Monday, November 21, 2011

Interoperate or Die - BlueJeans Videoconference Exchange

I met this new company at the Enterprise 2.0 show last week and was immediately intrigued by what they do - which is solving the interoperability problem for the video conference market.  The problem is real - everyone has something different in terms of video conference technology and unless you do all the video conference inside of the enterprise and none with clients or partners (although even that stands to be challenged), they are facing a problem of having spent a pretty penny only to learn that you can not use it 90% of the time because of interoperability issues.


BlueJeans Network provides interoperability among the following systems (which is quite respectable):

Conference Room EndpointsCisco / Tandberg
Lifesize
Polycom
Sony
H.323 Systems
Conference Phones (Audio-only)

Desktop / Mobile EndpointsCisco / Tandberg
Google Talk
Mirial
Polycom
Skype for PC/Mac
Desk Phones (Audio-only)

Desktop / Mobile DevicesAndroid Smartphones
Android Tablets
Skype for iPhone
Skype for iPad
Mobile Phones (Audio-only)


Pricing ranges between $69 and $199 per month, with $199 being "all-you-can-eat" plan, and if you're any serious about videoconference that's probably the one you'll use.  Considering that they do both protocol translation and in most cases transcoding on the fly, the pricing is very reasonable..

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Products vs. Platforms

I stopped by Enterprise 2.0 Conference this afternoon - a solid event with good exhibitors and speakers (highly recommend to visit if you haven't done so already)


One session that I sat in on that was of particular interest to me was Products vs. Platforms.  Here are some interesting thoughts that came up there:

"Usability Matters"!!! (as in it's often the reason a product succeeds or fails) 
"Discretionary efforts is the key to productivity" (as opposed to mandated activities) 
"Start with a product, finish with a platform" 
"Profiles are the basis for collaboration" 
"Pushing all information into one system doesn't work" (making a case for connecting information that resides in different systems) 
"Sharepoint: most used or most licensed?"

I will be covering some vendors I met at the conference in the next couple of days. 

If you happened to be in the area and have some time, definitely check out the event!





Sunday, November 13, 2011

Dealing with Darwin

One of my favorite companies in the Office 2.0 space, the Outsystems, gave a talk at the Cloud Expo last week about "Avoiding a Zero-value Cloud" (presentation below).  One of the things that I really appreciate about what they are doing is that they are not disconnected from the customer's real problems - which is "how do I manage this web of skunk projects, legacy systems, and new releases" - this is precisely what their platform is addressing and what they tried to illustrate with the talk they gave.



Monday, November 07, 2011

But what about Michael Scott??


Forbes ran an article on Social Power And The Coming Corporate Revolution couple of days ago.

It paints a picture of the inevitable "open" enterprise where everything is out in the open - from employee peer performance ranking, to the manager effectiveness, to the customer feedback, making the system very efficient and fair..  So the days of "The Office" as we know it today might be numbered, and we're entering the brave new world of Transparency..

The article is full of good insights and quotes:
I don’t think it’s crazy to ask if your CEO is the next Mubarak,” says Gary Hamel, one of business’ most eminent theoreticians of management. “The elites—or managers in companies—no longer control the conversation. This is how insurrections start.” Says Marc Benioff, CEO of Salesforce.com, Inc.
“‘Information is power’ used to mean that hoarding information gave you power. Now we’re seeing that sharing information is power. The more you can share, the more you can help other people—and the more it becomes apparent you’re an expert and a valuable employee.” David Sacks, CEO of Yammer: 
Definitely a good and empowering read..

Some of the companies/products featured in the article:
Rypple -  employee performance management
Yammer - enterprise social network
Jive - enterprise social network