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Sorry Apple, This is Really Samsung's Month

I find if you write about Android or Apple, you are often a target for people who will flame you on social...

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Rich Tehrani Thoughts From California

I've been on the road in Vegas and California over the past ten days or so. Here are my thoughts. The Venetian...

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GENBAND Kandy Goes Public at Ruby Skye

Last night, GENBAND hosted a gala premiere at Ruby Skye in San Francisco for its official Kandy launch - the transitional solution...

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Peter's View: The Channel Ecosystem

I read CRAIG'S VIEW: THE NEW CHANNEL ECOSYSTEM by Craig Schlagbaum, channel chief at Comcast. My response was too long for...

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2 Ways to Maximize Your Vendor Relationship

As channel partners, we get hammered all the time to sell vendor's stuff - even if it is unreasonable or doesn't...

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The Changing Definition of the Diameter Signaling Controller and Diameter Routing Agent (DRA)

Next week, I will be speaking at the Signaling Focus Day of LTE Asia.  The signaling focus day obviously will have...

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The Cat Video Index: A Simple View of Data Costs

By: Andy Porter, Product Manager in the Payment, Policy and Charging department at Alcatel-Lucent

The Economist has its famous Big Mac index for comparing buying power across countries. But I wanted an index that focuses on the cost of mobile data usage. That meant I had to find a data-charging equivalent of the Big Mac. I needed an item that crosses cultural boundaries, is universally understood and is available worldwide.

I considered many possibilities. But the answer arrived when I saw my daughter laughing at a video of a cat playing a piano. Obviously, the mobile data equivalent of the Big Mac is the YouTube video. It’s a universally available service that is easily measured in quantitative terms, making it ideal for comparing mobile data costs.

In honor of my daughter, I chose the classic “piano-playing cat” as the baseline video. And by the way, this cat video has been viewed over 34 million times, proving its suitability as a baseline.

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Ausra to Build Solar Manufacturing Plant in NV

December 17, 2007

Todd Woody over at Green Wombat writes that “Big Solar’s time has come.” He’s referring to the news that Ausra Inc., is building the first U.S. manufacturing plant for solar thermal power systems in Las Vegas.   According to the press release on Ausra.com, “The 130,000-square-foot, highly automated manufacturing and distribution center will produce the reflectors, towers, absorber tubes, and other key components of the company’s solar thermal power plants.”   “Ausra can fill four square miles with solar collectors every year from this one factory, enough to provide market-priced zero-pollution power to 500,000 homes. Americans want clean power, and are tired of the market fluctuations, price increases, and pollution from fossil power plants. With market-priced solar power, we are entering the Solar Decade, in which massive construction of solar plants will take place.

Equitrac Helps Organizations Stay on a 'Green' Track by Reducing Paper Waste

December 12, 2007

In the early 1990s, just as the Internet revolution was getting underway, many tech companies and analysts were predicting that the Web and the rapidly advancing business solutions of the day were going to result in a drastic reduction in paper consumption – not only in practically every business sector but also in education, government, not-for-profit -- even in consumers' homes. Of course, this “paperless society” didn’t quite pan out: Although there has certainly been shift in terms of how paper resources are used (for one thing there are less printed bills filling consumer’s mailboxes these days), organizations of all types and sizes, as well as individuals, are actually consuming more paper today than they did 15 years ago.

And -- let’s face it -- it’s mostly because people are printing stuff from the Internet left and right. The “print” button has become ubiquitous through the Web and users are happy to irresponsibly click on it anytime they want something printed out – even if they don’t really need the whole thing on paper. In many respects, the simplicity and ease of using the “print” command has only made us less conscious of how much paper we are using: It takes much less effort – and as a result much less thought – to simply click “print” in order to get 25 copies of a document than it does to take the document to a copy machine and print copies “manually.” Here’s another example: It used to be that when you went to your local library you would go and find the book you needed, put it on a copy machine and copy a few pages.

TSA, Continental Airlines Go 'Green' and Secure with Encrypted Boarding Pass Info On Mobile Devices

December 5, 2007

Passengers flying out of the George Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston, Texas airport during the next three months will have an opportunity to make their travels a little bit more ‘green.’ Continental Airlines and the U.S. Transportation Security Administration are piloting a program that lets travelers use their cell phones or PDAs in lieu of a paper boarding pass.   Houston Chronicle reported Tuesday that the system involves displaying encrypted bar codes on mobile device screens. The information displayed onscreen is then scanned by airport officials at boarding checkpoints.   If everything goes well with the pilot program, mobile device-based boarding passes could eventually do away with the need for paper documents entirely—with the exception of photo ID.

