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Back to the Future: Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?

As information consumers that depend so much on the Network or Cloud, we sometimes indulge in thinking what will happen when we really begin to feel the effects of Moore’s Law and Nielsen’s Law combined, at the edges: the amount of data and our ability to consume it (let alone stream it to the edge), is simply too much for our mind to process. We have already begun to experience this today: how much information can you consume on a daily basis from the collective of your so-called “smart” devices, your social networks or other networked services, and how much more data is left behind. Same for machines to machine: a jet engine produces terabytes of data about its performance in just a few minutes, it would be impossible to send this data to some remote computer or network and act on the engine locally.  We already know Big Data is not just growing, it is exploding!

The conclusion is simple: one day we will no longer be able to cope, unless the information is consumed differently, locally. Our brain may no longer be enough, we hope to get help, Artificial Intelligence comes to the rescue, M2M takes off, but the new system must be highly decentralized in order to stay robust, or else it will crash like some kind of dystopian event from H2G2. Is it any wonder that even today, a large portion if not the majority of the world Internet traffic is in fact already P2P and the majority of the world software downloaded is Open Source P2P? Just think of BitCoin and how it captures the imagination of the best or bravest developers and investors (and how ridiculous one of those categories could be, not realizing its potential current flaw, to the supreme delight of its developers, who will undoubtedly develop the fix — but that’s the subject of another blog).

Consequently, centralized high bandwidth style compute will break down at the bleeding edge, the cloud as we know it won’t scale and a new form of computing emerges: fog computing as a direct consequence of Moore’s and Nielsen’s Laws combined. Fighting this trend equates to fighting the laws of physics, I don’t think I can say it simpler than that.

Thus the compute model has already begun to shift: we will want our Big Data, analyzed, visualized, private, secure, ready when we are, and finally we begin to realize how vital it has become: can you live without your network, data, connection, friends or social network for more than a few minutes? Hours? Days? And when you rejoin it, how does it feel? And if you can’t, are you convinced that one day you must be in control of your own persona, your personal data, or else? Granted, while we shouldn’t worry too much about a Blade Runner dystopia or the H2G2 Krikkit story in Life, the Universe of Everything, there are some interesting things one could be doing, and more than just asking, as Philip K Dick once did, do androids dream of electric sheep?

To enable this new beginning, we started in Open Source, looking to incubate a project or two, first one in Eclipse M2M, among a dozen-or-so dots we’d like to connect in the days and months to come, we call it krikkit. The possibilities afforded by this new compute model are endless. One of those could be the ability to put us back in control of our own local and personal data, not some central place, service or bot currently sold as a matter of convenience, fashion or scale. I hope with the release of these new projects, we will begin to solve that together. What better way to collaborate, than open? Perhaps this is what the Internet of Everything and data in motion should be about.

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How will the Internet of Everything Change Education and Skills for Jobs of the Future?

Technology has had a dramatic impact on education over the past few years, with tablets, digital chalkboards and new collaboration technologies changing the way students learn and professionals advance their careers.

The Internet of Everything (IoE) is becoming a major accelerator for innovation across all industries. The idea of an increasingly digital world where mobility of applications and people are commonplace, where all types of things are connected and provide more intelligence and value is becoming the new reality.

A number of factors including IoE and other evolving technologies and trends will transform the way we look at skills and education in the future.

I’ll be joining Cisco Futurist Dave Evans for a live interactive conversation about the future of skills and education next Tuesday at 11:00 AM PT. Please join us and ask questions; let’s explore what the future will hold and how we can get there.

Join us on Tuesday, February 4 at 11:00 AM PT here: http://newsroom.cisco.com/feature/1332106

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Seamless Solutions for a World of Many Clouds

Considering all the hype around the cloud, it’s easy to forget that we live in a world of many clouds. Organizations can’t simply tap into a single all-powerful entity located everywhere and nowhere, all at once. In reality, they must dip in and out of a complex and often challenging array of public, private, and hybrid clouds.

But what is the future of cloud? The Internet of Everything (IoE) is driving an unprecedented explosion in connectivity — and transformation — and cloud is the key delivery system that makes it all possible. In the enterprise, cloud has already upended traditional IT consumption models, transitioning IT departments into brokers of services that are increasingly available through third-party vendors — and accessed through a variety of clouds. Facing an increasingly cloudy future, service providers are focused on moving beyond their traditional roles as telecom providers, while new players continue to enter the core markets of traditional service providers.

But how will enterprises and service providers meet the security and operational challenges of an ever-expanding and increasingly complicated cloud universe? Part of the answer lies in the industry’s evolution toward an ecosystem of cloud providers. Incorporating a cloud “brokerage” and a cloud “federation,” this ecosystem will give customers a choice of cloud solutions that meet their specific needs.

I’m happy to report that Cisco, along with some of our key partners, is helping to smooth the cloud transformation journey both on the demand (enterprise) and supply (service provider) sides.

This week we announced at Cisco Live Milan  a breakthrough hybrid-cloud solution called Cisco InterCloud, which paves the way for interoperable and highly secure public, private, and hybrid clouds.

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Collaboration—It’s More than You Might Expect

Collaboration in the era of the Internet of Everything (IoE) is not just about people connecting with people. Yet when you ask most people how they picture “collaboration,” they probably think of person-to-person collaboration first: perhaps a web-based conference call where people are sharing content such as a Word document or a PowerPoint presentation. Or they might envision an immersive teleconference experience with people from different continents, across multiple time zones. Or they might think of a more traditional approach—a group of people having a lively discussion around a conference table, with someone taking notes on a whiteboard.

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Cisco IOx: An Application Enablement Framework for the Internet of Things

January 29, 2014 at 8:00 am PST

IOxThis is a three part blog that will explore some of the issues that are still holding back the Internet of Things (IoT), what Cisco is doing to help to solve these issues (via Cisco IOx), and what are some of the real life benefits that can be achieved.

Helping to solve the “Data Tsunami” for the Internet of Things

Big Data is a term being used a lot these dates. A “Data Tsunami” would be a better descriptor. In roughly 2000 years of recorded history humans created 2 Exabytes of data. The pace of data creation has accelerated at an incredible pace in the last few years, we now generate over 2.5 Exabytes of data every day:

  • Energy utility companies process 1.1 BILLION data points (.5TB) per day
  • A large offshore oil field produces 0.75TB of data weekly
  • A large refinery generates 1TB of raw data per day
  • An airplane will generate 10TB of data for every 30 minutes of flight

The Internet of Things (IoT) is enabling the proliferation of connected objects, and these objects are creating a data explosion, with data coming from billions of disparate devices, located all around the world. But unless these disparate devices can work together to create meaning,  all of this data is relatively useless. Read More »

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