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Poor nations must also play role in global response to financial crisis

Supachai Panitchpakdi, Secretary-General of the UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) today voiced concern for what he called “innocent bystanders” in the widening global financial crisis.“The impact on developing countries will be much deeper than was anticipated,” he said during a meeting with UNCTAD’s governing body, the Trade and Development Board, in Geneva. Certain sectors of their economies “are beginning to suffer, and this is only the beginning,” he cautioned, adding that volatile exchange-rate movements affecting some of these countries will not help.“Trade will suffer, and the commodities boom that has helped developing countries for a number of years now is ending,” said Mr. Supachai. He noted that a real issue will be whether any cash will be left for credit and development aid needed for efforts such as achieving the anti-poverty targets with a 2015 deadline, known as the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), as well as to boost productive capacities and cope with issues like climate change.Other issues that need to be addressed include the fate of smaller private banks, preventing “capital from fleeing from developing countries,” and regulating liberalized global markets to reduce volatility and risk, especially for small nations.Mr. Supachai stressed that adapting the global financial system “must be a global effort,” that includes the participation of all countries and the UN.The President of the Trade and Development Board, Debapriya Bhattacharya of Bangladesh, noted that the crisis “is complex and interrelated, it has yet to fully unfold, and the impacts are not yet completely clear.” However, there will be repercussions for trade, the currencies, and the investment prospects of the world’s less-advanced nations, he told the meeting. “It’s not just the extent of the problem, but how to manage the pace of it.”Heiner Flassbeck, Director of UNCTAD’s Division on Globalization and Development Strategies, described the current financial turmoil as “a global de-leveraging, a global going out of risky positions. That is all right on its own – in fact we have said for several years that this was going to happen – but it can go too fast. It must be slowed down by government intervention.”He warned of a “huge slowdown in trade due to the global recession that is looming.“The current malaise is that we have built a huge casino next to the real economy, and given too many people the means to play there, and now that casino has collapsed,” he told participants. “We need to realize, to learn the lesson, that this kind of casino is not productive, is not helpful. We must go back to balanced and real economic relations and to balanced relations between currencies.”The current financial crisis will also feature high on the agenda when Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon convenes a meeting of his senior Chief Executives Board, which brings together the heads of the world body’s various entities, next week in New York. 16 October 2008A wide range of countries should play an important role in shaping policies to cope with the current global financial crisis, according to senior United Nations development experts who warned that the impact of the turmoil on poor nations is being overlooked as “economic giants” deal with the emergency. read more

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Cisco HomesIn on the Huddle Room

