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[Cisco Developer Contest] Meet the Finalists!

The wait is over. After getting nearly 900 registrations from 75 countries, among all those who submitted their proposals for Phase-1 of the Cisco Developer contest, we had 110 qualified teams who satisfied the requirements originally set forth. Cisco judges were amazed at the quality of the entries, the diverse range of ideas and the creativity that had gone into these submissions. This was especially surprising given that a vast majority of the contestants had never been exposed to Cisco router and many had not even heard of the Application Extension Platform and how it facilitates application integration. Because of the diversity we had judges with multiple disciplinary backgrounds sit in as consultants. For all those who responded -- THANK YOU! For all those, who were shortlisted as potential finalists -- big KUDOS to you. And for the top ten finalists -- CONGRATULATIONS!So, who thought Inside the Box?These teams were short listed into potential finalists as mentioned in my previous blog. After another review process, we finally have the top 10 finalist teams who are raring to roll up their sleeves and get into the Cisco labs.These finalists come from four different continents:• From North America: Team Cupertino Systems, Team Service Enabled Networks and Team SNAT• From Europe: Team MADnetwork, Team Bugsbernie and Team RSDevs• From South America: Team Jin Jin and Team Campuser• From Asia: Team Ideate and Team EnhancersWe’ve two teams of three, three teams of two, and the rest are individuals. They come from diverse backgrounds including many who are entrepreneurs, some are students and others are techies who’ve entered the contest for the fun of it. Their motives range from “taking the family to Disneyland” to “continuing higher education”.Mick Scully, Cisco Vice President at the Access Routing Technology group put out a VoD announcing the finalists. Be sure to check out the Flash version where Mick captures the momentum and announces the finalists on the contest website. It is ironic that a few months ago, many of these finalists were going about their busy lives. They were probably aware of Cisco and maybe had heard of our routers, but had no idea that they would be doing anything with either. The Cisco Developer Contest changed all. Now, their lives just got that much busier, as they spend their waking time thinking what they need to do to win the contest and create some history here :-). New and updated contest website:We’ve updated the Cisco ‘Think Inside the Box’ contest website to feature the finalist teams and provide insight into their applications. We’ve also put up team photographs with their personal profiles. Be sure to check that out. You may send shout outs to your favourite teams through the Innovation Blog (no need to register). We’ll also look to bringing you video blogs shortly, to give you a 360 degree view into our finalists. Read More »

Top Ten Questions on My Mind as I Head to InterOp — What are Yours?

Oh, how InterOp has changed… and changed… and changed, again. I remember InterOp’s original innovation roots — when live connection to the showfloor network was a requirement for all exhibitors. In this early phase, attendees numbered from a few to around ten thousand and were mostly software/hardware development engineers. Proving was paramount. Connecters, signals, protocols, devices… everything needed proving. I remember InterOp’s transition to a full-fledge mega-show, requiring exhibition space in not only the Las Vegas Convention Center and attached Hilton, but also within a dozen or more satellite hotels. In this phase, attendees numbered over 150,000 and were mostly network operators and product marketeers. Selling was paramount. Vendors sold customers. Start-ups sold investors (or outright buyers). Technology innovation seemed to take a back seat to crossing the chasm in order to reach the mainstream money pile. Well, with a troubled economy and heightened virtual access to industry events and information, InterOp would seem to be returning to its innovation roots once again. No network vendor should be spending event monies unless they are looking to show something that is truly innovative. No network operator should be spending travel monies unless they are looking to do something really innovative. While the development engineers may not have returned, InterOP has once again returned to being a proving ground for networking. Only this time around, it is less about proof of concept and more about proof of value. Which leads me to the questions that I will carry with me as I travel the aisles, visit the booths, and attend the sessions. Read More »

Inspirational innovations

May 8, 2009 at 12:00 pm PST

When Barack Obama kicked off his online town hall meeting recently, he accomplished yet another innovative endeavor in his presidency. No other US presidents have ever reached out to the public and grass roots the way he has, utilizing the full power of the Internet and technologies to connect with the main street.Customers are asking the same effort in the information security arena. They are looking for new solutions that can help them secure their business environment, with easy deployment and management in the mean time. I’m very excited about the major progress made in Cisco’s Identity-Based Networking Services (IBNS). It is just such an innovative solution for customers. Read More »

The Power of the Network

With power, comes responsibility. You’ve heard this before, but it is even more critical when we’re all armed with the tools that can influence or impact others. Most recently, this came to a head with Twittering about Swine Flu. With the unfiltered nature of the ‘tweet’, fact and rumor, the correct and incorrect, are immediately available to ‘followers.’ It is almost like mob rule for news. Twitter is just the latest example of our sometime misplaced demand for the latest information … a nation developing an acute case of ADD and grabbing disparate pieces of information on the fly …. without any centralized analysis based on vetted data. Imagine if you managed your IT infrastructure that way. Reacting to individual situations as isolated problems; troubleshooting based on rumors or hearsay; operating in a vacuum, without analysis and without the bird’s eye view. Not the most strategic or efficient way to manage your business. And certainly not an approach you can sustain over the longer term. Caveat emptor, magnified a thousand-fold. Read More »

Cisco IT Innovation Forum – A sneak peek for May 7th

As mentioned in my previous blog, on May 7th, less than three days from today, curtains will rise on the Cisco IT Innovation Forum -- a 360-degree customer-focussed event involving Cisco’s customers from all over the world, industry thought leaders from various analyst firms and of course, Cisco business and technology experts. What’s in it for you?All our keynote speakers, panelists and other presenters are going to share their thoughts and experience on how to sustain innovation in turbulent times while navigating to survive. Though there is no one size fits all, these are times when the bulk of organizations resonate to a few common problems, and are looking for creative practices to lower costs in the workplace, improve productivity and think outside the box in how they leverage IT not just as a cost center but as a strategic asset to their business.Who’s speaking?We have our customers sharing their experiences and advocating best practices from across the globe. It’s not “Cisco-speak” and believe me you don’t want to miss this — Joao D. Bezerra Leite, Director, IT Operations and Infrastructure, Itau Bank- Ushir Bhatt, Chief Executive Officer, Future Group- Dave Cahill, Chief Information Officer, Van Meter Industrial, Inc.- Matthew Frederickson, Director, Information Technology, Council Rock School District- Grigorios Gkotsis, Project Manager, Consultant, Information Society S.A., of Ministry of Interior- Eric Hicks, Director, Information Technology, Burnham Institute for Medical Research- Marco Michelotti, Manager, Information and Communication, Leaseplan- Darren O’Connor, Chief Information Officer, The Reject Shop- Riccardo Salierno, Chief Information Officer, Liquigas S.p.A.- Daryl Schweiger, Manager, Information Systems, Cardiovascular GroupAlso, don’t miss out on some of the leading analysts from Nemertes group, Current Analysis and the Lippis report, or the Keynote session with Cisco executives Mick Scully, Marie Hattar, Shailesh Shukla moderated by Bob Berlin. Believe me, none of them are shy to voice their opinions.imageRegister now @ http://www.ciscoitinnovationsforum.com. It’s Virtual and Free! Read More »