It’s a new year, the traditional time to resolve to lose weight (again), and to replace bad habits with good ones. But this year, I’m not going there. Did I overeat during the holidays? Yes. But forget my weight gain. What I want to focus on is why are so many of us overeating when so many others are going hungry. Why aren’t we using technology to fix this?
Dozens of businesses are sprouting up around food and technology—with a focus on capitalizing on our desire for fine dining. I won’t pretend that I’m a stranger to social media platforms that tip me off to the latest new restaurant opening, but what I’d love to see is some of this mindshare going toward helping to curb hunger. I’m not even talking about world hunger (yet) – I’m talking about in our own backyards. According to Feeding America, 48.8 million Americans lived in food insecure households during 2010. And according to a New York Timesarticle a couple months ago, the number of kids signing up to receive subsidized lunches is increasing, due to the economy.
Enid Borden, President and CEO of Meals on Wheels Association in America recently wrote about this very topic. In her article, she quite eloquently asks, “How do we harness the power of imagination and creativity and put them to work in the human services domain? How do we prevent the foolishness of hunger in a food-rich land?”
So my end of year blog to machine builders, and the loyal followers from whatever company.
The model is changing. Think about how personal electronics have changed your life. Do you listen to a CD in your car anymore? I remember back when I drove a “company car” but they allowed me to add things, and I added a 6 CD changer. It was in my trunk. This was in 1996. Do they even put CD changers in cars today? My wife just bought a new 4DSC, and ya know, there is no CD slot. So if we go for a trip I have to listen to her music. Fortunately we have a mesh.
So, huge changes in the music business model. Same for the book industry. Witness this: when we leave for a weekend I take my iPad. I have several books I want to read stored there. Are they on my iPad or the Cloud? I don’t care. I want them when I want them. And before today’s technology existed I would have needed to carry many different books with me. In my case today they are on my iPad, but tomorrow? Who knows? Can I get instant response from the cloud? I bet I can.
In the factory can you afford to ignore the cloud? You know your employees in the plant are going to be using devices that are far more advanced than what they have in the factory. Soon they will be suggesting that they can do “this” (whatever this is) better if they could only…. More on this topic early in 2012. Read More »
This article has been written by Jan Zanetis, Education Advocate for Cisco in Australia. The original article was published in the December/January edition of Educational Leadership (EL). Visit EL to read the full version.
The Virtues of Video
Video-on-demand tutorials. International student collaborations. Virtual field trips to Australia. Schools can use interactive video to enrich students’ learning.
What if your struggling students could view demonstrations of difficult math concepts as often as necessary? Picture your students asking questions of an expert diver as she explores Australia’s Great Barrier Reef. Or imagine a motivated student in a remote location attending an advanced placement physics class without leaving home.
Providing such enriching learning activities, even with limited funds, is no fantasy; it’s possible through live, interactive video.
At a conference on developing sustainable, connected and scalable cities, Cisco hosted an international roundtable using Cisco TelePresence, a high definition, life-sized video meeting solution, with education thought leaders from Amsterdam, Brisbane, Hong Kong, London and Lisbon.
Some participants joined via a Dialogue Cafe. Under the auspices of the United Nations, the Dialogue Cafe Association is building a network of publically available, video-enabled spaces that make it easier for innovators, students, public leaders and businesses to connect and collaborate across geographical, cultural and sometimes political divides.
How many meetings have you spent being distracted by characters such as the heavy breather, the distracted driver or the hold music culprit? Web meetings can be a really productive way to stay in touch and work together with your colleagues and clients but there are many considerations to keep in mind to make sure you’re not a meeting offender. We pulled together a short video with some pointers to remind us all of the standard WebEx etiquette.
5 WebEx Etiquette Tips
1. Look your best: WebEx is the ideal place to hone what we like to call your “business mullet”: business up top, party below the camera. If you keep things professional (read: no bathrobes or Hawaiian shirts), you can feel free to wear your sweats and slippers when not in view. Just remember to turn your camera off before you stand up or else be ready for the onslaught of office hazing. (see this in the video at :32)
2. Know when to share video: Many computers and mobile devices now offer built-in cameras, which are a great way to connect with the people you meet with… but not every situation is the same. Use common sense – keep your camera off while you’re driving or in a chaotic environment such as the airport that will be distracting for others involved. Put it on when you want to have a more natural conversation or show product details and examples. (see this tip in the video at :54)
3. Keep your microphone muted: You can’t always control when your doorbell will ring, when the car behind you honks or when your neighbor’s dog will go after the mailman. When in doubt, keep your line muted (either on your phone or by manually muting yourself on WebEx). If you’re the meeting host, you also have the power to mute people manually so you don’t waste precious time asking the heavy breather to tone it down. Read More »