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6 months back, @Hitachi Solutions Europe, there was a need to move into the 3rd generation of Educational Technology offering edutech, from Interactive Whiteboard, to ict, to e-learning. Looking at typical government Education tenders, I recognize there are many parts of the requirements that Hitachi can fulfill. From hisol alone, we could bid for the Learning Platform as a browser base application, digitalis education content, as we have a partnership with Cambridge, one of the largest publishers in the world, and all the relevant ICT display hardware (interactive panels, Tablets, projectors) from our relationship with Hitachi Europe-Digital Media Group. Many of these large funding were associated with African projects. This has a need of good internet connectivity as well as data storage & management in the back end to form a complete high quality e-learning cloud based solution. On top of that some projects also required providing a training center to be build from grounds up; Hitachi Construction Machinery? Having being selected as the technology partner from the Delta state government, we were given a land to build the Cambridge-Hitachi training centers, certifying teachers to use our e-learning products.

 

Nigeria Training Centres Requirement Example

c-h Training centre.jpg

 

I was very happy to have our old MD sign off my developed 3 year Education strategy, but have onehitachi integrated at its core was why I think the support was given by Tokyo. Why have other partners to fill in the components of a complete solutions, resell and decrease our margin, when we can work together with other Hitachi groups that already has that capabilities?!

 

Having started working with HDS on some of the South African projects and having acid tested the approach of directly engaging the Government with we are "Hitachi" (Not Hitachi Solutions or Hitachi Europe, but Hitachi) these are the solutions we have, which is designed to be modular, so that it fits the requirements of the Ministry of Education's needs for 5 to 10 to 20 years down the line. How can we help you resolve the country's educational problems, standards, and technological implementation, by being a edutech partner & have the capabilities to supplier 90% of what you would like to tender? These projects are at country and district deployment level, and this will certainly save cost for the set up team to assess the many bidders with proprietary system, non-modular offerings, that will have interoperability issues with multiple supplier components to an entire e-learning solution. When country problems are solved by training the users, and training them to the Hitachi technology, the needs are than driven to be purchase for users that are now trained and have the e-capabilities.

 

The internal project name is Total Integrated Education Solution

T.I.E.S Map1.png

T.I.E.S Map2.png

 

T.I.E.S Map3.png

 

I must say that out of many HDS teams' both local, and global support, this project may have had issues when deployed with Content delivery to tens of thousands of tablets across schools in South Africa. HDS are extremely proactive and had brought us also to introduce connectivity providers such as Vodaphone/Vodacom, because with any E-Learning solution especially in Africa, one of the places without much CDN PoP or well maintained Data Centres, there is a need fro a solid e-solution back-end. I must thank HDS for spearheading these E-Learning opportunities, especially in South Africa, to make sure the Hitachi offering is a cost effective, viable solution to the government.

ISO 8851-1

Posted by Thomas Thurman Jul 4, 2013

It's surprisingly common for people to ask for documents to be encoded in ISO-8851-1. What they wanted was ISO-8859-1 (also known as Latin-1). What they asked for, ISO-8851-1, is the standard for the fat content of butter. Of course, this would be the correct encoding for the alphabet they use in grease.

punch.png

A bedtime story

Posted by Thomas Thurman Jun 24, 2013

I found a copy of a bedtime story I made up for my little sister when she was a child, so I posted it online. I thought some of you might enjoy the read!

Night Mail

Posted by Thomas Thurman Jun 21, 2013

I had always assumed that the film Night Mail used an existing poem by Auden. But today I discovered that it was written specially for the film.

 

(When they do this sort of thing today, they call it hiphop.)

 

I recently read a McKinsey report about how social technologies can make us 20-25% more productive. McKinsey suggests that we will reap the benefits of social technologies as we change our default communication preference from 1:1 or 1:many private emails to social communications. As the author states, we need to unlock the dark matter trapped in our email inbox. Openly communicating, collaborating and sharing knowledge, information and expertise (where appropriate) can benefit others far beyond the intended audience and create value by improving productivity across the extended value chain.

