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In May 1999 we started

Since 1999 has been an on line magazine and web resource. We provide the news and connection to the community of change agents that are creating our present definition of smart, intelligent, integrated, connected, green, and converged large buildings. Our virtual magazine and web resource provides a searchable platform for discussion and exchange while creating opportunities for B2B for all new and existing stakeholders.;xNLx;;xNLx;We hope you will enjoy this new fresh way to fly through time in 2D or 3D to quickly get to our great quantity of valuable information

"IoT Disruption Transforms and Opens Industry"

Our April issue theme is "IoT Disruption Transforms and Opens Industry" Transforming and Opening the Industry is a journey, not a destination, and will require consistent and constant attention. Our contributing editor Therese has described our April issue as something about open source being a friction-reducer mixed into the IoT/Smart Building super collider,......very descriptive for sure. Especially the IoT/Smart Building super collider. This is so much like the DDC revolution in the 1980s, Opening to BACnet movement in 1990s, going online with Open Internet in the 2000s, sticking our heads in the clouds in 2010s. Now the data is moving to the edge coupled with open source cloud thinking which is Transforming and Opening our Industry. From IBcon 2016 program for which I am an adviser, comes these words from the Smart Building Integrators Summit; - Today we are dealing with three different generations of smart building technologies: (1) Past (closed, proprietary, single system), (2) Current (more open and attempting to retrieve data and functionality of the older more closed systems) and (3) Future (IP-enabled, intuitive GUIs, analytics, edge devices pumping data directly to the cloud). But, with all of these new changes comes more and more involvement with IT technologies. Couple this with the Power of Open Source to Transform the Buildings Industry and we have major disruption.

Project-Haystack Open for Mashing

Introducing Project-Haystack's new e-zine "Connections" Haystack is an open source initiative to streamline working with data from the Internet of Things and is evolving as one of the preferred mash up tools for our industry. We are extremely pleased that our contributing editor Therese has taken on the task of helping the Project-Haystack folks bring this e-zine to you as its Managing Editor. In the article below she states; "To say that the work being done by the Project-Haystack membership is trailblazing seems an understatement, so I’m going to compare it to the Lewis & Clark expedition." Project-Haystack Connections E-zine Launches New digital publication keeps communications for and about Project-Haystack adopters flowing and serves as a starter kit for any organization that wants to get on board. - Therese Sullivan, Principal, BuildingContext Ltd We are extremely pleased to deliver to you Project-Haystack's new e-zine "Connections" as a supplement/insert to our March issue. We have been involved with the project from its inception and are proud and pleased to have the honor of helping present this first issue. This issue provides an amazing overview of the achievement and resource collection in place today. In celebration of the first ever Connections magazine we have provided a March review entitled "How to Build a Haystack", which is a brief history of Project-Haystack chronologically documented.

Making it Mashable

Our goal now is to achieve mashable integration of all our services and products. We need to create mashable pieces that will allow the creators of IoT gizmos and spimes to further create things never before imagined. When I left for AHRExpo Orlando I thought the theme of "making it mashable" was a leading thought, but as I discussed with the industries' thought leaders it became a clear vision on everyone's mind. It's not only just the goal of trying to make our creations mashable but the exhausting job searching the Internet of Things to see if mashable creations that are applicable presently exist. Our sessions in Orlando went well, the transformation of our industry is well underway with Internet of Things becoming part of everything. As we help define our role in the transformation it became very clear that making it mashable was a large part. I was pleased with the turn out and interactions at AHRExpo.

Our Role in the Transformation

The transition to a new year causes us to reflect on the previous years. The future is falling on us fast but we must be the force that provides linkage to the past, and more importantly to the existing. Only we as an industry have the skill and knowledge; this is not an IoT thing, this is us. We need to not be overwhelmed by the transformation occurring but to be the stabilizing force of reason in the transformation in our building automation industry. A reflection of the changes in our industry last few years casts an amazing shadow. It is interesting that if you look at our monthly themes, you will see that what we all have been talking about is "Our Role in the Transformation". It is not the amazing IoT technological changes that are the focus of our discussions it is how we as an industry of self learning assets embrace and connect these changes.

Autonomous Actions on the Intelligent Edge.

