#Ptech built Supply Chain Infrastructure - Destruction of Free Market
#ProTips #GIG #GlobalInformationGrid #IoT #InternetofThings
#Ptech built Supply Chain Infrastructure - Destruction of Free Market
#ProTips #GIG #GlobalInformationGrid #IoT #InternetofThings
The immigration reform measure the Senate began debating yesterday would create a national biometric database of virtually every adult in the U.S., in what privacy groups fear could be the first step to a ubiquitous national identification system.
Buried in the more than 800 pages of the bipartisan legislation (.pdf) is language mandating the creation of the innocuously-named “photo tool,” a massive federal database administered by the Department of Homeland Security and containing names, ages, Social Security numbers and photographs of everyone in the country with a driver’s license or other state-issued photo ID.
Employers would be obliged to look up every new hire in the database to verify that they match their photo.
This piece of the Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act is aimed at curbing employment of undocumented immigrants. But privacy advocates fear the inevitable mission creep, ending with the proof of self being required at polling places, to rent a house, buy a gun, open a bank account, acquire credit, board a plane or even attend a sporting event or log on the internet. Think of it as a government version of Foursquare, with Big Brother cataloging every check-in.
“It starts to change the relationship between the citizen and state, you do have to get permission to do things,” said Chris Calabrese, a congressional lobbyist with the American Civil Liberties Union. “More fundamentally, it could be the start of keeping a record of all things.”
For now, the legislation allows the database to be used solely for employment purposes. But historically such limitations don’t last. The Social Security card, for example, was created to track your government retirement benefits. Now you need it to purchase health insurance.
“The Social Security number itself, it’s pretty ubiquitous in your life,” Calabrese said.
David Bier, an analyst with the Competitive Enterprise Institute, agrees with the ACLU’s fears.
“The most worrying aspect is that this creates a principle of permission basically to do certain activities and it can be used to restrict activities,” he said. “It’s like a national ID system without the card.”
For the moment, the debate in the Senate Judiciary Committee is focused on the parameters of legalization for unauthorized immigrants, a border fence and legal immigration in the future.
The committee is scheduled to resume debate on the package Tuesday.
The new generation of HDTV’s and cable receivers sold to the public contain features that are not very publicized by tech companies: Cameras, mics and sensors that have the ability of recording everything that is happening in the living room. Not unlike the telescreens in George Orwell’s novel 1984, TV’s will soon be able to watch and even thoroughly analyze everyone present in the devices’ vicinity.
The cable company Verizon has recently filed a patent for a system that contain audio and video sensors coupled with facial and profile recognition software. That would allow the company to obtain information such as the number people in the room, their sex, their race, what they are doing and even what they are consuming while watching TV. The goal of such a system is to broadcast “targeted advertising” but crossing the line to outright spying on people is only footstep away. Here’s an article on Verizon’s patent.
Picture this: You’re having an argument with your partner while watching television, and suddenly an advertisement comes on for marriage counseling. Or maybe you’re doing some weightlifting while a movie plays in the background, and ads for health food pop up on the screen.
In the past, it would have been mere coincidence. But in the future, things look set to change, thanks to Verizon’s “gesture recognition technology.”
The company has filed a patent, published last week, for a system designed to be used in the home to target advertisements at people. Using a combination of image and audio sensors, it would detect actions in your living room while you were watching TV. These sensors, deploying facial and profile recognition, would pick up “physical attributes” like skin color, facial features, and even hair length, and also detect “voice attributes” to help determine the tone of your voice, your accent, and the language you speak. Inanimate objects aren’t off-limits—the technology could also spot beer cans and wall art.
Combined, this would mean that your TV or set-top box would effectively be watching and listening to you while you snuggle up on the couch with your partner to watch the latest episode of Homeland. If the cuddling went a bit further, the chances are the technology would pick up the noises and start playing ads for “a commercial for a contraceptive” or “a commercial for flowers,” as outlined in the patent.
The patent also says if the device picks up that the user is “stressed” then it “may select an advertisement associated with the detected mood (e.g., a commercial for a stress-relief product such as aromatherapy candles, a vacation resort, etc.).” It adds that “If a couple is arguing/fighting with each other” the system “may select an advertisement associated marriage/relationship counseling.”And if the sensors detect that a user is a kid, the system will trigger “more advertisements targeted to and/or appropriate for young children.”
As Steve Donohue at FieceCable has noted, Verizon’s technology would operate in the same way Google targets Gmail users based on the content of their emails—only transposing that principle into the home by “scanning conversations of viewers that are within a ‘detection zone’ near their TV, including telephone conversations.”Of course, this is only a patent, so you don’t have to start eyeing your TV suspiciously—for now. ArsTechnica points out similar patents have been filed before and have yet to be put into practice. But that doesn’t make this latest incarnation any less creepy—and is perhaps an illustration of how surveillance-style technologies are increasingly encroaching on private life.
