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How Cisco is Keeping You in The Game

Every year millions of hours of work are lost to the NCAA basketball tournament – from checking brackets and streaming games at work to people taking time off to catch their choice game. For many, travelling to watch their team’s games could mean even more hours lost –but not anymore. 

Two weeks ago I flew out a few days early to Saint Louis, Missouri to cheer on the Stanford Men’s Basketball team in the first and second round of the tournament. My flight from San Jose had Wi-Fi, which allowed me to work for the majority of the time in the air. I wasn’t the only one either:  Read More »

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Importing contacts from WebEx Connect to IM & Presence

Currently, WebEx Connect has no method of exporting contacts into Jabber or IM & Presence. I came up with this solution to help a couple of my users migrate their large contact lists, and thought I would share the solution with you. Let me know what you think.

This method relies on the use of a perl script and having the user log into pidgin XMPP client to WebEx Connect to populate the pidgin blist.xml file with the WebEx Connect contacts. Read More »

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Use SDN Strategically – and NOT as a “Band Aid”

hammer nut

The other week I attended the “Software Defined Networking 2013” conference in London.  This is a UK-based event for the discussion of SDN, OpenFlow and Network Virtualisation Solutions from a strategic perspective.  There were quite a few interesting perspective s I picked up at this conference.  In particular, the conference for me reinforced the potential of SDN – but if you apply it to the wrong problem, you may not get the return you hope for!

Top of mind for me, then, coming out of this conference was a demo of “What SDN Can Do For You” from one of our competitors.  At best, the phrase “using a sledge hammer to crack a nut” comes to mind.

The demo came from our friends in Palo Alto, who once (boldly but incorrectly!) predicted  that “Cisco UCS would be dead a year after launch”. They gave a SDN-focused demo that, when I “peeled back the onion”, didn’t demonstrate a compelling SDN use case.  Rather, it convinced me that if you have this particular problem as illustrated in their demo, you don’t need SDN: you need a new vendor!

Read More »

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The Sidelines That Had a Big Win

As the Internet of Everything continues to progress and more people, process, data and things begin to connect to each other, it’s getting easier to see how the future will fit together. The pieces of the IoE puzzle will no longer be disparate things, but a single, connected unit with technology at the core.

A great way to demonstrate this connection is to think of everyday situations. A child’s big game is important to any parent, and the CFO of a Fortune 500 company is no exception. But when the CFO is double booked with a meeting and his son’s big soccer game, he might worry how to balance his life at home with his life at work. Thanks to IoE, he doesn’t have to choose.

The Internet of Everything connects the CFO’s phone and car, which communicate to keep him on a conference call with his sales team while he travels to the field. He knows that when home phones become work phones – thanks in part to technology like Cisco Connected Mobile Experience – work can fit in anywhere. At the field, his connected tablet provides updates on the real-time sales data of products sold nationwide. Instead of having to step aside from the game to check in with the office, the CFO can watch his company break the all-time sales record as it happens, virtually with his sales team via Cisco WebEx, while celebrating his son’s win, in person on the sidelines.

And that is just the beginning. Imagine that the soccer ball is instrumented to provide feedback to individual children, helping them to improve their game, while at the same time providing the coach with play-by-play replays on his tablet. Video feeds of the game can be sent to grandmothers in other states so they can watch their grandchildren play. And as the play clock ticks down, uniforms monitor the kids’ vitals to ensure no one gets dehydrated, sending alerts to the parent volunteers when a child needs an extra water break.

This is the kind of experience the Internet of Everything is making possible. Explore the interactive image above to learn more. No longer must people choose between things such as work and play. IoE is integrating the two, creating opportunities for flexibility, security and real-time success.

Tell me, how can you see IoE making a difference in your world? Leave a comment here or join the conversation on Twitter to add your thoughts.

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Anytime, Anywhere Efficiency


As today’s workforce continues to become more mobile and adopt the “on-the-go” mentality both at home and at work, their needs are also evolving. Companies need to respond. Empowering employees to work anytime, anywhere will improve efficiencies and increase productivity. When the staff takes their work outside of office walls, an environment of knowledge, sharing and creativity across local, regional and global teams is created naturally. The Internet of Everything (IoE) is a clear driver in this new collaborative environment as companies continue to connect more people, devices, processes and data.  This collaborative environment, in turn, also empowers a company as a whole through the insights and data exchanged.

In one of my previous posts, How Not Where Is What Matters Most in a Collaborative Work Environment, I noted that mobile and remote workers have higher performance ratings than traditional workers. Are these connections increasing the comfort level with utilizing remote resources on a consistent basis, such as remote mentoring or collaboration with global teams? Is it the extended connection to global colleagues and customers to obtain better insight and decisions? Or, is it the combination? Read More »

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