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Brand Journalism: Thoughts and Insights from Communication Pros (VIDEO)

This summer The Network, Cisco’s Technology News Site, which houses our press releases, corporate information and original content from named journalists, celebrated its first anniversary.

Cisco’s newsroom has been around for years, but our team, the social media communications team, set out to redefine how the newsroom functioned. We made it more social, more visual, more interactive and connected it with our corporate social channels (i.e. Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, etc.). We added commenting through Disqus and launched a fully-functional mobile site. So, you’re asking…what’s so special about that? Well, the social functionality and focus on visual may have been obvious, albeit valuable, enhancements…but what really sets this corporate newsroom apart is our approach to content development.

We have a team of more than ten contributing professional writers who’ve produced for BusinessWeek, PBS, Forbes to name just a few of the outlets. We feature two articles a week from these writers and balance our site with content produced by our team and curated through the company.

As the brand journalism conversation continues to gain momentum, we are often asked about our approach to content. We like to describe what we are doing as an experiment of sorts, wherein our goal is to produce engaging multimedia content about industry  trends, innovation and best practices developed by a creative team of seasoned journalists, editors and artists with the goal of driving conversation among key influencers. To give you an idea of how the stories our contributing writers produce compare with some of our other content, on average, their pieces get about 60% more page views and are 3 times more likely to receive comments.

We stuck a camera in front of some of our friends who joined us for The Network’s anniversary gathering earlier this summer.  Hear what they are saying about Brand Journalism and, if you have thoughts on the trend, share them below…we’d love to hear what you think.

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Flipped Classroom Transforms Personal Learning

The Flipped Classroom continues to enlist tech-savvy teachers as evangelists, and technologies that support them continue to evolve.   At this year’s ISTE conference, Cisco caught up with Flipped Classroom pioneers, Jonathan Bergmann and Aaron Sams to discuss one of the hottest trends in education.

In the video below, Jonathan and Aaron discuss how the Flipped Classroom model transforms the entire classroom dynamic through conversation rather than dissemination of knowledge. Jonathan suggests one of the greatest benefits of flipping is that overall interaction increases: Teacher to student and student to student. With more than 67 percent of educators reporting that this model has improved student test scores by 67 percent it’s no wonder that this is being rapidly adopted.

Looking for more Flipped Classroom colleagues to connect with or model? Check out the People of Flipped Learning for a list of educators practicing, and blogging about their flipped experience.

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Video: Helping Government Agencies Ensure Safer Communities and More Efficient Services for Citizens

Global government agencies are benefiting from video technologies to help ensure safer communities, reduce costs, and deliver more efficient services for citizens.

National security, public safety and emergency response organizations face challenges and increasing demands to help ensure safety and security.  In a crisis situation, every second counts. Potentially life-threatening situations change in a heartbeat, and decisions must be made in seconds.  Video surveillance technologies enhance situational awareness and act as a force multiplier to scale critical resources.

Video technologies are also helping government organizations scale and increase efficiency and to better serve citizens.

Video can help protect people and communities, it can also help improve the delivery of citizen services and streamline traffic flows on congested highways.   Linking the intelligent network of real-time video sensors helps government agencies capture intelligence and deliver services for citizens.

A great example is in Dallas, Texas.  See how the Dallas County Tax Office:

  • Ensures security for citizens and staff
  • Increases tax revenue collection for the county
  • Adjusts citizen services and staffing support with real-time adjustments
  • Prevents fraud
  • Provides for remote viewing from multiple locations to study effectiveness of policies and procedures

This week at ASIS 2012,  Cisco introduced Cisco Video Surveillance Manager 7.0 that delivers hyperscalable, flexible, and comprehensive physical security solutions.  The Cisco Video Surveillance Manager 7.0 is certified for Cisco virtualized Unified Computing System (UCS) environments .  Read More »

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Announcing MSI for 3rd Party Management Partners

Many of you following this blog are very likely familiar with the Media Services Interface (MSI) and the key role MSI plays in the Medianet architecture. The MSI is an SDK residing on rich media applications and endpoints that makes the network and applications smarter together. Over the past several months the MSI has been increasingly integrated across a wide range of Cisco applications and endpoints. The path forward looks very exciting with plans for many more rich media applications integrating with the MSI.

