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Midland County, Texas Builds Library of the Future

July 18, 2013 at 8:48 am PST

Technology is a wonderful thing, at least in my opinion; especially when it’s used to inspire creativity, knowledge and to make learning fun and interactive. New and interactive technologies inspired the Midland County Library in Texas to change people’s perceptions of what a library can and should be. Coined as the “library of the future”, community members now engage in a wide-variety of activities inspired by not only the books on the shelves, but the entire world around them.

Take a look at the video and see how Midland County is changing the definition of “library”:

Changing longstanding perceptions of public libraries is necessary to attract children and adults to visit, read, check out books and ultimately, learn.  When a library positively changes the way people interact and gain information, education goals become limitless. The technology transformation is proving successful too; since its opening, the new library has had more than 1,000 visitors daily.

Midland County Library partnered with Cisco to develop its IT infrastructure, helping incorporate new technologies, such as interactive digital signage, to entice new visitors to the library. The a state-of-the-art, interactive facility features digital walls, e-book rentals and training programs on how to use new technology.

This weekend, if you are attending the National Association of Counties (NACo) Annual conference in Fort Worth, join me for Midland County’s 8am workshop on Sunday -- Using Interactive Technology to Drive Citizen Engagement in room 202 D.

 

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Innovation is Standard at Idaho Education Network

July 1, 2013 at 12:52 pm PST

For the last four or five years, I’ve watched as the Idaho Education Network (IEN) has implemented and reaped the benefits from their distance education program and use of video conferencing, or telepresence. To this day, they continue to improve on success, and during a session at ISTE 2013 last week, Brady Kraft and his team once again illustrated how they consistently stay on top of their game.

Brady Kraft, IEN, presents at ISTE 2013

Brady Kraft, IEN’s Technical Director, presents at ISTE 2013

IEN is a statewide network that connects every school in the state, including higher education institutions, Internet2, private and public training providers, and first responder training organizations.

One of their mandated goals is to provide equal access to a quality education for all citizens and they’re utilizing technology to achieve that goal. As the 7th  most rural state in the nation, half of the counties in Idaho have less than 10 people per square mile, and 75% of Idaho’s schools have < 600 students. These schools havenot been able to offer a full curriculumdue to many factors, including availability of qualified teachers and budgetary restraints. Read More »

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The Internet of Everything…A Small World After All?

It’s summertime. For most people, the warmer temps and holiday weekends are the perfect excuse for a vacation. But have you ever traveled to an amusement park or exotic destination only to wait in line for hours for the hottest ride or trendiest restaurant? Or perhaps your coolness factor would skyrocket if you didn’t have to keep track of ticket stubs, receipts and maps? Well, the ups and downs of amusement park experiences may be able to be saved for the roller coasters. Could the Internet of Everything be changing how we experience…experiences?

Just recently, I stumbled across an article on All Things D by Bonnie Cha titled, Tomorrowland Today: Disney MagicBand Unlocks New Guest Experience for Park Goers. The article highlights new technology that Disney World Resort in Orlando has been using in trial phases and hopes to have broad implementation soon. The technology, called MagicBand, is a connected band (bracelet) designed to be an all-in-one device connecting park goers to everything through Radio Frequency technology. Visitors will be able to access the theme park and hotel rooms, purchase food and souvenirs and add extra options via My Disney Experience website.

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Cisco Live 2013 Shows Life in 2023, Thanks to the Internet of Everything

Join the conversation with @DaveTheFuturist #IoE2023

Join the conversation with @DaveTheFuturist #IoE2023

It’s probably no surprise to you that my favorite part of Cisco Live is discussing future technology. This year, there are so many ways the Internet of Everything (IoE) is connecting people, process, data and things.

For example, we are looking at a world where our clothes, our glasses, even the pills we swallow, will be connected. In the business arena, IoE enables new processes and creates new value. The data we consume and create is providing new insights. And we are connecting things at record rates. Today there are about 10 billion things connected to the Internet, a little more than one for each person on the planet. By 2023, there will be five times as many—50 billion things—connected. And there is $14.4 trillion of potential economic “value at stake” for global private-sector businesses over the next decade, as a result of the emergence of the Internet of Everything.

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What Do CEOs Care About in a Hyper-Connected World?

If you think we already live in a connected world (and we do!), get ready to fasten your seatbelts.

Today, there are “only” about 10 billion connected “things” on the planet. This includes hundreds of millions of people communicating with one another in myriad ways, and a rapid increase in two-way conversations between people and machines. That is, when the machines aren’t busy “chatting” with other machines.

It may sound complicated (and it is!). But the Internet of Things is just the proverbial tip of the iceberg. The next phase of the Internet — the Internet of Everything (IoE) — will encompass 50 billion connections involving people, process, data, and things by 2020. This will drive the next wave of dramatic Internet growth and opportunity.

Cisco estimates that the IoE economy promises a staggering $14.4 trillion in Value at Stake for private-sector companies globally over the next 10 years. This value is embedded in five drivers: asset utilization; employee productivity; supply chain and logistics; customer experience; and innovation.

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