June 2007

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The Connectivity Daily
These contributions provided a balance of industry information that appealed to all conference attendees, whether their focus was BuilConn, M2M, GridWise Expo or the ZigBee Expo. 

Frank Capuano
Strata Resource Inc

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

Each morning during last month’s ConnectivityWeek attendees were greeted with a copy of the Connectivity Daily - the official event daily paper.  The three published issues included an array of information including article excerpts from Harbor Research, Energy Priorities, GridWise, CABA, the ZigBee Alliance and AutomatedBuildings.com.  These contributions provided a balance of industry information that appealed to all conference attendees, whether their focus was BuilConn, M2M, GridWise Expo or the ZigBee Expo.  The paper also included the need-to-know event schedule information including meeting announcements, networking opportunities, IBB announcements and Buildy voting information.

New Products
Past Issues

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To provide you with a sampling of the daily perspective from ConnectivityWeek, 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 22 - Welcome to Connectivity Week
By Anto Budiardjo

Welcome to Rosemont, for the next few days the home of ConnectivityWeek. As a collection of events focused around device centric connectivity, ConnectivityWeek is broadening its wings, while further developing the core subject of building-IT convergence under the BuilConn brand, now in its fifth year.

The exciting new concept of Buildings 2.0 is without doubt the buzz of the show as far as buildings is concerned. Buildings 2.0 is a bold concept born at the recent Cisco Roundtable at BuilConn in Dubai last February, it outlines a new way to think about buildings, from design to construction to operation. Part of this vision is making buildings more energy efficient through the use of IT with concepts like Demand Response and Smart Energy.

Our newest additions to this year’s ConnectivityWeek are the ZigBee Expo and the Pervasive Security Roundtable. The adoption of ZigBee for device connectivity is becoming real and significant in buildings, residential as well as energy management applications. Pervasive Security is a new discussion on how we will need to look at the security issues of the growing number of smart devices connected in this pervasive world. As new citizens of the Internet, devices in homes, commercial buildings, industrial applications, transport, energy and other areas will need technology to guard them against misuse and failure.

PlenaryFor five years now, BuilConn and ConnectivityWeek have been the gathering place for the new community furthering the connected world; as such we continue to evolve the social activities at this very important event in our yearly calendar. From the welcome reception on Tuesday, to networking lunch and breaks, IBB on Wednesday evening and the Industry Awards Gala on Thursday, we invite you to participate, make new acquaintances, build relationships, get into some lively discussions and debates as well as have some fun.

For many who have attended the event, the IBB jam session on Wednesday is a key not-to-be-missed event of ConnectivityWeek. Live music from a professional band made up of many artists from the industry, supplemented by your participation, and well oiled by refreshments, all in the midst of the convention facility.

I also urge you to cast your vote for this year’s Buildy finalists during Wednesday and Thursday expo hours. Now in its fourth year, Buildy has become the recognized award for leaders and influencers of convergence of IT and buildings. This year, the Award Gala will also include the GridWise Applied Awards to recognize those individuals and organizations who have applied the GridWise principles, key to the future of our electricity system in the US.

We are excited to have brought this event for the first time to the Chicago area at the conveniently located Rosemont Convention Center, a stone’s throw away from O’Hare airport. We look forward to your comments on this and future venues to host ConnectivityWeek.

Finally, I look forward to meeting with you individually; please find time to chat with myself, as well as the Clasma team, the speakers, exhibitors and sponsors who collectively make this event possible.

May 23 – Workshop-Roundtable-Buildings (A review of pre-conference sessions from May 22)
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 Connected Buildings: The Value to Owners, Web Services Workshop, Cisco Connected Roundtable and Installing Connected Buildings.

The Connected Buildings: The Value to Owners track defined the various control systems found in buildings and the various technical methods and protocols available to integrate the disparate systems in a single control network.  The track progressed to discuss the energy management system components and web access to building information.

In the Web Services Workshop track (sponsored by Tridium) attendees learned what web service products are capable of today and the status standards development.  The track explored these topics with an enthusiastic exchange between panelists and attendees.  Gridlogix and Cimetrics discussed how they use web services to access and expose a myriad of building information, regardless of the underlying protocols used at the field device level.  (Visit their respective booths during today’s Expo for more information.)

The afternoon session updated attendees on the latest developments in oBIX (www.oasis-open.org/committees/, oBIX XML Standards SC), BACnet Web Services ( www.bacnet.org/WG/XML/index.html) and the National BIM Standard.  Under the auspicious of OASIS, oBIX 2.0 development is poised to move forward and now is the time for interested parties to get involved in oBIX technical committees.  Under the auspicious of ASHRAE®, the BACnet Web Services standard has not only created BACnet XML definitions, but also create a set of protocol neutral SOAP/XML definitions for web services interface creation.  The National BIM (Building Information Model) Standard (www.nibs.org) is creating a digital representation of physical and functional characteristics of a facility.  It will serve as a shared knowledge resource for information about a facility that will be accessible (via XML) by enterprise web service applications. 

