This weekend, as the United States celebrates Veterans Day, Cisco’s Global Government team would like to thank all those who have and continue to serve.
The world is continuously changing, bringing new and complex challenges and now, more than ever, communities and citizens need and expect a connected government, one that will enable local government to be there to help, to serve and to protect, no matter what the circumstance.
A connected government is about creating new possibilities for citizens and employees. It’s about breaking down silos between agencies and departments, providing cost-effective solutions, increasing operational efficiencies, and delivering better, faster, real-time services. It’s about understanding how the world is changing, and adapting to that change with scalable, long term, solutions made possible through technology.
As governments of today face these variety of challenges, new and innovative approaches are being implemented and some local governments are leading the way by deploying cloud and mobility solutions to overcome these challenges in a collaborative and timely manner.
Our latest public sector video highlights some examples of how these challenges are being addressed globally.
In the months since I attended the Smart Cities event organized by Qualcomm and CommNexus in San Diego, the buzz about “Smart Cities” and the use of machine-to-machine (M2M) wireless technologies has only grown louder and more intense. Which Smart City-relevant innovations are under development inside Qualcomm?
Known primarily for mobile chipset technologies, Qualcomm is working to optimize wireless networks and sensors that support M2M solutions and, ultimately, Smart Cities of the future. An often-overlooked part of this initiative is the company’s work in preparing the wireless industry for the imminent tsunami of data that will come when countless “things” equipped with M2M wireless sensors—part of the “Internet of Everything”—hit wireless networks. Qualcomm calls it the 1000x Challenge, referring to wireless industry predictions about a 1000x increase in mobile data usage between 2010 and 2020.
From Qualcomm’s perspective, a “smarter grid“ employs digital wireless technologies that allow utility companies to safely and securely deliver prepaid electric services that save homes and businesses money through real-time monitoring of power usage over existing cell networks, thus reducing deployment costs for the utility and saving energy for the planet. At the same time, smarter grids enable customers to better manage their own energy usage.
One recent Smart Grid example is Qualcomm’s work with Duke Energy, the largest electric power holding company in the United States. The success of this collaboration has enabled Duke Energy to install hundreds of thousands of communications nodes, which interface with electric and gas meters, line sensors, transformers, and other end points, meters, sensors, and distribution automation equipment, and optimize energy usage in five states.
Working with ECOtality, a maker of electric vehicle (EV) charging stations, Qualcomm participated in The EV Project, the largest deployment of electric vehicles and charge infrastructure in history. The project, now in nine states plus the District of Columbia, leverages cellular technology incorporated into charging stations, enabling EV car drivers to easily find charging stations with their smartphones. Moreover, the solution allows users to reserve stations as well as receive alerts users when the charge is finished or if it the charge has been interrupted.
Another exciting development, also involving EVs, is Qualcomm Halo’s teaming with Renault and Delta Motorsport in London. Qualcomm Halo, a subsidiary of Qualcomm, produces wireless charging mats that enable EV drivers to simply drive up and park over the charging mat—no exact alignment necessary (e.g., you have to line up your electric toothbrush perfectly on the charger in order for it to charge). Initially, the benefit is no longer having to deal with tangled charging cables. But looking beyond that, Qualcomm Halo envisions embedded chargers in the roadway. Even further out is the idea that these mats could be built into the road and connected to the overall Smart Grid. Depending on the time of the day, more or less energy resources could be devoted to that specific roadway, effectively channeling energy to where it’s needed most.
BYOD: If It’s Really Inevitable, How are you going to get there?
Hi, my name is Cheryl Hewett and I am the Global Marketing Lead for Cisco Public Sector Services. I may work for a technology company, but I would definitely classify myself as a technology user…not an implementer. Like many of you, I find my need to balance work and home life crucial to my personal well-being. Having a single smart phone to manage both parts of my life has been a game changer.
According to a recent report in the LA Times, the International Telecommunications Union has issued a new report stating that at the end of 2011, 6 billion people had a cellphone subscription. That means 6 in 7 of us have a cellphone!
Our use of personal devices for work continues to increase, even in government organizations. The expected trend is for new employees to increasingly demand more use of their personal devices within their workplace. Read More »
I had the opportunity to take a day off to celebrate the San Francisco Giants victory of the 2012 World Series this year. The City of San Francisco scheduled the victory parade on Halloween. It’s the perfect day as the colors for the Giants team are black and orange. I saw the victory parade on TV in 2010 and decided I needed to feel the excitement this year and be there in person.
There were a lot of Giants fans on BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit). We decided to meet at the Civic Center in downtown San Francisco, where the parade route ends and the team will speak. Upon my exit off the BART station, I saw our very own Cisco NERV vehicle, supporting the City of San Francisco Giants Parade. Read More »
I love the Internet and all the great social and professional tools available in my life, to do my job, and keep in touch with friends and family around the world. But, we need to be careful since each email or web link represents a potential threat in the cyber world. Forget the ghosts and goblins of Halloween, cyber security threats are scary. Cyber-threats now have the potential to disrupt communications, cause widespread power outages, and compromise sensitive government intelligence – in a blink of an eye.
And, with the proliferation of mobile devices we need to be extra careful to ensure security. A recent U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) report found “18 of 24 major federal agencies have reported inadequate information security controls,” and in a September 2012 report on mobile security, recommends better implementation of controls for mobile devices need to be encouraged since malware aimed at mobile devices alone has risen 185 percent in less than a year.
The good news is that there are steps we can also take to address these risks including best practices. Click to learn more.