Charney went on to describe Metcalfe's Law, which states that the value of a telecommunications network is proportional to the square of the number of connected users of the system. While the law may be sound when discussing fax machines in the 1990s, Charney said, today's world sees connections varying in value. "All connections are not created equal," he explained.
He then described the fascinating developments that are taking place around the world. From a $5 million project by NICTA, Australia's ICT Research Centre of Excellence, to use big data in order to determine the source of geothermal energy, to the Danish government's adoption of video-calling in order to provide government advice to citizens in far-flung regions, Charney catalogued fantastic applications for emerging technologies.
Of course, this pie-in-the-sky talk couldn't last forever, and following his speech, Charney brought the audience back down to Earth, inviting Ian Kennedy, CTO, Cisco EMEA, onto the stage. Kennedy explained what was being done now within Cisco in order to reach the fantastical ends that Charney had described.
Whether or not the Middle East will one day contribute to the advancement of technology as a whole remains to be seen, but given the way in which the UAE audience lapped up these presentations, it would seem that the country's brightest are willing to try. And Cisco was happy to make clear that it wanted to help.
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