February 2009

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            Editorial Comments by Ken Sinclair

Ken Sinclair

Letters to the editor

  February 2009     


A Reflection on our Reinvention

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I am pleased to provide a reflection on our reinvention. The scope of our industry is rapidly changing and fueling our reinvention as our buildings become a major interactive load on the national smart electrical grid. The definition of what is included as part of Building Automation grows daily.  We are an industry which is growing taller in public profile, wider in our reach of technologies touched, and deeper in data connectivity.

The buzz at AHR Expo in Chicago was Cisco Completes Acquisition of Richards-Zeta Building Intelligence, Inc. and Cisco's EnergyWise technology for Cisco Catalyst(R) switches measures, reports and reduces the energy consumption of Internet Protocol (IP) devices such as phones, laptops and access points. Cisco also announced industry partner solutions along with an intelligent middleware acquisition that will ultimately enable the management of power consumption for entire building systems such as lights, elevators, and air conditioning and heating.

For more insight on this news please read Connected Real Estate Cisco grows Connected Real Estate investment with EnergyWISE and Richards-Zeta Acquisition. Rick Huijbregts, Vice President, Vertical Industries, Cisco Canada

Be sure to catch this Webcast - Tuesday, February 3 Smart Buildings: How Connected Real Estate “LEEDs” to Sustainability

Great industry perspective in Anto's article Subtle Winds of Change in Windy City  A perfect storm of change if you understand the big picture that has been a constant theme on AutomatedBuildings.com for months if not years.  Anto Budiardjo, President & CEO, Clasma Events Inc.

This is very good news for our industry; The nation's century-old energy grid might get an upgrade soon to handle alternative energy. The economic stimulus package has earmarked $11 billion to invest in smart meters and 3,000 miles of renewable-energy transmission lines. Venture capitalists and utilities also are investing in smart-grid applications at a record pace. "It's like the Internet for the energy economy," said Katherine Hamilton, head of the GridWise Alliance. USA TODAY (01/30) State Journal (Charleston, W.Va.), The (01/29)

This all calls for "The Reinvention of Building Automation".  You may note that I have dropped the word Systems as the movement is creating a new industry whose tentacles reach way beyond our traditional definition of  what was originally included in the BAS definition. I propose that the new annoying acronym be shortened to BA. I provided this article to explain our reinvention Building Automation Sustainability.  Whether you view the word “Building” as a noun or a verb the real goal is Sustainability and provided the column The Reinvention of Building Automation (BA) Building Automation is evolving to a web service that is greatly enhanced with online services.

Lots of great articles all addressing our reinvention to highlight a few State of the Industry - 2009  Thomas Hartman, P.E., The Hartman Company;  Count Me In: People Counters Jim Sinopoli, Managing Principal, Smart Buildings, PE, RCDD;  Robots in Every Building? Jeanne Dietsch, MobileRobots Inc Stuart Rich, PenBay Media; and I bet you did not see this one coming Wireless Pneumatic Thermostat  Harry Sim, Cypress Envirosystems

February Columns  Control Valves – Sizing & Selection  Steven R. Calabrese  Energy, Innovation, and E-Tech  Toby Considine  Building Automation Wishes for a New Year  Paul Ehrlich & Ira Goldschmidt  The Reinvention of Building Automation Ken Sinclair  Trust: The Primary Currency in an Open Systems World Andy McMillan

February Previews & Reviews  Connected Real Estate “LEEDs” to Sustainability  SPEED Digital Signage Training Program  Power Points AHR Chicago Sessions

The news just keeps flowing thru our web site and RSS feeds daily, and of course the only way to truly find what you are looking for in the vast quantity of information on our site is with our site search engine http://www.automatedbuildings.com/search/sitesearch.htm

As always lots of new products, plus be sure to check our event calendar to see the number of events we have in our future.

Welcome our newest advertiser who well fits our reinvention;  CatNet Systems - Next generation web server/HMI products with an emphasis on ease of use and 100% browser setup. Protocols include BACnet, ModBus, and LonWorks. 