The Cisco Developer Network program for Medianet system management partners has been in place for some time now and has been instrumental in helping 3rd party network management system partners leverage the benefits of medianet from a network standpoint. We are pleased to announce the expansion of this program to include MSI interoperability verification and testing for system management partners. For the first time, system management partners that are focused on the endpoint and application side of the equation can use the MSI to proactively monitor application performance and accelerate troubleshooting.

Read More »

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Cisco’s new hyperscale approach to Connected Physical Security

What you need to know

In an increasingly connected world, Big Data is the latest buzzword making the rounds of venture capitalists and enterprising young startups. It offers the opportunity to turn raw data into business-impacting insights to boost sales, cut costs, and decrease cycle times. A similar revolution is happening in Video. Thanks to Moore’s law, ever higher pixel counts, and manufacturing improvements, cameras (and more importantly the software to analyze the video they capture) are proliferating. These new technologies take video surveillance to an all new level. While protecting people and assets, they can also count the number of people waiting in line at a checkout counter, generate a heat-map of the most-trafficked area of the store, and help streamline traffic flows on busy street. These increasingly intelligent camera systems will create a new capability we call Video Intelligence. This is similar to Business Intelligence, or data-mining, except that by turning video into information, it turns every camera into a real-time sensor of the real world.

Physical Security-enabled Business Transformation

The benefits of video intelligence will enable businesses and governments to radically transform the way they do business and deliver services. A video intelligence system will be an integral part of an organization’s IT infrastructure. It will run on a converged network and will connect every branch to the data centers. This will lead to a proliferation of cameras and a need to bring back the video and analytics data in realtime. We believe that this will lead to a dramatic increase in the scale of the deployment of video. Hyperscale deployments require systems capable of digesting huge video flows.

So what is a hyperscale system?

A hyperscale system is one that is capable of providing massive amounts of information and  real-time intelligence to people and devices at massive scale for a specific purpose, at global scale.  For example, think of Google, the GPS systems you use to navigate, Apple’s Siri voice recognition system or IBM’s Watson.  The emergence of hyperscale systems and the need for them, have changed the way we work, live learn and play.

Introducing Cisco Video Surveillance Manager 7.0

On Sept 6, Cisco announced Video Surveillance Manager 7.0, the industry’s first end to end system built from the ground-up and certified to run in Cisco’s UCS virtualized computing environments delivering all of the IP-based applications for Connected Physical Security together as an integrated end-to-end system. These new solutions now make it possible for customers in healthcare, public sector and retail to move beyond traditional basic safety and security surveillance deployments and use video to transform the way they run their businesses through hyper-scalability and ease of configuration.  Cisco also introduced a compete new line of IP video surveillance cameras, an extension of its medianet strategy and remote management services, to help IT and security teams partner to implement very-large scale video deployments.

These new systems are capable of providing significantly greater benefits to businesses and organizations worldwide. hyperscale physical security systems will deliver intelligence and business capabilities at a fraction of the cost, and complexity of traditional physical security systems.

Powered by Cisco’s award winning Cisco Unified Computing System and Unified Data Center / Virtualization technologies, and end-to-end Medianet technologies and architectures these new systems are now becoming much faster, denser, and far simpler to use, manage and deploy, providing more than 10 times improvement in performance, space savings and TCO. Cisco’s new hyperscale systems are capable of supporting more than 10,000 streams of video on a single integrated system, with integrated applications.  Hyperscale systems have the advantage they can support the needs of not only security but also can be used for business operations, day to day, to improve efficiency and to deliver new capabilities to government and enterprise businesses.

To learn more, please check out the links below or stop by to see Cisco’s new hyperscale systems at ASIS 2012 in Philadephia (booth #213): http://www.cisco.com/go/asis

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