CiscoThe Cisco Connected Roundtable track continued the Buildings 2.0 discussion started in Dubai.  As designed, this track inspired a constant stream of attendee interaction that examined the very core of the industry with provocative questions and a vision to move the industry forward.  Several questions and comments were put forth and discussed during this track, including: “Buildings 2.0 not only makes our systems smarter, but is also makes the end users smarter by providing them with better information and tools.”; “Why do we need systems to communicate?”; “What is the value of interoperability?”; “Is energy conservation driving interoperability and integration?”; “The value of interoperable BAS is to provide information that improves the productivity of the people in the building – its not a question of energy.”; “Where do we start?”; “We need to establish an organized process to reduce the complexity for customers to put together (or select) a solution that meets their facility needs.”; “We need to be in the building information business and not the building management business.”

The Installing Connected Buildings track (sponsored by the NJATC) discussed how training is the difference between winning a project and not having the technical depth to participate in the bid process.  The NJATC provides training to electricians at over 300 locations nationwide.  Traditionally their training focused on the proper electrical installation of electrical systems – including BAS products, to ensure the installation passed the “smoke test”.  Now their training is evolving beyond that to include training in the Open System technologies of LonWorks, BACnet and ZigBee.  This training will go beyond simply defining acronyms and include training on third party tools for using these protocols.  The NJATC recognize that without the right knowledge, skills and tools integrators will not be able to achieve success in the world of connected buildings.

May 24 – “Rewrite the Rules” (A review of plenary addresses from May 23)
By Frank Capuano

The keynote and mega panel discussions kicked off yesterday’s conference with a somber look at one possible future for our planet and presented numerous ways we, as an industry, can influence and change this future.

Keynote addresses were given by Todd Hawthorne of Cisco, Mr. Robert W. Galvin of the Galvin Electrical Initiative and Peter Kelly-Detwiler of Constellation NewEnergy.

Todd presented several global trends of resource usage, the impact these trends are having on the climate and how becoming a connected world can lessen that impact.  With nearly 50% of the world energy being consumed by buildings, this industry is well situated to change the future.  Governments and corporations are beginning to embrace a “green” perspective with respect to their energy consumption.  Creating intelligent buildings with a focus on energy efficiency and/or reduction in consumption will benefit the planet, the building owner and the installer.  All information in a building system has strategic value.  The Cisco Connected Real Estate (CCRE) initiative can unlock that value and provide positive environmental and financial benefits.  CCRE is often categorized as the 4th utility, but many feel that it should be considered the 1st information utility.

[an error occurred while processing this directive] Mr. Galvin presented a decades long perspective on the industry of change.  He stated that the two biggest problems facing us today, which also represent two large opportunities, are the inefficiencies of the power grid and traffic congestion.  The two fundamental connections we must make are an electric grid of “Perfect Power” and an effective transit system. To do this we have to create change.  In Mr. Galvin’s experience change of this magnitude can alone be accomplished by rewriting the rules.

Peter discussed a future where energy is the commodity and the business is risk management.  Conventional wisdom states that as the demand for a commodity increases, so does its price.  This holds true, unless better methods for production and delivery of the commodity are developed.  As energy becomes the pinnacle commodity the natural resources we use to generate it will become increasingly expensive, while the burden to produce more energy will be detrimental to us all.  To prevail against conventional wisdom we must substitute intelligence for natural resources and use the technologies of connectivity better manage risk.  This will avert bleak future forecasts and drive new economic opportunities.

 The mega panel of eight, representing a cross section of the industry, discussed the varied topics of interoperability, the power grid, intelligent buildings, commercial real estate, elevating the BAS to a true EMS and leveraging control network technologies to accomplish more than they are currently.  Even though energy issues appear at the focus of many industry discussions, the panel clarified that energy is only part of the picture.  “Part of the energy story is supporting the mission of the organization.”  “The goal of the BAS is to provide a higher quality working environment.”  Several challenges were issued throughout the discussion.  “The laws governing the connection between buildings and the grid are changing, for the better, but your representative needs to hear you voice.”  “We all need to be Change Agents.”  At the end, Dave Mosby issued the paramount challenge for ConnectivityWeek companies to help him achieve Buildings 2.0 on a new construction project for the State of Missouri.

Contributing Articles:

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

Smart Services – Transforming the Channel to Market
By Harbor Research – Currents, Issue 80
Smart Services are Driving the “Real-Time” Economy
By Harbor Research – Currents, Issue 84
The Growing Need for Smart Services in Business
By Harbor Research – Currents, Issue 90
GridWise Architecture Council Framework for Interoperability
By Steve Widergen – AutomatedBuildings.com
GridWise Demo Update
By Steve Widergen
Demand Response in a Nutshell
By Denis Du Bois of www.EnergyPriorities.com
Demand Response: Experts and Businesses Discuss the Challenges Ahead
By Denis Du Bois of www.EnergyPriorities.com
ZigBee Sees Strong Growth for Energy Management and Efficency Solutions
By Kevin Schader – ZigBee Alliance
CABA Completes Intelligent Buildings Roadmap
By Rawlson King - CABA
Buildings 2.0
By Anto Budiardjo – AutomatedBuildings.com


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