Saturday, December 5, 2009

10 key questions for every company leader

Forbes presents questions that businesses should never stop asking. These resonated with me:

  1. What is our purpose for existing?
  2. Who is our target customer?
  3. Why does anyone need what we’re selling? 
  4. How are your employees holding up?
  5. What were our competitors up to?
  6. Can you reduce expenses--without harming the product?

Note how these apply to all sizes of businesses. Even if you do not have a high leadership role, you should be asking yourself these questions for your particular role, to keep yourself on the edge.


Monday, November 30, 2009

Google Empire is misunderstood

Google's Chrom OS was announced and a first look was available for download. Everybody thinks that Google is unstoppable and its taking over the world; the reality is that most of its products and solutions are misunderstood.

A perfect example is the operating system that they are launching. Google's OS (touted Chromium) is not a direct competitor to Windows or Apple's OS-X, as many people think. As a matter of fact, it is not even designed for being run on regular laptops and PCs. It is not targeting any chunk of the desktop and laptop market share, but rather new thin devices that don't exist yet - i.e. picture even more inexpensive netbooks and other embedded computers, or maybe even television sets.

The Wall Street Journal has a good explanation of it.



In the end, Google has many products and market adjacencies that seem to overlap. The EU is starting to pay attention to them.

Here's my quick first look at Google's Chromium OS

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Social media missconceptions

This month's issue of Inc magazine includes a list of the 19 best business blogs to read. I decided to make my own pick and started reading a couple.
The most interesting post this week was from Penelope Trunk. Her post was titled 4 Lies about social media, and I concur with her 75%.
Her list is as follow:

Lie #1: LinkedIn is for networking.
Lie #2: Twitter is for conversation.
Lie #3: Blogs are personal journals.
Lie #4: Social media is no place for business.


I agree with the fact that LinkedIn is, in reality, not for networking but really for relationships. LinkedIn doesn't have features that enable you to socialize with your network, or to make it grow. Groups and discussions try to give it that social aspect, yet most people use it for advertising themselves or looking for potential employees/employers. What LinkedIn is great for is to stay informed on the whereabouts of people you have worked with or have relationships with.

I disagree that Twitter is not for conversation; to me that's one of the best uses. If you follow 250 people, you can't possibly process all their tweets. So it is definitely not to stay informed, unless you are lucky to be looking at it when the tweet shows up. It is great for asking questions and getting quick to-the-point answers. It's also great for customer service and support. With my friends, twitter is definitely a good conversation mechanism.

The last two are more obvious: Blogs are not personal journals (though they can certainly be used for that), and it is proven that Social Media and web 2.0 is definitely a place for business. Ask dozens of specialized consultants and marketing companies out there.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Bloggers must disclose endorsements

The South Florida BizJournal reports on how the FTC is to regulate Bloggers for their endorsements: Interesting policy regarding the liability of bloggers for product endorsements and reviews.

Feds: Bloggers must disclose payments for endorsements - South Florida Business Journal

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Salesforce.com integrates Twitter analytics


Salesforce.com, the cloud computing CRM service provider, announced a new service that takes into account what customers are twittering. I have experienced, first hand, great service from companies like Polar, where employees monitor Twitter and help customers with useful advice. I do it myself, too, as people ask me questions about Data Center infrastructure, or the latest business architectures and solutions in the networking industry.

That process, is a manual process: the user has to go into a search engine, and look for comments about a company, product, or service.

Salesforce.com is automating that and integrating it into their CRM application so that the system can crawl Twits and address questions, comments, concerns.

This is yet another great business benefit for using web 2.0 tools like Twitter and Facebook. I wonder if everybody is clear on the value of Twitter as a regular consumer.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Paul Van Dyk's Digital House

Nice video on Paul Van Dyk's house... what does a famous DJ have at home?

