Industry Solutions and Tivoli
DavidBBartlett 0600017MDJ Tags:  smarter planet solutions industry coumputing cloud 2,895 Visits
Recently Judy Collins appeared at our local bookshop in Rhinebeck, NY that we frequently visit to promote a children's book. Gosh, how time flies! It was just yesterday that we were wearing out her LPs in the college dorms. One of my favorite Judy Colllins song was 'Both sides Now' which contains the line ' I've looked at clouds from both sides now, from win and lose , and still somehow, it's clouds illusions I recall...' So what are the real benefits of cloud? And what is just an illusion? Here are some cloud musings based on my experience in industry solutions for a smarter planet:
How can cloud be used in development for industry oriented applications?
Cloud computing can be used in development for intense simulations of assembly operations. These are the complex simulations of whole systems, as opposed to a single pump for example. Simulations generally require HPC (high performance computing) that can be cost prohibitive for anyone except the largest enterprises. One example is System Verification Management for the Electronic Design Automation Industry. Systems verification is the testing of integrated circuit hardware and embedded software to identify defects. Coverage verification is a type of systems verification using random testing of a chip design simulated in software. Because software simulations run extremely slowcompared to actual hardware, enough tests can never be run to completely verify a chip design. Therefore critical functions are chosen to be “covered” by simulation testing. Modern chip complexity is driving manufacturers to coverage verification to vet design before it hits the expensive silicon and to speed time to market. In fact, Coverage verification simulations approaching 1 million per day on an High Performance Computing (HPC) environment are now becoming the norm. The HPC environment must be utilized and maintained to the maximum extent possible to achieve quickest time to market and that can be achieved efficiently using cloud computing.
Another example is smart grid. One focus for smart grid is demand management or the ability, during brown outs for example, to dynamically deallocate power to nonessential devices like pool pumps and allocate power to schools, hospitals, or certain appliances in your home. This requires visibility up and down the chain of delivery to determine where and how the power is being used and whether its delivery is as efficient as possible. Dealing with a range of variable and unpredictable outages requires the ability to dynamically allocate the compute resources for the task and we have found cloud to be an efficient way to manage a smart grid.
And what about smarter cities? The city of Wuxi in southeastern China, developed a "cloud services factory" to provide computing resources to local companies. Software developers can access new resources in minutes, and new businesses can hit the ground running. Wuxi now has the potential to provide services to hundreds of small and medpium-sized companies, which represent the future of a city that sees itself as an engine for growth.
Are there economic, cultural or other trends that are driving the adoption of cloud computing?
Today, more than ever, the need to drive down the cost of computing while being fully prepared for variable and peak workloads. In addition, if a cloud can handle a mulit-tenent environment with 15, 50, 500 customers all with dynamic processing on the same infrastructure, and same support (monitoring, backup/restore) cost has to decrease due to economy of scale.
I think that the tough economy has definitely spurred interest in cost cutting measures and efficiency; but, I think the real drivers are the emergence and acceptance of virtualization and Service Oriented Architecture in companies. Companies are becoming more technically astute and see the advantages of subscribing to Web Services, applications, storage and services like SPAM filtering in a cloud. In addition, because many people's workstations are now on their phones, pda's and netbooks, it makes more sense to host the operating systems, applications and data on virtual servers in a cloud.
Another factor driving adoption is the need to stay competitive in today's markets. For most business the ability to deliver more applications and services without adding fixed costs helps improve focus on core business competencies. ie: Improve time to market, Increase Business Flexibility and shift from Fixed to Variable Costs. Also, the ability to monitor costs.
What are some of the perceptions or barriers that need to be overcome for cloud computing to gain the widest possible acceptance?
Perception of the lack of bulletproof Reliability,Performance and Security & Privacy. Performance concerns exist about throughput because computing is off-site. Concern exists that data will be secure from competitors eyes in a public cloud.
