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The Connectivity Daily

Frank Capuano, of Strata Resource Inc, is the Editor of the Connectivity Daily, Manager of the Buildy Awards Program and Editor of the BuilConn Update for Clasma Events Inc.  Strata Resource is a market communications and research corporation specializing in the building automation industry. 

Every morning during last month’s Connectivity Week attendees were greeted with a copy of the Connectivity Daily - the official event daily paper.  The three published issues (with a total circulation of 1300 issues) included an array of information including article excerpts from Harbor Research, Energy Priorities, Cisco and the BuilConn Update.  These contributions provided a balance of industry information that appealed to all conference attendees, whether their focus was BuilConn, M2M or GridWise.  The paper also included the need-to-know event schedule information including meeting announcements, networking opportunities, IBB announcements, Buildy voting information and exhibitor announcements.

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To provide you with a sampling of a daily perspective of Connectivity Week, the front-page articles of each issue are reprinted below.  Also included below is a list of links to the contributing articles from which excerpts appeared in the paper.

May 16 - Welcome to Connectivity Week
By Heather Deal

Welcome to the North American Connectivity Week, the intersection of intelligent buildings, smart devices and the technological evolution of the nation’s electrical system. As such, Connectivity Week is the synergistic relationship of three industries, where each industry is influenced and shaped by the other through common information technology, enabling devices and the simple fact that each industry is a critical component of the effective operation of the other.

Encompassing three industry-specific events, North American Connectivity Week unites

BuilConn, the premier event for intelligent buildings; M2M Expo, the defining event for machine-to-machine communication; and the inaugural GridWise Expo, a first-of-its-kind gathering of key industry stakeholders in the technological advancement of the nation’s electrical system.

This will be a busy and exciting first Connectivity Week with the multitude of events planned, including defining events such as the Cisco-sponsored Roundtable, with 35+ companies participating. This by-invitation-only forum will essentially map the future of Building-IT convergence by gathering leading figures in the building automation industry to discuss and debate the technologies, products and methodologies that will provide viable solutions for a converged environment.

Each conference day begins with not-to-be-missed keynote speeches delivered by leading figures in the building automation, M2M and power industries who will discuss how connectivity brings these subjects together and provides significant incremental opportunities for the stakeholders in all of these markets. The remainder of each conference day boasts five tracks with 100+ speakers on all topics relating to connectivity. This variety allows you to pick and choose the sessions that fit your conference objectives, and though you may find that there are too many sessions from which to choose, the organizers will distribute the conference proceedings approximately one week after the event to all registered attendees.

The exposition is the place to meet the 30+ providers of the technologies and solutions that enable a wholly connected enterprise and is the central venue for valuable networking. The expo is also the place to vote for your favorite Buildy Award nominees. Don’t miss the impressive display of the building automation industry’s best technologies, products, integration strategies, and industry visionaries North America has to offer. Buildy Award Winners will be announced at the Award Gala Reception and Dinner on Thursday, May 18.

Amid all the talk of connectivity, integration and interoperability, it is no surprise that the IBB will take the stage again at The Blue Guitar on Wednesday evening. The IBB, or Interoperable Blues Band, is aptly named for its makeup of prolific members who represent all facets of the intelligent enterprise, all playing together in the key of connectivity. Another unique facet of the IBB is its open door policy for new members: jump on stage, grab an instrument and join in the jam.

As these three industries come together through a commonality of technologies and inter-dependence on information, what becomes increasingly clear is the sphere of influence that is the enterprise. The single most significant benefit of such a level of interconnectivity is factual and accurate information, information that can be used to increase operational efficiencies, generate revenue and add significant savings to the bottom line for any organization whether it is a manufacturer, installer, service provider or end user.

CatNet Systems May 17 - Pre-Conference Review (A review of day 1 sessions)
By Frank Capuano

Yesterday during the pre-conference, attendees listened, learned and participated in several sessions designed to increase awareness, educate and facilitate an exchange of ideas. The day consisted of four tracks including the Building Systems Bootcamp, a Web Services Workshop, an M2M Workshop sponsored by Harbor Research and the Connected Roundtable sponsored by Cisco.

The building systems bootcamp track discussed the fundamentals of the building systems from equipment to controls. Systems discussed included HVAC, Access Control, CCTV/Security and Lighting Systems. The history and evolution of control system technology from the first proprietary DDC to today’s open system technologies were discussed. The session culminated with the benefits of building systems integration with respect to energy conservation and business objectives.

The web services workshop discussed the future and current state of web services products, acceptance and standardization.  Updates on the oBIX and BACnet Web

Services initiatives were presented and discussed. The oBIX initiative is moving forward with a public review expected soon and continued deployment by early adopters.