Augmented-reality eyewear is the next step toward a future in which we never again have an unmediated view of the world
Google announced yesterday that before the end of 2012, you will be able to buy augmented-reality smart eyeglasses from the search giant. The Android-powered glasses will have an onboard camera that monitors in real time what you see as you walk (or, heavens preserve us, drive) down the street. The lenses will then overlay information about people, locations, and whatnot directly into your field of view.
We knew this day was coming, but I certainly didn’t suspect it’d be so soon. Never again will you have to wonder Where is the closest Pizza Hut? or What make of car is that? or Don’t I know her from somewhere? Ubiquitous smartphones have already given us the ability to swiftly look up information with only a moderate disruption. Smartglasses completely remove the mediating step of pausing to wonder and ponder and research: data is simply there, an inseparable part of your visible world.
Overlay Google Maps onto the real world, and navigation becomes effortless. Overlay reviews and menus onto restaurant storefronts as you pass them; overlay nutritional data onto your plate as you eat; overlay purchasing info if you particularly admire your co-worker’s new shoes; overlay translations of foreign signage, breaking news, hilarious kittens romping at your feet.
As smartglasses become popular, the world will start to seem naked and inaccessible without a glossy data layer on everything.As smartglasses become popular, the world will start to seem naked and inaccessible without a glossy data layer on everything. Everyday activities, maneuvering through the physical world, socializing, working, learning, will all be increasingly eased by the use of glasses; increasingly, until these activities start to feel almost impossible without the glasses. Who’s going to have patience to laboriously explain facts to a non-data-overlaid person? Give you my business card? Point you in the direction of Fifth Avenue? I don’t even remember how to spell my name! Where are your Googles?
Will businesses see the need for physical signs and billboards? Will municipalities bother to maintain physical street signs and traffic signals? Will smartglasses make the university lecturer’s blackboard and salesman’s PowerPoint obsolete as well?
What comes after that? With everyone wearing glasses (or, at this point in the future, contact lenses or implants), individual appearance becomes as malleable on the street as it is now on the Internet. You can overlay your real body with a digitally altered one, saving money on subtle nose surgery or just completely living life as a furry avatar.
What, though, will it take to get us to that tipping point, when head-up augmented reality suddenly shifts from a novelty to a ubiquity? Wearing cumbersome goggles on your face as you proceed through your day is a bit more of an intrusion than I for one am ready for. Sony’s 3DTV goggles are impressive and designed only to be worn in the comfort of your couch, and still I have yet to meet someone who owns a pair. The gear will have to be small and easy to integrate with your basic life processes. Perhaps AR windshields in our cars will become common first, before we put them on our faces.
But, however it comes — the fully mediated future has begun.
I’ve been noticing a whole lot more EAS tests going on on TV late at night than I ever have before- several times within 30 minutes sometimes. I decided to see what was going on, as it’s started giving me a not-so-great feeling. Here’s what I’ve found:
The Emergency Alert System (EAS) is a national warning system in the United States put into place on January 1, 1997, when it superseded the Emergency Broadcast System (EBS)… In addition to alerting the public of local weather emergencies such as tornadoes and flash floods, the official EAS is designed to enable the President of the United States to speak to the United States within 10 minutes, but the nationwide federal EAS has never been activated. A national EAS test is planned for November 9, 2011. The EAS regulations and standards are governed by the Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau of the FCC… EAS has become part of IPAWS - the Integrated Public Alert and Warning System, a program of Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). EAS is jointly coordinated by FEMA, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), and the National Weather Service (NOAA/NWS)…
The national test will transmit and relay an EAS test message from the White House. The first national test of the EAS will be conducted November 9, 2011, live nationwide at 2:00 PM EST/11:00 AM PST.
…The EAS is used on AM, FM and Land Mobile Radio Service, as well as VHF, UHF and cable television including low-power stations. Digital television and cable providers, along with Sirius XM satellite radio, IBOC, DAB and digital radio broadcasters have been required to participate in the EAS since December 31, 2006. DirecTV, Dish Network and all other DBS providers have been required to participate since May 31, 2007. (wiki)
The EAS provides the ability to send messages regionally or nationally, though it has never been tested at these levels…. We need to know that the system will work as intended should public safety officials ever need to send an alert or warning to a large region of the United States…
The audio message will be the same for everyone… [but] the video test message may not be the same and may not indicate “this is a test”. This is due to the use of a “live” national code- the same code that would be used in an actual emergency. (ok[dot]gov/homeland/documents/EAS%20Test.pdf)
From a message board, one of the few social media sites I was able to find any commentary on this:
thywar: Only the President has the authority to activate EAS at the national level, and he has delegated that authority to the Director of FEMA. The test will be conducted jointly by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) through FEMA, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) National Weather Service (NWS).
