Chief Development Officer Charles Giancarlo is a leading voice at Cisco Systems and has had a major hand in recent technological and business successes. Giancarlo guides the overall direction of innovation and perhaps has more say in where Cisco will advance into the future than anyone else.
IT World Canada editor-in-chief Dan McLean had an exclusive interview with Giancarlo during this month’s Cisco Partner Summit in Las Vegas. What follows is an edited version of the discussion.
Q: During his presentation (channel vice-president) Keith Goodwin said you have identified a half-dozen new emerging technologies. Can you talk about those?
A: There are a number of areas that are very interesting. Virtualization — we continue to just scratch the surface of what’s possible in that environment. The area of virtualizing the client is becoming interesting. So making somewhat transparent what’s on your PC or what’s in the cloud in the data centre is opening up all sorts of new opportunities. So that’s something we’re investigating.
We identified the entire area of video convergence. We’ve announced a large number of things in that area in the last 12 to 18 months, including digital signage and video surveillance capabilities. You’ll probably see more things come out in that area from us. Collaboration is a very rich and we’re working on a number of technologies in that area.
Q: It seems logical to think that many of the new technological developments will be focused on the consumer side, given what you’ve said in the past about consumers being the most significant segment area for innovation.
A: Yes, I think so, although I don’t know that we’ll become another Sony. I think sometimes what we say about the consumer driving technology maybe gets taken a little too far. Because it’s hard to distinguish now between an end user as a consumer or as a business end user, we are going to be much more involved in that end-user environment.
Q: Consumers driving tech