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Summer Fridays: Do you fear them or love them?

Summer Fridays for many of us is the start of the long awaited weekend, the drive to the shore, or an evening BBQ with family and friends. But for those of us who live and work in the Washington, DC metro area our weekend plans are put on hold more often than not, and this Friday’s commute may prove to be another challenging drive according to an alert from the Virginia State Police: “On Friday afternoon (Aug 19), major traffic delays are expected on the Dulles Toll Road, Dulles Airport Access Highway, I-66 East and the Beltway due to a 9/11 memorial motorcycle ride, according to the Virginia State Police. Commuters should expect very significant traffic delays in the afternoon, especially during rush hour.”

This sort of an announcement would make me cringe if I didn’t work for a company that supports Telework. But fortunately, I do – so, I have the traffic gods under control! Remember work is what I do. Not a place. So I am working from my home office, avoiding the grid lock, with no impact on my productivity thanks to Cisco’s Telework / Mobile Workforce policy.

So it go me thinking… Why don’t more public and private sector organizations have Telework / Workforce Mobility policies, especially for “America’s 50 Worst Commutes.”

Summer Fridays. I love them!…  No longer fear them.  But, what about you?

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The Power of Pervasive Video

August 18, 2011 at 1:49 pm PST

We’re having a great time in Baltimore this week at the Defense Information Systems Agency’s Customer and Industry Forum 2011 (DISA). We’ve had the opportunity to discuss telepresence with people from all across the defense industry, and we’ve learned a great deal about their innovative and enterprising communications practices.

All of these discussions of enhancing information exchange for better command and control of military operations and improving communication throughout the Defense Department highlighted, for me, the profound impact a wide video collaboration deployment can have on an agency. With telepresence connections available to all employees, business retains continuity during disruptions, teleworkers stay fully connected, and agencies fulfill their commitments to environmental sustainability, among other benefits.  Read More »

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Telepresence Primed to Optimize Multijurisdictional Emergency Response

August 15, 2011 at 5:13 am PST

When emergency strikes, people want answers. What’s going on, what is the safety threat, and perhaps most importantly, who’s in charge?

That last question can lead to some complicated answers when an incident occurs under multiple law enforcement jurisdictions. For example, take the pipe bomb scare in March 2010 at the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, California. As Corey McKenna of Emergency Management explains, several units responded—campus police, a regional bomb squad, and the local police and fire departments—but these units did not have much history of working together. A fair bit of miscommunication and chaos ensued.

Thankfully, the above scenario proved to be nothing more than a suspicious empty suitcase. But the confusion among responding parties characterizes emergency response all too often. McKenna reports that problems with multijurisdictional response include “time and grind”—hammering out the details without the guidance of capable leadership—and “relationships”—knowing the people with whom you’re working. Read More »

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Cisco offers cloud and data center solutions for DISA’s Customer & Industry Forum

DISA’s Customer & Industry Forum 2011 provides a valuable opportunity to see and hear how the latest technologies can help the Department of Defense better achieve its mission while introducing greater efficiencies at lower cost. Read More »

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Are smart cards heading the way of video recorders?

I read an article recently discussing the advantages and disadvantages of smartcards. I know that there have been quite a few distributed, but it seems to me that the adoption rate and the length of time they have been available are a bit out of sync. I would have thought that we would have many more smartcards, used in more places, being as they werer actually invented in 1968, and were widely used in French pay phones starting in 1983.

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