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Cisco Joins Second Life

With the launch of Cisco’s latest Integrated Services Router (ISR) Empowered Branch launch, Cisco has taken its first step into Second Life. Our first foray in Second Life was the launch of the new ISR product, but this is just the beginning of the Cisco’s campus in Second Life. For Cisco, it is about the Human Network. Part of that is becoming part of communities in Real Life, and now, in Second Life. We opened the Cisco campus to better explain and show who we are, what we are about, and how we are powering the Human Network. And, that means more than just showcasing products (or, giving away T-shirts and virtual Cisco phones in Second Life). It means working with the community, becoming part of the community. Read More »

Scientific Atlanta’s HD Encoder Wins The Day

Consumers are getting to enjoy increasingly higher quality video images, and a driver of that experience is Scientific Atlanta, a Cisco company, and its continued development of products that enhance home entertainment. This week, the Consumer Electronics Association cited Scientific Atlanta’s MPEG-4 HDTV Advanced Compression Encoder (Model D9054) as an International CES Innovations 2007 Design and Engineering Awards Honoree. “Scientific Atlanta’s new Model D9054 HD Advanced Video Compression Encoder is the first single-slice per picture AVC encoder, setting an unprecedented benchmark in HD video quality at low bit rates,” the award citation said.

Giancarlo Points to TelePresence

TelePresence Powers Cisco’s Emerging MarketsThis week, Charlie Giancarlo, Cisco’s chief development officer, spoke about Cisco’s cultivation of innovation. Listen to the entire podcast.Along those lines, Cisco recently formed its Emerging Markets group aimed at generating new products and business from within the company.”The Emerging Markets group exists to create all new products that are not likely to come from our existing business units. Our recently launched Cisco TelePresence product is a great example of what the group is up to,” Giancarlo said.”Such innovative technology needs a focused and from-the-ground-up effort that the Emerging Markets group is set up to provide.”As I’ve told the leader of that group, Marthin De Beer, I’m not looking for him to produce x number of new products per year,” said Giancarlo. Watch a video of DeBeer explaining TelePresence. “I’m looking for major new market opportunities and to have the business plans for those worked out well enough where we can expect to have a 60 percent success rate. It’s really a place where the entrepreneurs at Cisco…can shine.”

Evolving Networks

Two new stories demonstrate the changes IP-based communications are bringing about in our living and working environments.In Colorado, The Children’s Hospital said it will work with Cisco partner Global Technology Resources to provide a Unified Communications system at its new, 10-story 1.44-million-square-foot campus in Aurora, scheduled to open in the fall of 2007. The hospital selected a number of products from the Cisco Unified Communications portfolio, as well as from Cisco’s security, wireless, networking, and business transformation services that hold out much promise for improved patient care and hospital administration.The new network will be able to support a myriad of new applications. For example, hospital staff will be able to use hand-held devices to check medication levels, helping ensure that patients receive the correct dosage and type of drugs, Ryan Frymire, the hospital’s director of IT, told the Denver Post.In addition, a nurse-call system, which patients use to request water, assistance or medication will let patients have two-way communication directly with the nursing desk. That would allow tasks such as fetching ice chips to be handled by nursing assistants rather than registered nurses. In Las Vegas, Clark County’s new Regional Justice Center is deploying an IP multimedia communications network that promises much change in court administration.”The new network is helping government go to the people rather than the other way around,” Chuck Short, executive officer for Clark County’s court system said in a News@Cisco story. “We really want to take distance out of the equation for access to justice.”Clark County has already used video conferencing to conduct a divorce court case for a woman homebound on the East Coast due to illness. Additionally, Cisco’s wireless network in the Justice Center now lets visitors or workers log-on in the building. The network allows attorneys, for example, to use the wireless connection to display computer-based slideshows for courtroom presentations.

Actions Speak Louder Than Words

“Ĺ“Globally, two-thirds of employees are cognizant of security risks when working remotely on company machines. That’s the good news. Of course, the converse is that one-third connect blindly to the Internet, in spite of hacking, theft and malware threats.”That’s how VARBusiness describes the results of a global security survey of more than 1,000 teleworkers in 10 countries.While most remote workers say they are aware of security issues, their behavior often doesn’t show it.The survey by an independent marketing firm commissioned by Cisco, was designed to better understand how teleworkers’ perceptions and behavior heighten security risks for the global network community, information technology (IT) organizations and the businesses they support. While two of every three teleworkers surveyed said they were aware of security concerns when working remotely, many admitted behavior that undermines and contradicts their awareness. Their reasons offer valuable insight for IT and security managers around the world, fueling a need for tighter, proactive relationships with end users. For example, more than one of every five remote workers surveyed allow friends, family members or other non-employees to use his or her work computer to access the Internet. In China, more than two of every five admitted to sharing their work computers. And in Japan, more end users share their work computers with others than those who use them for their own personal use. Top excuses: “I don’t see anything wrong with it”; “My company doesn’t mind me doing so”; “I don’t think letting them use it increases security risks”; “I doubt my company would care”; “Co-workers do it”"The immediate takeaway is that companies must do more to raise user security awareness and change risky computing habits,” VARBusiness wrote.