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The Challenges Facing the Class of 2012 Mean a Lifetime of Learning

June 12, 2012 at 10:24 am PST

In the Fiscal Times News, the headline reads, Class of 2012, Don’t Even Think of Retiring at 60. The story congratulates this year’s college graduates and then gently lets them know that they will be working much longer than their parents. In fact, they might not ever stop.

That’s because our economy is changing.

Author Michael Hodin argues there’s no way for us to stay competitive if one third of our population is retired. This is a really interesting point. That affects tax revenue, social security and, more importantly, our greatest asset, our collective intelligence. His conclusion might surprise you:

So your challenge is this, Class of 2012: How can you help create a world where “seniors” contribute at the highest levels to social and economic life? How can you help recreate our 20th century institutions so that older generations remain vital, relevant, and productive? And how can you create new institutions for your children in the 21st century?

This is a great challenge.

At Cisco we have a bias for learning. Not only is it highly valued to keep our employees as current and developed as possible, but it’s also one of our core values around product development. We delight in looking for ways to bring information to remote learners -- regardless of age, location or ability.

WebEx helps people of all ages learn regardless of where they live or work.

Universities, like the California Baptist University in Southern California, use Cisco Webex systems to develop synchronous online learning. You no longer have to live near the source to participate in their program [watch video].

If you are done with school but want to continue to hone your skills -- or learn something new -- you can find a plethora of free online webinars and seminars delivered by our customers. We also offer online education via WebEx Channels where you can find content on management, leadership and much more.

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Technology Helps College Get Bigger in Texas

May 29, 2012 at 11:04 am PST

It’s one thing to use technology. It’s another to take that technology and do something extraordinary with it – especially when that involves something that benefits others. Each year, IDG’s Computerworld Honors Program recognizes organizations that use “visionary applications of information technology promoting positive social, economic and educational change.”

This year, one of those organizations happens to be Lone Star College System, a community college in Texas (naturally) that has integrated collaboration technology from Cisco to reach more students and improve the overall learning experience for an increasingly diverse student population.

They say everything’s bigger in Texas. Lone Star College serves more than 85,000 students at five campuses and ten learning centers in a service area of 1400 square miles. Oh, and the student population is growing by approximately 20% each year.

So what do you do if you’re the CIO at a school with the goal of becoming recognized as the best community college in the nation? You find the technology to meet your goals. Some of the highlights: Read More »

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WebEx Wins Green IT Summit Award!

May 29, 2012 at 8:17 am PST

Cisco WebEx won the Green IT Summit 2012 award for the best telework and teleconferencing solution.

WebEx video conferencing is green IT because it reduces travel for people who typically attend meetings in person. Using WebEx allows virtual teams to easily collaborate with distant colleagues and clients. Of course it also saves time and money.

The Green IT Summit is a yearly event held in the Washington D.C. area around Earth Day.

Jim Lynch, from TechSoup, explains more about the awards: Read More »

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Empowering Choice in Collaboration

In my recent blog, Experience Matters in Collaboration (So does Architecture), I shared my thoughts on how we are facing a workplace that is no longer a physical place, but a blend of virtual and physical environments; where employees are bringing their preferences to work and BYOD (“Bring Your Own Device” to work) is the new norm; where collaboration has to happen beyond a walled garden; and any-to-any connectivity is a requirement, not a “nice to have.”

Cisco is committed to delivering a new collaborative workspace that meets our customer’s needs and empowers users to work their way—anytime, anywhere and on any device.  As we announced last week, findings from the Cisco IBSG Horizons Study on virtualization and BYOD  shows that 95% of organizations surveyed allow employee-owned devices in some way, shape or form in the office, and, 36% of surveyed enterprises provide full support for employee-owned devices.   These stats underscore a major shift in the way people are working, in the office, at home and on-the-go, a shift that will continue to gain momentum.

Over the last year, Cisco has demonstrated a commitment to delivering innovative software like Cisco Jabber and Cisco WebEx across a wide spectrum of operating systems, tablets and Smart Phones. We’re seeing tremendous interest in these software offerings. Customers see the value in how these offerings enable employees to work on their terms in the Post-PC era, while still having access to collaboration experiences.

Based on these market transitions, Cisco will no longer invest in the Cisco Cius tablet form factor, and no further enhancements will be made to the current Cius endpoint beyond what’s available today. However, as we evaluate the market further, we will continue to offer Cius in a limited fashion to customers with specific needs or use cases.

Moving forward, we intend to double down on software offerings, like Jabber and WebEx, that provide the anytime, anywhere, and any device experiences. We will leverage key learnings and key collaboration experiences native to Cius in our other collaboration products.

Experience matters, and Cisco is focused on empowering individual collaboration styles more effectively and securely, while providing the broadest choice of collaboration options based on preference, location, and device.

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Changing the Collaboration Game with Clouds

Organizations small or large can deploy collaboration technologies on premises, on the cloud, or on both with a hybrid deployment. I believe that the source or the provider of collaboration technology should be transparent to the end-user and that the experience should be the same regardless of deployment model or device used.

At Cisco we’re very focused on offering flexible deployment models that support on-premises, cloud, or hybrid deployments of our collaboration technologies.  Of course, these are built on our collaboration architecture to ensure the interoperability and user experience. Read More »

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