In essence, the authority to seize control of all television and civilian communication has been asserted by the executive branch and handed to a government agency.
So this begs the question: is the first ever national EAS test really a big deal?
Probably not. At least, not yet.
But there are some troubling factors all coming together right now that could conceivably trigger a real usage of the EAS system in the not too distant future. A European financial collapse could bring down U.S. markets. What is now the “Occupy” movement could lead to widespread civil unrest. And there are ominous signs that radical groups such as Anonymous will attempt something major on November 5th- Guy Fawke’s day.
Now we know in the event of a major crisis, the American people will be told with one voice, at the same time, about an emergency. All thats left to determine is who will have control of the EAS when that day comes, and what their message will be.
Ceorlmann: It almost sounds more like a test to ensure that if someone high up wanted to, they could turn off all comm. to keep people in the dark and unable to communicate with each other in a SHTF event.
For you conspiracy theorists:
endtimeinmytime: I may not be the first to think it, but I’ll go ahead and say it…
That sure is an odd date. Kinda reminds me of something.
Now, I wonder, just wonder, should anything transpire on this day if people are going to say that it was all just coincidental, just like 9/11 and London’s 7/7 attack. After all, on both of those days, drills, of the nature of the attacks, were supposedly “being carried out.” When the cries for help rang out, they were dismissed with the explanation of, “It’s just a drill, ma’am. There is nothing to be concerned over.” Hmmm…o-okay.
If I’m not mistaken, the above comment was in regards to the fact that on both of those dates (9/11 and London’s 7/7 attack), there were drills “coincidentally” being carried out, using up vital emergency resources, covering the exact scenarios of major events that actually occurred those days. (See the first Zeitgeist.)
orly152: I’m not into conspiracies or doom and gloom. However, I’m into been prepared for whatever scenario I can prepare for. There are lots of signs out there that our government has been preparing for things to come from building prisons near major cities, to ordering millions of dollars worth of MREs etc etc. Obviously our government is preparing for something major expected in the near future… On another note, the EAS has been in existence since 1994, and its precursor, the Emergency Broadcast System (EBS), began in 1963. After all those years in existence the EAS finally decides to try out the system nationally? (source)
A Department of Homeland Security directive indicates emergencies would include terrorism; natural disasters; cybersecurity; weapons of mass destruction (WMD) threats; defense of agriculture and food; critical infrastructure protection; protection of key leadership and events; border security; maritime security; transportation security; immigration security. (directive: dhs[dot]gov/xabout/laws/gc_1215444247124.shtm)
I’m finding it pretty creepy that the Fed has ordered a national seizure of mass communications systems. Even if it is “just a test”, the fact that they are testing it out nationally at all is worrisome to me.
There’s also a Digital Emergency Alert System that can send out text, voice, and video to mobile phones and possibly computers, although I don’t believe this will be tested.
What do you think about this?
With a tiny-enough GPS sensor, it’s possible to track the location of anything from your lost keys to a runaway pet. That’s because the world’s smallest GPS receiver is now smaller than a penny and weighs only 0.3 grams. But that’s just the chip — what about all the electronics required to make it truly useful, like a system for remotely downloading the data it has logged?
This GPS logger weighs 10 grams, most of which is battery. Custom-made by Telemetry Solutions of Concord, California, it’s small enough to attach to a fruit bat for research purposes. Data can be downloaded directly from the chip upon recapture, or it can be downloaded wirelessly from up to 500 meters away.
Why hello police state!
Source: Booz Allen Hamilton
How should the United States respond as global competitors expand their influence over the Internet and build cyber capabilities? An analysis of the Internet in 2020 shows that the United States must develop a strategy that focuses on more than technology to retain its cyberpower status. Read this white paper and decide for yourself which of these four potential scenarios is most likely for the US:
What is the future state of the cyber domain?
NEW YORK – UPS is now requiring photo identification from customers shipping packages at retail locations around the world, a month after explosives made it on to one of the company’s planes.
The Atlanta-based package courier said Tuesday the move is part of an ongoing review to enhance security. The directive will apply at The UPS Store, Mail Boxes Etc. locations and other authorized shipping outlets.
UPS customer centers have required government-issued photo identification since 2005.
In late October, a printer cartridge on a UPS cargo plane bound for Chicago was stopped in London after explosives were discovered. The package was later traced to a retail location in Yemen.
