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Van and bus networking approaches

  • 22 Jun 2021 17:12
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This free event is designed to offer expert help and advice to new start and existing entrepreneurs and small Scottish businesses, an event that expects to attract over 8,000 business hopefuls.
Cisco will be exhibiting at the event with their technology kitted-out NOW Van.  Attendees can climb aboard to see at first hand exactly how technology is getting more affordable and accessible for small business (despite the stiff management speak). 

Technically Cisco offers unified IP communications solutions through wireless and mobility solutions, network foundation solutions, and management applications with embedded security.

Happily in small business terminaology this translates into being able to see how the following technologies work:

WebEx - ideal for small companies as it is all run from the browser.  This collaboration software help you in all manner of ways including improving the way you sell, looking at specific customer issues, the ability to share and update documents and reports in real time etc.

Video conference capability - very useful for small business who work between sites or have remote workers.  It's all done through laptops and webcams so costs are not prohibative.

Single Number reach - this telephony system allows you to twin up your mobile phone and business so that both numbers automatically ring and has a unified voicemail box, allowing you to work much more flexibily and be always available for customers.

The internet school bus approach
(Below:Courtesy Joshua Lott for The New York Times)
Arizona students endure hundreds of hours on yellow buses each year getting to and from school in this desert exurb of Tucson, and teenagers break the monotony by teasing, texting, flirting, shouting, climbing (over seats) and sometimes punching (seats or seatmates) - not so different from many other long journey school buses.

School officials there came up with the idea of mounting a mobile Internet router to the bus sheet-metal frame, enabling students to surf the Web. The students dubbed it the Internet Bus, and what began as a high-tech experiment has resulted in Wi-Fi access transforming a rowdy bus ride into a rolling study hall, with behavioral problems virtually disappearing.

“It’s made a big difference,” said J. J. Johnson, the bus driver is quoted saying “Boys aren’t hitting each other, girls are busy, and there’s not so much jumping around.”

The buses were part of a wider effort to use technology to extend learning beyond classroom walls and the six-hour school day. In 2005, the district inaugurated a digital school, issuing students with laptops instead of textbooks, and more than 100 built-in wireless access points offering powerful Internet signals in every classroom, even as far as the football field.

Bus or van approach to networking on wheels has some interesting  possibly extendible implications, from showing off Cisco services to pacifying the rumbuctious young.

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