Tell our sponsors you saw their ad on the AutomatedBuildings.com web site and thank them for supporting your free access to evolving Automated Building Industry information. Click on their ads and view their valuable products and services. Please review all Our Sponsors. 

It is a great time to be in the news business for our industry. 

Send comments and suggestions to news@automatedbuildings.com

 Continuing the Countdown to Chicago

I feel that the ASHRAE winter meeting and AHR Expo event January 26-28 in Chicago will mark the start of the real reinvention of our Building Automation industry. Reinvention is necessary not because we want to, but because we have to. The present financial times are rapidly redefining what is sustainable and what is not and Building Automation in its present form is not achieving anywhere close to its potential. Typical heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems are 50% efficient compared to fully integrated systems.  Source:  U.S. Green Building Council, Cisco Systems, The Hartman Co.

Add to this the functional creep of what is now included the new Building Automation definition and we have a real need for reinvention.

In Tom Hartman's article Obama’s Energy Challenge he states...... On January 20th, the US starts a new chapter in managing energy. and goes on to say....................the building sector is by far the most wasteful of all of the major energy use sectors in the US today. But while this unbridled energy waste offers an enormous opportunity to reduce energy use, it also represents a daunting challenge because despite the many claims, virtually all energy reduction initiatives associated with the building industry have so severely underperformed that there is an absence of any reliable existing policy or program structure upon which to build the sound and scalable initiatives needed for a more energy efficient future for buildings.

Anto concurs in his article...2009, Not Business As Usual!  he states;.......... Big things need to happen to force a revolution, what we are witnessing right now with the economic woes, climate change and the change that the new Obama administration will bring

Jim's Nine Predictions for Smart Buildings in 2009  provides insight to some of the elements of this reinvention plus his article New Year Resolutions for the Industry  tell us ....what we need is a second step called LEEP, which is Leadership in Energy and Environmental Performance.

Peter Kelly-Detwiler of Constellation NewEnergy advises; Sign Up for Demand Response Many of the power grids in North America offer significant incentives to participate in demand response programs in his article A New Year’s Resolution for PJM

In the upcoming years pervasive computing will undergo a transition. New OSS projects will be created that focus on generic pervasive and mobile computing (or Internet of Everything as some people tend to call it) and also on specific support for building automation, smart grid and related technologies. You need to read more OpenLynx: Open Source Software by Peter Michalek

In addition An Aspect on Networked Area Control , Introduction to BACnet Routers, Choosing the Right Integrator, and Top 12 Issue Favourites - 2008 

contemporary Great January Columns;  Discussion on DescriptorsSteven R. Calabrese, Smart Buildings meet the Smart Grid, Toby Considine BAS Use of Ethernet/IP Infrastructure II Paul Ehrlich & Ira Goldschmidt

Is 2009 the year of significant change?  It has the markings of it Ken, the perfect storm is forming. I don’t think 2009 will be business as usual.

January Reviews  Automated Demand Response  KNX Energy Management Solutions  Monitoring-based commissioning  Wireless for Controls: An Update

Be sure to get the latest and greatest right up to show time in our  Previews of AHR EXPO

Also find out more about Building to Grid in the preview of B2G Summit Chicago Jan 28

We would like to welcome our newest advertiser Control Solutions, Inc.  Control Solutions, Inc. - Minnesota offers cost effective network gateways, embedded web servers, and network I/O for building automation using BACnet®, LonWorks®, and Modbus® protocols.

We have added a new Blog tab to our navigation menu which links to related industry blogs of interest.  We created an Industry online Forum many years before blogging was conceived and have combined these.

We have been working on improving our web site by reorganizing how we handle the great number of news release we receive daily.  We now provide a HomeToys RSS News Feed News Feed ( Which Needs a RSS Feed Reader ) and have provided a New Our RSS news feed rendered into HTML



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