Can you hear me now? Tales from a Cisco voice instructor

January 29, 2013  7:31 PM

How to Ruin a Great Idea

Dave Bateman Dave Bateman Profile: Dave Bateman

I just posted about the cool new iOS app that allows you to take six seconds videos and post them to Twitter or Facebook. Well, the app was out long before someone came up with the idea to use it for porn. This, of course, has caused a great deal of concern for a large number of people. Concerned parents are worried about their children installing the app and stumbling (or even intentionally) watching inappropriate videos.

While I am sure this was not what the developers of this app expected, it is not as surprising as one would think. What concerns me the most about this is that, if not handled properly, it could cause what could have been a fun app to become blacklisted by many.

They have taken steps to try to label these types of videos as offensive and not allow them to play automatically. However, some users still complained because they thought the warning was a joke and ended up viewing something they didn’t want to see.

Let’s hope the fun aspect of this video is able to outweigh the offensive uses some people are finding for it.

January 28, 2013  7:31 PM

New Twitter Video App

Dave Bateman Dave Bateman Profile: Dave Bateman

What can you show in six seconds? I think you’d be surprised. There is a new iOS app out call Vine. It allows you to take six second videos and post them to Twitter, Facebook ,or the Vine service itself. When I first heard of this app, I thought that six seconds wasn’t enough time to even get the camera in focus and wrote it off as another one of those apps that I would open once and then simply delete from my iPad. But, when I opened it and started seeing what people were creating in just six seconds, I started to see the value.

The operation is as simple as it gets. Press your finger to the screen and it records, take your finger off the screen and it stops. It allows you to take as many micro clips as you like and combines them into a single six second clip.

Currently the app is only available for the iPhone, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see it for the android OS in the not too distant future.

January 27, 2013  11:43 AM

Unlocking Your Cell Phone is Now Illegal

Dave Bateman Dave Bateman Profile: Dave Bateman

As of last Saturday, if you choose to unlock a newly purchase phone so that you can use it on another carrier, you could be considered a criminal. Can you imagine being in jail for unlocking your phone? I can see it now, I’m sitting in the cell and my cell mate, Bubba, asks me what I am in for. I can tell you one thing, I’m not going to say, “I stuck it to the man by unlocking a cell phone.” I am pretty sure that wouldn’t gain me a lot of respect in the big house.

Chances are the common cell phone user will not end up in jail for such an offense, but you have to wonder how something like this ever became illegal. It all has to do with the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998. Basically, this made it illegal to create devices or services that allow people to disable copyright technology. Most feel this act was to prevent people from copying DVDs or downloading songs. As a matter of fact, as of 2006 and again in 2010, unlocking cell phones was specifically exempt. However, as of Saturday, this changed and they are no longer exempt.

So what about jailbreaking? It seems as of now that is still allowed, kind of. In October the Copyrights Office allowed jailbreaking for individuals. However, this still leaves some room for the groups that created the jailbreaking apps to be sued.

There is currently a petition at that is asking to make call phones exempt from this act.

January 24, 2013  7:30 PM

Cisco Launches a New CCNA Certification

Dave Bateman Dave Bateman Profile: Dave Bateman

Cisco recently announced a new CCNA for Video certification. It is believed that video is going to become a high demand technology and Cisco is trying to make sure the people deploying the solutions are qualified to do so.

To achieve this certification, an individual must pass two tests. The first is the 200-001 VIVND and the second is the 640-461 ICOMM. The VIVND is a new test while the ICOMM test has been around for a while. As a matter of fact, it is the test the ones takes to achieve a CCNA – Voice.

The one thing that does seem odd to me is that this CCNA certification does not have the perquisite of the route/switch CCNA like the CCNA Voice and many other CCNAs have. While this seems odd, the description of the certification makes it sound like this certification is more job-role specific than other. Here’s how they describe this certification:

Audiovisual professionals working with traditional analog solutions can extend their skills into a Video-over-IP networked video environment with our Cisco Certified Network Associate Video (CCNA Video) certification. This certification track is a job-role-focused training and certification program for video and collaboration products. You will learn to deploy video end-points, set-up new users, and operate networked video solutions.

So if you are looking to add a new certification to your resume, this might be one to check out. In the next post we will take a look at the new courses amid at this certification.

January 23, 2013  7:30 PM

New Cisco Video Courses

Dave Bateman Dave Bateman Profile: Dave Bateman

As I mentioned in my last post, Cisco has announced a new CCNA Video certification and, along with it, a couple new classes. The aim of these two new classes is prepare someone to pass the new test as well as to provide them with the skills they will need to be able to deploy video end-points, set-up new users, and operate networked video solutions.
The first course is called Implementing Cisco Video Network Devices (VIVND1). It is a three day online course. This course describes the characteristics of a video solution and enables students to evaluate the general requirements for video deployments such as coding options, media formats, protocols, network impact, high-level architectural components and their interactions, and requisites to the environment.

The second course is called Implementing Cisco Video Network Devices Part 2 (VIVND2) and is a five day traditional instructor led course. This course describes Cisco business video solutions and enables students to implement and troubleshoot Cisco Unified Communication and Collaboration, TelePresence, and Digital Media Player in different Cisco business video solution architectures.

