Cisco in the Spotlight: “Iron Man 3” and Telepresence

cisco, telepresence, cisco cts, used cisco reseller, telerobotics, teleoperations, iron man 3, tony stark, planit hardware, used IT hardwareDid anyone notice all of the awesome technology in Iron Man 3? No, not the suits—the Cisco telepresence units used throughout the film. Okay…so I work in this industry, my eyes are often on the lookout for the brands that are fixing their name to tech hardware both fictional and real. Sometimes, technology so advanced that you never it knew it existed will make its mainstream debut in a blockbuster film, such as Iron Man 3, and it will be very much real. But back to the suits: they were pretty remarkable.

In Iron Man 3, Tony Stark (Robert Downey, Jr.) has built his latest and greatest suit, the Mark 42, a weaponized suit of armor similar to all the others he’s made but with an added flair of telepresence. Telepresence is essentially technology, in various forms, that allows one to feel as though or gives the effect that one is present where they are not. This can be achieved via telerobotics and teleoperations—remote controlling—much like how Tony can intuitively control the Mark 42 suit, see through it and speak through it without actually being in the suit itself. Very enticing stuff, indeed.

On top of the suit, TelePresence video conferencing units by Cisco were also incorporated into the film. Cisco is the number one name in IT hardware, and planIT HARDWARE is a used Cisco reseller, offering new-in-box, new-open-box and refurbished products at 60-90% off list price.

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Keeping Up With the Joneses: Cisco Acquires Whiptail, Joins the Data Storage Market

cisco, whiptail, acquisition, flash, data storage, keeping up with the joneses, etymology, used IT hardware, used cisco reseller, planit hardware, network hardwareWho were the Joneses? And why is it that they had everything? Out of all the family names, the Joneses get picked to be covetously compared to for eternity. I wonder where this all started…

Allegedly, the phrase, “Keeping up with the Joneses,” originated in reference to the over-developing, wealthy Jones family of New York in the mid-1800s, from which American novelist Edith Wharton descended. The Joneses married into the empire known as Chemical Bank, owned by one John Mason. The clan then began to out-build their wealthy peers in the Hudson Valley, forcing those around them to “keep up.” Popularization of the term came from an eponymously titled 1913 comic strip that ran in papers for 26 years. In this comic, the Joneses of the title are the unseen-but-often-referred-to-neighbors of the main character. With the ubiquitousness of the comic came the normalizing of the phrase that we now know today.

Now that we’ve established just how daunting idiom etymology can be…

This past Tuesday marked the day Cisco would finally make its entrance into the world of data storage. After negotiations with Whiptail, a privately held Whippany, NJ-based leader in memory systems (particularly flash storage), Cisco finally got its hands on technology that could help its servers process information much, much more efficiently. According to Cisco Systems Inc., such a move will “simplify customers’ data center environments by delivering the required performance in a fraction of the data center floor space,” effectively condensing the jobs of several pieces of IT hardware into a more lightweight data system.

Good for Cisco. It seems they have caught up with the likes of HP, Dell, EMC, and IBM, who all have invested in flash storage vendors. It would appear that keeping up with increasing performance demands means keeping up with Joneses.

 

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S.E.A. vs. ASA – Syrian Electronic Army Cyber-Attacks NYTimes.com, Twitter

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This is why Internet security is more imperative than ever.

Just yesterday, an electronic hacktivist group known as the S.E.A. (Syrian Electronic Army) seemingly compromised both The New York TImes’ and Twitter’s websites.

It started around late afternoon yesterday, when Forbes and Gawker began posting about the incident. Apparently, upon visiting NYTimes.com, some users found an ominous screenshot of an SEA emblem and a declaration that the page was “Hacked by Syrian Electronic Army.” Eileen Murphy, a spokeswoman for the world-famous news publication tweeted that yes, this was likely an external malicious attack.

Twitter, who has been the victim of recent SEA cyber attacks–including the hijacking of BBC, 60 Minutes, AP, and Reuters feeds–was targeted once again and fell victim yesterday as well. This time, DNS records for their image server, twimg.com, were compromised and renamed to state “sea@sea.sy” as being the admin. This caused image-serving requests to be sent to someone else’s server. Thankfully, the hacktivists were not able to redirect Twitter’s main server traffic:

It was then announced later on that the Times’ DNS (domain name server) registrar was attacked, a company called Melbourne IT; this is the same registrar that Twitter uses. So, because Melbourne IT was hacked, SEA had access to both Twitter and NYTimes DNS records.

