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Virtual Overhaul

So one of the key feedback items we have gotten from attendees of Cisco Live and Networkers Virtual is that the virtual environment is difficult to navigate as there are too many navigation options and the style is not consistent across the pages. We take this feedback very seriously and I am pleased to announce that on 6 April 2010 a major user interface and style treatment revamp was launched live.

Some of the key changes include:

  • Implementation of a single top level navigation with drop down menu options to increase ease of use and awareness of the depth of content and peer networking available in the virtual environment.
  • Consistent style treatment applied across all pages to enable a consistent user experience and continuity in brand through-out the virtual environment.
  • Bottom toolbar implementation to provide quick access to key tools such as feedback, help, virtual briefcase, and the communication center. The bottom toolbar also allows for key messages and activities to be more easily viewed and digested via the toolbar banner ad and rotating marquee messages.

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A nice overview of the new home page navigation

Web analysts SiteIQ wrote up a nice overview and review of the new navigational features on the home page.

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Oooooo… new menus

Last night, we made some subtle changes to the home page, including some brand new drop-down menus from that bar at the top.  These new menus have links to a broader range of things, and during our extensive testing you’ve told us they’re easier to read and understand:

Before: Products


After: Products for Your Home

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Room Service: TelePresence Style


marriottLet me tell you a story about a friend of mine, we’ll call him Tom.  What if I told you that Tom got in his car this morning, and drove into Manhattan.   From there, he headed over to Frankfurt, Germany, to interview a project manager, then quickly jumped over to Bangalore to review the current status of his new product build.   Both meetings were time sensitive, and took place face-to-face.   Best part was, Tom was back home in time to have dinner with the family.   Is Tom the head of a fortune 100 company travelling by private jet?  Not quite.  He is the owner of a small software company, and he travels by TelePresence, hosted by Marriott. 

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Mobile Barcodes for Virtual Connections

I meet so many people via virtual means and probably won’t meet many of them in real life. One of the consistent requests we have for each other is the exchange of contact information. This becomes a very manual process. I have been looking at ways to enable quick connections with virtual contacts and have been revisiting mobile ‘barcode’ technology to support this effort.

Mobile barcode technology is not new in any way, shape or form. When I was thinking about ways to enable quicker exchange of contact details and other information with my virtual network contacts mobile devices came to mind as a possible solution. What I found is for ‘barcode’ technology there are a several different flavors to choose from and from my testing some work better than others as relates to supporting vCard, URL, media, and other types of information exchanges. I will go into details and provide examples further in the post.

So let’s dive into those barcode technologies and see some working examples.

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