Cuba is ready for Prime Time !

Lots of discussion these days on ending the Embargo !

Our recent visit made us agree that it’s time to normalize relations between the US and Cuba..

The Daily News has been saying that for years, here’s a recent post

The United States of America must end its failed half-century-old embargo on Cuba following President Obama’s momentous decision to restore diplomatic relations with the oppressed and depressed island nation.

Free trade and the free exchange of people and ideas hold far more promise of loosening the Castro dictatorship’s grip than an ossified American policy imposed in the bygone era of the Cold War.

For nearly two decades, the Daily News has urged dropping a blockade that made sense only when Cuba was a puppet of the Soviet Union and a serious security threat 90 miles off Florida.

In 1995, we wrote that the embargo “has created only pain and suffering” while leaving intact a regime that “has been an enemy of democracy.”

Today, it is even clearer that the 54-year political and economic freezeout has categorically failed to benefit Cuban families. In fact, isolation has made their lot worse.

Cuba remains suffocated by a government that imprisons and intimidates dissidents, denies fundamental freedoms of press, worship and political franchise, destroys families and constrains economic liberty.

This wrenching reality dawned on none other than Pope Francis, who, as a bishop, traveled with Pope John Paul II to Cuba in 1998. There, he witnessed a society in ruins, and he would later write scathingly about the destructive effects of communism.

No surprise, then, that Francis helped broker Obama’s restoration of government-to-government communications, along with the freedom of American USAID contractor Alan Gross, who had been imprisoned in Cuba for five years.

Thanks to the Daily News for the post !  We Agree !

What’s your opinion ?

Bill Bramhall on Cuba and Obama

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Push to Talk vs. Cell Phones

7 Advantages to Using Push-Talk Devices Over Cell Phones in your Small Business

Push-To-Talk

Small organizations that manage a mobile workforce rely on the clear communication of instructions and information. The ubiquitous smartphone may be popular and offer the convenience of easy person-to-person contact, but falls short as a multi-channel communication device to combine security and reliability in all conditions. Cell phones and push-to-talk technology has often been likened to comparing apples with oranges because of the significant differences in performance, application and sustainability.

Comparing Technologies: Understanding the Nuts and Bolts

Cellular phones are a type of radio that relies on low-power transmitters that create radio frequency “cells” within which the phone can operate—hence their name. All cell phones require access to a base tower, which transmits and receives voice, data, and control instructions through channels that are accessible to multiple users.

By contrast, a push-to-talk radio relies on a single or multiple transceivers and operates on frequencies that may not be available to cellular phones. Radios are simplex devices with a specified number of secure channels that operate in a small area, where only one person speaks at a time.

The Advantages of Push-to-Talk Radio for a Workforce

Security — Security is of paramount importance when dealing with a mobile workforce. Using a push-to-talk radio system eliminates the risk of secure information concerning shipments and confidential instructions being intercepted by unauthorized users. Unfortunately, even the most secure cell phone networks have vulnerabilities that can be exploited by cyber criminals. The U.S. Government Accountability Office has reported a staggering 185% increase in the number of malicious software-based attacks on cell phones because of the inadequacy of the security protocols governing such devices. PTT systems offer ironclad security and access to specific frequencies based on a confidential radio frequency allocation system.

Clarity — One of the key aspects of effective workforce management is the clear, unambiguous communication of instructions, responses, and information. By design, cell phones are duplex devices, allowing the simultaneous transmission and receipt of information. Overlapping conversations can cause instructions to be misunderstood or misinterpreted. In an emergency, even a simple misunderstanding may be the difference between life and death. Industries such as logistics and airlines that run extremely time-sensitive operations stand to lose millions of dollars from incorrect communication. PTT radios hold a distinct advantage over cell phones in being turn-based communication devices. PTT protocol also requires both parties to deliver a message clearly and to acknowledge the receipt of a message. Consequently, PTT radio encourages and improves the clarity of transmission, resulting in fewer misinterpretations.

Connectivity — PTT communications offer instant connectivity with the press of a button. This feature becomes crucial in an emergency or hazardous environments where instructions and information must be relayed quickly—such as between the control center and safety crew of a power plant. Cell phones are limited in this area because of the time taken by the device to connect to the network and for the network to establish a connection to another user.

Reliability and Durability — During a natural disaster or adverse environmental conditions, cell phone towers are usually out of operations, robbing users of the ability to communicate. PTT radio is a reliable channel used by emergency services and the authorities to maintain contact with headquarters. In the context of a workforce, PTT radio continues to function in areas beyond the range of cell phone towers, offering a boost in reliability to companies who have workers traveling to and from remote regions. PTT radio devices are far more durable than conventional cell phones and are designed to withstand impact, high levels of dust, humidity and electrical fields and operate efficiently in environments where cell phones cease to function.

