Today Cisco announced the winners of its "Think Inside the Box" Developer
Contest. Launched last fall, the competition challenged application developers
around the world to develop applications that run on the Cisco® Application
Extension Platform (AXP), which resides on the popular Cisco
Integrated Services Router (ISR).
Cisco launched this contest to encourage collaborative development through
the use of Web 2.0 technologies, promoting what Cisco calls the Human Network
Effect. The winning teams were determined by a panel of seven industry experts
who selected the following applications as the most innovative, implementable
and relevant to businesses. More than 100 qualified teams from 75 countries
entered the competition. The finalists demonstrated the business relevance of
the AXP in solving real-world problems, in areas of unified communications,
security, advertising, cloud architectures and energy management.
The panel of seven judges narrowed the 100 submissions down to eight
finalists. The criteria for selection were innovation, effective use of the AXP platform,
feasibility, and project plan documentation. From those finalists, the
following winners were selected:
- First Place: Team MADnetwork, led by David Perez in Spain, won
US$50,000 for the Building Automation Service application (BAS). Created with
branch offices and multitenant units in mind, BAS helps businesses remotely
monitor and manage building operations.
By integrating the service management capabilities on AXP, the application
minimizes the need for external servers to manage disparate facilities (HVAC,
lighting, plumbing, presence, fire, flooding and smoke detectors), which reduces
capital and operational costs. The solution also saves energy costs by
determining, in real time, which resources are being consumed, and to what
degree, by working with a remote management solution.
Second Place: Team Enhancers, led by Rajesh Kotagiri in India, won
US$30,000 for the Local Advertising Mesh Network Platform (LAMP) application.
LAMP creates a distributed ad-serving platform hosted on the AXP. This platform
will reside on ISRs targeted initially toward retail deployments: For instance,
retail stores can display ads on LCD units in various locations. With this
solution, businesses can tap potential new revenue streams by shifting some of
their advertising efforts to their existing networking infrastructures.
- Third Place: Team BugsBernie, led by Bernhard Beckmann in Germany,
won US$20,000 for the Integrated Surveillance System application. With this
application, Internet Protocol phones can be turned on during nonworking hours
to monitor any audio signals in the offices. When abnormal audio signal patterns
are detected (crossing a configurable threshold), the application notifies
external security services or devices such as mobile phones, computers and video
monitoring systems. Sabotage of telephony equipment is also detected.
The Integrated Surveillance System is a simple and cost-effective means to
enable a security solution in branch offices by taking advantage of an existing
IP-telephony network. The application improves manageability of security systems
by providing an integrated security framework to an existing network.
The ISR and AXP Platform:
- The Cisco AXP offers tighter integration between the network and business
applications to help branch-office customers achieve greater business
efficiencies and innovation. As a result, in tandem with the Cisco Integrated
Services Router, the AXP helps lower the total cost of ownership in the
- Cisco opened its industry-leading access
routing platform to third-party developers in April 2008 with the
introduction of the Cisco AXP.
Cisco Developer Network:
- The Cisco AXP is part of the Cisco Developer
Network, which offers a fast-growing social networking community of more
than 14,000 individuals who collaborate via wikis, blogs and forums to share
development ideas, support and feedback on Cisco networking technologies.
Quotes from the Cisco "Think Inside the Box" judges panel:
- Marie Hattar, vice president of network systems and security solutions at
"This contest has proven to be a vibrant approach to sparking innovation.
Finalists developed their applications in a span of 90 days with no formal
training or router knowledge," commented Marie Hattar. "And with the Cisco Developer
Network (CDN), this opens up a whole new way to engage the developer
community as we expand on the vision of the network as a platform. We look
forward to the CDN community being able to deliver more value to our customers
by building more intelligence and capability into our routers."
- Brett Galloway, senior vice president, Wireless and Security Technology
Group at Cisco and executive sponsor of the developer contest
"I am extremely impressed with the breadth and depth of the applications
the teams brought to the table in this contest. It’s exciting to see innovation
outside of the company matching that of inside the company and clearly solving
real customer business problems. We saw applications ranging from unified
communications, to interesting new business models, as well as new opportunities
to take our current network infrastructure and expand it to other technology
- Paul McNab, vice president, Enterprise Mid-Market Solutions Marketing at
"The AXP contest was a true proof point for leveraging the network as the
platform for business responsiveness. If you look at CEOs today, in this current
climate, they want to know how they can respond to opportunities globally in 90
days. I was amazed at what could be accomplished on the AXP within this time.
Looking at the proposals submitted, I think the three we chose show the breadth
of the approach we take to stimulate creativity and innovation."
- Dominic M.Del Balso, vice president, Enterprise Technology and Operations
at KeyCorp, Cisco customer and judge
"Cisco continues to impress me with the level of thought and innovation
that goes into its portfolio. A contest such as this highlights their thought
process with regard to looking for multiple sources for their next solution or
building blocks for their next solution."
- Robert Whiteley, vice president, Research Director, Forrester
"Judging this contest was very interesting. The applications–security,
green IT, and business innovation in terms of advertising models–far exceeded
my expectations for what people would decide to develop on the AXP.. Ultimately,
I decided to vote for the Building Automation Service application, given its
relevance and unique application for the branch."
- Brian Proffitt, community manager for the Linux Developer Network and
Linux.com, on behalf of the Linux Foundation
"Cisco is providing an open door for people to come in and innovate, and
this contest demonstrates that innovation can come from anywhere or anybody. …
Innovation has not been taken out of the hands of developers, and the sheer
number of submissions to the contest tells me that there is significant interest
in developing on the AXP."
- Zeus Kerravala, senior vice president, Yankee Group
"Resulting applications from the AXP contest show the ability to manage
branch offices remotely on the AXP, allowing companies to put in a centralized
policy to turn off and on business systems automatically, lessening the need for
- Bola Rotibi, principal analyst, MWD Advisors
"Sometimes the challenge of applications is determining how you feed it
into the market and get people to adopt it. In this situation, the ISR is
already in place for many. You don’t have to create the market. The market is