November 2016

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Zach NetsovEMAIL INTERVIEWZach Netsov and Ken Sinclair

Zach Netsov is a product specialist with Contemporary Controls involved with the company’s building automation products.  Zach received his BSEET from DeVry Institute of Technology.


Creating an Open Controller

Zach Netsov will be one of the speakers on open controllers during a free industry session at AHR Expo 2017 sponsored by  The session is scheduled for 10:30am-11:30am Monday January 30, 2017 in room N239.

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SinclairThanks for joining us at AHR with this added session.  Don’t we have open controllers today?

Netsov:  Thanks for providing us an opportunity to speak on Sedona Framework during one of your sponsored sessions.  No, we do not necessarily have open controllers unless you have an open protocol, an open control language, and an engineering tool available to anyone without restriction.  A BACnet controller may appear to be open in that it is an ASHRAE standard well accepted in the industry but we hear complaints that it is not open because not everyone can access the controller’s program.  This is not a fault of BACnet because it is only a protocol without concern for the methods used to actually make it a controller.  This allows the controls’ vendor to lock up his product with a proprietary language, proprietary engineering tool, and restrictive licensing.  This is not the spirit of openness.

SinclairHow does Sedona Framework solve the problem of openness?

Netsov:  Sedona Framework was originally developed by Tridium to be open by making their intellectual property available to the public under an Academic Free License granted by the licensor-Tridium, Inc.  A licensee is allowed worldwide, royalty-free and non-exclusive use of the technology.  At the time, Tridium’s vision was to establish a community of developers – those who develop Sedona products using the framework – and integrators – those who use drag-and-drop programming tools to assemble components onto a wire sheet in order to create applications.  The methodology is very much like Tridium’s Niagara Framework.  Contemporary Controls considers itself as a developer in this Sedona community and invites other developers and integrators to contribute their custom developed components, custom developed applications, and vision for a better Sedona to the community.

SinclairDoes Sedona programming require proprietary tools?

Netsov:  For the Sedona Framework developer making custom components or making a Sedona virtual machine, a Sedona complier is freely available.  For system integrators who need to assemble Sedona components onto a wire sheet to create applications a Sedona tool is required.  Niagara Workbench 3.7 and 3.8 can serve as the Sedona tool.  Other Sedona product suppliers have tools as well.  My company Contemporary Controls has developed a tool called the Sedona Application Editor (SAE) which is available to all for free via download from the company’s website  The intention of SAE was to make a tool usable with any Sedona 1.2 compliant virtual machine thereby allowing the sharing of Sedona custom hardware independent kits (group of components) between those in the Sedona community regardless of the Sedona vendor. 

contemporary Sinclair What will we learn at the Sedona education session during AHR 2017?

Netsov:  I will begin by briefly introducing people to Sedona Framework and the use of the SAE tool.  As part of the tool download, the user is given a Sedona virtual machine that operates on the same Windows machine as SAE so the user can experience the programming and execution of Sedona logic without the need of an actual Sedona controller.

Following me will be Jon Vietti of DDC Support Services who is a highly experienced DDC programmer and who developed several complete applications using Sedona for various air-handlers.  He provides the user perspective.

John Petze has a unique perspective of Sedona.  As former president of Tridium he was there when Sedona was being developed and remains a staunch supporter of open systems.

Finally, George Thomas will present the ideas of a group of Sedona developers committed to making a Sedona Alliance that will represent the interests of the Sedona community.

SinclairThis all sounds interesting.  See you in Las Vegas in January.

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