Human Safety — Even the most conservative cell phone plan usually provides access to the Internet or to non-business communications such as SMS. When misused, the cost of non-business communication over a cell phone can have an adverse impact on the profitability of a small business. Using PTT radio, a control center or can restrict and monitor communications within the PTT network. Some PTT devices even offer text messaging services within a closed group. Group networks allow command and control centers to reach all employees who may be scattered across the coverage area without worrying about expensive cell phone charges. PTT is compliant with on-road communication standards for operations in a moving vehicle while the use of a cellular phone in a car or truck severely compromises the user’s ability to concentrate on the road.

Push-to-talk remains the cornerstone of effective, efficient and economical communication for small organizations with workforces spread over a wide area of operations. Their ironclad security, clarity, connectivity, reliability and durability help answer the question of why radios vs cell phones for small businesses and make these devices an essential tool for the modern mobile workforce. Compatibility with automated work order management solutions represents the next step in PTT-based efficiency where a local workforce can use the operational versatility of PTT to ensure better turnarounds, less rework, and improved cost effectiveness. This compatibility can ensure that a mobile workforce can communicate easily and troubleshoot operations even from remote locations.

Summary

Despite advancements in cellular technology, PTT platforms exhibit the robustness, scalability and uptime required by emergency workers, police, logistics, and other time-sensitive and mission-critical operations. PTT remains the go-to technology in hazardous environmental conditions and in areas where conventional cellular services are not operational. Today, the broad functions of PTT are being replicated by smartphone apps, but the core utility of the technology remains irreplaceable.

Thanks to our friends at PDV for the post !

References:

http://video.motorolasolutions.com/video.aspx/mototrbo-push-to-talk-ptt-radio-solutions-advantages-over-ptt-cellular/2520377540001

http://www.azetti.com/products/push-to-talk-over-cellular

http://www.pcworld.com/article/2010278/10-common-mobile-security-problems-to-attack.html

http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-12-757

 

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Happy New Year ! from mitelservice.com

Happy New Year! What are Your Blogging Resolutions for 2016?

Image via Flickr user Amodiovalerio Verde

Well here we are again, folks – the start of a new year. The time when we’re usually bursting with motivation and promises to not repeat the mistakes of the past. I know I’ve learned a lot in the last 12 months. 2015 was all in all a good year !

We looked at the changing face of the cloud, the potential of 5G , the potential of Cuba !

The Mitelservice team wishes you all a very Happy and Healthy New Year !

Let’s make 2016 the best year yet !

Visit us at :

www.webassociatesllc.com

www.cuba-it.us

www.mitelservice.com

 

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Hemingway Fishing Tournament in Havana Cuba !

Hemingway Fishing Tournament

Big Game Fishing in Cuba

We just returned from Havana and had a chance to visit the Hemingway Marina as well as spend a day fishing ! We had a great day catching tuna and wahoo in 1000 feet of water just miles off the beach.

If your into Big Game Fishing I would recommend the Hemingway Marina !

Good Fishing from the Mitelservice team !

66th Ernest Hemingway International Billfishing Tournament – scheduled for June 13, 2016.
Hemingway with large Marlin caught in Cuba
Hemingway with large Marlin caught in Cuba.

Held at Marina Hemingway, 9 miles west of Havana, the Hemingway International Billfishing Tournament hosts fishermen from around the world in pursuit of marlin and other large deep sea fish, including tuna and wahoo, using 50-pound fishing line.

First held in 1950, this year’s tournament marked its 60th year in existence. For four days, fishermen will battle with large ocean fish – as Hemingway did. This is a tag-and-release tournament.

How it Started

On May 26, 1950, 36 of the best fishing boats of Havana sailed through the channel of the Castillo del Morro, situated at the entrance of Havana harbor, in search of the Gulf Stream. One of them was “Pilar”, owned by Ernest Hemingway, who participated in this first tournament representing the International Yacht Club de La Habana.

A group of fishermen proposed to name the fishing tournament with his name, in respect of Hemingway’s passion for big game fishing. Hemingway not only agreed, he won the cup for the first three tournaments.

In 1959, Hemingway moved to Idaho, but returned to Cuba in 1960 to receive an award at the 11th International Tournament Hemingway, held at what is now Marina Hemingway.

In 1961 and 1962 tournaments were not held due to the serious tension between Cuba and the United States, culminating with the Bay of Pigs invasion. In 1963 the tournament resumed, but only on a national basis, and was run that way until 1977. In 1978, the tournament began inviting international participants.

