Making Gadgets Easier To Use

There is a major technology gap between my parents and me. I’m the type who can pick up most gadgets or software and “figure it out” within a short period of time. However, my parents are a little different. Before they even hit the ON button they feel it necessary to read the manual front to back. That just doesn’t fly with the ADHD side of me.

Hopefully companies like NEC will change that gap by researching and developing Human Interfaces that are easy to use with even the most complex technologies…and the most complex people.

NEC recently announced it is strengthening this research and development by adding and maintaining relationships and joint research with big names such as Carnegie Mellon University and Palo Alto Research Center.

The goal? Reduce the number of “helpdesk” calls I get from my parents.

Press Release

Technical Information

NEC is serving fresh seafood.

For many years NEC has been a leader in RFID technologies. They have assisted companies and organizations with improving processes through the use of RFID. From country border crossing to getting ahead of the line at amusement parks, NEC has had some interesting installations.

I personally am not a seafood lover. I’ve tried many times but just can’t grow to like it. Even still I know that fresh seafood is a critical factor for a successful meal.

This recent article in NEC’s CSR report caught my eye. One of Japan’s largest seafood wholesalers uses NEC’s RFID systems to ensure the freshness of their product. They are using RFID tags with cell phones as the transmitter.

Check out this article.

Corporate Social Responsibility

Very few companies take Corporate Social Responsibility as seriously as NEC Corporation.  NEC is one of the few global companies that publishes an annual CSR report to inform stakeholders how it is doing with regards to its NEC Group Vision 2017: “To be a leading global company leveraging the power of innovation to realize an information society friendly to humans and the earth.”

NEC forest

In previous posts we have talked about the innovation that NEC brings.  I would like to highlight a few of these innovations that are specific to our CSR innitiatives.

  1. Reducing CO2 emissions from manufacturing activities: CO2 emissions deriving from energy usage fell an absolute value of 90,000 tons compared with the previous fiscal year. This drop was due to energy conservation measures for the planned introduction of highly efficient energy-saving equipment and improved productivity through production innovation, as well as decreases in production volumes.
  2. Reducing CO2 emissions through enegy saving products: With a goal of reducing CO2 emissions during usage to 30% compared to that of products developed in FY 2006, NECsucceeded in surpassing that number with a reduction of 45%.
  3. Increasing CO2 emission reduction effect by providing IT solutions: The effect of reductions in CO2 emissions reached 1.89 million tons and has increased further through the IT solutions provided in FY 2009.
  4. Offsetting CO2 emissions: BIGLOBE, which offers comprehensive Internet services, has devised a scheme whereby it “plants as many trees as necessary to absorb the CO2 emissions caused by searches,” so that Web searches and searches from the toolbar support carbon offsets.  For every one million searches, a single eucalyptus tree is planted in the “NEC Forest,” located on Kangaroo Island, Australia. According to estimates made by BIGLOBE, a single Web search results in CO2 emissions of 0.4 g. A single eucalyptus tree, however, will absorb 400 kg of CO2 over 20 years. Thus, planting a single eucalyptus tree can offset the CO2 emitted by one million searches.

These are just a few of the many initiatives that NEC has undertaken with regards to CSR.  When considering a company to partner with on solutions, consider one that has not only your company bottom line at heart, but also the planet.

Now That’s a Long Cable Run


NEC announced it will be upgrading the underwater cable running from the west coast of South America through Panama to the Caribbean, a distance in excess of 2000 miles. Eleven telecom companies are involved in a consortium that is buying the PanAmerican cable.  This new cable upgrades the original cable which was installed 10 years ago in 1999. Due to rising bandwidth requirements, the upgrade will bring modern 10 Gbps wavelengths to the new cable.  Its current capacity is 2.5 Gbps.

Press Release
Technical Info on the Underwater Cable Project

Healthcare: What is your vision for IT/communications?

InformationWeek recently interviewed Chad Eckes, CIO from Cancer Treatment Centers of America, for its July 6, 2009 issue.  One of his answers stood out and is very relevant to NEC’s healthcare practice.

Q: How do you measure IT effectiveness?
A: Factors include improvement of patient care and safety as a result of IT systems: increased efficiency of clinical processes; and internal customers satisfaction, including the patient and those caring for the patient.

NEC has argued that the biggest investment in your healthcare facility is not technology – it’s people. Specific to communications, we believe that instead of technology defining how people communicate in their role (doctor, nurse, ER, OR, admin, etc), that the role should define the technology used to communicate. With this approach, communications are tailored to each individual’s role, which ensures quick access to healthcare resources and records (the IT part of the equation) so patients get the best care possible.

NEC will be hosting a webinar on August 12 with Irwin Lazar, analyst at Nemertes Research, to talk more about the impact of VoIP and UC for healthcare organizations.  Al Campanella, CIO of Virtua Healthcare, will also be on the webinar to share the vision and mission of a leading healthcare organization.  Click here to register!