The BACnet Web Services initiative is gaining momentum and remains focused on its goals, which include being automation protocol independent, scalable from client to enterprise applications, able to read and write to any point and support for multiple points, arrays and trending.

In the afternoon session several web services products were discussed, including BACrest by Cimetrics (booth #180) and HostedControls by Cyrus Technologies (booth #155). Visit the Expo for more information on these and other web services products.

The M2M workshop, sponsored by Harbor Research (booth #108), explored the benefits available to adopters of remote device monitoring and management. The discussion included measuring ROI, building a business case for using device monitoring and management within existing business processes, emerging opportunities from device monitoring and management and how companies are changing the way they do business to take advantage of the M2M landscape.

The Cisco Connected Roundtable session collected input from a cross-section of the industry to map the future of Building-IT convergence. The session objectives included understanding the changing needs of owners, discussing the affect of IT on building systems, exploring the new value of convergence and discussing drivers and obstacles of adoption.

Roundtable participants shared the opinion that intelligent connected buildings are necessary and that IT organizations will play an integral role in the adoption and convergence in this space. The varied background of participants produced a diverse set of demands, needs and requirements for an intelligent connected building.  Discussions included predictions and requirements of the impact and deployment of IT-centric building systems for various building spaces, including campuses, hotels, managed property and energy efficiency.

Predications and requirements included:

PlantPROCORE May 18 – Connectivity = Opportunities (A review of keynote addresses)
By Frank Capuano

The benefits, implications and challenges of connectivity greeted Connectivity Week attendees during yesterday’s keynote addresses. In short, the benefits of connectivity will be realized at work, at play and at home, the implications are a ubiquitous shift in business opportunities and relationships and the principal challenge is to embrace change.

Dr. Rick Huijbregts, CCRE Strategy Manager at Cisco; Oscar Thomas, Enterprise Solutions Manager at Cisco; Glen Allmendinger, President & CEO of Harbor Research; and Jack McGowan, President of Energy Control, Inc. provided insight on how connectivity is creating a new vision for real estate, new service opportunities and paving the route for a better national power grid.

Anto Budiardjo, President & CEO of Clasma Events, began the keynote session by defining Connectivity Week as connecting the seemingly disparate, and increasingly interdependent industries represented by the BuilConn, M2M and GridWise events. What began as BuilConn in 2003 has grown to include the M2M Expo, with its grand integration philosophy of device connectivity to connect buildings, people and homes, and to include the GridWise Expo, which embodies an initiative to apply the practices and technologies of Building-IT convergence to the national power grid.

Rick and Oscar provided a glimpse of a connectivity-based future defined by the Cisco Connected Real Estate initiative where the Internet is the 4th utility.  They purposed that the convergence of IT and real estate would transform the way we work, play and live. The transformation would involve the integration of an intelligent network framework as an integral component of building design.  This would reduce cost and complexity by replacing disparate networks for communications, security, and building systems with one simplified, flexible, and scalable IP network.

Glen discussed how connectivity would present new service opportunities and change our business models and relationships.  As more devices are connected, until everything becomes a node on the network, we will have a set of relationships that did not previously exist. The previous hub-and-spoke business relationship philosophy will no longer apply. The business environment will become a fluid situation with products facilitating a continuous relationship between the producer and the customer.  He emphasized that connectivity was not about the technology, but about the relationships the technology enables.

Jack discussed the transformation of the nation’s power grid outlined by the GridWise initiative. In essence, GridWise is trying to leverage the power seen in the World Wide Web and apply it to the national power grid. This provides the benefits of higher efficiency, better management and new service opportunities. The building control business is no longer install, maintain or programming devices, it is about delivering intelligent services for installed systems. GridWise, enables you to view the electric meter as one element in a large universe to deliver service and value to. With electricity being pervasive to device connectivity, GridWise will create numerous business and service opportunities.

These Connectivity Week keynote addresses demonstrate how connectivity is affecting business relationships, presenting new service opportunities and changing the places where we work, play and live.

Contributing Articles:

Excerpts from these sources were published in Connectivity Daily with the permission.

Device Networking Drives New Relationships Between Product Development and Services
By Harbor Research – Currents, Issue 68

Internet Beyond the Web
By Harbor Research – Currents, Issue 65

CCRE - Cisco Connected Real Estate
A White Paper Published by Cisco

The Connectivity Law
By Anto Budiardjo, published in the BuilConn Update

Smart Buildings, Smart Grids Connect for Reliable and Lower-Cost Energy
By Denis Du Bois of www.EnergyPriorities.com

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