With the foundation in 1992, the Hemingway International Yacht Club of Cuba (CNIH of Cuba), the Hemingway tournament has found new inspiration. The tournament promotes good relations with fishing clubs and fishermen – encouraging the participation of sport fishing and spending time protecting the environment and species.

In 1997, with the help of the Billfish Foundation and the direct involvement of Mr. Ralph “Agie” Vicente, Representative of the Billfish Foundation for the Caribbean, HIYC Commodore Jose Miguel Diaz of Cuba Escrich introduced the method of tag-and-release to the Hemingway tournament, which has helped save hundreds of billfish.

The Ernest Hemingway International Billfish tournament is considered one of the oldest big-game saltwater tournaments in the world.

2016 Tournament Details:

  • 66th Ernest Hemingway International Billfish Tournament
  • Date: June 13, 2016
  • Location: Marina Hemingway
  • Cost:
    • Bring your own boat/equipment: 450.00 CUC per team from 1 to 3 anglers and 100.00 CUC per an additional angler. Registration fee includes free mooring if you come on your own boat, personal invitations for the Welcoming Cocktail, Closing Dinner and Awarding Ceremony for the teams.
    • Rent boat/equipment: Prices start at 2,500.00 CUC. Included are captain and mate, fishing tackle for every angler, baits, fuel and snack.
  • Prizes: Medals and trophys for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place. Prize for largest fish and largest dolphin fish (dorado/mahi-mahi).
  • Rules: Tag-and-Release. International Game Fishing Association (IGFA) rules
  • Visa: Entry visa will be available at the entrance to Marina Hemingway. Call the port captain using VHF Channel 16 up approach.
  • More information: E-mail: UPDATE: From multiple attempts, many of the email addresses for Marina Hemingway and for the Commodore Escrich have not been answered. The latest email addresses to try are: dircomercial@prto.mh.tur.cu or rpublicas@prto.mh.tur.cu (You can also try to reach Commodore José Miguel Díaz Escrich, the port officer of the Hemingway International Yacht Club of Cuba at: yachtclub@cnih.mh.cyt.cu although emails to this address have been reported to not be replied to.) Phone: Or try the following phone numbers: (537) 204 5088 / (537) 209 7270 / (537) 796 0242

 

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Big Data

The term “big data” has been popping up all over the tech world in recent years. However, it has only recently begun to be accepted as an important concept for marketing professionals, who tended to be a bit more unsure of just how they could use big data to produce results. Thanks to the brave pioneers who blazed the trail, the union of big data and marketing has become much more accepted as a feasible way to make themarketer’s job easier while enhancing customer relations and improving profitability.
GoldMine.jpg
Even those who have embraced big data, however, frequently have no idea of just how “big” the data actually is. There are 2.5 quintillion — 2,500,000,000 million — bytes of data generated every day. Furthermore, more than 90 percent of the total online data in existence today has been generated since 2013, and much of it is coming from social networks. Obviously, there is a wealth of information contained in the data, but the problem of filtering and funneling this data explosion remains an issue for most organizations.

This is where social-performance software or SPS, comes in handy. The exponential growth of big data has naturally inspired software developers to create ways to help businesses garner valuable intelligence from the data they collect. This new species of software is geared to provide the following benefits:

  • Analyze the conversations among your followers on social-media sites.
  • Suggest the content you should publish and the media to use.
  • Advise which channel should be used to publish.
  • Determine when you should publish the content.
  • Determine your target audience for the content.

In short, SPS helps you get your content to your intended audience when they want it, resulting in enhanced brand awareness or response rates.

The proliferation of social media has given marketers unprecedented access to valuable insights. Properly mined, you can learn:

  • Where your target audiences spend the most time
  • Who and what they like
  • Their favorite brands
  • Their occupation, job title and/or employer
  • Their friends
  • What is trending in each follower’s world
  • Their connections and interconnections
  • The ways in which your followers influence connections
  • Data about your followers’ connections and friends

Best of all, SPS can potentially provide you with all of this intelligence in real time. The social world changes rapidly, and what was valid yesterday may be outdated today. The insights you gain can help you react immediately to any changes in the market or to make adjustments to your marketing efforts mid-campaign. The analytics derived from the data can also help you to quantify your return on investment by channel. With the proper software, you can measure basic metrics, such as the number of conversations related to your brand, the number of new leads derived from social activities and the sentiments being expressed about your brand. You can also measure advanced metrics, such as emerging trends that might affect your reputation.

