It’s easy to take our connectedness for granted, isn’t it? We often don’t even think about all the innovation behind our connections, but it’s mind boggling when you actually consider just how much getting connected has revolutionized nearly every facet of life over the past two decades. Even more amazing is the fact that we’re just getting started. I like how Mary Meeker, in the most recent installment of her highly anticipated annual “Internet Trends” presentation, described it as still being in “spring training.”
It took us more than 20 years to get two billion people on the Internet, but estimates suggest the next two billion will connect to the network in less than half that time. And the growth of connected “things” is even more incredible. Sometime around 2009, the number of things connected to the Internet surpassed the number of connected people, at which point we began to experience what some call the “Internet of Things.”
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Here is something fun you can do today with your smart phone or tablet. It’s an app that brings the Internet of Things alive from a newspaper or screen.
How to get it:
1. First, go grab a copy of today’s global Wall Street Journal and find the Cisco TOMORROW Starts Here ad, which is in the center of section A. ( From your computer, you can also print or view a copy of the ad.)
3. Start the app and touch the Wake up an Ad icon.
4. Press Start to wake up the ad.
(Again, if you don’t have the actual ad you can also print or view on the screen a copy of the ad from your computer.)
5. Point your phone or tablet at the ad…
6. Choose “Newspaper Spread” when the translucent overlay appears.
7. Enjoy playing with the interactive experience!
We’ve gotten some fun comments from Cisco employees during the testing, including these two:
SO cool! My kids actually watched the videos with me (ages 5-1/2 and 4); their verdict: “OOOH, look — the people are MOVING!!!”
Wow! It’s just like Hogwarts!”
One of the greatest things about the holiday season is the wonder and excitement it brings to families across the world. For the past six years, Cisco has ensured that children and their families who are unable to celebrate in the comfort of their own home due to illness are able to experience some of the festive traditions this time of year brings. Cisco’s annual Santa Connection Program virtually connects Santa Claus to thousands of hospitalized children worldwide. Through the magic of Cisco’s video collaboration technologies (TelePresence and Jabber for mobile devices), children virtually connect to the “North Pole” and are able to share their holiday wishes and Christmas lists with Santa directly.
This year, I was fortunate enough to visit Children’s National Medical Center in Washington, D.C. and get an early glimpse into how our Santa Connection Program will help nearly 400 kids at this hospital experience the magic of the season alongside their families. The hospitals’ telemedicine area will undergo its transformation into a Winter Wonderland complete with snow, Santa’s sleigh and shimmering holiday décor, all to create a place of joy for the children spending their holidays in the hospital.
In this magical room, patients connected with Santa’s Workshop via Cisco Jabber for iPad and TelePresence carts, allowing these children to meet face-to-face with Santa (and his elves!). I know that the excitement and joy these children experience while speaking with Santa is a moment that will never be forgotten and Cisco is honored to be a part of this annual event.
Currently in its sixth year, this is the program’s most successful season yet. From December 4-21, 2012 Santa will connect with nearly 3,000 children in 33 hospitals across the U.S. alone, and make additional stops to other hospitals across the globe, including the UK and Ireland and Canada. With this super-speed cyber sled, children can rest assured knowing St. Nick will have enough time to make his list and check it twice!
Stay tuned for more updates on Santa’s visits in the coming weeks as he virtually crosses the globe and delights thousands of kids during this special season. Here’s a first-hand account about Santa’s recent visit to Children’s of Alabama hospital in Birmingham, Alabama earlier this week! You can also read more about the program on our healthcare blog.
As part of our ongoing support of the Australian and New Zealand partner community, last week we hosted the second annual Cisco Marketing Excellence partner awards. These awards are designed to recognise the great work that our partners are doing in creating and promoting innovative Cisco campaigns.
The awards are given across both the partner and distributor categories as well as recognising a partner in the Premier/Silver category which is a new award this year.
I am pleased to announce the following partners as this year’s winners:
James Mackay from Express Data is the winner of the distributor category for developing creative marketing around the Cisco Front Row program. Gabrielle Kingston from Westcon was the runner up thanks to her innovative promotion of Cisco UCS.
In the partner category Logicalis’ Oliver Descoeudres was the winner for developing an integrated program promoting “Tomorrow’s Workplace”. The runner-up was Garrett MacDonald who created a cloud campaign for Data#3 featuring Cisco’s “Know the network” as a call to action.
For the new Premier/Silver partner category, Blair Burchill from Comscentre was judged the winner for a customer briefing he conducted with Cisco and a leading public sector customer.