It’s clear that a variety of security technologies, processes, procedures, laws, and trust models are required to secure the cloud. There is no silver bullet for securing the cloud but who better than IBM with a full breadth and depth of solutions and services enable organizations to take a business-driven, holistic approach to securing the cloud. IBM capabilities empower organizations to dynamically monitor and quantify security risks, to better understand threats and vulnerabilities in terms of business impact, to better respond to security events with security controls that optimize business results, and to better prioritize and balance their security investments.
How will IT change over the next five years or so, because of the influence of cloud computing?
I think IT technologies will more and more be applied to real world (non-IT) assets as we transform utilities, transport, healthcare, buidlings, and cities to a smarter version. This will be made possible in many instances by the power of cloud computing.
An example of a specific opportunity is in the area of storage. As the world becomes smarter and, we are collecting more and more data, and storage requirements are skyrocketing. Today we are approaching a trillion connected sensors that are enabling smarter planet plays such as smarter transportation and smarter healthcare. Being able to farm out the management of the storage devices to experts and pay for what is actually used is already becoming very compelling.
I think 5 years from now we will see much of smarter planet plays being realized and powered by clouds. It will not be clouds illusions we recall but real leverage and value for our industry solutions.
DavidBBartlett 0600017MDJ Tags:  planet buildings utilities cities health smarter care 3,845 Visits
You have all seen the marketing ads: smarter health care, smarter traffic, smarter cities… On the one hand it's a cool marketing campaign, but it also speaks to desperately needed solutions in our world that has so many challenges. Personal expenditures on health care push millions below the poverty line each year. 1 in 5 people in the world do not have access to safe drinking water. Congested roadways in the US alone are responsbile for 4.2 billion lost hours of productivity and 2.9 billion gallons of wasted fuel. But hold on, buildings, if uncorrected, will, by 2025, use more energy than any other category of "consumer!"
The work my black belt team of architects does, plays a key role in these Smarter plays. We have software frameworks for each smarter planet solution that provide architectural and
standards based guidance. These frameworks provide for a consistent, scalable , and repeatable
approach. Frameworks like Health
Integration Framework for smarter health care, or Solution Architecture for Energy
what does smarter really mean and how is
now have the ability to measure, sense and monitor the condition of almost
everything. In this last decade, we have rapidly reached a tipping point, if you
will, of the proliferation of technology needed to do this and at the right
performance and price point. Have you have
heard the commercial' "it is , do you know where your children are? "
Well now it is 2010 and If you don’t know where they are , get a
There is now a billion transistors for every human being on the planet. Sensors are being embedded everywhere—across entire ecosystems—supply-chains, health care networks, cities… even in livestock and natural systems like rivers. There are 30 billion RFID tags already embedded into our world , and 85% of new automobiles now contain event data records.
So what does smarter really mean?
leverages this instrumentation, these sensors, integrates, correlates, and
enriches it, and makes intelligent use of it. Smarter enables an industry's line of business to sense &
respond to opportunities and risks in ‘real time.’ Smarter is a result of business process
management, event processing & business optimization capabilities…So you
can see why I might say
is not just about managing IT anymore, it is about managing the world and we
have the technology to do it. Probing, Monitoring, event enrichment, asset
management, storage, secure access, dashboard views…these are the key . Oh yeah, and you need to scale to millions of end points and 10’s of millions of events and make sense of it in a timely
Let's talk about Smarter Buildings. (Something you will hear more about this week at the global Pulse event in Las Vegas.)
In this case a chiller in one of the buildings on campus fails. The building management system sends a notification to Omnibus, Impact enriches the event with asset, location, contact information from Maximo and initiates a work order in Maximo. Based on the severity is also generates an urgent email to the Facilities Manager with the work order that has automatically been created. The Fac Mgr uses his personalized dashboard containing KPIs and work orders, checking to see if the chiller was due for preventive maintenance, and then assigns to a technician to fix. The technician received the work order, performs the work and records labor costs, material costs etc. which are reflected in the asset lifecycle costs. The Chiller is now operational.