Friday, August 7, 2009

CNBC Interview with John Chambers

CNBC interview with John Chambers, CEO of Cisco Systems, regarding FY09 announcements, predictions, concerns. Highlights:
- Expanding to 30 market adjacencies, looking to expand to 50 businesses over time
- Committees and councils as management strategy is the key to succeed in scaling to various markets



I will be including more video posts... they are easier to deploy, insert, quicker TTM, and more fun!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Opera Unite - Redefining the Web Browsing Experience

Today, as I was researching the current development state of the Opera 10 Beta 2 browser for my home PC, I discovered Opera's new project: Opera Unite.

The company is reinventing the way users browse the web, by enabling bidirectional communications with a web browser. Different from today, where the majority of the web operation is coming down to the user who is looking at the website, now information will flow in the other direction out from the user's computer.

In my opinion, this is going to be big. As it's accustomed by Opera, introducing new features that become standard in other browsers (e.g. browser tabs, speed-dials, embedded RSS Reader, synchronized bookmarks across computers) expect to see this functionality become mainstream soon.

In a nutshell, your web browser will allow you to upload and share folders with friends and other people, via a web server within the browser. Very promising for sharing information, documents, synchronizing files, etc., across computers.


Thursday, July 2, 2009

FCoE or iSCSI? that is the question.


I found a great article today to help people decide whether to go with FCoE or iSCSI, or when each technology fits best. Bellow are some snippets, and here's the link to the full article.

The arrival of Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE) makes it possible to consolidate on an Ethernet fabric to meet both storage and local area network needs. However, it also means that you now have two SAN options for use on Ethernet networks: FCoE and iSCSI. This raises obvious questions about what the differences are and when you should choose one versus the other.

The FCoE layer replaces the TCP/IP layer used in iSCSI and also requires the Data Center Bridging (DCB) Ethernet improvements. The DCB working group of the IEEE has extended IEEE 802 standards to satisfy the requirements of different traffic classes on a single network without creating “traffic interference,” that is, without having one class of traffic starve another.

Since FCoE was designed without the Internet Protocol (IP) layer, it is not intrinsically routable using IP. However, FCoE routing can be performed using already established protocols such as FCIP.

The iSCSI protocol can be implemented in networks that are subject to packet loss, and iSCSI can run over 1 Gigabit Ethernet (1GbE). FCoE requires 10 Gigabit Ethernet (10GbE) and a lossless network with infrastructure components that properly implement pause frame requests and per-priority pause flow control (PFC) based on separate traffic classes that map to different priorities. The idea behind PFC is that during periods of congestion, high-priority traffic is allowed to continue while lower-priority traffic is paused.

Your 10GbE switches will need DCB support for FCoE, including a range of enhancements for classes of service, congestion control, and management. FCoE also requires Jumbo Frames because the FC payload is 2,112 bytes and cannot be broken up; iSCSI does not require Jumbo Frames.

While FCoE may create some confusion in the short term as you take steps to decide if and where it makes sense in your infrastructure, the long-term benefits are clear. By consolidating your networks on a single Ethernet fabric you can dramatically reduce capital and network management costs without sacrificing the ability to choose the protocol that makes the most sense for your application set.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Market Research Results: Unified Computing System

If you are into Virtual Machines, Application Deployment in the Data Center, Data Center Management, Storage Networks, or simply into IT, you may have heard of Cisco's announcement on the Unified Computing System. I just wanted to share some market research data from Goldman in Confluence. CNET did a great job at putting it all together and stating conclusions on the data: http://blogs.zdnet.com/BTL/?p=17751

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Everest 2009 Dispatch: Avalanche on camera

A few weeks ago, news of the first team to summit Everest in 2009 showed up in the media. A team of sherpas that were cleaning the route for other expeditions. IMG sherpa Mingma Tenzing was first on top of Everest for 2009 at 12:25pm. Panuru (IMG), Kami Rita (AAI), Dorje and Nima Tsering (Himex) were a few minutes behind him. They left the Col at 2:15am.

This week, a completely different story: one Sherpa disapeard in an Avalanche on Base Camp. The avalanche was massive, caught on camera, and very impressive pictures were taken.