The stepped-up security also comes as UPS prepares for its busiest shipping day of the year. United Parcel Service expects to deliver 430 million packages between Thanksgiving and Christmas, and 24 million packages alone on its busiest day, projected to be Dec. 22. That’s up 60 percent from a normal day.
"Since retail centers experience a significant increase in business from occasional shippers during the busy holidays, this enhancement adds a prudent step in our multi-layered approach to security," UPS Vice President of small business and retail marketing Dale Hayes said in a statement.
Shares of UPS Inc. rose 66 cents to $72.35 in morning trading Tuesday after rising to a 52-week high of $72.42 earlier in the session.
CANCUN, Mexico, Dec. 2, 2010 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — Yesterday at the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in Cancun, Mexico, an officially-accredited delegation from the Demand Response and Smart Grid Coalition (DRSG) briefed attendees on why demand response and smart grid are necessary in order to ensure that climate-policy goals are attained. DRSG was selected by the UN to provide the briefing, which was incorporated into the official UNFCCC program for attendees on Wednesday, December 1.
"We applied to the UN to become an officially-recognized delegation to the meetings in Mexico,” said Dan Delurey, President of DRSG, “and were pleased to receive official credentials to attend. We were more than pleased to be subsequently approved by UN officials to conduct an event as part of the official program for the meetings.”
DRSG member companies participating in the briefing were Landis + Gyr, Aclara, Johnson Controls, and Ingersoll-Rand.
"Our reason for going to the UN Climate Conference was to make the climate community aware of how smart grid and demand response can help it get to where it wants to go," said Delurey. "We explained how DR and smart grid help in the management of intermittent renewable energy such as wind and solar. We also tried to convey to conference delegates the additional gains in energy efficiency that are possible by empowering consumers with new technologies and new informational feedback about their electricity usage. With renewable energy and energy efficiency being foundational building blocks of efforts to reduce emissions and address climate change, we want those on the front line of climate-policy developments to understand that it is in their interest to be supporters of smart grid."
Delurey added, “We had great attendance at our briefing and found ourselves helping attendees from countries around the world understand the smart grid and how it can be put into action via demand response. There was a high level of engagement with the audience, and we believe that our educational efforts here at the conference will pay off.”
The Demand Response and Smart Grid Coalition (DRSG) is the trade association for companies that provide products and services in the areas of demand response and smart grid. DRSG works to educate and provide information to policymakers, utilities, the media, the financial community and stakeholders on how demand response and smart grid technologies can help modernize our electricity system and provide customers with new information and options for managing their electricity use.
Members of the DRSG Coalition include: Aclara; Ambient; Boeing; Bridge Energy Group; CABA; CALMAC; Cisco; Comverge; Conservation Services Group; Constellation NewEnergy; Control4; Cooper Power Systems; Corporate Systems Engineering; Echelon; Eka Systems; Electrolux; eMeter; EnergyConnect; Energy Curtailment Specialists; EnerNOC; Enfora; EnOcean Alliance; Enspiria Solutions; GE; Google; Grid Net; Gridway Energy; HomeGrid Forum; Honeywell; Ice Energy; Ingersoll Rand; Intel; Itron; Johnson Controls; Landis+Gyr; LG Electronics; Lockheed Martin; Lutron Electronics; Oracle; PCN Technology; Schneider Electric; Sensus; Siemens; Silver Spring Networks; SmartSynch; Steffes; Tendril; Trilliant Networks; Tropos Networks; UISOL; Universal Powerline Association; U-SNAP; Whirlpool; and ZigBee Alliance.
More information is available at www.drsgcoalition.org.
SOURCE Demand Response and Smart Grid Coalition
Smart home appliances represent a major part of the Smart Grid vision aimed at increasing energy efficiency and, to achieve this goal, home appliances need to communicate with entities and players in other Smart Grid domains via home networks. The implementation of such home networks must enable plug and play of appliances from the same or different vendors, requiring no manual configurations by homeowners. Power line communications (PLCs) is a potential technology that is used today in home networks and could also be used for appliance communications for Smart Grid applications.
The effective use of PLCs is impeded by the existence of multiple and non interoperable technologies currently under development in various standards setting organizations. Relevant standards include ITU G.Hn (G.9960, G.9961, G.9972), IEEE P1901 (HomePlug ™, HD-PLC™, and ISP), and ANSI/CEA 709.2 (Lonworks™). Since these technologies do not interoperate, their operation in close proximity may cause harmful mutual interference when operating in the same band and at the same time and this may lead to severe performance degradation or even malfunctions in both Smart Grid and home networking applications. This problem is compounded by the fact that PLCs are also used in the same frequency band for other non Smart Grid applications, such as entertainment, A/V, etc.
PAP-15 will address this issue and will focus on the harmonization of PLC standards for appliance communications in the home.