Ok, cool, but let's talk about this GHG problem from buildings, as they become the largest energy consumer on the planet. Let me again give an example. We have actually deployed chillers in IBM linked to hourly weather forecasting algorithms and samplings in order to leverage temperature and humidity change to lower operating costs and use of natural resources. And yes, in some cases we can even shut down chillers (as opposed to 24x7 operation.) This can be applied to many instances where we box in people and equipment , lock the windows, and run the boilers and chillers and hvacs, regardless of what mother nature is doing on the other side of that glass. We have the technology, it is just a matter of applying it. Fortunately there is a strong set of business partners and ibm technology that is available.
start with a definition. A smarter building:
has a life cycle managed comprehensively, in a sustainable manner, coordinating all aspects from design to demolition
is Holistically managed and optimized to integrate well with other buildings, smarter cities, and smarter systems (e.g., smart grid)
leverages technology and process for a safer, more productive, operationally efficient building
provides an improved set of user interface tools and sensors and actuators that monitor everything to create buildings that are:
– Cost effective for their owners and tenants
– Reducing energy and operational costs
– Maintaining high property value
– Operationally efficient
– Comfortable and productive for their occupants
– Safer and more secure
– Environmentally responsible for the planet
So what are some of the challenges we must tackle to make a building smarter?
– Property typically 2nd largest item on the balance sheet
– Operational expense – 50% of building life cycle cost, 'retrofit' – 25%
– Pressure to reduce cost now exacerbated by continued escalation of energy prices
– Building life cycles largely disjointed
– Siloed management of subsystems and assets
– Lacking end-to-end visualization, analytics and optimization
– Long term focus and flexibility
– New sustainability and carbon management mandates
– Better social and commercial alignment – cost, invest expectations, building function and flexibility, security, occupant productivity and health, environment and social impacts, are all considered collectively with a long-term focus
Globally, buildings consume 42% of all electricity, generating 15%
of electricity related green-house gases (
The cost of buildings is a significant element of most balance sheets, with property
management often being the second largest item after staff. Fifty percent of a buildings lifecycle cost is operational expense, with retrofitting buildings being the second biggest expense. Contrast that with construction which accounts for only 11%.
Life cycle cost plays a significant role as property owners and operators address the long-term efficiency of operations, construction processes and infrastructure. Too often we see companies invest in buildings, equipment and systems that underperform in 2-5 yrs. Each stage has different considerations when attempting to affect cost, which impacts overall building and asset life cycle costs.
Sustainable Management is designed to improve life cycle management, carbon data collection and analysis, ongoing asset maintenance, and all processes and systems used to support these activities.
All of these can be areas of waste and unnecessary greenhouse gas emissions because of poor planning and maintenance, inadequate energy management, and inefficiencies such as heating or cooling unused or underused space, lack of resources and technology, and inability to collect and analyze operational information.
Challenges include: Property carbon footprinting and audit, Travel carbon footprinting; Project-based travel, tracking and analysis; Sustainable property strategy; Workplace transformation; Sustainable property data management; Sustainable capital program management; Product and service lifecycle carbon analysis; Sustainable data center management
Today there are a number of key
DavidBBartlett 0600017MDJ Tags:  transportation servicemanagement railways trains smarterrail mass-transit 3,482 Visits
As I sit on a cold, cramped, and aged 767 en route to speak at a Rail Conference in
One of our projects is with the Washington Metropolitan Area Transportation Authority which is expanding its use of Tivoli Industry Solutions after the June 22 Red line crash that killed 9 and injured over 70 riders.
Proper maintenance will lead to peak performance, which will, in turn, create safer rides, better attitudes toward the system and higher ridership. The Washington Metro is using this software to manage its more than 12,000 rail and bus stations, 106 miles of track, 1,144 rail cars and 1,500 buses. It also uses the software for its 594 escalators and 275 elevators.