For the original post: See the First Ascent Blog.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Virtual thumb drive - Syncing and sharing files between computers


This week, using Twitter, I discovered about a service called Dropbox. The company offers a service to synchronize and share files between users and multiple computers. The analogy is a virtual USB thumb drive.

You simply download a thin client that lives on the system tray, it creates a special folder in your hard drive called Dropbox, and everything that you put in that folder is syncrhonized accross all the computers where you installed the client. Also, if you want to share files, you can dedicate another folder within the dropbox folder, to share with specific friends. Oh, and it also has a web interface where you can access your files, in case you are in a public computer that doesn't have the client.
The service gives you 2GB of free space, or you can pay $99/year for 50GB. Files are uploaded into a server in the Internet, and that's how you achieve backup and synchronization.

The initial target market for the service is individuals with multiple computers that want to easily share files. I use it for synchronizing some file between my home PC and work MacBook. Also, it seems to cover some of the SMB market too, where small offices share common files. However, there are no group account, each individual would have to pay for the service to gain access to the 50GB.

The product positioning can probably be improved, and I am sure it will come as the product matures: group accounts offering a discount for the service are a must for the SMB market; ISP and Service Provider alliances are probably another option; I don't see a fit for advertisement other than in the main portal.

For a good article about Drop Box on Techcrunch:
Dropbox: Now Effortlessly Syncing Files For 1 Million Members

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Twitter Money Machine Pyramid

This is funny. Someone left a comment in my blog post about the Twitter Followers experiment from last year.
At first, I thought this was some kind of phising site, but still decided to go and check out the site - http://www.twittertrafficmachine.com
That's when I started laughing. On the front page, there is an "Informertial" about this wonderful system to get Twitter followers. It's very funny; with 30 days money back guaranteed and everything. This is nothing else but a pyramid scheme. The only thing missing is Billy Mays.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Looking at Latin America for advise in the Downturn

On Monday, the WSJ published a special article in collaboration with MIT Sloan Management Review regarding how can we learn from Emerging Markets in this downturn economy. Professors Martin Roth and Richard Ettenson explain how America and other western powers can learn from Latin America and Asian countries because of how used to downturns and volatility they are.

I can speak first person of Latin America: corruption is always around the corner; market volatility is the norm. In these countries, companies have learned that they can’t just hunker down when bad times strike. Reaching a halt is the worst thing that companies can do. Managers in Venezuela, Brazil, and other Latin American countries look at turbulent times as a chance to implement bold, creative ideas, and outflank rivals boosting their business. For example, it is the time for new pricing tactics, scraping old or traditional marketing plans, or launching new products.

Professors Roth and Ettenson lay out 4 lessons to learn, that I have summarized here:

1. When the economy is down, get customers to trade up: In tough times, consumers typically try to trade down by purchasing the cheapest alternative. Instead of getting the premium product, they look for the inexpensive version. This can be achieved by carefully adjusting prices of high value products. By absorbing lower general profit margins out of premium products, savvy customers recognize that they are getting “a good deal” by trading up. Consumer and Vendor negotiate losses.

2. Increase product and Service Visibility: Even though marketing is a place where companies tend to cut first, it is one of the most important. Marketing budgets should be dynamically shifted towards places with greater visibility. For example, in Latin America there is a greater focus for Point-of-Purchase advertisement than for massive TV campaigns. For B2B companies, this is the time to focus on services and customer satisfaction because everybody knows that it is less expensive to retain a customer than to gain a new one.

3. Rethink what customers value: the downturn could be so severe that your customer may simply not afford to buy a company’s product anymore. That is when business model flexibility is important. For example, if customers value the services more than the product itself; then the company must focus on productizing services.

4. Look at new metrics: because the recession could be affecting multiple factors, managers should look deep in many directions. They should not focus only on macroeconomics and the Dow. In Latin America, companies look at politics, inflation numbers, unemployment rates, education issues, and many other parameters.

