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SDN Reflections on the London Gartner Data Center Conference – Part 1

Last week I was in London for the Gartner Data Center Conference.  As always there was a wide range of interesting topics being discussed, all very useful.  Working in Cisco Data Center Services, I am interested in many data center topics, however this year I was interested to hear perspectives on SDN, how the market is evolving, and how the attendees – including many senior IT practitioners – are considering SDN adoption.

London's Big Ben at Night

London’s Big Ben at Night

From a Cisco perspective, we were showcasing the recently launched Application Centric Infrastructure (ACI), which generated a lot of interest.  There is growing awareness among our customers that ACI could do for networks and applications what the Cisco UCS has done for the server market (with UCS server profiles in the latter proving a good analogy to help customers understand the potential of ACI).

So what were some of my key takeaways from the SDN discussion I heard here?  And what were the questions that in my view are still not being discussed sufficiently across the industry?

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Statement by Cisco Chairman and CEO on Nelson Mandela

“Today, Cisco joins the world in mourning the passing of Nelson Mandela. Mr. Mandela was a courageous leader who had the vision and strength of character to help create a brighter future for all citizens of the country he loved so much. In doing so he inspired the world. I, and all of my colleagues at Cisco, send our deepest sympathies to Mr. Mandela’s family and to the people of South Africa.”

– John Chambers

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Technology: The Heartbeat of Generation Z

I was thrilled and honoured to have Jessica spend this week with me learning about the world of PR as part of her Work Experience Program.  I didn’t have this type of program when I was in high school in the US and wish I had.  It is an excellent way to provide Australian students with insights into careers they are considering pursuing in the future. 

While we discussed the role of a PR professional, the media landscape, pitching journalists and developing story ideas, we also talked about Cisco and our vision to “Change the way we work, live, play and learn.”  It is on the topic of “how the Internet has changed the way we learn”, that Jessica has elected to write the following blog. 

Technology: The Heartbeat of Generation Z

Your heart thudding inside your chest is as fundamental to human life as technology is to Generation Z (those born since the late 1990s). Their smartphones, tablets and computers are an extension of themselves. This is evident in their compulsion to constantly check devices as they seek new information, connection and independence. Perhaps what they do not realize is that their lives and learning are dependent on this technology, without which, they could risk losing marks and even a heartbeat.

Still in school, Australia’s Generation Z is immersed in the rapid influx of knowledge and resources that the Internet supplies. They are accustomed to advancements in technologies and the presence of the Internet, which is now supplied in a seamless manner, wirelessly. This gives students the ability to move effortlessly without being hindered by a cable. Other developments in technology have increased the flexible approach to learning; appropriate study techniques; multitasking and optimal usage of time studying.

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The Internet of Everything’s Impact on Hospitality

When a person is considered tech-savvy and “always-connected” in their day-to-day life, these expectations don’t change when they stay in a hotel. In fact, this new “connected hotel guest” actually expects the same mobile experience at hotels that they receive at home or work.  Hoteliers across the world are constantly trying to find ways to meet the increasing needs of the mobile-connected guest. Previously, hotel Wi-Fi was used primarily for guests and staff connectivity, but now, it’s becoming much more than that because of these guests’ needs. Read More »

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Deep-Dive Techwise Technical Workshop: Cisco Connected Mobile Experiences

Next Thursday you don’t want to miss a live technical webcast with Q&A on the hot topic of Wi-Fi location-based services. Join Techwise tech legend Jimmy Ray Purser and technical marketing engineer lead Darryl Sladden for a deep technical discussion covering the ins and outs of Cisco’s Mobility Services Engine – the intelligence engine in the Cisco Wi-Fi network that enables Cisco Connected Mobile Experiences functionality.

You’ll get a full, hands-on view of four pieces of the solution and see how it all ties into your Wi-Fi network:

  • Location detection – how Cisco’s Wi-Fi infrastructure detects mobile devices and calculates their location
  • Analytics – how the MSE aggregates and reports Wi-Fi location data and trends to administrators and operations leads so that they can better understand guest behavior
  • APIs – how Cisco’s Mobility Services APIs provide application developers rich, contextual information they can use to create a variety of internally and externally-facing apps
  • Maps – a use case of how Cisco uses it’s own Wi-Fi location-based services inside the organization to increase efficiency and employees get to where they need to go

This is an in-depth session you won’t want to miss. Register now and mark your calendars for December 12!

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