In my last blog, I discussed the benefits of Smart City cloud management capabilities. An intelligent IP-enabled network unites multiple services onto one infrastructure, allowing for tight operations management and lower expenses. Operating this network remotely, through the cloud, further enhances the capability for sustainable, effective city management.
As Smart City visions emerge in various projects in local government, we will see a combination of new ways of thinking, designing, planning, executing, and managing. Busan, South Korea has already discovered the powerful benefits of cloud infrastructure to create Smart+Connected Communities solutions. The government partnered with companies to create a Mobile Application Center to utilize city assets and the connected network. (You can also watch a video series, “Cities of the Future,” on Songdo, South Korea and how this new connected Smart City was designed, planned, and built.)
There are some important steps that other cities and governments can take to harness the power of the cloud to become more connected, efficient, and sustainable. A process on how to answer the Smart City call to action is further outlined in Cisco’s POV paper, “Smart City Framework,” and video.
1. Use one intelligent, multiservice IP network.
This is the overarching mantra of a Smart City—connect systems and services to improve city livability. While it can seem daunting, it’s important to remember the long-term benefits of a connected city, especially using cloud management. Some of the most promising Smart City projects have shown that it’s possible to use the network to achieve some major goals of state and local government, including efficient city management and economic, social, and environmental sustainability.
Savvy government leaders are recognizing the untapped power of the network and incorporating its potential into the early stages of planning and development. Many cities have experimented with including information and communications technology (ICT) solutions through small-scale “proof of concept” projects. Since budgets are so limited, it can be difficult to adopt a purely centralized approach, which means trying new techniques and learning from the enterprise sector.
2. Build a foundation for public-private partnerships.
Government agencies and city leaders cannot create smart, connected urban communities alone. Frameworks are needed for relationships between the public and private sectors.
Winning strategies seem to be the ones that enable citizens, business leaders, and policymakers to drive job growth, increase economic opportunity, and provide improved citizen services. The goal is simple: enable effective partnerships by linking governments with private enterprises and citizen organizations focused on creating economically competitive, socially cohesive, and environmentally clean communities. Innovative ICT solutions can be critical tools for those reinventing enterprise, government, and city services. This kind of collaboration between the public and private sectors can provide successful conditions for these new business models, which—ideally—encourage the private sector to take a more active role in upgrading city services and infrastructure.
3. Regulations are needed to standardize the uses of ICT.
Governments regulate the three traditional utilities—water, gas, and electricity—with a clear and consistent framework. City leaders are discovering that the broadband network has become the fourth utility. Regulations are necessary to standardize the uses of ICT in developing new urban communities and in providing services to the public.
It is essential to consider design principles for Smart City network regulations that can accelerate development. Governments should consider their role, and the desired outcome of regulations. Incorporating ICT requirements and standardized procedures into Smart City developments will take serious consideration and planning.
As cities continue to experiment with the network and cloud, there will be fantastic opportunities to hear from leaders about their progress, mistakes, and opportunities to readjust. In September, Meeting of the Minds will offer a podium for leaders to discuss what has happened thus far in their journey to become a Smart City, and what is to come in the future. If you are considering next steps to become a Smart City, I would highly recommend this event. As we all work to become more connected, efficient, and sustainable, collaboration among all companies, individuals, and organizations is vital.
Stay tuned to the Cisco Government blog for the next installment of the cloud for local government blog series or click here to register and reserve your copy of the complete compilation of the blog series, including this two-part blog as well as a variety of cloud resources, which will be available in May.
We are proud to announce Cisco WebEx Meetings for Android version 3.0, available today in the Google Play store. Web conferencing is one of the leading applications being used on mobile devices. With over four million mobile downloads, WebEx is the leader in mobile conferencing. Supporting iPhones and iPads, Android smartphones and tablets and the new BlackBerry 10, WebEx has broad device support with the strongest feature set. Our WebEx app allows users to start, join and schedule, and host WebEx meetings. In the meeting, users can quickly connect audio, chat with participants and see shared content in both portrait and landscape orientation. We continue to invest in and introduce new functionality for WebEx Meetings on mobile platforms and our user base continues to grow. On Android alone we have seen a 248 percent year-over-year growth.