So, if you are planning on achieving the CCNA Video certification, these course may be of interest to you.

January 5, 2013  6:43 PM

Project Humor

Dave Bateman Dave Bateman Profile: Dave Bateman

The new year is upon us and it is sure to be filled with many projects. Some will be successful while others, not so much. My favorite (insert sarcasm here) types of project are those that have far more team members than required. It seems that the one thing large teams are never short on are opinions. It seems everyone know “the best way to do something.” While working on team projects, it is best to keep your sense of humor. To help with that, here’s something I found floating on the Internet. It is a humorous list of the types of people you may find on your team.  When projects aren’t as much fun as you wish they, were refer back to this list. It might make you smile. Remember, at the end of the day the project will be completed, one way or another.

1. Project Manager is a person who thinks nine women can deliver a baby in one month.

2. Developer is a person who thinks it will take 18 months to deliver a baby.

3. Onsite Coordinator is one who thinks a single women can deliver nine babies in one month.

4. Client is the one who doesn’t know why he wants a baby.

5. Marketing Manager is a person who thinks he can deliver a baby even if no man and woman are available.

6. Resource Optimization Team thinks they don’t need a man or woman; they’ll produce a child with zero resources.

7. Documentation Team thinks they don’t care whether the child is delivered –  they’ll just document 9 months.

8. Quality Auditor is the person who is never happy with the PROCESS to produce a baby.

9. Tester is a person who always tells his wife that this is not the right baby.

December 31, 2012  10:35 PM

New Years Resolution

Dave Bateman Dave Bateman Profile: Dave Bateman

It’s that time of year again – time to look back on the past year and start to think of what you can do to make the next year even better. While many people are going to promise to go on diets or quit smoking or something else to improve their personal health (which is always a good idea), I’d like to suggest you consider a resolution that could help your professional life. In the type of economy we are currently living in, you need to do all you can to make yourself more valuable than the next person.

Here are a few ideas:

  • Learn a programming language
  • Take an online course
  • Achieve an professional certification
  • Start a blog

If you are someone that likes big challenges check out these ideas:

  • Write a book
  • Start a new business (or maybe just a new job)
  • Earn a new degree

The list of things you can do to move your professional life forward are really limitless. The important thing is that you work to move it forward and not just relive the same year over and over.

December 31, 2012  5:42 PM

How Big is Your Digital Footprint?

Dave Bateman Dave Bateman Profile: Dave Bateman

Have you ever wondered how much data you actually consume in a week’s time? For me I would say that it varies based on that week’s tasks. For example if I need to test a new application I may have to download multiple DVD ISOs. Other weeks the largest thing I may download is the menu to the local pizza place. However I have a feeling that my data footprint is larger than I think.

Cisco came up with a way to determine what your digital footprint looks like. It is a short survey that asks you around 20 questions. While I found it to be interesting it seemed to focus mainly on social media and video. My results said that I am “beginning to discover the possibilities of today’s always-connected, data-driven world.” I have been active on the Internet for almost 20 years so I am not so sure how accurate this description is. However, some of the questions do make you think about the way you use the Internet. When you have a free minute hop over here and take the survey to see what Cisco thinks of your footprint.

December 30, 2012  3:20 PM

IE Remote Code Execution Warning

Dave Bateman Dave Bateman Profile: Dave Bateman

On Saturday Microsoft posted a security advisory warning users of Microsoft Internet Explorer 6, 7 and 8 it has a security vulnerability that could allow the execution of remote code. The advisory explain it this way:

“The vulnerability is a remote code execution vulnerability that exists in the way that Internet Explorer accesses an object in memory that has been deleted or has not been properly allocated. The vulnerability may corrupt memory in a way that could allow an attacker to execute arbitrary code in the context of the current user within Internet Explorer. An attacker could host a specially crafted website that is designed to exploit this vulnerability through Internet Explorer and then convince a user to view the website.”

Microsoft promises to investigate this issue and release a fix as soon as possible. In the meantime you should make sure your firewall is properly configured and your malware detection and antivirus software is up to date. If you are still running Internet Explorer 6, 7 or 8 this might be a good time to consider upgrading to a more current web browser.


December 28, 2012  2:35 PM

Cisco Umi – the End of a Bad Idea

Dave Bateman Dave Bateman Profile: Dave Bateman

I remember the first time I heard about Cisco’s Umi product, I thought “that is not going to last long.” While I can’t say all of my predictions are accurate this one was. As of January 31st, 2013  the service will cease to exist. Just in case you don’t remember (or never knew) what Umi is was, it was a HD video conferencing system aimed at the home market. The initial investment was around $600 plus 25 bucks a month to use the system. The price was later dropped to $500, and the monthly fee was lowered to $9.95. Still not a steal when you can use Skype to do the same type of thing for free.

When I first heard that the service was going to be shutdown, I felt bad for those few people that actually bought the system. However, Cisco is doing the right thing and is offering to refund the full refund on the hardware. They will also refund any prepaid service beyond January 31st 2013.

So if you are one of those people that chose to purchase this product, you better get working on getting that refund started as the refund offers February 28th 2013.

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