May 2008 Archives

1. You e-mail the person who works at the desk next to you.
2. Your reason for not staying in touch with friends and family is that they don ' t have e-mail addresses.
3. Leaving the house without your cell phone is now a cause for panic.

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If I have said it once, I have said it a hundred times….”Hyperconnectivity is a megatrend whereby everyone and everything that can benefit from being connected to the network will be connected.”

And that includes enterprises themselves!

After all, every enterprise has suppliers, customers, and partners, who are all part of an expanding ecosystem Increasingly, work will be performed wherever it can be most cost effectively done, with much less regard to the organization of the doer (employee, partner, contractor, open source contributor, whoever). This is very different than the vertically integrated industries of the last century.

What will help make this happen? One word: FEDERATIONS.

Federations are all about extending trust across domains.

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Ever since Interop, there’s been a lot of buzz in the industry about the Cisco Energy Tax.


Customers have asked me: “Why are Cisco routers and switches such energy hogs?”

The answer lies in how Cisco has architected their products, driven by their network-centric strategy built on IOS. IOS has evolved into a Swiss army knife of functionality, with literally hundreds of features that most enterprises have little use for (I discussed this ‘Feature Creep’ in an earlier posting). Anyone still running DECnet or IPX in their networks?

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“The boundary between work and personal connectivity for the hyperconnected is almost nonexistent. Two-thirds use text or instant messaging for both work and personal use. More than a third use social networking for both. “

This comes from a white paper resulting from a Nortel-funded IDC information worker survey.

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"There is no I, there is only we"

May 16, 2008 10:38 AM

We had a very interesting day with a number of journalists, all heavy bloggers, who visited us at the Nortel R&D worldwide headquarters in Ottawa.


The focus of the day was demos of some of our pre-product innovative/incubation R&D in areas such as virtual reality conferencing, embedding communications into business apps, and Web 2.0 and beyond.

What became obvious to the group was that Nortel competencies in real-time communications, scalability and reliability, had high value in turning virtual reality technologies into potentially much more user friendly and more powerful business tools.

A recurring theme was that "There is no I, there's only we", in Andy Lippman's words, who joined us for a good part of the day.

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Perhaps you've seen this ad?


Central to our efforts to give you the facts on the Cisco energy tax as compared to Nortel solutions, is the Nortel Energy Efficiency Calculator. This calculator is an engineering planning tool, that not only addressees networking in the data center (the hottest area in Green IT discussions), but also the converged LAN/WAN including IP phones and call servers.

I played with it and it’s a very neat tool..

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We all accept that hyperconnectivity is coming- everyone who can benefit from being connected will be connected using whatever device he or she is using. But in fact, it's happening faster than we expected.

A Nortel-funded IDC survey of nearly 2400 information workers around the world found that 16% of them termed 'hyperconnected users' (with another 36% of 'highly connected users' waiting in the wings), rely on and expect a range of mobile, unified communications and social networking capabilities, in their work environments. But user pull for personal productivity tools is not sufficient for a business case to invest in unified communications and related technologies.

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I just came back from a 3 day customer session we held in Vancouver, where we had a chance to discuss all aspects of networking and communications with some 20 Nortel customers from across North America. One of the topics was around the training requirements associated with introducing Nortel into a Cisco data network, in some cases, funding this transition by avoiding the Cisco energy tax.

One of the customer examples we gave was of a news agency with 3 newspapers in a major US city that replaced their Cisco network with Nortel. During the RFP process, the customer compared proposals from Nortel and Cisco, and chose Nortel.

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UC Podcast anyone?

May 8, 2008 9:11 AM

Late last year, I did a podcast on the day of the OCS2007 launch at a music studio in Toronto. This is part of Microsoft’s Canada monthly in-depth look at issues relevant to IT executives and managers across a range of Canadian industries. This podcast is entitled “The changing landscape of Unified Communications” and includes Vicki Mains of CNIB (formerly the Canadian National Institute for the Blind and a mutual customer), Erin Elofson of Microsoft, and myself. It’s 30 minutes, which hopefully will engage you during a good portion of your commute.

Something for your next commute. Drop me a not if you have any comments.

Sorry only available in English;(

Cisco is Green (with Envy)

May 6, 2008 8:02 AM

that Nortel data solutions are 50% more energy efficient. Green may be in, but Cisco products carry a huge energy tax.

Cisco’s response #1: market green and hope the customer doesn’t see the Cisco energy tax on his bill.
Cisco’s response #2: start redesigning its products (this probably won’t be just another upgrade).

What’s the customer to do #1: don’t get distracted by Cisco marketing
What’s the customer to do #2: fund your data and/or UC evolution through energy tax savings
What’s the customer to do #3: get the facts and do the math

Spam hits 30

May 3, 2008 10:49 AM

Hyperconnectivity is a megatrend whereby everything and everyone that can benefit from being connected will be connected.

The down side is that things that don’t deliver business benefit can also be connected.

And today marks the thirtieth anniversary of spam- it first appeared on the ARPAnet on May 3 1978, as an over exuberant entrepreneur tried to promote his products by sending out an unsolicited bulk emailing.

The term ‘spam’ appeared some 15 years later (15 years ago) and has been highly disruptive to residential and business users alike.

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Great news for enterprises, who now have a proven low risk choice to the guerilla.

Sure some of these have been loyal customers since the Bay days and are now moving to the latest and greatest.

But most are swapping out their incumbent vendor (often Cisco) in favor of better performance and resilience, lower energy consumption and/or lower TCO. Yet others are bringing a second vendor (Nortel) into their networking environment as part of a dual vendor strategy.

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