I am writing this from CA World 2013 in Las Vegas where the atmosphere is charged up. The theme for this conference is “Go Big. IT with Impact”. The idea is that IT departments have to think big to make material business impacts and succeed. At the end of the day IT needs to solve business problems. Companies need the right strategy and technology solutions to harness the Cloud, Internet of Everything, mobile and Big Data. In a “partner with impact” session exclusively for partners, David Bradley, SVP Channel Sales, CA Technologies featured Rick Snyder, VP Global Partner Organization, Cisco. The complete video is below
In this video, Rick mentions Cisco Validated designs (CVD), which are reference architectures, and blue prints for success. These designs incorporate a wide range of technologies and products into a portfolio of solutions developed to address the business needs of our customers. These CVDs document solutions that are tested to facilitate and improve customer deployments.
CA Technologies stressed the importance of the SaaS delivery model and the benefits of providing application services. CA also thinks that the opportunity for enterprise class application services offered as managed services will grow rapidly. Service providers should be beneficiaries of this shift. A common customer of Cisco and CA Technologies – Logicalis, won the partner impact award for their managed private cloud solution for a UK bank.
There were several interesting announcements in the past 24 hours. The following caught my attention.
CA in association with SAP will provide Mobile device Management solutions for enterprises. IT Management and Security are very high on the agenda for most enterprises. As more enterprise applications run on mobile devices securing and managing these devices becomes critical.
CA also announced devops automation capability with the Nolio products. With application aware system monitoring and management enterprises can expedite application development and reduce costs.
CA Technologies announced the acquisition of Layer 7 technologies, a leader in the API management space. APIs have become a necessity for application developers. REST-based APIs have allowed application developers to build rich web and mobile apps by providing the ability to integrate multiple services into individual application.
These approaches complement the way in which we help our own customers. The ISR-AXs are application aware and improve user experience at remote branch offices. The Cisco UCS has an API and facilitates infrastructure programmability. This enables integration, orchestration and execution of automated workflows. We will have two breakout sessions tomorrow at the conference:
TD055SN- Cisco UCS and CA: Operational efficiency with Converged Infrastructure (Speaker : Mark Balch, Director of Product Management, Data Center Business Unit)
TB056SN- Delivering Optimal Application Experience with Cisco ISR-AX (Speaker: Liad Ofek, Manager, Technical Marketing at the Service Routing Group)
I am eagerly looking forward to the keynote this evening by Richard Branson, Founder of Virgin Group.
Cisco Unified Computing Systems (UCS) server platform continues to make significant strides in becoming a major player in the mission-critical application space, in this case SAP. UCS just claimed a fantastic benchmark using the UCS B200 on SAP Sybase ASE.
Since UCS was built from the ground up for virtualization, not only will its virtues lend itself to speed as evidenced by the SAP SD benchmark , UCS will also significantly lower operating costs in the process as evidenced by an external case study with TUI Travel or HotelsBeds out of Spain. Read and downlaod here the case study
Cisco has also been running a comprehensive set of world-wide SAP HANA Roadshows. They have consisted of 11 road shows in the US, 6 road shows in EMEAR, 3 road shows in Canada, and 1 in APJC. As a result, the demand for SAP HANA on the Cisco UCS Server Platform has dramatically increased.
Cisco now has over 50 customers running SAP HANA on Cisco UCS Servers. Some of these customers vary from very large service provider companies, medical device firms, large international food companies, and world wide travel companies. The size of the server used for these customers vary from small rack mount servers (Cisco UCS C260), to medium configurations (Cisco C460) to larger installs that take advantage of the Cisco Blade Server Technology (Cisco B440). All of these servers are certified for SAP HANA and are currently available on the SAP Product Availability Matrix (PAM).
Until recently, the global media industry had been relatively stable, with a robust value chain and well-defined business models.
Today, multiple factors are tearing at the fabric of those finely tuned business models: new players such as Netflix, Hulu, Amazon, and Apple offer consumers new ways of accessing professional video content; technology standards are in flux; and regulatory and macroeconomic factors undermine consumer and investor confidence.
Last week, more than 90,000 media and entertainment officials from 150 countries descended on Las Vegas for NAB Show, the annual National Association of Broadcasters conference. I attended to share some of predictions for the industry that we have developed in the Cisco Internet Business Solutions Group (IBSG). In particular, I spoke at a breakfast briefing for CxO-level executives about the impactful yet uncertain effects of four key drivers—consumer behavior, regulatory changes, technology, and macroeconomics—in an effort to better define their media-industry disruptions: Read More »