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Entrepreneurs: Your Invitation to Innovate with Cisco in Europe – Second Season Application Now Open

It was only last November that I wrote about our first Cisco Entrepreneurs in Residence (Cisco EIR) cohort in Europe. I knew then we had started something special – an incubation model that allows Cisco to tap into the immense talent of the European startup community and helps address many of the unique challenges entrepreneurs face in the region. Only a few months into our first European season, our startups have gained significant traction inside Cisco – and are demonstrating potential for strategic relationships and differentiation with us.

With this success in mind, I am pleased to announce we are now accepting applications from startups located in Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Russia (EMEAR) to join our second season cohort in the region. We have partnered with Pioneers once again and are looking forward to announcing the winners on stage at the Pioneers Festival in Vienna in May. Find out more and apply here.

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Governments Need Global Standards of Conduct for Surveillance

Privacy and human rights advocates, technology companies, and trade associations have today called on U.S. political leaders to reform the country’s surveillance laws. We add our voice to those calls. These reforms will help show the world that the U.S. Government is ready to lead the dialogue on global standards of conduct, and wants to further build international trust with citizens – a cornerstone for our industry.

We also see a need for governments to agree on transparent standards of conduct. Building a system with appropriate safeguards and limits will serve both national security objectives and the needs of global commerce. In May 2014, Cisco offered a series of recommendations that support customer confidence in the global internet economy, while respecting the role that governments need to play in ensuring the physical safety and the economic security of their citizens. Governments and industry players need to deliver these outcomes for our future. Cisco is ready to play our part and we believe our peers and colleagues in industry and government are as well.

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As Cisco Intercloud Turns One, Two of its Architects Reflect On How The Strategy Was Born

A Q&A with Cisco President Rob Lloyd and Cloud Senior Vice President Nick Earle

Rob Lloyd Nick Earle Cisco

 

 

 

 

 

One year ago this week, Cisco announced a plan and a billion dollar investment to build the world’s largest Intercloud – a globally connected network of clouds from Cisco and our partners. As we arrive at the one-year anniversary, I took a few minutes to chat with Cisco President Rob Lloyd and Cloud SVP Nick Earle – two of the ‘architects of the Intercloud’ – about how the idea came about, and what they have learned in the year since the vision was unveiled.

David McCulloch: Can you take us back to early 2014 and remind us why Cisco needed to evolve its cloud strategy?

Rob Lloyd: In late 2013, even as sales of Cisco’s SaaS and cloud enabling technologies continued to rise, we started to see demand for a new cloud model: a hybrid cloud model that took into account our customers’ current IT investments and augmented those with a choice of cloud providers, and access to local and national cloud options to more easily comply with data privacy and industry regulations. We realized that if we could deliver all of that with one holistic hybrid cloud strategy that gave customers a high degree of control over security, policy and application performance, we had a huge opportunity on our hands.

DM:  Enter Cisco Intercloud! How did the idea come about?

Rob: A few weeks before Cisco’s annual executive leadership team meeting, Nick Earle, Edzard Overbeek (head of Cisco Services), Jim Sherriff (chief of staff) and I met to brainstorm what it would take to deliver the hybrid cloud strategy our customers wanted.  We knew we had some valuable assets already: Cisco Application Centric Infrastructure (ACI) was capable of enabling consistent security and policy across clouds. Intercloud Fabric enabled portability of workloads between clouds. And our Integrated Architecture offers in the Data Center were already market leading.  But we realized we could go further still if we fully embraced our extensive global ecosystem of partners. If we could combine Cisco’s strengths together with those of our partners, and move quickly, we knew we could disrupt current cloud models and become the market leader in hybrid cloud solutions.

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Cisco Named Supplier for New Verizon Next-Generation Metro Optical Network Build

By Bill Gartner, Vice President Cisco’s Optical Systems and Transceivers Group

At Cisco, we pride ourselves on being true business collaborators with our service provider customers.

And we relish any opportunity to work side-by-side with a leading global service provider on a technology program with the potential to advance the entire telecommunications industry.

These opportunities are rare indeed. And today at OFC, the largest global conference and exposition for optical communications and networking professionals, Cisco was fortunate enough to receive such an opportunity.

Verizon announced that it would be working with Cisco and one other supplier to design and build a next-generation 100G metro network in the United States that will deliver improved scalability, functionality and efficiency. To meet Verizon’s mission of offering its customers high-capacity video and wireless solutions, it has decided to modernize its metro optical network.  Cisco is honored to be part of this important network transformation.

Using 100G flexible CDC ROADMs and packet aggregation will enable Verizon to advance and scale its network while maintaining existing services and reducing service-activation times as well as network operation and maintenance costs.

“Deploying a new coherent, optimized and highly scalable metro network means Verizon stays ahead of the growth trajectory while providing an even more robust network infrastructure for future demand,” said Lee Hicks, vice president of Verizon network planning. “Cisco met not only our technology requirements but the aggressive timeline to deploy our next-generation 100G-and-above metro network.”

Verizon will test and deploy the Cisco Network Convergence System and the second NCS4000supplier’s equipment on portions of its 100G metro network this year, with plans to turn up live traffic in 2016. Supplier volumes will be guided by ongoing testing, support and performance.

Verizon and Cisco are long-standing technology and business partners, and we are pleased to play a key role in Verizon’s optical network modernization program.

Cisco has made investments in next-generation optical technologies to help Verizon realize its vision to transform its network architecture to achieve the speed and operational efficiency required to meet the demands of today, while capturing growth opportunities over the next decade.

This new architecture gives Verizon advantages in its metro network including increased capacity, superior latency and improved scalability.

Verizon is a leader in 100G technology having successfully completed several industry firsts, beginning in 2007 with a successful field trial of 100G optical traffic on a live system.

Cisco is very pleased to be working closely with Verizon on its landmark network build-out, and we are committed to making it successful so that Verizon customers will reap its benefits for decades to come!

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Celebrating STEM with a Piece of “Pi”

Tomorrow is Pi Day! We make this a fun day in our household, where we celebrate the mathematical constant of π—or 3.1415—on March 14. To celebrate, we will make (and eat!) pie and see who can recite the most digits of pi. This year math fanatics are thrilled because it falls on 3/14/15, which aligns to the first five digits of pi. This has created even greater interest in what already is a global phenomenon.

Beyond pie eating and making YouTube videos, Pi Day provides the perfect opportunity to talk about our need for Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) education. The gaps we have in highly trained and skilled workers for the next wave of the Internet—or the Internet of Everything—are real. According to research, by 2018 the U.S. will face a projected shortfall of 230,000 qualified advanced-degree STEM workers.

We must get children engaged in STEM earlier and cultivate that interest throughout their entire educational journey. The National Center for STEM Elementary Education notes that a third of students lose interest in science by the fourth grade, and by eighth grade, almost 50 percent have lost interest. By the time students reach high school, only 16 percent of American high school seniors are proficient in mathematics and interested in a STEM career.

To ensure we are ready for the new digital era, Cisco is participating in a number of programs to engage and educate students in STEM areas. One program, US2020, is dedicated to igniting movement of STEM mentorship across the United States. Cisco has pledged that by 2020, 20 percent of our workforce will volunteer in STEM mentoring. We also provide funding for innovative programs like the MIND Research Institute, which is fundamentally changing how math is being taught in underserved communities from coast to coast.

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