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User Experience

Number of Internet Users

In 2011, Cisco Internet Business Solutions Group (IBSG) released a report stating that there were 12.5 Billion devices connected to the internet in 2010, exceeding the world population (6.8 Billion) for the first time. Cisco also forecasted that “there will be 25 billion devices connected to the Internet by 2015 and 50 billion by 2020” [1].

News outlets sensationalized this, taking the finding out of context. Even Cisco drew the wild conclusion, “we know that approximately 2 billion people use the Internet today. Using this figure, the number of connected devices per person jumps to 6.25 in 2010, instead of 1.84” [1].

These claims are fallacies of misplaced correctness, and just ridiculous so lets put it into context.

Before analyzing it logically, lets analyze it anecdotally, using common sense. I’m a technologically savvy individual and I have 1 Desktop + 1 Laptop + 1 SmartPhone + 1 Tablet + 1 Work Computer = 5 Internet Connected Devices. I know that I have more devices than most, so there is no way that the average person had 6.25 Internet-connected devices in 2010.  And, if the percentage of the population to use the Internet grows to 100% in 2015 (best-case), that would mean that the average person has 3.47 devices [1][2].  I really can’t picture the average person in a 3rd world country having as many as 3-4 Internet-connected devices by 2015.

Now lets investigate the cause of this fallacy.  This finding describes the number of devices connected to the internet not the number of people.  Both Cisco and the media are guilty of drawing conclusions from this data without considering the context, and are dead wrong in their predictions.  They are taking “devices” to exclusively mean “personal devices” when really it encompasses:

  • Personal Computers,
  • Work Computers,
  • SmartPhones,
  • Tablets,
  • iPods, and notably,
  • Computer Servers

Google Inc., among other companies, has a larger server farm which contributes to the number of Internet connected devices.  There are so many “devices” in the world that are not “personal devices” that conclusions cannot simply be drawn through dividing the number of “devices” by the world population.

I’m surprised by the lack of critical thinking on behalf of Cisco; they are supposed to be trend setters and reliable guides of the Internet of Things and this has made me seriously doubt their credibility.

If you plan to build a business-model on these future predictions, think critically, and think twice.




[1] Evans, D. (2011). The Internet of Things. Cisco Internet Business Solutions Group. Retrieved from

[2] The World Bank Group. (2012). Internet users. The World Bank. Retrieved June 10, 2012, from


Additional Reading:

How To

How to number pages differently in Word 2011 for Mac


If you’re writing a paper, and need to have the front-matter’s page numbers in roman numerals (i, ii, iii, iv, etc.), and the remainder of the paper in arabic numerals (1, 2, 3, 4, etc.), this how-to is for you.

The key is to create distinct “Sections” in the document, however, Microsoft has made this ridiculously difficult in Word for Mac 2011.


Steps 1: Remove page numbering from all pages:

  1. Go to ‘View -> Header & Footer’
  2. Select and delete the numbering
  3. Close the Header & Footer


Step 2: Show all nonprinting characters:

  1. Click on the backwards ‘P’ on the right of the ‘Redo’ button ¶
    This shows all characters and formatting that don’t show up when printed but are essential for formatting

Step 3: Create new Sections:
Creating multiple sections in a document allows you to apply different formatting (i.e. page numbering) to different sections

  1. To create a new section, go to the end of the previous page and click ‘Insert -> Break -> Section Break (Next Page)’
  2. You will see the non-printing section break in blue ¶====== Section Break (Next Page) ====== 

(Tip: to delete a section break, position the cursor before the section break, then select the section break by holding shift and pressing the right arrow key.  Once highlighted, press the delete key to remove the section break).


Step 4: Make your Sections distinct:

  1. Navigate to the section you want, and click on ‘View -> Header and Footer’
  2. You will notice that the previous page reads “Header -Section 1- | Close (x)” and the next page reads “Header -Section 2- | Same as Previous | Close (x)”
    “Same as Previous” is WRONG, it will apply the same page numbering to Section 2 as Section 1, and I can’t fathom why Microsoft made this the default
  3. Click on ‘Header and Footer’ on the purple ribbon on the top of the screen on the right of ‘Home’ and under the ‘Save’ icon button.  (This only appears once you click on ‘View -> Header and Footer’).
  4. Click the cursor into Section 2’s header, then under the ‘Header and Footer’ ribbon, deselect ‘Link to Previous’.  Do the same for Section 2’s footer.

Step 5:  Apply numbering:

  1. Click into the header/footer in the section you want to apply the numbering to.
  2. Click “Insert -> Page Numbers…” and make sure to set the appropriate settings (e.g. Show on first page, type of numbering, start at (#) )
  3. Do the same for the other Section

(Note: If the numbering is somehow applying to both Section 1 and Section 2, go back into the header and footer ribbon and ensure that “Link to Previous” us unchecked for Section 2’s header and footer.  This is likely the cause, as this version of Word seems to reset this value to default on its own.)