For a copy of the full article, go directly to the WSJ website.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Cisco’s History in the Data Center’ - The Platform

I usually try to be vendor agnostic in this blog... you may laugh at that comment, if you are a frequent reader and you know me personally, though. The original goal/mission of Confluence is to write about ICT industry trends, entrepreneurship, and how technology intersects with the business world.

That said, here's (another) exception: this is a very interesting blog post on Cisco's official blog site on the history of the company in the data center. See!, it is related and aligned with Confluence's goal, with a touch of the vendor... worth the time though.

The Unified Computing Story, or ‘Cisco’s History in the Data Center’ - The Platform

Friday, March 20, 2009

Cisco Energywise Flash Demo

I thought of embeding a quick Flash demo of Cisco EnergyWise to manage power of all networked devices. Take a look at the GUI and all its potential.



Flash Demo Link

For more info, you can go to http://cisco.com/go/green

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

What is Unified Computing?

I promised a post on Cisco's announcement earlier this week about Unified Computing. Here's a link to a great flash/video explanation: Flash Explanation

A Unified Computing System is a data center server platform that unites compute, network, storage access, and virtualization into a cohesive system. As a result of unifying all that it reduces TCO and increases business agility. The system integrates a low-latency, lossless 10GE unified network fabric with enterprise-class, x86-architecture servers for any application. The system is an integrated, scalable, multichassis platform in which all resources participate in a unified management domain.

Managed as a single system whether it has 1 server or 320 servers with thousands of virtual machines, this approach decouples scale from complexity. It is all managed as one big system. Unified Computing System accelerates the delivery of new services simply, reliably, and securely through end-to-end provisioning and migration support for both virtualized and non-virtualized systems. For example, you could move hundreds of servers and complex applications in a matter of a few hours.

For more info, just Google Unified Computing, or go to the source at Cisco's site.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Confluence to Typepad or WordPress

I hiatus because of my consideration of migrating Confluence to Typepad or WordPress. I'm still doing some more research; will resume posts soon.

Friday, February 27, 2009

World Economic Forum Announces New Batch Of Young Global Leaders (Mark Zuckerberg, Chad Hurley, Kevin Rose And More)

World Economic Forum Announces New Batch Of Young Global Leaders (Mark Zuckerberg, Chad Hurley, Kevin Rose And More)

The World Economic Forum has just published its annual list of Young Global Leaders, recognizing “between 200 and 300 outstanding young leaders from around the world for their professional accomplishments, commitment to society and potential to contribute to shaping the future of the world”.

The list of honorees, besides celebrities like Coldplay’s Chris Martin and F1 legend Michael Schumacher, includes a good number of people from the technology and Internet industry, so here’s a quick run-down of the names you might know:

  • Mark Zuckerberg - founder and CEO of Facebook
  • Kevin Rose - founder of Digg
  • Chad Hurley - co-founder and CEO of YouTube
  • Josh Silverman - CEO of Skype
  • Michael Birch - founder and CEO of Bebo
  • Premal Shah - President of Kiva
  • Lisa Huddleson - Corporate Foundation Executive Director at Dell
  • Vinny Lingham - CEO of Synthasite
  • Paul Bassat - CEO of Seek
  • Suranga Chandratillake - co-founder and CEO of blinkx
  • Michael Cannon-Brooks - co-founder of Atlassian
  • Andrej Nabergoj - co-founder and CEO of Noovo
  • Matias de Tezanos - founder of HealthCare.com
  • Kamal Quadir - founder of CellBazaar
  • Ashok Vemuri - Senior VP, Banking and Capital Markets at Infosys Technologies
  • Habib Haddad - co-founder of Yamli
  • Josh Spear - founding partner of Undercurrent


Wednesday, February 25, 2009

WAN optimization is challenging for desktop virtualization

I came across a good article from Network World on the challenges that WAN optimization faces when virtualization for the desktop takes place. It is interesting to understand if WAN optimization is for you - it is not for everybody. More importantly, if you are considering a combination of thin clients at your branches (e.g. VMWare, Citrix, or Microsoft Remote Desktop) with WAN optimization, how do you implement all that.