In today’s competitive environment, your customers hold the winning hand. They are demanding more from you than ever before. They want to be “wooed” and build a relationship with your brand before you try to sell them your product or service. They want to feel that you truly know them, and one way to instill that feeling is to offer them personalized experiences that are relevant to them and in harmony with their online behavior. If you lack the data — or the ability to mine the data you have — you cannot give them the experience they want. If you disappoint them, they are extremely likely to move on to a competitor who will better meet their expectations.

Thanks to Lisa Carolin for the post!

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5G by 2020 ?

5G by 2020: Is it possible?

Earlier this month, the UN outlined its roadmap for developing superfast 5G to be ready for a global launch early next decade. In 5 years from now, estimates suggest that we can expect connection speeds 1,000 times faster than current 4G levels. At those speeds it would be possible to download a full-length movie to your smartphone in just a second.

Impressive, but that’s only the start. The launch of 5G is expected to fuel the rise of the Internet of Things. Gartner’s most recent estimate of 25 billion connected “Things” by 2020 shows how extensive the network will need to be. As the UN’s 2020 target draws nearer, we will examine how different regions are preparing to roll out 5G networks in future posts.

Thanks to Chris Baker for the post !

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Happy Thankgsgiving !

Turkey!Happy Thanksgiving from

Mitelservice.com

As we start to wind down November and look to a bigger and better 2016 we should also take time to reflect on all that we have.

Hopefully Family, Good Health and a desire to make 2016 even better..

So sit back , over eat and drink and watch some football with the people you love !

All the best from my Team to yours !

 

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Is it time to start thinking abour Nearshoring in Cuba !

U.S. and Cuba Cultural Similarities and Differences, and great potential as the Best Nearshore Destination !

Cuba’s close to the U.S. geographically, but not necessarily culturally. Our histories sometimes converge, and Columbus played a prominent role in exploring both. Friendliness abounds in both countries, but Cubans display an especially warm and welcoming spirit.

Cuba sees little violent crime. Music and art prevail. Americans may enjoy more material advantages, but Cubans, in general, express happiness with what they have.

 

Government, Healthcare, Housing, and Daily Life:

In Cuba, voters turn out in far greater numbers for municipal, provincial, and national elections. Campaigning, outside of posters and meetings, does not take place. America’s is chiefly a two-party system. Cuba has several parties, but communism dominates.

Wages are lower in Cuba, but so are many costs. Interestingly, waiters, chamber maids and others in service professions often earn more than doctors, thanks to tourist’s tips!

Cubans receive free healthcare—but doctors and supplies remain limited. The states enjoy a reputation for advanced medical care—but health insurance gaps create debt for many Americans.

Both countries experience poverty, but Cuba sees little homelessness. Housing in Cuba is subsidized, and families generally take in members who would otherwise have nowhere to go. This makes the typical Cuban home more crowded than the average American dwelling. (Severe tropical weather has also been known to destroy significant numbers of island homes, further reducing housing options.) Cuba boasts a higher rate of home ownership overall.

Cuba’s literacy rate consistently hovers near 100 percent. The country’s universities have been free for generations, and the island boasts a well-educated population. However, recent budget cuts have ended many higher-education programs.

Cuba sees little racial strife because the population’s roots are almost equally Caucasian, African, and biracial. The U.S., however, holds a far greater number of ethnic groups.

Cuisine and comestibles:

In Cuba, groceries are rationed. Surprisingly, perhaps, American cooking often uses more spice.

Vegetarianism is common in the U.S., but rare in Cuba. Past scarcities made meat a valued commodity, and fresh produce, though abundant, has traditionally cost handsomely. This may be changing, though. Too, Cuba’s best-known dishes, many of Spanish and African origins, revolve around pork, beef, or chicken. However, one or two veggie restaurants—notably El Romero in Laz Terrazas—garner consistently excellent traveler reviews, suggesting that meat-free dining may yet catch on.

Climate and culture:

The United States takes up far more land than Cuba. While the island’s temperatures range from warm to hot, weather conditions vary widely across America, and, in most parts of the country, change according to season.

In matters of interpersonal communication, Cubans tend to stand closer together than Americans, and speak loudly. Cuban communication includes many gestures. Eye contact is expected. Even relative strangers may use terms of endearment or mild physical contact.

Because of the island’s proximity and climatic similarity to Florida, and Miami’s large Cuban population, Miami and Cuba enjoy several cultural similarities. “Spanglish”—a mix of Spanish and English—is often spoken in Miami, and Cuban dishes can be found on many local menus.

As Cuba and the U.S. renew our old friendship, Americans seeking adventure are flocking to Cuba. And Cubans, curious about their American cousins, are welcoming them.

