Nobody Asked Me, But…(October 2014)

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It was the famous journalist Jimmy Cannon who when faced with nothing particular to write about would fill his columns with a random series of opinions on anything he felt like saying. He’d begin every topic with “Nobody asked me, but…” and then go on to observe the world as he saw it. While I am privileged to post blogs about collaboration for The IMCCA, Cisco, InfoComm, LinkedIn and my own site, and to submit the occasional (award winning) travel blog to JoeSentMe, I haven’t had had a place to air my rambling opinions that are too big for Twitter and too brief for a blog. With that in mind I am honored to support my friend David Maldow and his new Lets Do Video site with a recurring (when I feel like it) column of ramblings, rants, snark and musings about the things I know best – technology, AV, collaboration and multimedia (with what I’m sure will be a smattering of opinions on science fiction, travel and popular culture.) I’ll apologize now – just this one time – to anyone who may be offended by any of my comments and opinions. However, in most cases, the worst I’ll be doing is just putting in writing what industry insiders are saying anyway. If it’s not what you wanted to hear, well as I said, nobody asked me…  

Nobody asked me, but if the FAA was a private company its CIO would have been dumped after the recent fire in Chicago. To admit now – in 2014 – that there is no immediate business continuity / disaster recovery plan for employees who sit in a building (that could be anywhere) looking at terminals, accessing data and communicating – is unforgivable.  Can you imagine any large firm losing a single call center and not absorbing the workload for the “two weeks” we’ve been told it will take to rebuild?  Of course not.  We spend tons of money staffing our airports’ front doors with an obnoxious TSA army but leave the back door unguarded and with no back-up. Terrorists don’t need to get knives or bombs past guards and onto an airplane to take out the US aviation industry anymore – they just have to crack a sprinkler pipe or set a fire at a couple of unguarded FAA centers.

ChicagoAirTraffic

Nobody asked me, but the state of California has much bigger problems to deal with (drought, class warfare, unsustainable economy, etc.) than the dreaded, evil plastic bag.  None the less this versatile and inexpensive convenience has been banned in the state.  Of all the things that could become litter, this one and just this one is apparently the source of all of California’s problems.  The last time I flew through a California airport and went to buy a sandwich for the flight it was served to me in a huge, plastic clamshell type take-out container.  When I asked for a plastic bag to wrap the sandwich in to save space (and not waste the unneeded container) they didn’t have one.  I had to take the container and the plastic bottled drink as they came.  Funny, you don’t see plastic bottles littering the streets anymore, do you…maybe a similar refund on return would have been a better idea than zoning in on and banning nothing more than a scapegoat to distract people from real issues.

Nobody asked me, but with Microsoft announcing their next operating system will be named Windows 10 (skipping 9) everyone is upset.  Star Trek movie fans (who know that Trek movies parallel Windows operating systems with only every other one being decent) are upset that the expected next film is now bound to be a disaster.  Windows 7 users are upset because the skip intentionally makes them feel even more out of date.  Windows 8 users are upset because they bought-into and learned the overly complex and difficult live-tile UI only to now see it will thankfully fade off into the sunset.  And Microsoft die-hard fans are upset at the choice of the number to skip.  Of all the operating systems (OS) they thought Microsoft wouldn’t endorse, the number 10 (Roman numeral X) would have been top of the list.  Imagine the field-day Apple will have with comments that they had OS X since 1999.

Nobody asked me, but I’m finding myself supporting the little boy who points out that the emperor has no clothes – the emperor in this case being WebRTC.  The gap between the promise of WebRTC (universal, plug-in free rich media in every browser) and the reality that nothing of the sort is even close to happening is as big as ever.  The gap just plain will not close until Google, Microsoft, Cisco, Apple and the 381 other members of the W3C completely agree on all the technical standards involved. These are the same firms that won’t agree on the hundreds of other things involved where they compete head to head – so I wouldn’t be holding my breath.  It just makes me shake my head when I read another article about how great a new application is that doesn’t require me to download a plug-in…when it would require me to download a new browser I don’t use (or a browser that downloads new updates itself whenever it feels like it.)

Till next time…

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About Author

David Danto has over three decades of experience providing problem solving leadership and innovation in media and UC technologies for various firms including AT&T, Bloomberg LP, and Morgan Stanley. He is currently the Principal Consultant for collaboration, video, and AV disciplines at Dimension Data, as well as IMCCA’s Director of Emerging Technology. Email David at David.Danto@Dimensiondata.com to learn how he can help your organization solve problems, develop a future-proof collaboration strategy for internal use, or develop user-focused go-to-market strategies for your collaboration product or service. The opinions expressed in David’s commentary are his own, and are not representative of Let’s Do Video.

2 Comments

  1. kkharvey@yahoo.com'

    Dave,

    I agree with you on WebRTC and plastic bags, but the FAA issue is really complicated by the fact that the FAA’s budget is controlled by Congress…and if you think that the W3C gets nothing done, just spend a day at the capitol while those bozos are in session.

    KH

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