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Cisco UNDP partnership to tackle global poverty news
08 October 1999

Cisco systems and theUnited Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the world's largest provider of grant assistance to improve living conditions in the poorest countries are launching the world's most powerful website dedicated to the race against poverty. The NetAid site named makes it easy for donors to contribute time or money towards eliminating poverty. It also provides information about dozens of charitable organisations round the world and help the users donate money, services and products to the needy.

NetAid is a programme that brings together the world of entertainment and the potential of the Internet to eliminate poverty. This long term effort aims to build a caring community dedicated to providing basic needs like food, shelter, legal protection, human rights and healthcare to the poor, those earning less than a dollar per day.

A global concert to be broadcast simultaneously via the internet from stages at Giant's Stadium in New Jersey, Wembley Stadium in London and Geneva's Opera House on 9 October is expected to raise public awareness and generate financial support to tackle poverty in developing countries. Netaid will deliver the webcast of these concerts with world renowned artistes like David Bowie, George Michael, Counting crows and Jewels.

This website is developed to handle a million hits per day and a billion hits overall, which is ten times as much as the existing sites. The site can have about 125,000 simultaneous live stream adding to a viewing capacity of over 10 million people over the 10 hour long concert. It can handle about 60 million hits per hour and 1000 secure e-payment transactions per second. This network architecture spread over 1500 servers in 90 centers across the world makes it the largest in terms of all the above statistics.

The site uses 300 Real Video G2 splitters from Real Networks, RedHat Linux/ Apache software on the servers with 1200 of them delivering the graphics and 38 hosting the text for the site besides 2 secure servers for e-commerce and 300 servers for the two channels of live video streaming.

The event, known as "Net Aid," is co-sponsored by Internet giant Cisco Systems with support from Akamai technologies, KPMG

The Net Aid project draws on the experience of Harvey Goldsmith, Ken Kragen, Don Mischer and Jeff Pollack, who
produced "Live Aid," "We Are the World," "Hands Across America," and other major musical events for social causes.

The concert electronically links musicians and other entertainers performing on different stages around the world, raising their voices for the global fight against extreme poverty, which affects more than 1.3 billion people.

Actor Danny Glover is participating in Net Aid as UNDP's first Goodwill Ambassador, raising public awareness about the plight of the more than 1.3 billion people living on US$1 a day or less. Harry Belafonte has been a long-time advocate for development assistance worldwide and is co-chair of the UNDP Poverty Eradication Committee.

Through a network of 134 offices worldwide, UNDP helps people in 174 countries and territories to help themselves,
focusing on poverty eradication, environmental regeneration, job creation and the advancement of women.
In support of these goals, UNDP helps countries promote sound governance and economic development and helps rebuild societies in the aftermath of war or humanitarian emergencies. Cisco Systems, Inc., is the worldwide leader in networking for the Internet. Its networking solutions link computing devices and computer networks, allowing people to access or transfer information regardless of differences in time, place or type of computer system.

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Cisco UNDP partnership to tackle global poverty