The SEA are what the NYTimes defines as “a hacker collective that supports the Syrian president, Bashar, al-Assad” (via NYTimes.com). One of the more recent tweets coming from the above account states that “the @nytimes attack was going to deliver an anti-war message but our server couldn’t last for 3 minutes #SEA.” Whatever the case, two very powerful and influential online media outlets were just hijacked in the same day, allegedly from another country.

At planIT HARDWARE, we sell Cisco ASA’s (adaptive security appliances) and similar units, to provide any datacenter or business with a reliable piece of IT security hardware. As the manufacturer puts it, ASA’s “deliver a robust suite of highly integrated, market-leading security services for small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs), enterprises, service providers, and mission-critical data centers- in addition to providing unprecedented services flexibility, modular scalability, feature extensibility, and lower deployment and operations costs.” Our units are sturdy and reliable and just what you need to keep a secure server going in your business.

So, whether you’re a vendor or an SMB looking for reliable hardware, remember: it’s always smart to wear protection.

planIT Hardware Makes the 2013 Inc. 5000 List

planit hardware, used IT hardware, refurbished, nob, nib, eol, end of life, inc 5000, inc 500, inc magazine, inc, fastest growing, top private companies, top computer hardware companies, top atlanta companies, top georgia companiesIt is not the quantity of a person’s life that counts, but the quality of it; so it goes for businesses as well. Today is a proud day for planIT HARDWARE. We are pleased to announce that we have been ranked as an Inc. 5000 honoree.

Inc has been exalting privately held companies for the last 32 years and with this has created an exclusive club of which planIT HARDWARE is very honored to be a part. This particular list highlights the fastest-growing private companies in America. According to the business publication, “The Inc. 5000 was harder to get into this year than ever in its history.”

This year’s list was ranked by evaluating revenue growth accrued from 2009 to 2012. Inc. magazine Editor Jane Berentson states that, “now, more than ever, we depend on Inc. 5000 companies to spur innovation, provide jobs, and drive the economy forward. Growth companies, not large corporations, are where the action is.” Qualifying businesses must have been founded and begun generating revenue by March 31, 2009; the minimum requirement for revenue attained in 2009 is $100,000, and this figure needs to have reached $2 million by the end of 2012. Additionally, such companies must have held for-profit, private, U.S.-based and independent status as of December 31, 2012.

“I’m very pleased we’ve been afforded this kind of recognition,” says planIT HARDWARE Founder and CEO Paul Hogg. “It’s both exciting and humbling. planIT HARDWARE has been keeping the momentum going by having a tight team that works closely together. We maintain great relationships with our vendors and clients and treat each sale on an individual level, striving to provide whatever it is that customer needs on this or that particular order. If each transaction is a success, from the sales interaction to the shipping experience, then what we are left with is a series of successes. This makes it easier to refine those things we’d like to grow in as a company, and, as a result, the revenue growth has kept coming.”

Our company is a leader in the new and refurbished network hardware industry. We work with fellow IT hardware brokers and vendors as well as end-users to offer equipment at 60-90% off list prices. Our talented in-house technicians test every unit that comes and goes, our shipping team is flexible and efficient, and our sales force works with a back-breaking zeal to offer the best deals to our clients.

planIT HARDWARE ranked #1185 out of 5000 on the list, placing it also as #5 in the division of Top 100 Computer Hardware Companies.

Meet the Man Behind the Stache

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I’d like to introduce you to the man with all the big ideas around here. We fondly refer to him as Mr. Mustache, although his real name is Carl.

Carl “Mustache” Lundquist grew up in Bethesda, MD, with all the pomp, commerce and crab cakes the area had to offer. The son of a keyboard manufacturer, Carl often spent Saturdays deconstructing old Casios just to see how they worked. He soon began gutting out PCs and taking electronics (some not that old) off the streets of his affluent neighborhood on “large garbage” nights. Deconstructing was the easy part, but it was the rebuilding that Carl began to enjoy. He soon started custom-building PCs, optimizing their hard drives, processors, and RAM. He made a killing in high school not only by selling these units to the few kids of his district whose parents didn’t turn their nose up at the notion of buying refurbished, but also by repairing older units for the elderly around the block and the pawn shop guy off Old Georgetown Road.

In a few years’ time, he would be accepted into MIT, drop out after 3 semesters, work as the lead technician for a top IT hardware manufacturer and quit because of a disagreement about his grooming habits. After moving down South, he would come to work for planIT HARDWARE, where he was lovingly accepted for both his extraordinary expertise and facial hair.

It’s true, I mustache him a few questions, but I’ll shave them for later (har har har). “Please don’t ever say that again.”

Monsieur M. is an avid drinker of dark roast coffee, likes it with a splash of cream: “UPS Brown.”