We see it as the potentially “Best Nearshore Destination ” for  Agile Software Development visit www.cuba-it.us

 

Thanks to Chelsea Lowe for the post! and Robin Thom for the photo’s

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M2M and Internet of Things !

Machine-to-Machine (M2M) and Internet of Things (IoT) Services and Solutions

Machine-to-Machine (M2M) is the most prominent driving force of the Internet of Things (IoT). M2M communication allows connected devices to collect and share data, which can be monitored by the companies that deploy them around the world. The applications of M2M are already vast and range from wireless payment solutions, allowing business to “back-up” connectivity and continue to be able to process payments even if the internet goes down, to smart metering (or smart grid) applications which allow energy firms to improve their demand planning.

Despite their effectiveness, in the last few years, M2M deployments have faced substantial issues. Most notably, the numbering distribution of GSM/GPRS platforms and their assigned SIM cards is problematic. Numbers are scarce as IPv4 numbering plans reach their limits, and with IPv6 still in its infancy with M2M devices, numbering deployed machines can be difficult. The other major roadblock to M2M deployment is roaming charges, which unless monitored carefully, can spiral out of control for poorly managed devices and hinder any progress of M2M distribution by suffering organizations.

Even when such problems are avoided, the growth of M2M systems has come at a significant cost to organizations choosing to deploy devices with cellular connectivity. Not only do the costs of the rate plans from the different mobile network providers need to be considered, but also the costs associated with the management of devices. This leaves significant opportunity for a number of inefficiencies to arise including fines for overuse of data or, on the opposite end of the scale, overpayment for underuse of data.

It has always been a core capability of Telecom Expense Management (TEM) solutions to track conventional mobile devices and their associated data plans, but now TEM providers have introduced new features aimed specifically at helping organizations to better track and optimize costs across their M2M deployments. The potential savings for organizations, often struggling to manage their deployed devices, are enormous. TEM providers have lot’s to do.

What say you ?

Thanks to MDSL for the post!

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PDV wireless- multiple blog posts “A Quick Study “

  • We have been looking at the re emergence of push to talk solutions and one company is clearly leading the way PDV Wireless, below is several of their recent Blog posts on the subject. Take a look !
  • Traditionally, two-way radio networks and cellular networks are typically “uplink limited.”  For example, you could have a situation where a portable/mobile user can hear the base station while not being able to talk back (see image above).

    In a pdvWireless MOTOTRBO network, The use of Tower Top Amplifiers (TTA) provides the advantage of having “downlink limited” network, i.e. “uplink path” (mobile/portable talking to the base station) is typically STRONGER than the “downlink path” (BS to mobile/portable).

    Towers-revised

    Let’s take a look …
  • Distracted Driving: Think Twice Before Using Cell Phones in Commercial VehiclesRulemaking has been established by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) that restricts the use of hand-held mobile devices by drivers of commercial motor vehicles (CMVs). Specifically, a CMV driver cannot hold a mobile device to make a call, or dial by pressing more than a single button. CMV drivers who use a mobile phone while driving can only use a hands-free phone located in close vicinity.  While the reasons have been well publicized, it is important to point out specific research that supports these regulations:

    CMV …

  • The Growth of Geofence Tools within the Mapping Technology Spheregoogle marketMapping technology has experienced some of the most rapid evolvements within the emerging technology era. The widespread adaptation and utilization of Global Positioning System (GPS) technology has paved the way for many technologies to be built surrounding location data. Geofencing tools are a significant element within this space, as they have revolutionized the way that we view, understand, and segment location data across a variety of businesses. However, Geofencing faced much skepticism in its earlier age. Prior to the technology developments that we …
  • Analyzing the Benefits of GPS Technology within the Commercial Environmentgps whitepaper img1Originally developed in the 1970’s Global Positioning Satellite (GPS) technology was not widely adopted until the 1990’s for a variety of reasons. Since the increase in adoption, large segments of the commercial economy have taken advantage of the benefits of GPS. GPS is currently deployed in a wide array of applications including Cell Phones and in vehicle navigation systems. This technology allows individuals and/or vehicles to be tracked to a level of accuracy within 4 meters. It has been reported by the …
  • Voice DocumentationVoice Documentation is the ability to capture essential information from an individual so that that information can be used to benefit an organization.  Voice Documentation is the process of documenting field activities or events via verbal communications.

    voice documentation

    With all of the tools and methods used today to automate the collection of information from the field, one old but reliable tool often goes underappreciated: Voice.  Voice calls have always been the go-to method to share a great level of detail quickly and easily.

  • Thanks to many of the PDV wireless team for the multiple posts !
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