Since one of the potential acceptable outcomes of PAP-15 (see Objectives below) is to achieve coexistence among multiple PLC technologies, a PAP-15 “Coexistence” subgroup was formed. Coexistence is an issue for all PLC technologies operating in the same frequency band and at the same time, not only an issue for appliance communications. Furthermore, coexistence issues apply to both broadband devices (operating in the 1.8 MHz and above band) and narrowband devices (operating below 500 kHz). The purpose of this PAP-15 Coexistence subgroup is to make a recommendation to NIST on what the value of coexistence in the Smart Grid is and which coexistence mechanism(s) should be added to the list of Smart Grid standards.
(Edit: direct reference to the following article:
Smart grid standard falls short of interoperability
A group that has been working to set standards for home area networks in the United States has agreed on a co-existence mechanism for powerline networks in the country. However, the government-led group opted not to require interoperability for a number of competing approaches.
The members of the group say that the unanimous agreement on a non-interference approach is a victory. But it’s not clear if manufacturers of home appliances and gateways agree that the standards will help them build networked products.
More than a year ago, Whirpool Corp. made a public commitment to ship a million dryers ready to plug into a smart electric grid if there was a suitable networking standard the company could use. Organizers of the government-led standards effort said they didn’t want the lack of a standard to make Whirpool renege on that promise.
The powerline agreement came in a December 2 vote of the so-called Priority Action Plan 15. PAP-15 is one of a broad set of standards efforts under the Smart Grid Interoperability Panel convened by the U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology.
The PAP-15 harmonizes two existing implementations of a co-existence mechanism for powerline. Both IEEE 1901 and ITU G.hn use the so-called Inter-System Protocol (ISP) method of co-existence originally proposed by Panasonic.
However, “the two recommendations went through separate comment resolution phases conducted by the two independent groups and this resulted in producing a slight incompatibility between the two mechanisms,” said Stefano Galli, lead scientist, Panasonic, who helped define ISP and led the PAP-15 group.
In its latest report, PAP-15 recommended the smart grid group mandate that all current and future broadband powerline networks use one of the now-interoperable non-interference approaches. The move is “a refreshing success story [given] the often acrimonious state of the PLC industry,” said Galli.
"Coexistence does not replace interoperability nor [does it] narrow down the choice of which PLC technology to deploy, it only solves the problem of mutual interference created by deploying non-interoperable technologies," said Galli in an email exchange.
The market, not a standards group, should define what home network technology is best for appliances and other consumer systems, he said. “Coexistence will allow the industry to align behind the right PLC technology for the right application on the basis of field deployment data and market selection not on the basis of questionable and subjective pre-selection strategies,” he said.
The outcome “accomplishes the objective” of the group, said George Arnold, national coordinator of smart grid standards at NIST. He agreed with Galli that market groups, not standards efforts, should make final decisions on which networking approaches are best for smart grid links in the home.
"We have been encouraging the Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers to study the needs of this industry and evaluate the available communications options against their requirements," said Arnold. "They have recently released a report which provides recommendations that should be helpful to the appliance industry in choosing communications interfaces for appliances," he said in an email exchange.
At least four major broadband powerline technologies are currently in use—HomePlug AV, HD-PLC, the LonWorks technology of Echelon and a powerline variant developed by the former DS2, now part of Marvell. Chips for a fifth approach, based on the ITU G.hn standard, are in development by as many as eight companies.
Powerline is just one of several media for energy monitoring networks in the home. The Wi-Fi Alliance is also studying use of that technology for such nets.
- Rick Merritt
In a surprising turn of events, the San Anselmo Town Council voted last night to “demand” a moratorium on the installation of PG&E’s Smart Meters in town. The town also voted to begin drafting an ordinance that would place a temporary moratorium on the meters for one year.
The last time the council considered the wireless electric and gas metering devices, the results were slightly different. At the end of July, the council – with council member Ford Greene absent – heard a presentation from PG&E about the meters and decided to adopt a wait-and-see approach.
The council was criticized at that time for only having a speaker from PG&E and no opposing viewpoints. The scheduled speaker for the opposing side had a conflict at that time.
"I’m really struck by the difference between this meeting and the meeting we had where it was only PG&E. We really need to have these things together," said council member Jeff Kroot. Kroot then laughed about the length of the meeting last night and said, "Well, not again."
In July, Kroot was the only member who voiced a desire to request a moratorium on the meters. The council’s decision, then, was in stark contrast to the rash of calls coming from local towns, including Fairfax, for a moratorium on the meters. Fairfax also drafted a moratorium banning the meters and PG&E voluntarily agreed to place a moratorium on the installation of the meters in Fairfax until more community outreach could be completed.
