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The Power of Pervasive Video

August 18, 2011 at 1:49 pm PST

We’re having a great time in Baltimore this week at the Defense Information Systems Agency’s Customer and Industry Forum 2011 (DISA). We’ve had the opportunity to discuss telepresence with people from all across the defense industry, and we’ve learned a great deal about their innovative and enterprising communications practices.

All of these discussions of enhancing information exchange for better command and control of military operations and improving communication throughout the Defense Department highlighted, for me, the profound impact a wide video collaboration deployment can have on an agency. With telepresence connections available to all employees, business retains continuity during disruptions, teleworkers stay fully connected, and agencies fulfill their commitments to environmental sustainability, among other benefits.  Read More »

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Telepresence Primed to Optimize Multijurisdictional Emergency Response

August 15, 2011 at 5:13 am PST

When emergency strikes, people want answers. What’s going on, what is the safety threat, and perhaps most importantly, who’s in charge?

That last question can lead to some complicated answers when an incident occurs under multiple law enforcement jurisdictions. For example, take the pipe bomb scare in March 2010 at the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, California. As Corey McKenna of Emergency Management explains, several units responded—campus police, a regional bomb squad, and the local police and fire departments—but these units did not have much history of working together. A fair bit of miscommunication and chaos ensued.

Thankfully, the above scenario proved to be nothing more than a suspicious empty suitcase. But the confusion among responding parties characterizes emergency response all too often. McKenna reports that problems with multijurisdictional response include “time and grind”—hammering out the details without the guidance of capable leadership—and “relationships”—knowing the people with whom you’re working. Read More »

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