 

"Interaction workers", high-skill knowledge workers, will benefit the most from social technologies. Product management, product marketing, marketing communications, training and technology evangelists are ideal candidates to benefit from social collaboration platforms like HDS Community. For example, social technologies enhance the product development process by enabling collaboration and communication across the entire value chain by bringing sales, marketing, supply chain, partners and customers into the R&D conversation.

 

"Ultimately, the power of social technologies hinges on the full and enthusiastic participation of employees who are not afraid to share their thoughts and trust that their contributions will be respected."

 

Related McKinsey video (4 minutes): Can Social Media Boost Employee Productivity?

Jay Erikson

Go on, Tweet it!

Posted by Jay Erikson Jun 18, 2013

According to a recent article in Forbes, "employees who used various types of social media and digital modes of communication were more creative and collaborative at work, and thus more productive." Social networks can help us feel more connected which results in more collaboration, finding and sharing information, asking and answering questions, and being more efficient and effective. According to McKinsey in the same article, "If companies fully implemented social technologies, certain industries could raise productivity by 20 to 25 percent."

So go on, get connected and enjoy the productivity gains!

 

(Employees should review the Social Media guidelines first.)

Here is a list of things to consider when planning your posts on Twitter to truly maximize exposure and engagement:

 

  • Make sure your BRAND NAME is consistent across the web (This builds your brand equity online)
  • It's all about perception. Be mindful of your avatar, description, and language (voice/tone) you use in your tweets. The Web does not forget and every tweet becomes a searchable page on Google.
  • Connect with influencers and engage them in conversation (This helps increase your followers)
  • Promote your BRAND name often and make sure it is spelled out completely (Don't use acronyms)
  • Remember sharing "backlinks" to your website (This specially helps your SEM efforts)
  • Provide value to your followers by sharing content that matters to them (articles, whitepapers, infographics, etc.) Don't just self promote!
  • Use #hashtags to broaden your exposure.
  • Tweet at events (including virtual events). Events are, by far, the most effective way to engage people and build community.
  • Associate your BRAND name with other influential brands (People, Corporations, etc.)
  • Vary your content! (Pictures, Videos, Infographics, Articles, Quotes, Conversations, Surveys, Short Tips, etc.)
  • Use the 80/20 rule.
  • Use principles of persuasion in your posts: (1) Be consistent (2) Establish Authority (3) Practice Reciprocity, etc. (More information on these here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_Cialdini)
  • Retweet, comment, mention, favorite posts, add people to your lists, welcome your new followers, thank the RTs, Do #FF etc.
  • Tweet consistently. There is nothing wrong with automating and/or scheduling some tweets just as long as you don't abandon your followers. Plan to be present every day.
  • There are studies that suggest you'll have more engagement during busy hours (7AM-8PM) but remember it truly boils down to your market's geographical location and industry. Study your market!
  • BE AUTHENTIC, BE REAL, BE YOU!


I will continue adding as more come to mind and hope this helps.

 

See you on Twitter!!

Follow our Hitachi TrueNorth Partner Program >> @HTrueNorth

Follow me >> @CarlaYashiro

I'm mainly posting this to test the blog feature. Thus it may be strange and wandering (unlike anything else I ever post, I assure you...)

 

Have you ever found your own work cropping up in unexpected places? A few months ago, while playing around with web searches, I discovered that a poem of mine was being used as a translation exercise in a language class at a Russian university:

translate.png

(Google Translate tells me that the Russian text in yellow means "Appendix 5. Poetic work to be translated from English into Russian.")


How about you?

Here is an interesting article from Forbes on the capabilities and future of LinkedIn, including the possibility of becoming a training platform. Training and development has changed significantly from when I entered the field 15 years ago. Opportunities for learning are ubiquitous. As training developers, we must meet our customers, partners and employees where they are at based on location, needs, consumption preferences and expectations. Social learning is now a mainstream delivery method and will hopefully lead to innovative and exciting developments in training.

Global Peace Index 2013

Posted by Mark Bijnen Jun 17, 2013

The 2013 GPI has been released. I was at GPPAC in The Hague and it was very interesting to see how statisticians are working on large amounts of (BIG) data to develop a Peace Index of all countries in the world.

 

Below URL will provide you with more details.

http://www.gppac.net/home

Jay Erikson

Game On!