He refuses to talk about the weather. “Hail no,” he says when asked if he checks it daily.

Lately, he’s been jarring his own peaches with some help from Owen. Peach season is ending here in the Peach State, and those Mason Jars are good for more than a quaint drinking glass. “I need a napkin whenever I have a drink of any sort…a mustache napkin, for wiping off after each sip. It’s a lot of work having this thing.”

He only dons the finest of threads. “I buy all my clothing from Brooks Brothers and Brooks Brothers only.”

Does he have any tattoos? “Just one. A little mustache the runs lengthwise on my pointer finger.”

Hipster girls love him. “They’re always busting out their mustache wallets or flasks that they got from Urban Outfitters. It’s flattering, I suppose…although I don’t understand the fascination.”

Who are his closest friends? “Rich Uncle Pennybags, you know, the Monopoly guy…he and I are pretty tight. Also, Tom Selleck. And Steve; oh, he’s just a fellow IT hardware broker with a killer ‘stache.”

Mr. Moustache is an excellent salesman, as well as an experienced IT technician. He used to work in the northeast, but quit after he was constrained by his employer to shave the ‘stache. “I moved to the south, where that sort of thing is more acceptable in the workplace. Asking me to shave is like asking me to cut my head off…and that’s just not gonna happen.”

He knows how to save money and is a guru in the virtues and benefits of buying refurbished. “In this new economic culture we’ve all been adapting to the last few years, beards have become more popular and fashionable once again—people don’t want to waste money or time on shaving anymore. ‘Stop shaving and start saving,’ is what I always say.”

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The Curious Case of Digital Hardware

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Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards.” – Søren Kierkegaard

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, originally a short story by F. Scott Fitzgerald, then a film by David Fincher, tells the story of a man who ages backwards. In the movie adaptation, the seemingly ageless (I mean, c’mon…really) Brad Pitt is the perfect lead as Benjamin Button, a child who is born a small old man, who grows into a middle aged man, and so on, progressively getting younger as time passes. With such a unique and logic-defying concept, we at planIT HARDWARE immediately were reminded of how digital technology and its hardware progresses in much the same way. The first computers took up entire rooms; the first cell phone was as big as its inventor’s head. Now, we have palm-sized devices that fit in our pockets and serve several functions all in one small, sleek unit. From boxy, slow and bulky to fast, compact and sleek: this is the progression of digital hardware, and it bears a striking resemblance to that of Fitzgerald’s character.

Whether it’s new and slim or older and bulkier, we’ve got whatever you need here at our IT hardware warehouse, all in tip-top shape.

With devices like the Apple “iWatch” in development, let’s just hope these technological advancements continue to focus on function and don’t devolve into mere childish gimmick.

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Good Call: Video Conferencing and How “Back to the Future Pt II” Predictions Were Right

back to the future, predictions, 2015, cisco, telepresence, video call, webcam, video chat, video conference, teleconference, used it hardware, eol, nob, nib, refurbished, network hardwareThe Future: It’s all very exciting.

The 1989 sci-fi classic Back to the Future Pt II has become increasingly more relevant in the last few years. In the film, Marty McFly and the Doc travel forward to the year 2015. With only two years to go until the duo’s date of arrival, people are chomping at the bit for a hoverboard more than ever. In having to construct a vision of the future to set the movie in, Director Robert Zemeckis and his team ended up inventing, interpreting and incorporating a lot of technology and trends that have since become a present reality. Today, we’re going to focus on one innovation in particular.

Even as far back as the advent of The Jetsons, people have been daydreaming and clamoring for personal, digital technological advancements…in both the home and the office. One of the most common desires: video calling. While Skype has pioneered the home part, Cisco has had a handle on the office game for quite some time now. According to CTO Guido Jouret, Cisco TelePresence has been integrated into 75% of the Fortune 500. Cisco’s TelePresence technology makes it possible to have high-definition video calls that are about as interactive as it gets, short of meeting in person. It is this kind of technology that brought Michael J. Fox and Flea (of the Red Hot Chili Peppers) together on screen. It is this kind of technology that allows for someone in New Jersey to teach live to students in South Korea, for the Brown University Freshman to stay connected to her family while figuring out the difference between sociology and psychology, for the President to take a meeting while maybe finally finishing that pen-and-ink sketch of a snowy barn he’s been working on (everyone has to unwind). Whatever the function, Cisco has made Zemeckis’ and many a fanboy’s dream of video calling come true…and it’s not even October 21st, 2015 yet.

planIT HARDWARE carries stock of Cisco CTS-1000, along with other TelePresence units, so contact us for a quote today!

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