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What does it take to make change?

May 2014 was a big month for me! I had a long trip to Australia and San Francisco for Cisco Live. This was my 2nd Cisco Live that I’ve attended, and the global event is making a positive impression on me.

I’ve been to scores of events, many for my role here at Veeam (a Cisco partner) but Cisco Live brings something different to the table. The themes of the events may change, but I feel the Cisco Live embodies the core of the change with trends such as the Internet of Everything. This is relevant today and in the future, but each of us can consume this theme differently.

As a technologist, I take in these themes and have the obligatory “Wow!” and “That’s cool!” after taking it all in; but what about when we return and get back into our daily routine? How do we get from here to there and make real change in our IT practice? That’s the hard part, but I’m convinced we can all get there in our own way.

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Mobility and BYOD That’s Right for Your Midsize IT

Employee are now unchained from their desks; mobility frees the ability to work anyplace, anytime, and from any device. This is revolutionizing the type of productivity and efficiency businesses see from their workforce- large, medium, or small.  While realizing business efficiency and growth, midmarket IT is struggling to balance objectives (make the network for you) and challenges (limited resources).

Midmarket IT Objectives

Leverage the network as a strategic asset

To increase employee productivity and gain competitive advantage;

Better serving customers,

Thus realizing overall growth

Midmarket IT Challenges with Mobility and BYOD

The advent of mobility and BYOD, while unleashing unprecedented levels of communication and collaboration, brings challenges to IT. Mobility enables BYOD. BYOD enables multiple types of employees, logging in from multiple types of devices, from multiple locations. Users are demanding access to the Internet and applications wherever and whenever they want.  Chaos? Anyone reading this won’t need the laundry list of concerns. It’s there.

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Making the Roads Safer Through the Internet of Everything

Over a decade ago, I started thinking about what life would be like with connected cars. Erratic drivers, speeding tickets and unfavorable weather could be avoided while driving. I read an article recently that takes a more in-depth look at the future of connected driving titled, Big Data: When Cars Can Talk by Jeff Bertolucci of InformationWeek. It begs the question: how can connected roads, cars and drivers make for a safer traveling experience?

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Cloud for Local Government Global Blog Series, A Better Economy in the Cloud

My colleague Norm Jacknis (former CIO of Westchester County, New York) passed along a list of CIO concerns for 2013 that was prepared by Alan Shark of Public Technology Institute, a nonprofit that provides technology guidance to local government. The list for cities and counties included:

1. Big Data (Smart City)

2. Consolidation

3. GIS as centerpiece for strategic decision making

4. Mobility and broadband deployment

5. Cyber and network security

6. Cloud-based solutions

7. Legacy/modernization, RFP

8. Unified citizen engagement (311, social media)

9. Consumerization of technology (BYOD)

10. Shared services (across all jurisdictions)

What would you add or subtract?

I’d want to expand on a few of these items to include another emerging issue for CIOs and other government leaders: getting cities to embrace cloud and networking tools – while moving their urban economies forward.

Well, there’s good news to report on that overarching concern. There are several opportunities to learn more about how cities can embrace technology for economic growth:

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Economic Catalyst: Telecom Right-of-Way Access

By Steven Shepard, Contributing Columnist

I have always loved trains. Never knew why, but I think I just discovered the reason. They’re part of the industry I work in – or at least played a founding role here in the United States. And, they gave us much of the terminology that infuses our telecom vocabulary: switches routers, hubs, trunks, lines, etc.

But one railroad in particular played a fundamental role in the development of the industry and, more importantly, in the development of a truly competitive U.S. telecommunications industry.

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