For the entire article, go here

Friday, February 20, 2009

Campus Architecture – Resilient Services Campus

A quick note on the important of resiliency in the campus: Business-critical applications and unified communications demand new resilient services from networks that were originally built for data applications only. These resilient services help ensure that customers, employees, and suppliers always have access to business-critical applications.

Today most enterprises run these services in the core and distribution layers of their campus networks but neglect the access layer (wiring closet), forgetting that it is critical for ensuring consistency of services and applications. Traditionally, when thinking about resilient service, redundant chassis and blocks come to mind. However, resiliency has to be more than that.

It is important to embed high availability into every possible component at different levels. In other words, in order to increase the levels of availability, you must incorporate it in different places and levels of abstraction. For example, the campus design must have redundancy at a block level, equipment level, and intra-chassis level. Think about having multiple ways to get to your services, multiple chassis that interconnect your servers, and those chassis have multiple power supplies, line cards, and other components.

As the first point of contact with the network, wiring closet switches have become the business lifeline for knowledge workers, and the first line of defense for information security. The right switch prepares enterprise wiring closet network infrastructure for present and future applications. Redundancy at a chassis level becomes more important in this case because desktops and users connect to them thru a single cable.

Also, the core and aggregation of the network must be resilient at a block and chassis level to ensure self healing and no intervention in case of a failure.

Finally, the edge of the campus must also incorporate redundancy when possible, at a device and circuit level. In other words, carrier redundancy is important.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Campus Architecture – Network Virtualization

Virtualization is the buzz word due to its great and immediate impact in operational costs by reducing the equipment foot print, real estate requirements, energy consumption, and administrative burden of systems. It is definitely a straight forward concept to grasp. What is not so simple to understand is how to extrapolate that concept to a network infrastructure, unified communication services, and other IT elements that are not just servers.

For example, LAN virtualization solutions address three important aspects of network virtualization: LAN virtualization, path isolation, and services edge

First, LAN virtualization allows access control to recognize and classify legitimate users and devices, and authorize them to enter assigned portions of the network. It provides secure, customized access for individuals and groups to protect the Enterprise LAN from external threats. Also, some complementary features include: Port authentication using standards such as IEEE 802.1x for strong connections between authorized users and VPNs, and Network Admission Control (NAC) to minimize security risks by removing viruses, worms, and other harmful traffic before they reach the distribution or core layers.


Second, Path Isolation maps validated users or devices to the correct secure set of available resources (virtual private network, or VPN). These solutions use a mix of Layer 2 and Layer 3 technologies to best address LAN virtualization for typical LAN designs. There are three different path isolation solutions: (1) Generic routing encapsulation (GRE) tunnels create closed user groups on the Enterprise LAN to allow guest access to the Internet, while preventing access to internal resources. (2) Virtual routing and forwarding (VRF)-lite, also called Multi-VRF Customer Edge, is a lightweight version of MPLS that allows network managers to use a single routing device to support multiple virtual routers. (3) MPLS VPNs also partition a campus network for closed user groups. Previously, MPLS was not widely deployed in enterprise networks because of the lack of support on LAN switches, but it is now possible.


And third, Services Edge provides access to services for a legitimate set or sets of users and devices by using centralized policy enforcement. The objective to centralize policy enforcement is to minimize capital and operational expenses, share service modules across all partitions of the network, and accelerate the deployment of policies and services across the whole network.


 

Friday, February 13, 2009

Campus Architecture – Campus Communication Fabric

The Campus is the center of all business. It hosts the company HQ, and the main employee population. Also, it may host, geographically speaking, the Data Center as well. Also, the challenge most businesses face today is how to transform their existing network into a business enabling platform.

