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Cisco Flashmob! Did You See the Green Men? … and Other Cool Cable Show News

This year’s Cable Show kicked off with a … well, with a flash mob! First one ever for this event. All very exciting, if you ask me, or the hundreds of other cable onlookers on hand at the Boston Convention Center this morning.

Here’s how it went down: When the Show floor opened yesterday, at 11:00am, attendees mixed it up with 100 or so professional troupe dancers, some dressed in green stretchy suits, head to toe, with signage: “Don’t miss the event of the Show! Imagine Park, today at 11:30am! Be there!”  Mysterious.

When Cisco Fellow John Chapman took the Imagine Park stage at about 11:40am, it wasn’t to talk about CCAP, or the future of DOCSIS, or anything else, for that matter – because the green people and flash mobbers took over, in a big way. See for yourself:

But flashmobbing isn’t all we’re doing in Boston to shine the spotlight on the many good things happening in cable technology. We’re also glad to announce our work with Bright House Networks, to help businesses and school districts manage the security risks that come with the “BYOD” (bring your own device) realities of today.

Specifically, we’re working with Bright House to help the nation’s 10th-largest school district, serving 179,000 students, with a cloud-based managed services mix (IP VPNs, security; unified communications to come) to more than 250 sites. More here.

And today we announced another Videoscape deal with one of China’s largest cable operators. Oriental Cable Network is working with Cisco to advance its multi-screen video efforts, using Videoscape Quickstart, featuring a mix of products including Videoscape Media Suite, Content Delivery System IS (CDS-IS), Cisco Media Processor (CMP) and Cisco Digital Content Manager (DCM).

On the floor, do please come by Booth #1453, to check out our brand spankin’ new DS384 line cards, for our RF Gateway 10 chassis. Why you care: 10 cards, each capable of 10 Gbps. Apply one for redundancy, still get 160 Gbps of potential downstream throughput. Hello, full spectrum!

All in, it’s a great cable week in Boston! We’re here ‘til Wednesday afternoon, come on by.

Meanwhile, check out what John Chapman has to say about DOCSIS:

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Happy Birthday DOCSIS! Let’s Eat Cake

Think back to the year 1997. Back then, Bill Clinton had just begun his second Presidential term. Princess Diana’s funeral was watched by 1.5 billion people. Internet Explorer version 4 was new. The Hale-Bopp comet made its closest approach to Earth – and the Data Over Cable Service Interface Specification (DOCSIS) was released publicly for the first time (March 1997), marking the beginning of the broadband revolution.

That’s why our John Chapman, a Cisco Fellow and one of the original contributors to the DOCSIS specification, chose to highlight the subject, during his March 20 keynote at the Light Reading Cable Next-Gen Broadband Strategies conference in Denver.

The highlights: By year-end 1997, some 10,000 DOCSIS-based cable modems were installed in Canada. At the time, services ran on a single carrier, for 40 Mbps downstream – spread across 20+ fiber nodes.

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The Case for Cable in the Tablet Era

By Roland Klemann, Director of Service Provider Practice, Western Europe, Internet Business Solutions Group

Although the coaxial cable may have been born in 1929, predictions of its death have been greatly exaggerated.

While traditional models for consuming television are indeed under siege—from time-shift TV, over-the-top video, and an ever-expanding array of new devices—cable remains highly relevant, even in an age of exploding data traffic. In fact, with savvy deployment of Wi-Fi services, cable providers can seize an opportunity—not in spite of the mobile data deluge, but because of it.

After all, that sleek new iPad—introduced last week while I was attending the Cable Congress in Brussels—boasts dazzling video resolution. But for network operators, it only adds to a growing problem. They are already reeling under the burden of a massive upsurge in traffic, from tablets and IP-enabled devices of all kinds. What’s worse, they are still at the low end of an ongoing mobile data explosion. Cisco’s Virtual Networking Index predicts an eighteen-fold increase in mobile traffic from 2011 to 2016.

As a result, two things are breaking down: 1) the physical capacity of the networks, and 2) their economics. Theoretically, mobile carriers can build enough macro cells to carry all the traffic in the world, but in reality, that gets prohibitively expensive—fast. No wonder some are feeling an encroaching sense of doom.

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Hear Comcast, Cox, & TWC Share Industry Perspectives on IPv6

Do you know how networks will transition from IPv4 to IPv6?

If you aren’t planning to attend the V6 World Congress next week let me invite you to a webinar on Wednesday February 8, 2012 at 1:00 PM New York / 6:00 PM London time. . Besides the vendor perspective from Cisco and other industry participants, this event hosted by Heavy Reading Read More »

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SCTE Cable-Tec Expo Attendees: Welcome to Atlanta!

By Mark Palazzo, VP and GM of Cisco’s Cable Access Business Unit

Just a few more days until the start of this year’s SCTE Cable-Tec Expo, to be held in Atlanta from Nov. 14-17. We’re excited to see y’all in our fair city! A lot will go on next week, so we thought we’d put out some signposts about where you can find us, what we’re doing, and what we want to show you while you’re there.

Where you can find us and what we want to show you: We’re piling in to booth #1762, where we’ll be showing everything we’re working on to reinvent the television experience. That means:

  • The Videoscape Experience: “Videoscape” incorporates cloud, network and client devices to drive new video experiences over traditional and Internet-based networks.  That means freeing viewers from the traditional bounds of time, place and platform, towards the realities of anytime, anywhere, any screen.

Specifically, we’ll demonstrate the integration of linear, on-demand and over-the-top content, with our Media Suite – a full lifecycle content management system, for both managed and unmanaged (consumer-purchased) devices. As in set-tops, soft clients, Internet TVs, tablets, smart phones, you name it.

Also on hand: Ways to distribute media inside and outside the home, using our Media Gateway family of products, as well as our “Conductor” – a standards-based, real-time network and device management tool designed specifically for service providers. Read More »

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