Powerful low-cost edge controllers using open source software are changing the industry landscape. Intelligent Edge Computing changes machine learning's location bringing more power with an autonomous personality even closer to the edge while providing the foundation for a decentralized architecture creating machine distributed collaboration. The joke in our industry is that we are either moving towards or away from centralization. The latest trend sees us moving our present cloud power to the edge driven by low cost extremely powerful controllers capable of a decentralized collaboration. Although this embodies a lot of new concepts it is not that different than the microprocessor revolution of the early 1980s when the power of mainframe and mini was pushed to stand alone controllers. From our lead article, Your Buildings’ 21st Century Edge "What are the takeaway lessons here regarding how edge analytics controllers will disrupt the current building industry?" Looking at what is happening in edge control and analytics in cars is a good way to understand how comparable technology will bring buildings into line with 21st Century service demands. We see, for example, that new edge controllers – those that support the full software stack needed to collect, store and run analytics on time-series data from a building’s many digitized sources – are going to be a powerful force in building automation. We will follow the autonomous car's development of extremely powerful edge implementations to achieve autonomous interaction for our industry. Simple pattern recognition and response (“Look, a dog!”) are handled locally by the autonomous car. In our industry learned actions such as "there is no one in the room," "client arrived at 8:30 am yesterday," ''client has just returned from jog" etc. and other learned actions would be turned into autonomous actions. From this well read last month article From the Clouds to the Fog comes this quote, Back then, I advocated for enterprise energy monitoring and building control in the low-lying cumulus clouds. Today, I would look to managing energy and service delivery in local autonomous systems. These autonomous systems are the fog. Fog offers thinly disbursed nodes of intelligent actors. From this article on evolving open source, The Edge of VOLTTRON’s Sword comes this quote, The software stack is available free on GitHub to put onto a small form factor computer and create your very own “edge device”. For the building and HVAC space, the platform speaks BACnet and MODBUS. Out of the box and on a mini pc it can be used as a data collection device. Article closes with, True open source communities have been relatively rare in the building automation industry; Haystack and Sedona are the two others that immediately come to mind. It is our hope that VOLTTRON can become a robust and well supported platform with an active community of individuals and organizations dedicated to further development. Secure and open access to data is fundamental in realizing the future potential of the building automation industry. Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella recently described during his keynote address at the company’s Build 2017 conference in Seattle. “We’re moving from what is today’s mobile-first, cloud-first world to a new world that is going to be made up of an intelligent cloud and intelligent edge.” With IoT Edge, Microsoft now makes it easier for developers to move some of their computing needs to these devices. IoT Edge can run on Windows and Linux and on devices as small as a Raspberry Pi with only 128MB of memory. The Microsoft services that can run on these devices include Azure Machine Learning, Stream Analytics (which came to Edge devices earlier this year), Azure Functions, Microsoft’s AI services and the Azure IoT Hub. The end of last week Intel launched Deep Learning on a USB Stick This ultra-low power VPU enables you to add visual intelligence and machine learning capabilities in battery-powered products such as autonomous drones, or intelligent security cameras—at the edge, without a connection to the network, or the need for a cloud backend for your machine learning application. This leap from cloud to tiny edge devices literally "Opens our World" but how to manage machine distributed collaboration? This solution from Harbour Research, is waiting in the wings Blockchain: Enabling Truly Distributed Collaboration Blockchain has the potential to provide the foundation for a decentralized architecture that would allow permissioning of data to proper stakeholders in the ecosystem their associated with, enabling devices to work together autonomously, without humans. In Toby's August column Cryptocurrency is more than just Blockchain and Bitcoin Comes these thoughts, I am watching closely a new CC project, IOTA, which is based on Tangle. Tangle uses directed asymmetric graphs instead of blockchain. Tangle supports forking a database, to rejoin later, which might be critical in IoT applications that may lose connections to the cloud. IOTA can operate without the cloud if an isolated market is desired. IOTA has been demonstrated running on devices as small as a Raspberry PI. In case your mind like mine is now tangled this may help, from In this new autonomous Machine Economy IOTA will be the backbone. The Tangle ledger is able to settle transactions with zero fees so devices can trade exact amounts of resources on-demand, as well as store data from sensors and dataloggers securely and verified on the ledger. The swarmed data collected and analyzed plus the learned actions are the feedstock for training machine-learning. It is a new world where powerful edge devices will learn what they need to know by simply being present and respond with learned actions while sharing their knowledge in a swarm like distributed collaboration. We will start with small victories but you will be amazed how fast this will happen like horses to cars, but the change to autonomous things will occur even faster. The autonomous things will provide seamless interaction learning our wishes. In the beginning, we will express ourselves with data input, but quickly more autonomous devices pushed to the new ever evolving edge will turn our feelings into data for machine distributed collaboration. Control Solutions, Inc Machine learning and artificial intelligence are not common in today’s building automation systems. Some systems have features built into their software that represent the beginnings of this technology, but none have been able to capture the true benefits that Autonomous Actions on the Edge will. New-found visibility and context turns what was once darkness and noise, into easily digestible and manageable chunks of actionable information which now occurs autonomously on the edge. We are presently working on cool thoughts for our education sessions for AHRExpo January 2018 Chicago. The Future of Building Automation - "Growing Autonomous from the Intelligent Edge" Be sure to join us and share your thoughts with us on this exciting topic.Enter story info here