This brings us to
Visibility: To respond faster and make better decisions
We do this through role-based views and real-time, enterprise-wide views of all asset types. This is meaningful because information that was once only available by accessing multiple systems, with differing levels of detail, is now available from a single view based on functional role. And visibility allows users to access details of transportation assets(locomotives with sensors, linear assets (track), wireless networks, depots, IT systems) across the entire operation and freight across the supply chain, all from the same system.
Control: To increase governance and reduce operational risk
Control is important to optimize asset management and to extend asset life; reducing inventory costs by stocking only is needed, when it is needed, and controlling fuel spend by maintaining assets to be more fuel efficient. Control is also important to mitigate compliance because having better data lets customers know their compliance status; and it mitigates security risk for better control of systems and data reduces the risk of breaches.
Automation: To improve asset utilization with proactive asset management
Traditionally we have managed our different assets like fleets, facilities and IT as siloed, unconnected systems. But now, as the need for innovative change grows greater, companies need to manage IT and physical assets together within the same management platform, where data, processes and workflows can be shared seamlessly to be more effective, efficient and highly responsive. Automation also includes enhanced operational capabilities utilizing automated work-flow to streamline work process, taking advantage of standard reporting to conduct various analytics and working with accurate inventory data to improve reliability.
So our challenge, as Industry Solution Developers, within the context of rail services, is to enable better visualization, control, and automation of the use rail assets relative to how they support rail business services. In this context, we can’t just think of assets as a rail car or a linear track. We need to also think about what those assets are really providing to the business. Depending on the asset, the service the asset provides will vary. For example, a key service that a rail company provides is the improved delivery of passengers and goods - delivery that is both on time, safe, and at the lowest cost possible.
It’s about what the assets do to deliver the best possible services to their customer. And by taking a more holistic approach, businesses can optimize and automate and safely delivery these services to their end customers.
Topics under discussion include: grid security, reliability, accommodation of
It was noted in this morning’s roundtable that this is the 217th day of the recovery
There is lots of innovation and promise. The biggest challenge is finding what is
At home we have recently planed a lot of trees and one thing we have learned is when
To this end,
According to Centerpoint Energy, “The
Business partners such as: ESRI, SISCO, Retriever Communications and Trilliant are already validated
faced by every utility:
Reflecting on some of the key points of Gridweeek, as we continue to develop ‘
1)Understand and manage the utility’s customer expectations
2)Make data available for customer app exploitation to accelerate rate of buy-in and
3)Accelerate the rate of technology integration for faster ROI
4)Education of smart grid constituents to widen collaborative opportunities
5)Continue to progress clearly defined and open standards which can accelerate progress
By now you have probably heard that Ounce Labs was acquired by the Rational software division as part of IBM's cyber security solution build-out. This is great technology to insure software development and existing software is not the weakest link in the chain in our smarter planet projects.
For example, let's consider the 1,2,3's of how Ounce can help us in our work to secure the smart grid:
1) One of the key components of the Smart Grid is software
2) 99% of the software that powers energy-related applications and devices has been written with no attention to secure coding principles; hence, it is quite susceptible to attack
3) IBM/Ounce tools quickly scan large amounts of software to identify and help fix the most severe vulnerabilities in software
DavidBBartlett 0600017MDJ 2,242 Visits
When seconds count, public safety officials rely on communication via private mobile radio and mobile devices...and Tivoli Netcool software is behind the scenes managing the vital signs of the communications network, not only making sure the network is up and running, but proactively monitoring to prevent any network outages from occurring.
IBM Tivoli Netcool software is used by more than 1,000 service providers world-side to manage service quality and reduce operational costs and time to market. We are also helping service providers address emerging opportunities in next-generation network transformation, fixed/mobile convergence, and IP Multimedia Subsystem (IMS) deployment.
