Discovery Of A New Species?
NetQoS marketing VP Steve Harriman noted at Interop that a customer of his application performance-measurement company has brought together two teams that in many companies today still barely speak to each other: application development and IT infrastructure.
Net Neutrality Debate, Part 2
I expected my blog on net neutrality to draw plenty of flames, and I was right. In this new post I'll round up the arguments that readers have expressed in favor of net neutrality, respond briefly, and hopefully point the debate in a new direction. I can summarize the objections to my stance - that the price of access to privately owned networks ought to be determined by economics, not idealism - in fou
The Penguin And The Howitzer
In a conversation at Interop, Novell VP of product management Alan Murray noted that a recent InformationWeek cover story showing the Linux penguin sweating profusely due to having a gun pointed at its head representing the imminent threat of litigation from Microsoft was missing something.
The Consumer Effect Strikes Again
LifeSize Communications competes with Cisco in the Web video business, but John Doyle says he's grateful for all the attention Cisco CEO John Chambers is giving to the promising new technology because there's huge opportunities to compete at different price points with varying levels of complexity for installation, deployment, and management.
When Irrestible Forces Meet Immovable Objects
What happens when storage demand is growing at close to 80% and apps must be rolled out and available globally while consolidation is taking place across servers and data centers and branch-office infrastructure and virtualization is believed to be the cure for all ills?
RFID: Reasons For Increased Deployment?
While various naysayers have tried to argue that RFID's time has come and gone, infrastructure player Reva Systems says the uptake for the technology is coming along quite nicely.
The Salesforce.com Effect Comes To Interop
In its 22-year history, the Interop trade show has been synonymous with networking, and this year's exhibitors are true to that heritage. But there's a recurring, software-oriented theme from many of the vendors I met with: the impact of Salesforce.com on the networking business.
I Want My Seamless Mobility
I have heard a lot about seamless mobility -- the dream of universal wireless access where users can roam freely between wireless LANs and cellular networks and back again -- this week at Interop. I keep hearing vendors promise dual-mode access, but when I raise the issue of the pink elephant in the room, the vendors just smile at me and change the subject.
How Much Watching Does Big Brother Have To Do?
I was wandering around the outer bounds of the Interop show floor this afternoon and stopped by a booth from a company called SpectorSoft, which sells Internet monitoring software for small businesses and home use. Never having tried their software, I can't comment on it; from the short demo that I saw, it looked like it could be quite effective. It was the booth that made me feel a bit uneasy.
Where's The Real Shortage: IT Workers Or IT Jobs?
At Interop in Vegas, reps from tech services companies were pounding a familiar mantra: Offshore outsourcing is necessary because there aren't enough tech workers in the U.S. to meet demand. Will the Senate listen to them?
Zoho Launches Notebook Beta
Hosted software provider Zoho this week at Interop launched its new multimedia writer, called Zoho Notebook. So, is it any good? Zoho first showed off Notebook at DEMO but didn't release a public version until yesterday.
Strong Authentication, Great Value Proposition
Positive Networks, a provider of hosted VPN services, is using Interop to promote a two-factor, telephone (land-line or cell)-based authentication system for users looking to access corporate applications. The company will look to hook customers with the authentication technology -- it's free -- then sell a series of add-on services.
Better Traffic Management Comes To Windows
Zeus Technology introduced at Interop a Windows-based version of its Zeus Extensible Traffic Manager (ZXTM) software, which previously ran on Linux, Solaris and FreeBSD.
The Greening Of Interop
My assumption has always been that the best way to get enterprises to go "green" -- to institute conservation policies via decreased energy use and technology recycling, for example -- was to hit them directly in the pocketbook (or via regulations, of course). It's the bottom line that counts.
All On A USB Stick
USB flash drives have become ubiquitous, among both tech professionals and consumers. They're used to pass along product information at trade shows, as a means to take your data and apps with you (when your MP3 player doesn't have enough space), as a backup device -- and as a fashion statement.
Interop Sets A High Bar For Tech Vendors
Large industry shows like Interop Las Vegas are a great place for vendors to launch new products, for end users to find what they need to improve their business processes, and for us journalists to gather story ideas and to network. But what became obvious to me this time around is that vendors use these shows to test the limits of their technologies.