Open Edge Software Fuels Self-Learning Operability

Open software rapidly creates the function, form, and focus on these self-learning edge devices, and leads to the development of what has never before been built. Ken SinclairOur revolutionary themes for the last few months have led us to the importance of the open software movement as part of our journey. Truly Open Edge Software provides access to all data which fuels self-learning and enables unbridled creation for the new breed of makers that will marry our industry and IoT. Powerful, low-cost, high memory devices alone can not create the self-learning edge revolution; they need access to open sophisticated software that can operate within their environments to allow makers to build the new generation of devices. Open software rapidly creates the function, form, and focus on these self-learning edge devices, and leads to the development of what has never before been built. Software that is open and available to all that scales on an IoT level is our goal. Software that makers can rapidly development on and scale at low cost. In the past, this lack of open has always presented a barrier in our closed proprietary industry. Open protocols helped expose these proprietary pieces. We are amazed at the depth and passion for the open movement developing in the back rooms of our, and the IoT industry. This lead article sets the theme on the importance of open data, and its unrestricted manipulation.

The IoT Future of Building Automation

Future automation will be a full embrace of IoT. Systems will be smarter, self-learning, edgy, innovative, and sophisticated. They will automatically configure and integrate new equipment so they can optimize themselves, self-manage and self-heal while reinventing purposeful, productive, desirable buildings and accommodations. Ken SinclairIt has been an amazing year of change. I am overwhelmed by the number of balls I have thrown in the air. AutomatedBuildings does not create change but is a catalysis and harbinger of change. It has been a time when the industry has wanted to shoot us as the messenger but is now coming to the realization and confirmation that IoT is for sure the future of Building Automation. IoT changes everything, embedding in our future the ability to hostel the people that fuel function, purpose, productivity, and innovation. New metrics will evolve, new IoT measured variables from the data from our buildings such as well-being, satisfaction, stress, innovation and contribution to corporate purpose, of course, comfort and energy efficiency are major factors but no longer the only parameters. The lighting LED revolution brings us the new tools to allow a closer personal relationship with light; it's color, it's art and amazing effects on the new metrics. This revolution coupled with our much talked about self-learning edge revolution sees every lighting fixture and air conditioning outlet becoming a self-learning device with automated interaction from the resident occupant's mobile device when detected. As the millenniums move out of mom's basement, university's dorms, coffee shops, and free wi-fi zones, it is their time. When they are requested to appear in the corporate cubical, they are questioning the purpose, location, and function of our existing buildings. If I am coming to this central big city location should it not look more like a hotel hostel? If in fact, the corporate is willing to house me at a hotel why would I not just work from there?. Why does the business office not look more like a hotel or a condo providing multi-functions including my well-being and environmental impact on the world? Why do I need to come daily to this environment with virtual tools all around us? The kids ask excellent questions and are leading a revolution within our revolution. I am extremely pleased with our collection of industry thought leaders and relevant content plus our ability to provide a free Face to Face venue in Las Vegas in late January to discuss our future in our five Education Sessions at AHR Expo. The overall theme of all sessions is; Productivity the Power of People. We have prepared this primer, Introduction of the Industry Thought Leaders, with a link to online resources after each speakers' name, providing insight and an idea of their depth and direction.

"Our Assets are People, not Technology."