The first of PG&E’s community outreach meetings will take place tonight at 7 p.m. at the Women’s Club in Fairfax.
Read about the basic facts behind the Smart Meter debate here.
The White House is reviewing whether to ask for new authorities for the Defense Department and other government agencies to ensure that the nation’s critical computer systems are protected in the event of a major attack, the commander of the Pentagon’s new Cyber Command said Thursday.
If an adversary were to penetrate the U.S. power grid or other critical systems with an “unknown capability,” those systems probably would “shut down,” Gen. Keith Alexander told members of the House Armed Services Committee.
The Cyber Command is tasked with protecting only military computer networks. “It is not my mission to defend, today, the entire nation,” Alexander said.
Deciding who should execute what role in defending the nation against cyberattack is a thorny issue, complicated by the fact that the agency tasked with assisting the private sector - the Department of Homeland Security - lags behind the Defense Department in personnel, resources and capabilities.
Alexander said the White House is discussing how to form a team with the FBI, the Cyber Command, DHS and other agencies to “ensure that everybody has the exact authorities and capabilities that they would need to protect the country.” The White House may have to ask Congress for new authorities.
When management at JEA, the water, sewer and electric provider for Jacksonville, FL, was challenged by the St. Johns River Water Management District to reduce withdrawal of water from the area aquifer, they decided to do it in a big way - by using artificial intelligence. In the past, JEA’s mode of operation has been to keep water tanks full and react to consumption after the fact. Reservoir water levels were kept constant regardless of use. When demand was high, wells were drawn down over time to levels that reduced their life. Pumps required frequent maintenance and used excessive energy because they switched off and on almost constantly. While other utilities are investigating and experimenting with automated supervisory control − or artificial intelligence − of their pumping and distribution systems, JEA is believed to be the first to use such a system to directly operate a production well field.
When management at JEA, the water, sewer and electric provider for Jacksonville, FL, was challenged by the St. Johns River Water Management District to reduce withdrawal of water from the area aquifer, they decided to do it in a big way - by using artificial intelligence.
In the past, JEA’s mode of operation has been to keep water tanks full and react to consumption after the fact. Reservoir water levels were kept constant regardless of use. When demand was high, wells were drawn down over time to levels that reduced their life. Pumps required frequent maintenance and used excessive energy because they switched off and on almost constantly.
While other utilities are investigating and experimenting with automated supervisory control − or artificial intelligence − of their pumping and distribution systems, JEA is believed to be the first to use such a system to directly operate a production well field.
JEA’s new system, Optimized System Controls of Aquifer Resources, or OSCAR, controls the water system in real time, creating what JEA refers to as Operations Optimization. This means the water system is monitored, regulated and adjusted every minute of the day, 365 days a year, creating a “just in time” water supply. OSCAR regulates the pumping of water from the aquifer by evaluating data from a variety of sources. System Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) is key to the optimization of this process. Idea Integration, the applications integration company, developed a system for JEA to extract and consolidate the required input data from SCADA and weather-related data. Idea also built the web application to display all forecasting and scheduling information for one of JEA’s two major grids in Jacksonville. Using this data, JEA operators switch from reactive to proactive based on consumption forecasting. Energy consumption is then minimized while water generation is maximized during on-peak periods. Additionally, operations staff works with the software programs to develop optimized operating plans on an annual, weekly and daily basis, assuring up-to-date accuracy. Actual system conditions are compared to forecasts and operators are alerted to significant variations or equipment failures. It would be impossible for a human operator to compare all these variables as frequently or with as much accuracy as the automated system. When needed, however, human operators can override the system to make adjustments for drought or other extreme conditions. From an operations standpoint, a consumption forecaster takes this data and uses a “neural network” to predict sub-grid hourly consumption. Gensym Corp. was responsible for the software that actually generates the daily forecast and daily schedule for water to be pumped from each well for every individual water plant in the same grid. Gensym used heuristic algorithms to generate the forecast values based on historical water consumption data as well as weather-related data.
JEA’s new system, Optimized System Controls of Aquifer Resources, or OSCAR, controls the water system in real time, creating what JEA refers to as Operations Optimization. This means the water system is monitored, regulated and adjusted every minute of the day, 365 days a year, creating a “just in time” water supply.
OSCAR regulates the pumping of water from the aquifer by evaluating data from a variety of sources. System Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) is key to the optimization of this process. Idea Integration, the applications integration company, developed a system for JEA to extract and consolidate the required input data from SCADA and weather-related data. Idea also built the web application to display all forecasting and scheduling information for one of JEA’s two major grids in Jacksonville.