“As we talk with customers, more and more they are asking for ways to enable their employees to be more productive in different types of spaces,” said Joe Berger, practice director at Cisco partner WWT, in a prepared statement, calling out the advantages of each of these Cisco devices. He later added, “Because these devices are managed by the same tools as the larger rooms, Facilities can more accurately determine ROI and IT/HR get insight into employee behaviors.” The Webex Room Kit Mini will be orderable in December and available in January. Finally, Cisco is offering native AI and analytics across its solutions. This will allow IT, facilities, and real estate executives to use data to determine, for example, whether it would be more valuable to turn a large conference room into several huddle rooms. And organize around huddle rooms, it did. Today, Cisco announced several new devices aimed squarely at the space. Cisco this week made several announcements around cloud calling and huddle spaces at its BroadSoft Connections and Partner Summit events that are taking place simultaneously this week in Miami and Las Vegas, respectively. As the cloud calling news is largely geared toward service providers, let’s set that aside for now and dig into its huddle room news. All a customer needs to provide is a monitor, and it can get up and running with audio and video collaboration. The Webex Room Kit Mini is powered by the same Nvidia processor as other solutions in Cisco’s Room Kit series, which is what enables the intelligence that feeds the Webex Assistant and other AI features like facial recognition, noise suppression, and framing. Huddle Room Market Explodes, Cisco Moves InThe exact number of huddle rooms in the world varies depending on who you ask; Ira Weinstein of Recon Research, who is also the Enterprise Connect Video track chair, estimates it’s around 25 million. This number will only continue to grow as more enterprises try to make use of leftover spaces by rearchitecting them into meeting areas. And as Weinstein said earlier this year, many of these rooms haven’t been outfitted with video capabilities yet. While Cisco has long had video collaboration and ideation solutions for small conference rooms, the huddle room represents a major opportunity for the vendor. Video Communication Must Improve, Even as It Hits Its Stride Michael Helmbrecht September 12, 2019 Video conferencing at work has boomed. Now we need to fully deliver on its promise. The Webex Room Kit Mini is a solution custom made for huddle spaces, with features like wireless sharing and artificial intelligence (AI), and all the other features that come with Cisco’s Webex platform, like “one button to push” to join a meeting and calendar integration, Snorre Kjesbu, VP and GM for Meeting Room Systems at Cisco, told me in a pre-briefing. See All in Video Collaboration & A/V » What’s Up in AV? 4 Trends to Watch Jimmy Vaughan August 02, 2019 A look at some of the problem-solving solutions I saw at the recent InfoComm 2019 event. Log in or register to post comments Burbick_Cisco_WebexShare.png HuddleRoom_774.png In summing up the news, Kjesbu said that one of the things that Cisco is aiming to stress with this latest release, is that its broad portfolio now makes it possible for organizations to digitize their entire organization, no matter the budget, use, or space — “from your pocket to the boardroom,” Kjesbu said.Tags:News & ViewsCiscohuddle roomsanalyticscameramicrophone arrayVideo Collaboration & A/VAI & AutomationConferencingEndpointsMeetingsTeam Collaboration Tools & Workspaces Articles You Might Like Don’t Get Ripped Off with Video Conferencing Pricing Chris Heinemann July 30, 2019 Financially, the cost of video conferencing isn’t just high, it’s unpredictable. It’s time for a different approach. The Webex Room Kit Mini is available for on-premises and cloud environments, as Sri Srinivasan, VP and GM for Cisco’s Team Collaboration Group, wrote in a Cisco Blogs post. When it’s used with Webex Teams, customers also gain access to the intelligent capabilities and detailed analytics (more on that in a minute). The Mini also includes a USB interface that allows it to work with other video collaboration apps like Skype for Business. When used with apps other than Cisco’s, the system can access only a subset of the product’s advanced capabilities like premium audio, beam-forming microphones, people count, and best view, Srinivasan wrote. 3 Problems Still Facing Voice Services Alexey Aylarov September 04, 2019 Interconnectivity, teleconference audio quality, and robocalling issues are still impacting voice services. Meetings Made Easy: One Video Platform or More Beth Schultz September 09, 2019 Standardizing on a single platform or enabling platform-agnostic collaboration are two ways to go about reducing friction in the meeting room. It features a fisheye camera lens for a 120-degree view of small spaces. But those who use fisheye cameras know that they don’t produce the most flattering images — “you see fat bellies and big heads,” Kjesbu said. That’s why Cisco has used its computational power and Webex platform to rectify the image so that people appear normally, with no distortion. The Webex Room Kit Mini also features a special microphone array that only picks up audio coming from the front of the unit — not the sides or the back. Cisco made this design choice because the product is “literally for small spaces,” Kjesbu said, but this does also make the solution ideal for small gatherings in open spaces where background noise might otherwise be a problem. Additionally, Cisco has now formally released Webex Share, which was previewed at the company’s Collaboration Summit in April. Webex Share, shown to the right, is a palm-sized adapter that can be plugged into a monitor or TV screen to convert the monitor to a presentation device that works with Webex Meetings and Webex Teams. Sharing, Ideating, and AnalyzingFor teams that mainly need to whiteboard and co-create, Cisco offers the Webex Board 55, which has been available for nearly two years but now has been updated with enhanced features like pinch and zoom, Cisco announced. read more

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