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The Future of IoT Is Now: Proof at the upcoming IoT World Forum

IoTWFWe’re now less than a week away from the Internet of Things World Forum, located in Dubai. This premier industry event, on December 6-8, will showcase many of the exciting transformations made possible by the Internet of Things (IoT) gaining momentum across the globe. The agenda is packed with keynotes by industry leaders, breakout sessions, a hackathon, a startup showcase, and a smart-city tour of Dubai. But there are two events I’m particularly proud to highlight.

Research and Innovation Symposium

Designed for industry leaders, academic researchers, R&D directors, and technology professionals driving IoT, the symposium provides unique insight into the emerging technologies and research that will shape the future of IoT. This year, the symposium will explore “the two faces of IoT”—the endless possibilities for innovation, and the haunting technology questions and challenges that must be addressed and overcome as we move toward an ever more connected world. The symposium will run in two information-rich 75-minute sessions over the course of two days. It will highlight the insights of distinguished speakers from around the world representing perspectives from industry, government, and academia. If you want a glimpse into the future of IoT, don’t miss it.

Cisco Innovation Grand Challenge

Interest was high at last year’s Innovation Grand Challenge demonstrations at the IoTWF.

Interest was high at last year’s Innovation Grand Challenge demonstrations at the IoTWF.

Our second annual Innovation Grand Challenge brings six amazing startups to Dubai to compete for their share of $250,000 in cash prizes. This global competition aims to recognize, promote, and accelerate the adoption of breakthrough IoT technologies and products. The IoT World Forum is the culmination of a six-month process, which started in June with 3,000 participants from 101 countries. These entrants were narrowed down to 15 semi-finalists, and then—a most difficult task—to the six finalists who will give their pitches live, on stage, on Tuesday, Dec. 8 at 8:00-9:45 a.m. Before that however, meet them and hear about their marvelous ideas in person at The Hub demo area.

We have seen that the Grand Challenge can help catapult winners onto the world stage, with expanding opportunities. Last year’s top prize winner, Berlin-based relayr, has since gone on to secure $11 million in venture funding, and has deployed its technology solution throughout Cisco’s openBerlin Innovation Center, transforming the brick structure into a smart building that automatically adjusts light, temperature, and air quality, depending on conditions.

Are you going to the IoT World Forum? If so, I hope you’ll join me at the Research and Innovation Symposium, and the Innovation Grand Challenge finals in addition to all the other exciting keynotes and industry presentations. If you want to join in virtually, be sure to follow the conversation on Twitter by searching #IoTWF.

Our events next week highlight how the future of IoT is showing up today—in enterprises, startups, cities, and universities around the world.

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Countdown to Winner’s Circle at IoTWF Starts for 2015 Innovation Grand Challenge

So now the countdown begins to name the winners of our second annual Cisco Innovation Grand Challenge at IoTWF.

Today we unveil the six finalists selected by Cisco judges after a highly complex evaluation process, which started six months ago with 3,000 entries from more than 100 countries. I am calling these next-generation innovators, the Super Six.

AlexGIoTWFGrandChallengePic1The Super Six finalists are vying for three coveted spots in the ultimate winner’s circle at the IoT World Forum in Dubai on Dec. 8. In the weeks running up to the 2015 finals, all eyes will be on these ingenious entrepreneurs and startups. Their solutions are pushing the boundaries of what’s possible to improve the world around us through the power of the Internet of Things (IoT). Read More »

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Cisco Provides Leadership in Newly Formed OpenFog Consortium

The OpenFog Consortium has made its debut as an ecosystem of industry and academic leaders to foster an open architecture for fog computing in the Internet of Things (IoT). This is an important milestone that will accelerate IoT deployments and maximize their value across a wide range of industries.

AP46072_small_croppedMy friend and colleague, Helter Antunes, has been a pivotal force in forming the OpenFog Consortium and has worked tirelessly with other founding members to iron out the myriad of details involved in creating this sort of multi-party organization. He has also been instrumental in developing Cisco’s own fog computing strategy. That is why I am particularly pleased to congratulate him on being named the OpenFog Consortium’s first chairman, who will guide the group through its formative stages. Read More »

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OpenFog Consortium: An Ecosystem to Accelerate End-to-End IoT Solutions

Over the past several months,OpenFog Logo V1.01 I have been privileged to represent Cisco in working with other industry and academic partners to form the OpenFog Consortium, which was announced earlier today. You can learn more in the press release about what this new organization is, but I want to focus on why such an organization is so important at this stage of development of the Internet of Things (IoT).

Earlier this week, my colleague Maciej Kranz discussed the city of Barcelona’s fog computing proof of concept, which was showcased at the Smart City World Expo Congress. The proof of concept demonstrated that fog technology can bring intelligence to a range of urban services, including transportation, parking, lighting, traffic and waste management, public safety, and law enforcement.

But smart city services are only the beginning. Fog computing can provide immense value across all industries. For example, it might take 12 days via satellite to transmit one day’s worth of data to the cloud from a remote oil rig. With fog computing the data is processed locally, and safety or equipment alerts can be acted upon immediately. In manufacturing and transportation, preventive maintenance applications can process a huge amount of sensor data to trigger needed maintenance before there is an equipment failure. In retail, data from parking lot video cameras can not only provide security surveillance, but can also work with fog analytics capabilities to predict store traffic flow and optimize checkout staffing.

OpenFog Chart

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Catalysts for 10x Innovation (Part 1)

“Why does a computer need a fan? I want my computer to be quiet and small!” Steve Jobs actually provoked that question when he started the journey that led to the creation of Apple II nearly four decades ago.  And, of course, the journey made history and continues on into new frontiers of technology.

Asking an unsettling question that breaks the status quo – in any era – is one of the key catalysts to ignite innovation exponentially. This is especially true today because of the unprecedented levels of innovation made possible by the digitization of society through the Internet of Everything – the connection of people, processes, data and things.Cisco Leadership Forum_Biren presenting

A provocative question that turns things upside down gets the innovation journey under way.  However, it’s just one of many key catalysts we have identified from extensive research and experience that accelerate innovation 10 times or more.

My colleague, Hagit Oron, and I recently had the honor of conducting a highly engaging workshop – Innovation Catalyst – at Cisco’s bi-annual Leadership Forum, an event series tailored for people leaders.  Igniting innovation is one of our company’s highest priorities as we transform from a hardware product company into an end-to-end solution provider delivering business outcomes to customers in vertical markets.

Encourage Inclusive, Diverse Culture. First, we emphasized that leaders must foster a climate of innovation with their full teams – not just by hiring a few outliers – but as a collective team to solve problems and develop new products and services. That means assembling teams with a full spectrum of diverse backgrounds, skills, perspectives and approaches, enabling them with the right tools and resources as well as empowering them to innovate collaboratively. Read More »

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