Using this data, JEA operators switch from reactive to proactive based on consumption forecasting. Energy consumption is then minimized while water generation is maximized during on-peak periods. Additionally, operations staff works with the software programs to develop optimized operating plans on an annual, weekly and daily basis, assuring up-to-date accuracy. Actual system conditions are compared to forecasts and operators are alerted to significant variations or equipment failures.
It would be impossible for a human operator to compare all these variables as frequently or with as much accuracy as the automated system. When needed, however, human operators can override the system to make adjustments for drought or other extreme conditions.
From an operations standpoint, a consumption forecaster takes this data and uses a “neural network” to predict sub-grid hourly consumption. Gensym Corp. was responsible for the software that actually generates the daily forecast and daily schedule for water to be pumped from each well for every individual water plant in the same grid. Gensym used heuristic algorithms to generate the forecast values based on historical water consumption data as well as weather-related data.
Pumping is assigned to the water plant closest in proximity to the need, augmented by plants farther away when necessary to meet demand. Adjustments can also be made to control flow from wells that may be overextended, pumping from wells that have more available water supply. This “system scheduler” also assigns plant flow based on cost criteria, energy value and water quality. This process allows savings in several areas: − The value of the energy used for the system is maximized because water use is predicted ahead of time and pumping is scheduled for times of day when energy costs are lower. The ultimate result is minimized well production during on-peak hours and optimized reservoir storage. In addition, pump starts are greatly reduced, increasing efficiency and lowering maintenance costs. Savings in the initial trial applications for the expert system and optimizer include an estimated $1.4 million in capital expenses and $170,000 per year in operating expenses, plus an increased potential for energy sale opportunities. JEA implemented the OSCAR system a year ago on its south grid in Jacksonville, incorporating 15 plants and six wells. JEA plans to expand the system throughout its network of more than 39 facilities. By enhancing and optimizing this existing network, JEA can meet the demands of its growing customer base and reduce the need to dig new wells, preserving Florida’s aquifer for future generations.
− Groundwater supplies are better managed, ensuring supplies for future generations.
− Salt intrusion into wells has been reduced, increasing water quality.
− Chemical costs for treating water are minimized because water is treated as it is needed.
− Capital costs are minimized through better use of existing assets.
Pumping is assigned to the water plant closest in proximity to the need, augmented by plants farther away when necessary to meet demand. Adjustments can also be made to control flow from wells that may be overextended, pumping from wells that have more available water supply. This “system scheduler” also assigns plant flow based on cost criteria, energy value and water quality.
This process allows savings in several areas:
− The value of the energy used for the system is maximized because water use is predicted ahead of time and pumping is scheduled for times of day when energy costs are lower.
The ultimate result is minimized well production during on-peak hours and optimized reservoir storage. In addition, pump starts are greatly reduced, increasing efficiency and lowering maintenance costs. Savings in the initial trial applications for the expert system and optimizer include an estimated $1.4 million in capital expenses and $170,000 per year in operating expenses, plus an increased potential for energy sale opportunities.
JEA implemented the OSCAR system a year ago on its south grid in Jacksonville, incorporating 15 plants and six wells. JEA plans to expand the system throughout its network of more than 39 facilities. By enhancing and optimizing this existing network, JEA can meet the demands of its growing customer base and reduce the need to dig new wells, preserving Florida’s aquifer for future generations.
Profiles from the recession [VIDEO] Dubuque Smart City: With stimulus, putting the small town back to work
Blueprint America — with PBS NewsHour — looks at an old factory town in the Midwest that’s using stimulus dollars to not just put people back to work but to also make the city work again.
(Edit: The following retrieved from:
QuoteOn August 17, 2010 NLC TV (www.NLCTV.org) will release the second in a series of segments highlighting IBM’s Smarter Cities initiative. Curtis Clark, IBM Global Director of Regional and Local Government, will talk with Mayor Roy D. Buol, City of Dubuque, Iowa, about the city’s sustainability and smarter city efforts and its partnership with IBM and the community.
Since 2006, the City of Dubuque, Iowa, has made sustainability a top priority. At the foundation of the city’s sustainability model is a commitment to providing city residents and businesses with information to make smart energy choices. These choices will save money and create needed jobs in this community of 60,000. Mayor Buol and the City Council understand that sustainable economic development is vital in order to remain competitive in the 21st century.
Through a partnership with IBM, the City of Dubuque is instrumenting and interconnecting systems and making infrastructure and other systems smarter. Dubuque, a city that is recognized as a national leader in sustainability with its forward-thinking public policy, together with IBM, will address the ever-increasing demands of cities to deliver vital services such as energy and water management, and transportation, all while reducing the community’s impact on the environment.
After the launch, watch the archive of this program, share it with colleagues and see subsequent segments at your convenience anytime on NLCTV.org.
