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Bringing Our “A” Game: Cisco Again Recognized as a UC&C Industry Leader by IDC

I’ve noticed that many business clichés have been invading my language. I’ve been trying to be proactive in curbing the habit. Needless to say, it’s not working. So instead of trying to cut back, at the end of the day I’ve decided to push the envelope and give 110% to using as many as possible in this post. My hope is that this moves the needle in creating my own behavioral paradigm shift. 

Has it become cliché to be the “industry leader”? As an industry, we (marketing professionals) overuse the term “industry leading” to the point where it has probably become a rubber stamp. But I think it’s acceptable when credible independent sources do in fact recognize you as an industry leader.

To that end, IDC recently did just that. IDC named Cisco as a leader in the IDC MarketScape: Worldwide Unified Communications and Collaboration 2015 Vendor Assessment — for the second time in as many iterations of that report.

It’s important to understand that this kind of analysis is a moving target based on a constantly evolving view of the market. It requires us to open the Read More »

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Bit Stew shows off Analytics for Utilities with MIx Director at Cisco Live

We caught up with Andrew Miller, Sr. Sales Engineer from Bit Stew Systems at Cisco Live this year. Bit Stew is a Cisco partner that focuses on the analytics space with a platform that they call ‘Software Defined Operations for the Industrial Internet’. Their solution works with Cisco IOx on a number of Cisco platforms. The demonstration in this video shows just a small part of what they do, but does showcase analytics at the edge (Fog Computing) in a practical way with, in this case, an electrical utility customer.

Bit Stew’s Mix Core platform automates data ingestion, applies machine intelligence to learn patterns in the data, allowing industrial companies to discover actionable insights that optimize operational performance. MIx Director™ (formerly Grid Director™) is powered by the MIx Core platform, and is the application that industrial enterprises rely on for a contextual and real-time view of their operations, assets and customers.

In the Video, Andrew talks about the “Fog Computing” aspects of the MIx Director solution. With this solution running in cisco Grid routers at the edge of the network, a lot of the filtering of data can be done locally, without back-hauling to the data center or elsewhere. So long as everything is ticking along nicely, there’s no need to burden central resources or comms networks with unnecessary traffic. But if something untoward should happen, then operators will get alerts and see in real time what’s happening. Service crews or emergency services can be dispatched and potential disasters minimized. Well, don’t let me steal too much of Andrews thunder. Watch the video to see what happens next!

You can find out more about Bit Stew and some of their key people by reading these other blogs:

There’s a great “point of View” document that talks about the business benefits of the partnership here: Read More »

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Transforming Customer Care with the Cisco Collaboration Cloud

Customers are interacting with organizations in many different ways – from voice to email, chat and social media – using a variety of devices including smartphones and tablets. Many organizations are still figuring out how to deal with the evolving customer who is using any channel, any device and at any time. You need collaboration tools to share information faster and make more informed decisions. Legacy metrics are no longer adequate to measure customer engagement. The terms of engagement are changing rapidly and you need a flexible platform that will adapt to their requirements and growth.

Developing a system that meets all these requirements – yet is simple to deploy and use — requires an ecosystem approach. It’s no longer enough just deploy a contact center and expect to meet the needs of a new generation of customers.

Cisco combines the power of Cisco Collaboration Cloud with the versatile toolbox of Cisco Unified Contact Center Express (Unified CCX) to create a solution that scales to meet organizational requirements and is yet simple to deploy.

Deployed by more than 16,000 organizations worldwide, Unified CCX provides multiple channels for customer engagement. Customers can call in, email, Web chat or connect via social media. Agents use the Cisco Finesse desktop for integrated access to voice, email, and, web chat. Finesse, which  is extensible with open APIs, can be integrated with other business applications to create gadgets which put all the information an agent needs on their desktop. Read More »

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Get Unplugged with Cisco Spark Product Managers

A few weeks ago, we brought a video crew up to the Cisco Spark office in San Francisco. We asked product managers Taylor, Renaldo, and Eric to show us Cisco Spark and chat about product development.

Given Taylor is a former Stanford football player, Eric used to do standup comedy, and Renaldo is just “the man,” I figured it couldn’t hurt to go a little off script with these characters. We set up what MTV’s Real World might call a “confessional” with a person in front of a rolling camera and an open mic. If you were hoping for sobbing monologues or ill-tempered rants, you’ll have to tune into the latest summer reality show. But we definitely got some good stuff about their day jobs, and here it is:

Read More »

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Thermal Imaging Analysis – easy as PI with OSIsoft at Cisco Live

I caught up with Danilo Ribeiro, Strategic Alliance Program Manager from OSIsoft, at Cisco Live recently, and shot a video of the OSIsoft demonstration he was showing. In the video, Danilo talks about Fog Computing and thermal imaging analytics at the edge using the OSIsoft PI System and Cisco IOx.

The PI System is used by many, if not most, industrial companies to capture real-time data and events and manage an historian, interfacing to critical ERP, BI, process monitoring and office systems.

Danilo’s demonstration shows a thermal imaging camera detecting a gas ‘flare’ from the field (in the demo it’s a heat source mounted above the booth in this case to show the real-time data capture). The OSIsoft system is able to detect the anomaly and alert remote operators rapidly so that corrective action can be taken.

In the video Danilo talks about how the demonstration simulates a flare monitoring system. This is the kind of monitoring that happened in oil and gas fields like the one in operation at PETRONAS Penapisan Melake, Malaysia. PETRONAS has evolved into a fully integrated multinational oil and gas company. PETRONAS’ refining capacity, at 323,300 bpd (2012) is over half of the 2012 total refining capacity in Malaysia. PETRONAS CARIGALI is the upstream arm of Malaysia’s state-owned, fully integrated oil and gas company. Read More »

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