When we think of being connected to the Internet, our minds immediately shift to our computers, phones, and most recently tablets. This week at Cisco live, I shared that in 2008, the number of devices connected to the Internet exceeded the number of people on Earth.
That’s right. There are more devices tapping into the Internet than people on Earth to use them. How is this possible?
Some vendors and analysts contend that the network just connects boxes and all you need is a tactical infrastructure, capable of addressing current requirements. But with all the challenges today around security, plus mounting evidence that the winners in today’s market are those that are differentiating themselves with innovative customer experiences, I can’t help but ask, “why?” The tactical, ‘good-enough’ network is not only shortsighted; it’s potentially harmful. A disrupter? Yes, but not the desirable kind.
Building a forward-looking network that can evolve through today’s business challenges into the future is not pie in the sky. In fact, it’s a smart business decision that can ultimately save lots of IT dollars while beefing up your capabilities and security. More importantly, it’s key to creating a platform that doesn’t give out on or frustrate your end users—employees, customers, and partners.
At Cisco Live, I stopped for a quick chat about the next generation network. Listen in, below:
To learn more about the Cisco next generation network, go to cisco.com/go/borderless. In the meantime, though, please share your thoughts. What stands in your way when it comes to building a smart, strategic network?
In this episode of Partner Update, we find out what Andrew does first-thing in the morning, learn about a free new mobile app that delivers the latest partner news from Cisco, get the scoop on what kind of network can best solve endpoint and application challenges, get tips on minding your Twitter manners, learn how Cisco partners can grow cloud revenues, and figure out what Triple V means. (And a lot more.)
Tune into this action-packed newscast to get the latest news and info you need to know (in less than five minutes).
So what’s in the news this week?
Keep reading for a transcript of the newscast with timestamps so you can view the parts of the video you want to see and important links where you can find more information. Read More »
Just when we feel we are drowning in information, along comes Big Data to save the day. Big Data refers to a dataset so large it is beyond the capability of a typical database to manage and make use of the information. But a set of advances in hardware and software now allows us to rapidly capture, organize, and make sense of vast oceans of data, enabling us to apply the results to make better business decisions.
Big Data can give us a strategic advantage. For example, investors could see global trends in trading across sectors in near-real time; they could respond much earlier to a downturn in prices in a given sector, avoiding the steep losses incurred by taking later action.
Big Data can also create a richer experience for customers. Bloomberg.com gathers more than 100 data points from every page an individual reader views, processing the data with 15 algorithms to personalize recommendations. Algorithms that understand natural language and rich media and can reason make Big Data technology even more useful in decision making. Novel visualization paradigms, 3D, and gesture interfaces make Big Data understandable and accessible to everyone.
Thinking about the ICT future of the store with my colleague Bharat Popat. Doodling at the mental whiteboard.
Current state in the lower left. It’s client-server architecture. Three to six servers per store, depending upon segment and store size. Fat-client POS and desktops. Fans and hard drives. Ongoing break-fix maintenance contracts. A network pipe just big enough to each night send out batched transactions, inventory, and other performance data, and download the price-item files, promotions, and performance reports.
Now, a line from the lower left current state all the way to the upper right future. From the “as is” to the “will be.” Figuring three to five years. An assumption that a retailer will want to lead the segment and compete worldwide.
Grab the pen and draw the line, and as you do so, calculate the evolution of technology and of consumer expectations. Calculate the impact of global e-commerce, of multi-channel and omni-channel, of smart phones and tablets, of social networks and social shopping.
Calculate the impact of content clouds and IP video, of augmented reality and “mashops” of virtual into the physical. Calculate the impact of right time data analysis. Calculate dynamic video messaging.
Calculate how to cut time-to-capability down to weeks, not years. Calculate how to do more and spend less.
Now multiply it all by the demographic weight of the tech-savvy Millennial generation.
Do the math. Yes, I’m prejudiced -- I’m a proud Cisco guy. But it’s the math (not the badge) that leads me to this future state: a retail store that’s a living, breathing website.
A retail store that’s built on a lean, network-based architecture and a significant increase in network capacity to and from the store.
Lean store and big pipe.
More about these calculations in weeks ahead.
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