The fundamental design model for the network infrastructure is referred to as the Campus Communication Fabric, CCF, Blueprint. This is a model developed and industry validated by Cisco.

In November, I did a post on the Campus Communication Fabric that I have abridged bellow:

A Campus Communications Fabric framework can help a business solve complex planning issues, provide support for rich-media applications, enable consistent services and policies, and take advantage of a Service-Oriented Architecture (SOA) foundation, among other things. What that means is that the network will be scalable to any level, will recover itself from failures, and will become a revenue generating and cost reducing instrument without major hassles, specifically for media transport purposes in the Campus. i.e. Using high-definition TelePresence video as meeting medium.

There are six attributes of the Campus Communications Fabric:

  • Application Intelligence: Take control of applications and user experience
  • Unified Network Services: Connect any person to any resource with any device
  • Integrated Security: Secure every port with built-in protection for access, identity, and data
  • Nonstop Communications: Stay connected with a resilient infrastructure that enables business continuity
  • Virtualization: Simplify your network and maximize resource utilization
  • Operational Manageability: Do more with less—deploy services faster and automate routine tasks

Now, let's elaborate on these attributes, and why they are important.

Application Intelligence

Challenge: improving the network's ability to adjust to application requirements and support emerging trends.

Application Intelligence's functions are to recognize applications and prioritize them; monitor and control traffic; deliver new applications; and control latency in the network to have the infrastructure self adjust to changes.

Unified Network Services

Challenge: Providing any application and service to any screen at any place and any time

Unified network services connect any person or resource to any device regardless of how they are connected to the network. It provides consistent services and performance via wired, wireless, or VPN connection.

Integrated Security

Challenge: Providing distributed security tools and features required to protect and secure new traffic flow patterns

The concept of integrated security ensures that security is scalable (i.e. complex security requirements like PCI). Also, it can protect clients resources at the edge of the network in a built-in fashion via pervasive security policies.

Nonstop Communications

Challenge: Provide continuous access to applications, data, and content from anywhere.

A resilient infrastructure can guarantee application availability via intelligent network protocols and flexible design capabilities. High availability must be transparent and provided at a system level, not only a device level.

Virtualization

Challenge: Provide flexible configuration and management of all infrastructure resources to reduce costs and increase agility

A logical rather than physical view of data, storage, network, and other resources presented independently of location, packaging, or capacity enable a shared infrastructure, geographic scalability, and dynamic resource and service utilization. When thinking about virtualization, think about savings in energy and resources.

Operational Manageability

Challenge: In addition to the network always being available you always need to know what is happening in the network.

It is important to accelerate service implementation, facilitate changes, and simplify management by automating the infrastructure. A mechanism for doing this is by improving fault detection by automating it, and gaining full visibility to what's flowing through the network.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

The importance of ICT Architectures

Industry and Network Architectures can help evolve to an intelligent information network that fully integrates and optimizes the networked infrastructure, interactive services, and applications across an entire enterprise. An end-to-end architecture with integrated network services and validated designs can meet the growing demands of the global, mobile workforce and customer base. The ultimate goal of a well defined and implemented architecture is to provide a hospitable environment for revenue to increase (by increasing efficiency and productivity) while reducing cost (by simplifying and modularizing the technology infrastructure). Therefore, I have decided to dedicate multiple posts to the subject: something that I work with on an everyday basis.

First of all, let's start with the basics. Network and IT Architectures can be subdivided and applied to five distinctive places in the network:

  1. Campus – the main HQ site or large campus is the cornerstone of the company
  2. Branch – some studies show that approx 70% of employees work at a branch, not HQ
  3. Data Center – run the applications that handle the core business
  4. Teleworker – the virtual office is a reality in a globalized world
  5. WAN, MAN, Internet – connectivity to customers, business partners, and suppliers

In closing, Wikipedia defines architecture as "the art and discipline of creating an actual plan of any complex object or system." It is critical to be aware of the importance of organization and proper planning of any technology implementation.

