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In the event of a water landing…

I just got to DC from San Francisco International Airport, so I obviously flew-and boy are my arms tired. Thank you, Henny Youngman. The flight attendants were giving the safety briefing and they spend the majority of the time, it seems, on the”water landing.” Like most fellow passengers, I already know how to buckle a seatbelt and I will definitely put my oxygen mask on first before helping others, thankyouverymuch. However, will I really be using that seat as a flotation device? Will the slide from the emergency exit door really be used for a raft? I guess what I’m getting at -and I hate to sound fatalistic here -is, IF we really did have a”water landing” would any of these water devices be used? Have they EVER been used? Or, as I suspect, is all the”water landing” information meant to make us all feel a little better as we jump on the plane yet again?What is the technology equivalent of”in the event of a water landing” instructions? I suspect it is very much like”please refrain from using your typewriter until we have reached our cruising altitude.” Or, perhaps,”if you help that nice Nigerian son of the Treasury minister get his money to an U.S. bank account, you really WILL get a handsome helpers fee.” Or, better yet,”giving all your personal information online in order to win that free IPOD will, in no way, ever be used by spammers.”Okay, perhaps I’m just a little cranky from traveling.

Are you a head of state? Come to Cisco.

You may have seen that U.S. President George W. Bush visited Cisco’s campus last week. He called Cisco,”one of America’s most innovative companies.” Very nice of him to say that and I must agree, although, I probably would have said”world’s most innovative companies,” but still-He was in Silicon Valley to talk about his competitiveness initiative and we were all pleased that he chose Cisco in order to do so. Joining him, at a table of six, were our CEO, John Chambers, and California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger among others (who a friend suggested we may need to get a cube for him as it was his second time visiting Cisco in as many weeks.) The President’s full remarks can be read here.Anywho, President Bush is not the first head of state to visit Cisco’s campus in San Jose, CA. Since I have been at Cisco (circa 1999) we have also hosted the Presidents of Chile and Mexico, as well as the King of Jordan, and in 1998, then-U.S. Vice President Al Gore and Russian Prime Minister Viktor Chernomyrdin…this is not an exhaustive list, however.What does a head of state get out of meeting with Cisco? First and foremost: knowledge. Cisco invented the technology that forms the core of the Internet. We use the secure internet to run our business and save billions of dollars in operational costs and efficiencies. We can help governments do the same. Read More »

Governor Schwarzenegger At Cisco

Last week, Cisco hosted California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger who sat down with our CEO, John Chambers, as well as 20 or so other CEOs and high-tech executives from California. This meeting was put together by two technology trade associations of which we are members: TechNet and AEA. While it was a private meeting and I can’t report on the meeting proceedings, I can tell you what John Chambers talked about to the group…competitiveness.His presentation to the Governor and group of executives was framed by the four key pillars of what, in his view, it takes a state…or a nation…or be competitive in this increasingly flat world. Here they are: Read More »

Win a Round of Golf At Augusta National!!

So, I was watching The Masters a bit this weekend and I’m thinking how great it would be to actually play at Augusta National. I have the wireless Internet going at home, so I’m also checking out scorecards of players as I’m watching. Anyway, the point of this brief note is: HOW GREAT WOULD IT BE IF YOU COULD WIN A ROUND AT AUGUSTA BY WATCHING THE MASTERS? Maybe that’s a bit too pedestrian for the Augusta National members, but an online contest in concert with CBS would be HUGE. CBS, are you listening? Chairman Hootie Smith, are you listening?If you were watching on Sunday and saw Rocco Mediate put two into the drink on the Par 3 12th hole and then put the next one in the sand over the green and you were wondering, as was I, “what was his final score on that hole?”, you wouldn’t have learned it on CBS coverage…you had to go to and check the “hole by hole” summary. What did he make on that hole? That would be a very tough 10. Yep, seven over par. That makes it tough to win a tournament.I bet I could get a 10 on that hole…that is, IF I won the Masters/CBS online raffle…they just need to implement it.

Net Neutrality: “What we have here is a failure to communicate”

In a column on Net Neutrality in today’s San Francisco Chronicle, the editorialist states: “Here’s the problem: Let’s say pays extra fees to have its site load faster on people’s browsers. And let’s say a smaller online bookstore can’t afford the fees and thus its site loads more slowly. Assuming book prices at both sites are comparable, which one will get more business over the long haul? Most likely, the one with better performance — in this case, Amazon. The smaller upstart can’t compete.”Read the full SFChronicle story here.This, the author says, is the crux of the argument about why network operators shouldn’t be allowed to charge for their services like, say, the mobile phone operators charge for their services…or, dare I say, how Amazon charges for its services. Let me ‘splain. Read More »