Several times each year, Cisco transforms its largest on-campus meeting spaces from auditoria into technology demo extravaganzas.
We call these events ‘Demo Expos’. They’re a core part of how we encourage innovation at Cisco. The basic idea of Demo Expo is to enable engineers from across the company to show their colleagues what they’ve been working on, or to gather feedback on work-in-progress that could improve inventions and ultimately hasten them to commercialization.
Some of the demos are finished products that are already available to customers. Some are prototypes of products that will soon go into production, and some are, well, just concepts.
Last week’s version of Demo Expo brought together 180 demonstrators and more than 2500 employees simultaneously at five of Cisco’s US sites in San Jose, New England, Lawrenceville, Texas and RTP.
One of the demos that caught the eye of a visiting reporter from Wired, was the Cisco Connected Vehicle initiative. It’s a great example of what might be possible when some of the 99.8% of ‘things’ in the world that are not currently connected to the network, join in.
As the author Bob McMillan explains: “The payoff would be a more connected car — one that can switch from 4G to wireless networks while simultaneously streaming a YouTube video to kids in the back without so much as a hiccup. It would be a car that could get firmware updates over the air, and it would also be a lighter vehicle — one that used wireless connections and lighter Ethernet cables.”
I’ll leave you to read Bob’s article on Cisco’s vision for connected vehicles in Wired, but suffice to say, the connected car is coming to a driveway near you in the not-too-distant-future!