In the next posts, I will dive into each of the 5 places, to help envision how all elements are interrelated and affect each other.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Energy Efficiency in IT expanding everywhere

Energy efficiency is not a "nice-to-have" anymore. Every company is looking for ways to save money, and the huge electric bills fruit of large Data Centers, network devices, VMWare servers, IP Phones, wireless access points, and other electronics is a great spot to target.

What if you could go even further and not only control power consumption for those traditional electronics, but expand that into smart buildings, lights, and maybe even elevators?. That's the promise of Cisco's new EnergyWise story: save in electricity everywhere by adjusting the power consumption

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

[Web Marketing] A Special Cisco Valentine's Day Gift...

Another innovative online commercial from TechEdge and Cisco. There are "lots" of channels in the new marketing industry.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Study shows Apple with 10% market share in January 09

In January of 2009, Mac OS X gained a few tenths of a percent over December's market share numbers according to Net Applications' latest tracking data, marking another record high of almost 10% of computers out there. I can attest the growth of Mac's in companies as a Windows XP replacement; I have one for work too. However I am not sure about the one in every ten.

read Complete report

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Digital TV change postponed

The Senate on Monday voted unanimously to postpone the upcoming transition from analog to digital television broadcasting by four months to June 12, 2009. Aparently a lot of people was not ready.

read more | digg story

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Energy Efficiency and the Internet

I am usually careful when quoting other blog posts, but I thought that this was well worth it. The popular treehugger.com blog posted an energy usage comparison for the Internet in general. Interestingly enough, it shows how even thought the Internet is using twice the amount of power in 2006 than in 2000, the traffic has increased by 3.2 million times. That is efficiency!

According to the post, Earth2Tech says:

newer networking technologies are generally more efficient. Older technologies like dialup and traditional wireline connections use 3.56 kWh per GB. Newer technologies including fiber and power lines use .77 kWh/GB, while cable uses .72 kWh/GB and DSL sips a low .17 kWh/GB. These figures don't include the power consumption of the end-device like a laptop or a cell phone. Also remember the measurement is energy per gigabyte of data, and newer networks also transmit significantly more data than older networks.

And, Treehugger.com concludes:

this isn't very surprising, really. With "Moore's Law" making CPUs exponentially faster and new tools like software virtualization allowing one server to replace many, it was expected that a doubling of energy consumption would result in many times more data being transferred. One interesting question would be: Does the value that you get from data scale with the amount of data? It's probably not linear, for sure, but there's still value to be had in going from mostly text and static pictures to more audio and video.

It is definitely a remarkable finding that must be broadcasted to the world. We should keep going in that direction.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Nationalization of Banks in the US

As I was listening to the news on NPR news radio on my way home from the office, I noticed that one of the main topics was the potential nationalization of banks in the US.

This comes as a natural question as a consequence of the nationalization of the Anglo Irish Bank by the government of Ireland earlier this month, and talks in the British parlaiment about it too. I have always thought of nationalization of banks as a dramatic and proven ineffective solution to a big problem. Specially when it is a sign of paternalism and goes against pure free markets theory.

Hence, I decided to get home and google about it to read more about it. Although, I found no links about nationalization of banks in the US, but a ton related to the forced nationalization of Banco de Venezuela in Venezuela last year. Precisely what I expected to find!; I have always associated nationalization with totalitarianism and immature governments. It makes me wonder if all this is really going to work out... this time.

Monday, January 19, 2009

The importance of cross-training: Kayak, perfect complement to MTB

It's been a while seen Outside Magazine comes up with an article that sparks my interest. This one does it by showing up the importance of cross-trainning, and how Kayaking is considered the perfect complement for Mountain Biking. Well written, and summarizing what they call "Total Fitness" and how it can be achieved in 7 steps:

  1. Relax
  2. Cross-Trainning
  3. Loosen up
  4. Excercise for winning
  5. Endorphine highs are a proven fact
  6. Clear your head
  7. Focus in Nutrition

For more info: read more | digg story