Roy D. Buol, Mayor, Dubuque, Iowa
Roy D. Buol was first elected to a four-year term as Mayor of Dubuque in November 2005, and re-elected for another four-year term in November 2009. He was previously elected as Second Ward Representative to the City Council in 1995, was re-elected in 1999 and again in 2003.
Mayor Buol is a Dubuque-native and a 30-year retired employee of John Deere Dubuque Works. Since 2002, he has been Director of the Landscaping and Grounds Department at the University of Dubuque. Mayor Buol holds a Bachelor of Business Administration degree with a double-major in Business and Marketing from the University of Dubuque, where he also completed graduate coursework toward a Master of Arts in Communication. He is currently enrolled in the National League of Cities Certificate of Achievement in Leadership Program and represents Dubuque in the U.S. Conference of Mayors.
During his 12-year tenure as a member of the City Council, Mayor Buol has served on the City’s Long Range Planning Advisory Commission; the Community-Based Task Force on Gangs, Drugs and Youth Violence; the Dubuque Racing Association Board; the Dubuque Area Chamber of Commerce Board; the Dubuque Initiatives Board; the Greater Dubuque Development Corporation (GDDC) Board and Executive Committee; as Past Chair of GDDC’s River Valley Initiative Foundation; Chair, Dubuque Metropolitan Area Transportation Study Committee; and Chair of the City’s 175th Anniversary Planning Committee.
Mayor Buol’s community involvement includes serving as spokesperson for the City at conventions, conferences, and other tourism events, and as guest host for non-profit fundraisers and other significant occasions throughout the community. He serves on the United Way Budget Committee, is a member of the Loyal Order of Moose #355, Fraternal Order of Eagles, the Dubuque Shooting Society, the Dubuque County Historical Society, the Dubuque Museum of Art, and is a long-time supporter of the Grand Opera House and Dubuque Symphony Orchestra.
Mayor Buol and his wife, Deborah, are parents to four children and grandparents of seven!
Curtis Clark, Global Director for Regional and Local Government, IBM
In this role, Mr. Clark focuses on trends and directions in the public sector and works with Public Sector Organizations on strategies for developing and implementing innovative programs, services and operations that more effectively and efficiently meet the needs of citizens, businesses, and government employees. He is also responsible for IBM’s Institute for Electronic Government in Washington D.C. The Institute, in conjunction with the IBM’s Center for the Business of Government, serves as IBM’s focal point for thought leadership - sharing research, experience and best practices with public sector clients - focused on public policy issues, organizational and management practices, and enabling technologies.
Prior to joining IBM in 1997, Mr. Clark spent over 17 years with the State of North Carolina, where he held various executive and legislative positions, including: - Deputy State Controller for Information Resource Management (State CIO) - Executive Director of the North Carolina Statewide Performance Audit (GPAC) - Director of the Performance Audit Division of the State Auditors Office.
With 30 years of experience working with and for Public Sector organizations throughout the world, Mr. Clark has amassed first hand insight into public sector organizations and the realities of working to transform these organizations. He is a frequent speaker at conferences globally, sharing IBM’s insights, research and best practices with Public Sector Clients.
Mr. Clark has and continues to serve on public sector commissions and works with university programs, including: - The North Carolina Budget Reform and Accountability Commission (BRAC) - Adjunct Instructor, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, School of Government - The University of Maryland Center for Excellence in Service, Advisory Board. The Smith School of Business - Public Sector Service Excellence - National Governors Association Center for Best Practices - United States - National Association of Counties - United States.
Mr. Clark earned a B.A. degree in Political Science from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1977, completed course work in accounting, and is a Certified Public Accountant.
Watch this 30 second video which is an ad for IBM’s “smarter planet” smarter GRID!
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, is also going to be a model NWO cybernetic, eco-fascist, “sustainable”, Agenda 21, GIG, Smart Grid city.
CyberSecurity Malaysia Hosts New Event to Secure Digital City
CyberSecurity Malaysia, the Malaysian specialist center for cybersecurity, will be organizing Cyber Security Malaysia Awards, Conference and Exhibition 2010 in Kuala Lumpur on Oct. 25-29.
Bernama reports Chief Executive Officer and retired Lt. Col. Husin Jazri said the event, themed “Securing Our Digital City,” was held with the vision to create a cyber-secured community that was engaged at local, state, national and international levels.
“At this time, we are all living in ‘digital cities’ where the community combines broadband communications infrastructure and innovative services to meet the needs of governments, businesses and the public,” he said in a statement.
Husin said the conference was an effort that would provide the community with the knowledge and awareness in cybersecurity and the best practices needed to secure the digital world.
The event is expected to draw more than 1,000 participants from around the world and bring together some of the most influential and innovative minds in the industrial sector, government sector, and academia.