EADS Defence & Security -- a systems solutions provider for armed forces and civil security worldwide -- recently signed a deal with IBM to embed IBM Tivoli Netcool software into the EADS service management platform for multi-technology PMR (private mobile radio) solutions, which include TETRA, TETRAPOL and P25 radio networks, IP core, transmission equipments and application platforms.
How can you take advantage of this capability along with a growing number of partners embedding IBM middleware into their own products to deliver richer solutions at a lower cost? An easy way to do this is by 'OEMing'
A significant part of our growth strategy with our software business are OEM (original equipment manufacturing) agreements, through which you can embed IBM software inside your products to develop new solutions to better meet specific customer needs. IBM's software OEM strategy offers a non-traditional approach to generating revenue for both ISVs as well as IBM.
When seconds count, make sure you have the right technology in place![Read More]
DavidBBartlett 0600017MDJ Tags:  smarter real-time monitoring d.c. planet crash 1 Comment 4,822 Visits
Yesterday, the National Transportation Safety Board asked all rail operators to inspect and evaluate their control systems and install technology that could prevent the type of problem that caused fatalities in Washington, D.C. The NTSB stated that what the D.C. system essentially lacked was a real time monitoring system capable of correlating events with control of the asset or rail cars.
This is a huge focus for our team and a key enabler for numerous smarter planet initiatives. Maximo for Transportation is a complete solution for managing all transportation asset types, including locomotives and rail vehicles adding capabilities over Maximo Asset Management.
Leveraging Netcool technology for real-time monitoring and the rapidly accelerating pervasive instrumentation and interconnection of the world’s infrastructure, we are delivering entirely new ways for businesses to organize, operate and differentiate.
While the NTSB is still investigating, it seems apparent that the D.C. system simply failed to detect the presence of a stopped train and did not issue a command to slow which is quite basic functionality of many of our solutions. San Francisco, Miami, Philadelphia, are among the many other systems that rely on such automated systems and in need of immediate review.[Read More]
Another tragic story Computer failure may have caused D.C. train crash
The article goes on to say...
some observations... It is not clear at this point if 1) a red signal for that block of the track was flagged because a train ahead was already on the track ahead and the train from behind violated that signal authority or if the red signal didn't go up to indicate a potential block ahead, which would indicate a signal system failure or 2) the signal system worked right but the computer system failed to apply the emergency brakes on time (since train was operating in automatic mode) and the operator pressed the mushroom button rather belatedly 3) if the train was traveling faster than the authorized speed on this track and hence not providing enough braking time.
As a FYI, WMATA already uses ATC (Automatic Train Control) which to me is a precursor to Positive Train Control (the new mandate).So I am sure the group that looking at PTC is looking at this incident very closely.
With all the stimulus funding for infrastructure, there should be a focused effort on replacing or retrofitting these systems with current technology which would have helped to prevent this horrific accident. The technology and solutions exist today.
We have been developing an aviation solution that addresses some of the contributing problems in the Air France event. Our solution is call Advanced Aerospace Solution Environment or AASE.The AASE was designed to send and receive real-time flight data from the engines, airframe, and other sensors on the aircraft during in-flight operation to ground operations. When one of the many sensors detects a fault, the information about the fault and other related data is sent real-time to the ground central system and recorded. This process also kicks-off a work flow process to have the problem investigated and replaced if needed when the aircraft lands at its destination.
According to media reports, the issue may have been caused by a air speed sensor reporting incorrect information - an event the AASE solution could have detected and addressed.
Right now the FAA and other foreign agencies are trying to locate the "Black Box" flight recorder to help determine the exact cause. Although the AASE solution does not capture the pilots communication and all the second by second sensor data, it could help with information on critical sensors where faults have occurred. This additional information could help crash investigators determine the cause in the event the black box is not found or damaged. It could also shed light on the maintenance history and the frequency the part in question may have been a problem and not replaced.[Read More]