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Cisco Announces Acquisition of Collaborate.com

As the rapidly developing mobility and cloud markets transform the technology landscape, the population of mobile workers looking to extend the boundaries of their offices continues to grow. They want to connect, communicate and collaborate seamlessly, and their organizations are seeking user-friendly, mobile-centric collaboration tools that enable teams to work faster while being as productive as possible.

Today, I am pleased to announce Cisco’s acquisition of Collaborate.com to help capture this market transition in mobility and cloud. Collaborate’s skilled team of cloud and mobile software developers has created a mobile collaboration application that provides unified document sharing, task management and team communication capabilities, enabling today’s mobile workforce to collaborate with team members on projects. Workers can instantly create virtual collaboration rooms where they can chat and share documents, notes, photos and videos.

Collaborate’s platform integrates with email and third party cloud services to make collaborating efficiently with others while on-the-go that much easier.  Collaborate’s flexibility also enables teams to integrate collaboration and communication into their enterprise workstreams, as the application helps keep teams aligned and accelerates decision-making.

Cisco’s acquisition of Collaborate supports our goal of driving market leadership in Collaboration. Together, Cisco and Collaborate plan to provide a comprehensive solution that enables the mobile workforce to work smarter and more efficiently from virtually anywhere. Collaborate’s cutting-edge technology and strong engineers as part of Cisco’s Collaboration Technology Group will help accelerate Cisco’s innovation in Collaboration.

With deep experience building innovative mobile-centric collaboration experiences, we are excited about the new opportunities the addition of Collaborate and its talented group of individuals will provide to Cisco. The Collaborate team will enhance our ability to deliver industry-leading solutions and unique value to our customers.

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Trends in the Oracle User Community

In April the largest conference for Oracle users, outside of Oracle OpenWorld, occurred in Denver.  With 6000 attendees “Collaborate”, the annual Oracle user conference sponsored by IOUG (Independent Oracle User Group), OAUG (Oracle Application User Group) and Quest International, is one of the best events For Oracle users, whether it is Oracle Database or any of the other Oracle software products, to learn, network, share and teach. Oh, and have some fun too.

But for companies like Cisco who exhibit and sponsor Collaborate, it is also a great chance to informally “take the pulse” of the Oracle user community. The questions they ask and the sessions they attend provide a clear indicator of where Oracle users are headed, what the trends are and and where they are putting their efforts in the future. Here is what I discovered at this year’s Collaborate.

 

Oracle Trends from Collaborate 13

So unlike past conferences, the Oracle community is actively looking at

a) Virtualization for their Oracle infrastructure, including Databases  and

b) Preconfigured/prevalidated hardware solutions (sometimes called converged infrastructure solutions) instead of just the old DIY custom system approach for hardware.

To me these are both major changes in the mindset of those using Oracle Database and applications. And the implications are significant.  As virtualization permeates the large Oracle install-base (largest business software vendor),  the hypervisor vendors will see significant growth and many operational aspects of Oracle infrastructures will change and improve. That virtualization push includes Oracle who is making inroads with their dramatically updated Oracle VM (virtual machine) product.

The move towards pretested hardware solutions is also a major directional shift which should drive an increased focus on reducing software and database upgrade/version cycle times and downplay the need to do extensive hardware testing.  In today’s environment of “do more with less”, pretested hardware solutions may be a great way to help the Oracle IT team address that conundrum.

Can Cisco help with these trends towards more Oracle virtualization and pretested hardware configurations? The answer is a resounding YES!  With our storage partners EMC and NetApp, and our software partners Oracle and VMware, we have developed an extensive array of pretested/prevalidated solutions with hypervisors (Oracle VM and vSphere), storage (EMC and NetApp) and software (Oracle Database and applications) all running on Cisco UCS servers and Cisco networking.  For more information on Cisco’s Oracle solutions and to see the available Cisco Validated Designs (CVD) for Oracle, go to  Cisco.com/go/oracle

Coming up in my next blog, more on the move to virtualize Oracle database and applications.

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When Oracle User Groups “collaborate”, Great Things Happen

Collaborate 13

While some may be wary of the number 13, for 3 Oracle user groups (IOUG, OAUG, Quest Intl.) 13 is a measure of success for their joint (collaborative?) conference “Collaborate”, next week in Denver. Now in its 13th year, the 6000 attendee strong Collaborate is the world’s largest independent Oracle user group gathering.  And Cisco, along with our storage partners NetApp and EMC will be there demonstrating a breadth of Oracle infrastructure solutions (check Cisco activities and major speaking sessions  here)

In addition, Cisco is the sponsor of both the Women in Technology reception and Women in Technology panel discussion.  Cisco CEO John Chambers has made news recently with his women’s initiatives at Cisco, so extending that support at Collaborate 13 is a natural.

Cisco will have a large presence in the Collaborate 13 exhibit hall and will also have multiple conference sessions highlighting how Cisco Unified Computing System  has been winning the hearts and minds of Oracle users around the world. Whether the Oracle user wants to “build their own” custom system or buy a preconfigured and fully tested “converged infrastructure” solution, or anything in between, Cisco and its Oracle eco-system partners have an answer.

Here are some examples of customers who deployed Oracle solutions with Cisco Data Center architecture.

 

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Urban Sustainability – Not Just A Dream

As world leaders ponder how to meet the growing demand for energy and resources, while reducing global carbon emissions, cities are challenged even further. The exponential growth of cities has resulted in enormous urban challenges:  scarcity of resources; skyrocketing passenger, cargo, and digital traffic; and outdated and overloaded infrastructures.

The continued expansion of the Internet and our society’s increased connectivity seemingly amplify these urban challenges. However, Cisco and Schneider Electric see an opportunity to create a new future for cities, and they are already making cities more efficient and connected today.

The key is transforming a city from the inside out:

  • Developing an efficient infrastructure for the utilities network, transportation systems, buildings, and public services.
  • Adding connectivity to integrate these efficiency solutions, and including people in the social conversation.
  • Reducing carbon emissions and environmental consequences of urban life to ensure sustainability.

This transformation requires that the city’s operating systems, such as utilities and transportation, function with optimal efficiency, allowing data collection for operations optimization. In order to solve the “pain points” that negatively affect city residents (such as power outages), it is critical to optimize each individual system, as well as the overall structure and connections among systems. Efficient integrated operating systems that create connections will improve services, offer better information sharing, and enhance a city’s sustainability and livability, transforming it into a Smart City.

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The Rise of the Progressive SMB [Infographic]

Throughout the recent years we have seen an uptake in a new group of SMB’s – the “Progressive SMB,” organizations that are increasingly encroaching on the territory of their larger competitors. But what makes a SMB progressive?

Check out the infographic below to see what you can learn from progressive SMBs, including how they are going against the grain and investing heavily in technology to improve collaboration, productivity and long-term business bottom line results.

Do you consider yourself a progressive SMB? If so, we would love to hear how you are investing in IT to gain a competitive edge.

 

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