Progress Report: CRM For Google Apps
Since launching Etelos CRM for Google Apps -- a lightweight CRM app that works with Google's productivity suite -- on Feb. 28, Etelos has nearly 3,000 businesses representing 30,000 individuals using the product, Etelos CEO Danny Kolke said at Interop today.
Net Neutrality: Not the American Way
I've always had a problem with the Internet-freedom crowd who declare that "net neutrality" - the principle that no one has the right to prioritize or charge higher rates for bandwidth regardless of how much is used or what it's being used for - is an inviolable right on the order of bearing arms and speaking freely. And now Mayor Michael Bloomberg has crystallized my vague unease. In his vision for the future of
Making Corporate Data As Accessible As A Blog
One of the more compelling product pitches I heard at Interop today came from a low-profile developer of software components called /n Software. Got lots of corporate data built up that your knowledge workers can't find or access? Need a lightweight, low-impact way to disseminate data from various systems internally or to partners?
You Shall Use No 'N' Before Its Time
I was a bit nonplussed when I discovered that vendors catering to small businesses and individuals were starting to push 802.11n-compliant devices. Not only is it not certain that they even need them (since the only real advantage to individual home users would be if they're planning to stream video across it, and how many cable companies are advertising that these days?), but there is the small issue that 802.11 isn't going to be certified by the IEEE LAN/MAN Standards Committee for, oh, a coup
Microsoft Enlists Startup To Help Secure Linux Desktops
Patent claims against Linux notwithstanding, Microsoft is working with a startup to ensure a key security initiative includes support for the open-source operating system on client computers. On Tuesday, Avenda Systems said it will build Linux client software for use with Microsoft's Network Access Protection (NAP) technology. That software will allow NAP to interact directly with Linux clients.
IT And Enterprise 2.0: Why They Need To Get Along
There's tension between IT departments and grassroots Web 2.0 efforts in the workplace. IT likes top-down hierarchies. The Web 2.0 crowd prefers free-form work styles. They need to get it together.
Good Advice On Web Ops: Don't Forget The Users
Coradiant is working with Splunk to add user performance and experience information to the types of data that Splunk collects in its IT search engine. The two companies are looking to provide a more integrated analysis of Web operations performance.
High-Performance Wireless LAN Is Key To Business Mobility
There has been a lot of talk about improving the performance of the wireless LAN here at this year's Interop. Why do IT departments need high-performance Wi-Fi? Without it, initiatives like business mobility and unified communications will go nowhere fast.
Chambers Prods CIOs: Add Business Value Now
John Chambers has some feedback and some advice for CIOs. Speaking in an Interop keynote address, the Cisco CEO says half of CIOs are viewed as adding value to their business while half are viewed as expense areas "and that's not good."
Chambers Talks Internet Phase 2
I first wrote about John Chambers back in 2001, just before the tech bubble burst, in a lengthy profile for The Industry Standard. At the time, Chambers was still predicting that Cisco would go on growing its revenue at 35% to 40% indefinitely. As even a lowly tech journalist could predict, that didn't happen: Cisco went from being a phenomenal engine of growth to a solid tech giant growing at more like 10% to 15% a year. Chambers managed that shift adroitly, and today, now that Bill Gate
Long Lines=Good News
I knew I was about to attend a trade show in Las Vegas -- specifically, Interop -- when I hit the cab line at the airport. A couple of hundred people patiently walked up and down the roped-off aisles, one hand pulling their suitcases and the other clutching their cell phones, explaining to business associates why they may not make that lunch meeting, but they'll let them know as soon as they check in.
Loose Lips Sink Product Launches
I was flying out to Interop Monday morning when I heard two execs a row ahead of me talking about a big upcoming product announcement. They might as well have just chucked all their expensive corporate security technologies out the window.
Look For Mobility To Be Big Next Week At Interop
I am packing my bags for Interop Las Vegas next week. I expect to hear vendors talk more about mobility at next week's show. I think smartphones and other wireless gadgets will soon become central to enterprise telephony.