Okay first of all a belated congratulations to Jo Knight of CCIE Lab Preparation who managed to pass his CCIE on the 7th of October. Nice one well done Jo I have been meaning to write a post to congratulate you but work got in the way of blogging time. Anyhow if you move at the speed of a sloth like me then head over to his blog to congratulate him, or if you are yawning that is old news like most of you probably will be then make sure you check out his great posts on the lab. He even has a post on what he is planning to learn next which includes Turkish. Turkish or some other foreign language is what my brain seems to think half the IOS commands are written in :-). Anyhow nice one well done Jo!!
Next thing of interest that seems to be going on in CCIE land is the fact that Cisco is introducing it's own CCIE training program. Thanks to CCIE pursuit for pointing this out to me, head over to his blog to check out the full story. Now this is big news in my opinion and so is the fact that Cisco wants 3 million certified engineers by 2012 up from 1 million now.
Both the Cisco CCIE training program and the 3 million certified engineers are something I disagree with. According to the various articles Cisco is designing the program to compete head on with 3rd party bootcamps that are not up to par. So I wonder which 3rd party bootcamps are not up to par? Most of vendors that people seem to use in passing their CCIE's seem to have been up to scratch, as how have some many people passed their CCIE's up until this point?
Companies like Cisco and Microsoft survive and prosper because they have millions of smaller companies supporting their products and providing innovative products/solutions that address the short comings in their own products. Now when the demands for growth mean the Cisco and Microsoft's of this world start eating their own children so to speak then I get a bit upset. Innovation and product improvements do not generally come from large companies they come from small companies that spot a niche in the market. So surely these smaller companies should be rewarded by the corporate giants for supporting them rather than being trampled all over. I mean how much can the CCIE training market be worth to Cisco? Surely not that much where as to companies like IPExpert and Internetwork Expert it is their livelyhood. Also as soon as the corporate giant has established a monopoly in an area then they tend to innovate less which is bad for us consumers.
The other worry I have with Cisco entering the CCIE training market is will they develop a course that spoonfeds candidates? Previously Cisco guarded the intergrity of the CCIE and they did not actually produce any training material for it (oaky a few Ciscopress books aside). However now they have a program to sell they will obviously want to sell more of their training courses than the competition. So one of the best ways to do this is to have a higher pass rate than the competition and if you write the exam and the training material does this not mean that you might be tempted to load your training material with all the information to pass the CCIE? So could the commercial pressure of Cisco wanting to sell training programs lead to their program becoming a complete this course and you will be guarenteed of passing your CCIE type of program?
Would Cisco devalue the CCIE in this way? Do they really care about the CCIE or are they just intrested in getting as many engineers out there as possible who have knowledge of their products and thus act as marketers for their products? I mean why target a specfic number of engineers you want to produce? Instead of setting a target of 3 million engineers why do they not instead insist on improving the quality of the engineers they certify? I do not know what everyone else's experiences are but whenever a company I have worked for has wanted to recruit a new engineer we have never starved for lack of candidates. We have however had severe droughts of quality candidates. Even people who work at Cisco have admitted to me their problem is not the lack of candidates it is the lack of quality people. So what does everyone else think is this a good move by Cisco? Is there a shortage of engineers or is it the quality of the engineers that is in short supply?
Finally as for the demise of the USA that Network World seems to go on about in my opinion that is still a long way off. There is a inovative streak and a remarkable capcaity to reinvent itself in the eagle that the dragon and the tiger with their billion strong populations still have not achieved. On day they will get there but I do not think the US will be brushed aside just yet. Besides the US is still growing and it could hit half a billion people fairly soon, but I digress mental note to self this is a CCIE blog not a currnet affairs blog :-)
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