Monday, September 30, 2013

VC DireXions Summit-October 2013 VCI-Group President’s Message

October 2013 VCI-Group President’s Message

I have been telling you that this year we are transforming the VCI-Group organization to provide more relevant, thought provoking webinars, introducing you to Manufacturers and Service Providers and their new products/services, alerting you to all the events being held in our industry and a more robust website and forum.  I am pleased to announce that not only have we done that; but, we have developed a new opportunity for YOU our members to “influence” the industry!!

I would like to officially introduce the “VC DireXions Summit”, an exciting new program to be held in conjunction with ITEXPO on January 28th – 31st, 2014 at the Miami Beach Convention Center.  What is the VC DireXions Summit?  Your opportunity to help fulfill our charter: “working to influence the development of Industry-based standards for multimedia collaboration technologies and applications, to improve industry products and services, and to facilitate the exchange of information among its members”.

We will be asking YOU; our members, to provide direct feedback to industry hardware, software and service providers on improvements you want made in their products and services related to interoperability.  Your feedback will then be ranked by your peers along with others’ feedback.  The top-ranked requests will be taken forward with support from the Open Visual Communications Consortium (OVCC) to work with the manufacturers and vendors to resolve any interoperability issues and implement the features and functionality you need to be successful in your organization.

Tell us what applications or business solutions you are trying to implement; but, are having issues/concerns because you cannot get your equipment to talk to each other.  We are developing a special presentation template available shortly which you can use to make your case.   Our goal is to receive over 100 requests.  You will be able to vote on what you would like the industry to focus on. The top 10 requests will be our first priority.  Upon notice from the vendors of successful resolution of each interoperability request, we will be turning it back over to you, our members, for final testing and approval.  Finally we have an opportunity as End Users to influence the industry on those issues which personally affect the ability to deliver a service to our clients and company.

Also, at the VC DireXions Summit during IT Expo we will be providing a new type of certified training on multi-vendor interoperability by our strategic partner Compass Business Solutions. Keep watching our Newsletter and emails as we will be sending more information on this event.

Lastly, as we approach the end of 2013 we are looking for Members who would like to be a part of the Visual Communications Industry Group Board of Directors.  This is a great opportunity to join a group of individuals who are passionate about the collaboration/conferencing/unified communications industry and are looking to take it from “good to great”.

Please reach out to any current Board Member or the VCI-Group office if you are interested in becoming a 2014 Board Member.
Toni Alonso
VCI-Group President

Monday, September 23, 2013

VCI-Group September SIG.

Date: Thursday, September 26th, 2013 - 1:00-2:00PM ET 
Title: Grant Writing Tips and Tricks
Register: Click here to register for this event
Julie Best
Julie Best
Communications Director for the Idaho Education Network, a statewide network that provides broadband and video teleconference systems in Idaho
Guest Speaker(s):
Elizabeth Burton
Elizabeth Burton
Director of Business Development and Public Relations – Center for Rural Development
Description: Please join the next Distance Learning Sig webinar on September 26th featuring guest speaker Elizabeth Burton. Elizabeth will be discussing how to find, prepare, and writing grants to fund technology initiatives for education. She has led large-scale program change efforts and process improvement initiatives for public, private and nonprofit organizations. Most recently, Elizabeth led a national team of grant experts for a multi-national telecommunications manufacturing and sales corporation, where she re-engineered the grant assistance program, and enabled public and private sector organizations to secure millions of dollars in grant funding for technology. She is a nationally recognized speaker and trainer on organizational change, leadership and grants, and has served as a peer reviewer for federal, state and local government grant programs

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Alliance Spotlight Video Conferencing Architecture: Why a Sea Change is Happening

Date: Thursday, October 3rd, 2013 - 1:00 PM ET
Organization: Vidyo
Session Title: Video Conferencing Architecture: Why a Sea Change is Happening
Register: Click Here To Register

Marty Hollander
Evangelist and former SVP, Market Development of Vidyo

Description: The age of global, large-scale HD video collaboration has arrived but how did we get here and where is the industry going?
Get the inside story of how Vidyo technology powers one of the largest video collaboration deployments in the world today, connecting over 20,000 scientists at 600 institutes and universities across 113 countries for physics research. We’ll explore how video conferencing architecture has evolved to support massive deployments and the exploding number and variety of personal endpoints.
Join Vidyo's Marty Hollander to:
  • Learn about the video architectures and deployment models proven to deliver high-quality, multipoint collaboration at mass scale.
  • Discuss the adoption of scalable video coding technology and its critical role in place in the H.264, H.265 and WebRTC VP9 codecs.
  • Explore Vidyo’s ongoing work with Google to enhance the video quality of WebRTC and the future of browser-to-browser communications.
  • See what’s new with VidyoDesktop 3.0 and VidyoWeb.
Speaker's Bio: Marty Hollander is a consultant and evangelist for Vidyo and formerly served as the company’s SVP of Market Development. With more than 20 years of high-tech marketing experience, Marty specializes in developing lasting strategic assets through creative market development. Previously, Marty served as Vice President of Marketing at Cemaphore Systems, Latitude Communications (later acquired by Cisco) and ProactiveNet (later acquired by BMC). He also founded CollectiveSpace and IntelliCorp, where he played a variety of executive roles. Marty has also held senior level positions at Silicon Graphics and Storm Technology. Marty earned an MBA from Stanford University as well as an MS from Carnegie-Mellon University.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

September 2013 VCI-Group President’s Message

September 2013 VCI-Group President’s Message
If you have been reading the industry news lately you are aware that there is more turmoil amongst some of the leading players.  What does that mean to us?  I am not sure yet. Let’s give it another quarter and let it play out.  But, I will say this – our industry is no longer about BOXES.  We have moved from a hardware industry to a software and cloud-based industry.
How does that affect us – the strategists, implementers and supporters of visual collaboration?  It means that we need to keep our ear to the ground, our eyes open and to be adaptable and flexible.  We will need to become knowledgeable of the new technologies/services and companies who offer them.  We will need to become certified in WebRTC, the cloud and Unified Communication.
How can you do this?  It is through education!  Education does not necessarily mean “brick and mortar” – for many of us we learn “on the job”; but, you don’t want to do that as you implement a new technology or service for with that comes some risks, perhaps too many.  
You want to be the individual who can understand the benefits/risks regarding the new technology, to be able to describe, discuss and provide a strategy to transition from legacy to new technology.  You need to continue to be viable in the marketplace as the technology delivery evolves.
To do that – we, VCI-Group are developing the programs to ensure that you can continue to be valuable to your organization or to be able to move into a different role. 
Our monthly webinars are a glimpse into the current issues we are encountering; BYOD, cloud services, Web RTC, etc.  These webinars will give you an understanding of the services, technology and the concerns/issues the industry has.  Through our  Alliance Member Spotlights, you will have an opportunity to hear the new technology and services that these vendors have developed, are selling which are transforming  visual communications. 
Let’s not forget that we learn best from our peers and we offer Special Interest Groups (SIGs) that touch on verticals; e.g., Distance Learning, Healthcare and technology, Technical & Engineering.  Listen and join your peers and vendors in discussions on the current challenges.  These webinars and spotlights are  a mechanism for you to begin to explore the technology, services and challenges.
We understand that advancement and job viability is linked to education and we are developing training programs that will provide you with certifications.  We should have more information for you in the coming month on the programs, delivery and costs.
So as summer comes to a close, we prepare for continued changes within our industry and the opportunity to provide you with the knowledge and education to adapt and master the technology and services.
Remember, knowledge is a powerful thing.
Toni Alonso
VCI-Group President