Utah to Curb Greenhouse Emissions

November 21, 2007

Survey: Contact Centers Seeing Green

November 12, 2007

An “on the conference floor” survey of executives attending the CCA Annual Convention, conducted on behalf of Softlab, finds that contact centers are seeing green, much like their IT counterparts.   According to the survey authors:   Businesses across all sectors are beginning to understand the benefits of adopting green strategies within the contact centre and, as a result, plan to put in place strategies to improve their environmental performance.   However these companies are not going green simply for the sake of being environmentally conscious, rather they need to see the business benefit.   According to Softlab senior consultant, Lisa Olafsdottir:   “…going green for green’s sake is not a current business goal. With productivity and revenue gains seen as the most important drivers for implementing a green policy — by 26% and 24% of respondents respectively — companies do want to be seen to be taking steps to reduce their impact on the environment, but only if it makes commercial and financial business sense.”   Some other interesting findings from the survey:  
  • 53% of respondents already have a green policy in place, though many, unprompted, expressed concerns regarding the quality of the current policy. Perhaps surprisingly, nearly one quarter (22%) don’t know.
 
  • Similarly, only 41% have a specific employee in place responsible for ‘green’ issues, with no such champion in 26% of respondent organizations. Again, 33% were uncertain as to the existence of such a role within the business.
 
  • The most commonly used contact center applications include workforce optimization tools (adopted by 72% of respondents), followed by Voice over IP (VoIP) (71%) and multi-channel solutions (62%).

Singapore Organization Creating 'Green' Building for Zero Net Energy Usage

November 7, 2007

The concept of “zero emissions”—or a system in which there is no net waste, because everything is reused or recycled—is challenging organizations and companies to come up with new green technologies, or uses for existing technologies, to cut down on carbon footprints.   One such project, underway in Singapore, was highlighted in a ChannelAsiaNews.com report Wednesday. It seems that a “zero energy” building is being created there by the Building and Construction Authority (BCA), the organization’s flagship “green” R&D project. The building is part of BCA’s Green Building Masterplan.

IBM Goes Greener

October 31, 2007

Business Link in UK Intros New Green Business Web Site

October 17, 2007

UK-based businesses have a new tool to help them be more “green.” BusinessLink.gov.uk, a resource Web site for businesses, part of the UK government’s Business.Gov agency, this week added a new section devoted to green business practices.   The “Environmental & efficiency” section of the Business Link Web site is broken up into three main areas: “Environment and your business,” “Sustainability and your business,” and “Waste and pollution.” Tools on the site include a self-assessment of environmental compliance, free e-mail alerts about regulatory updates, information about training and grants, and a variety of publications to help companies get their hands around “being green.”   Also featured on the site are phones numbers for several “green” related hotlines.   The new site looks like it will be a valuable resource for UK companies seeking to be more green. If you run a company in the UK, let us know if the site proved useful for you, or if there are better sources of information available.

Report: Australian Companies Not Ready for Carbon Emissions Reporting, Trading

October 17, 2007

Often on this blog you read about green technology programs and initiatives in the U.S. and Europe. But those aren’t the only parts of the world where people are concerned about the environmental impact of doing business. A recent report on the Web site of The Age, a newspaper covering happenings in Australia and New Zealand, highlighted an Ernst & Young report about efforts to reduce carbon footprints by companies “down under.”   According to The Age reporter Peter Hannam, the Ernst & Young report indicated that most Australian companies, while they’re making an effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, are nowhere near being ready to report on carbon emissions or participate in emissions trading programs.

Companies Can be 'Green' With the Technology They Already Have

October 5, 2007

Lots gets written about these days regarding new types of technology that can help companies be more ‘green.’ These include everything from vehicle engines designed to run on corn-based fuel, computer chips that require less power to run, and revamped cooling systems for data centers. But, in terms of reducing impact on the environment, there is a lot companies can do with existing technology.   That, according to ComputerWeekly.com reporter Rebecca Thomson, was the message from Carbon Trust chief policy officer Michael Rea at a recent meeting. Carbon Trust is a London-based, government-funded company tasked with helping UK businesses and public sector organizations reduce their carbon emissions.
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