Posted by Jay Erikson Jun 13, 2013

I love collecting shiny new badges on social media sites like Foursquare. Sometimes I view it as a challenge to see what interesting badges I can collect. Sometimes it is just my competitive nature driving me to be on the leader board. Gamification is about influencing behavior. On most social media sites it is just a game and I can take it or leave it depending upon how busy or distracted I am in life. However, with some social collaboration sites, like the HDS Community, there is often a more fundamental purpose driving the desire to participate. As Conor Leeson states in KMworld: "While people can be drawn in to collaborate and share via extrinsic motivation, how do you get them to stay? The more you can tap into their intrinsic motivations and help people realize the inherent benefits of collaboration, the more successful and sustained that engagement will be." According to the excellent podcast from Accenture "Gamification and Workplace Behavior Modification", gamification will succeed when it is connected to a goal I intrinsically care about. My goal with the HDS Community is to learn from and share information with our customers and partners and fellow HDS colleagues. And if all this collaboration leads to more badges, that's all the more fun for me. Join the conversation and share something today. I hope to see you on the Leader board!

We sometimes go through LIFE without paying attention to what we communicate and the role “communication” plays in promoting TRUST. Every word, gesture, tone and voice inflection, body language, and even how fast or slow we respond play a big role in the way we are being perceived and thus TRUSTED.

 

According to Wikipedia “In sociology and psychology the degree to which one party trusts another is a measure of belief in the honesty, fairness, or benevolence of another party. The term “confidence” is more appropriate for a belief in the competence of the other party. Based on the most recent research, a failure in trust may be forgiven more easily if it is interpreted as a failure of competence rather than a lack of benevolence or honesty.”

 

In the Digital Era, TRUST is very important for both personal and corporate BRANDS as they develop LOYALTY and promote GROWTH (in the form of friends, followers, fans, customers, sales, etc). Because in Digital Media we lack many of the most visible aspects of communication (body language, gestures, tone, etc.) it is important that you pay attention to the following:

 

 

    • How fast do you RESPOND to other people’s messages? When you respond fast, people tend to feel that you care and that they can rely on you. If you have multiple email accounts and you have profiles on Twitter,Facebook, LinkedIn, etc. make your life easier by using aggregators, readers and/or brand monitoring tools.
    • Are you CONSISTENT in the way you communicate? Believe it or not people intuitively pay attention to this. Just like with personal relationships we tend to trust those  who seem to be constant and unchanging as they seem more reliable and dependable. So, decide WHO you ARE, HOW you would like to come across and PROJECT just that. For your digital communication this includes the language you use, the tone, the length of your message and even typography. Make sure your emails look and feel respectful, clean and especially CONSISTENT.
    • Are you LISTENING? Before you respond to your messages be sure to read everything carefully and respond to all questions asked. Fulfilling your recipient’s expectations also promotes trust.

 

Digital communication can be easily misinterpreted and you could loose valuable relationships in the process, therefore be mindful, practice RESPONSIVENESS, CONSISTENCY and LISTEN.

I recently read "How to Make Space for Social Media" on the Harvard Business Review blog which seems timely given the launch of the HDS Community. There are a couple of key points that really resonate with me. For example, what will I eliminate from my already full schedule to make time for social media/collaboration? Have I set goals for what I expect to accomplish with the time invested in social media?

 

There is more to social media than posting pictures of a recent vacation or tweeting about Duck Dynasty. Used effectively, it's also more than a time sink.  Following the right people, you can find a lot of wisdom in 140 characters. It can also help us filter the noise. There are too many periodicals, blogs, streams, feeds, etc to read everything. Following the right people can help surface the content most relevant to you. It can also be used as a tool for solving problems. But we have to make conscious decisions to ensure we are getting a good return on our invested time. Thank you for choosing to be part of the HDS Community. Hopefully you will find the HDS Community to be a useful resource to help you solve your challenges and a place to connect with some of our really smart, creative and funny people.

Hitachi has a long track record of social innovation. If you want to learn about our heritage see 100 Years of Social Innovation. If you prefer video format, go over to the Hitachi Theater to view videos about our technical achievements, corporate culture and history.