I have been sensing some, Oh no! the IoT sky / cloud is falling on us. It hit me on the head, so I know it must be so, - says Chicken Little. It is so heavy we all shall be crushed or displaced or outsourced. (Big smile.) So I felt the necessity of pushing the focus back on the people of our industry, our only true assets, and putting them on the watch for Foxey Loxey in our new year of incredible opportunities 2017. Happy New Year! The Internet of Things, “IoT” transformations are bringing significant industry disruptions. Disruption is good because it causes our assets to be employed to review our core values, our reason for being, and adapt to change for survival. These are things that only the people of our industry can do; our existing technologies can not help and have the potential of becoming liabilities. Our industry, as all industries are inundated with the movement to the cloud and the self-learning edge, IoT is in our face everywhere. In lieu of the necessary action of how we might repurpose our only assets, our people, we focus on our existing technologies, their high cost, missing functionality, and the lack of speed an IoT connection of our aging technologies and outdated procedures. We need to focus instead on our only assets, our people who have all been through several technology shifts in their life. They have seen hardware evaporate into software and become data in the IoT cloud or processes acted on at the edge. People that are deeply attached to their existing technology are very concerned because these IoT-driven changes are coming very fast and are very disruptive to their reason for being. There are a lot of pieces on the table for sure. We will quickly move to hybrid controllers blending the best of old field connection hardware with the new low-cost IoT-ready processors providing self-learning at the edge and providing amazing new IoT connections. "Open" like we have never seen is occurring everywhere, commoditization of our products, strange new bedfellows, are all part of our future. So rally your people, your only true asset to set in place a plan as to how best work with today's IoT tools and technology shifts. You may have become so attached to your technologies that you are immobilized to move forward without them, and this is of great concern. Has your company been reinvesting in your only asset with new people, to grow your company younger and increasing your industry relevance? Our people's skills that create our reasons for being are our assets not our technological flavor of the day or the latest IoT app. How much money have you spent updating your only assets your people? Yourself? Your procedures? Your IoT connections and knowledge?

Productivity & Satisfaction Deployment

Satisfaction and Productivity of corporate assets, "their people," is an ongoing dynamic survey of human cognition's that is creating new performance metrics from the data from our buildings. We are all struggling to develop mushy measurement methods of cognitions of well-being, satisfaction, stress, innovation and contribution to corporate purpose. Of course, comfort both temperature and lighting need to be provided as basic services with expected energy efficiency. Our five education sessions at AHRExpo this year in Vegas and the further discussions with industry thought leaders allowed us a better understanding of our mission to be the Catalysis / Harbinger of The IoT Future of Building Automation. There is an information storm blowing, the constant IoT rain pouring from the cloud, the accumulating self-learning puddles on the edge and occasional showers from the traditional Building Automation industry. It is a major concern that people assets in our buildings are not presently satisfied or as productive as they could be. To crack this nut, I believe we need to start with the process to get the cognitions of these assets. Neither Satisfaction or Productivity are easy to define and involve obtaining deep knowledge of each assets personal self-esteem, well-being, stress, innovation level and contribution to corporate purpose. We have never before had a direct feedback path from occupancy assets, but we now have a start of a feedback loop weaved around social media, video analytics, and smartphones interactions. Only a few adventurous folks have entered into this new frontier. Some of the problems of the complexity are how do we communicate in the language of satisfaction? We cannot connect these human assets to a wire and use a protocol like we do most of our sensed variables. Will we have these valuable people assets talk to with Alexa? or will they "hey Google" their wishes? will they text us? email us? cut us some slack? Yes, we will likely need to support all these methods as they reflect the individual's personality. There are some interesting developments occurring with video analytics tracking Human emotion as an IoT telemetric value. This YouTube, Understanding emotions using the Google Vision API - Office and Smart Buildings gives you a quick insight. This month's article From Data to Insights speaks well to this, with yes we have an app for that. The future workplace will leverage advanced technology to understand, predict, and accommodate employees' preferences. Please join our mission and help create satisfaction and productivity as the new measured variables. Create a change in thinking and attitudes that focuses on these new values including the budgets to support and the resources to execute.

Change Evolves from the Definition of the Possible

I am extremely pleased with the industry support I am receiving helping me define "the possible of connected buildings" because this clear definition of the possible is helping us define the transformational changes we all need to make. Change is a slow process. There is an ancient Chinese proverb that goes: "When the wind of change blows, some people build walls, others build windmills." We have all been talking about change for a long time; from our 2008 mission statement; is committed to the continuance of our existing work plus the creation and nurturing of a community of change agents, to lead those who will accept change and convince those who resist. We have a long, long way to go to move out of the deeply rooted vendor centric unconnected world of traditional marketing of our products and services. We need to define the services and recognize the transaction and the performance we can deliver. We need to "Give our customers the ability to do something new, that they couldn't do before, but would have wanted to do; if only they knew they had the ability to do it." Imagine every single possible bit of information at your fingertips, perfectly contextualized, and perfectly personalized. This may never be realized, but the journey to find perfection will be the change we seek.

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