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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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Cisco’s Chief Futurist Shares Top 5 Predictions for 2013 and Beyond #IoE

March 7, 2013 at 11:42 am PST

The future intrigues us all, especially when every now and then we’re able to catch a glimpse of what’s to come.

At Cisco, one of the ways we build our business and serve our customers is to think about the future and how technology innovation stands to transform the world in which we live. This approach is especially important now as the more than 99 percent of physical objects that are currently unconnected become part of the Internet of Everything (IoE).

And while we know that no one person or company can predict the future with 100 percent accuracy, we put a lot of effort into coming as close as we can. To make this possible, we have a Chief Futurist on staff – Dave Evans – who, in addition to his responsibilities leading the Cisco IBSG Innovations team, spends his time helping Cisco and our customers see what lies ahead.

In an event earlier this month, Evans and the General Manager of Cisco’s Emerging Technology Group, Dr. Guido Jouret, shared their top predictions for the future and the mind-boggling innovations that will start taking off in 2013 and beyond. If you’re up for a little crystal-ball gazing, here’s what they had to say… Read More »

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Internet of Everything in Action: Today and Tomorrow #IoE

When the history of the Internet of Everything (IoE) is written, its success or failure will be determined by answering one question. How did IoE benefit humanity? In the end, nothing else matters.

With this in mind, let’s look at two examples of how IoE will benefit people, both today and tomorrow.

Today—Transforming the World’s Cities
To revitalize the world’s largest cities, City24/7 — a company committed to making public communications more accessible to everyone, everywhere — in collaboration with Cisco IBSG and the City of New York has launched an interactive platform that integrates information from open government programs, local businesses, and citizens to provide meaningful and powerful knowledge anytime, anywhere, on any device. In short, City24/7 delivers the information people need to know, where and when it helps them most.

Located at bus stops, train stations, major entryways, shopping malls, and sports facilities, City24/7 Smart Screens incorporate touch, voice, and audio technology to deliver a wide array of hyper-local (about two square city blocks) information, services, and offerings in real time. The Smart Screens can also be accessed via Wi-Fi on nearby smartphones, tablets, and laptop computers.

The overarching goals of the City24/7 Smart Screens are to: Read More »

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Put the Word “Fan” Back into Your Facebook Fan Page

November 15, 2010 at 10:21 am PST

There is a reason for the word “fan” in “Facebook fan page”. It’s there to imply interactions with your fans, right? Well, only partially. An effective Facebook fan page not only provides a platform for business-to-fan conversations but it also helps enable fan-to-fan interactions. Last week you heard from Charlie how the Cisco Networking Academy team is using Facebook. This week's story is about the Linksys Facebook fan page. As Brenna Karr (@BrennaNoD) Social Media specialist for the Linksys brand within Cisco Consumer Products put it so nicely: “You’re not running the conversation, you’re playing in their space. Be one of them.”

1. Know Your Target Audience…On Facebook

Understanding your target audience is one thing, but an understanding of how to provide information that is interesting and relevant to your fans on Facebook is another. Defining the purpose of your page and then creating content and engagement opportunities that suit your fans is critical to success.

2. Encourage Your Fans to Share and Comment

Corporations are starting to get the hang of asking questions on their Facebook pages to encourage conversations with their fans. This is a good thing. But what the Cisco Consumer Product team has done well is taking these conversations to the next level – by asking their fans to share their content and comment on each other’s posts. In other words, they encourage conversations amongst their fans. Encouraging fans to share content can help exponentially spread the word. And by asking people to comment, you can help create a deeper engagement which in turn gives people a reason to come back to your page. Just remember to make the call to action visible and straightforward.

3. Enable User-Generated Content

In the spirit of community enablement, the Cisco Consumer Products team introduced the “Linksys: Show Us Yours” program in the summer of 2010. This 2-month challenge targeted Twitter and Facebook  fans, Read More »

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