Last week, the Schedule 84 Suppliers Research Panel participated in reviewing the 2018 contracting year with the GSA Schedule 84 leadership team. Our panel group consists of experienced contractors and consultants meeting for a monthly conference call. Schedule 84 is the GSA Schedules Contract for Total Solutions for Law Enforcement, Security, Facilities Management, Fire and Rescue. Our opinions are part of a research programme to provide valuable feedback to the GSA Schedule 84 programme and...
PerpetuityARC Training, part of Linx International Group, is proud to announce that its Advanced Investigation Techniques course has attained IQ Level 5 accreditation. The five-day classroom course provides security and HR professionals, general managers and people working in compliance and audit roles with the knowledge and skills necessary to conduct effective, legally compliant investigations. Advanced Investigation Techniques is ideal for professionals working in the private sector who have...
The schedule and speaker line-up for the Electronic Security Association’s (ESA) 2019 Leadership Summit – the strategically efficient event for leadership teams within the electronic security and life safety industry – has been announced. The event will be held in Austin, TX from Jan 28-31, and will feature a variety of education and networking opportunities. On the main stage and in classroom sessions, the industry’s leaders will engage with speakers whose expertise com...
DICE Corporation has announced that the company is launching a new Tech Security Summit that will combine the annual DICE User Group conference with exclusive training and educational resources for professionals in all sectors of the security industry. 2019 Tech Security Summit The inaugural event takes place April 29 through May 2, 2019 at the Sheraton Grand National Downtown in Nashville, TN. Event highlights include panel discussions with DICE representatives and industry experts, product d...
Tavcom Training, a subsidiary of Linx International Group, and the global provider of accredited security systems training courses, has announced the appointment of eLearning Developer Peter Panayi and Account Manager Effie-Mae Sims. Both will be based at the Tavcom Training Centre in Hampshire, UK, and will focus on growing the success of its rapidly expanding prospectus of classroom and distance learning training courses. Security systems training courses Tavcom Training boasts a wide range...
Bosch has expanded its professional services for integrators with the Boost Onsite Support offering available in North America. Designed to assist with the commissioning of large and complex installations, integrators selecting this service receive in-shop and/or on-site support from a Bosch technical expert as well as access to this specialist via email and phone throughout the duration of the project. Bosch security, safety and communications systems With this level of onsite support, install...
ASSA ABLOY Access Control, UK division of ASSA ABLOY, the global manufacturer and supplier of door opening solutions, has announced upcoming dates for its new SMARTair installer training course. SMARTair access control solution SMARTair is a flexible, end-to-end, battery-operated access control solution, which can operate in both offline and wireless online, without the need for cabling. It can be installed quickly and easily. It is easy to set up and manage. Those attending the training course will be given a demonstration showing exactly how easy it is to install, set-up and commission a SMARTair system. The course will also provide an opportunity for attendees to develop their understanding of wireless, battery-operated access control systems. It will conclude with troubleshooting training, followed by a question and answers session. SMARTair installer training course One of the main benefits of SMARTair is how easy to set up and install the system is" Alan Kent, Access Control Manager and SMARTair Specialist said; “One of the main benefits of SMARTair is how easy to set up and install the system is. Course attendees will be given hands-on training by our expert technical team to demonstrate this in practice." “SMARTair is ideally suited to a number of sectors including student accommodation, care homes and hospitality, and attendees will be given an insight into how to best take advantage of its versatility and adaptability." Full day course for security installers Alan further stated, “The full day course is held at our ASSA ABLOY Academy in Willenhall, West Midlands, and is suitable for systems integrators, professional security installers, and any hands-on end users looking for easy access control.” The available training dates are as follows: 4th December 2018 9th January 2019 13th February 2019 13th March 2019 10th April 2019 Refreshments are provided throughout the day, as well as lunch. Larger companies wishing to book onto the SMARTair training course may be able to specify a separate training date. Places are strictly limited to six attendees per course, so pre-booking is essential.
Even the most advanced and sophisticated security systems are limited in their effectiveness by a factor that is common to all systems – the human factor. How effectively integrators install systems and how productively users interface with their systems both depend largely on how well individual people are trained. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What is the changing role of training in the security and video surveillance market?
ASSA ABLOY UK Specification has issued a whitepaper to provide a guide to the specification of doorsets and associated hardware in nurseries, schools and universities. Entitled, ‘Specification considerations for education buildings: doors and ironmongery’ the whitepaper outlines the various relevant standards when specifying doors and ironmongery for education projects, including those relating to accessibility and usability. The paper also covers whole life costing implications and why these considerations are imperative for a successful specification, as well as discusses how architects and contractors within the education sector can contribute to a better built environment by factoring in health and wellbeing influencers. Flexible and future-proofed David Shields, National Specification Manager for ASSA ABLOY UK Specification and the author of the paper said: “In a procurement environment with multiple stakeholders where funding is tightly controlled, education buildings have to be flexible and future-proofed. They need to deliver cost certainty and the highest standards of specification.” “This is why contractors, architects, local education authorities, facilities managers and head teachers are often pulled in very different directions when it comes to product specification for education buildings.” Ironmongery specification “This whitepaper aims to provide clarification, along with practical advice and unique considerations, specifically for doorset and ironmongery specification within education settings.” With a wealth of experience supporting specifications within the education industry, ASSA ABLOY UK Specification work with architects, contractors and end users to ensure the right solution is provided for each individual project, which is then performance guaranteed for up to 20 years. This provides complete peace of mind and can save a school thousands of pounds in replacement and maintenance costs.
The second day of Global Security Exchange (GSX), the security industry’s flagship event, was jam-packed with security professionals eager to get first-hand exposure to exhibitors and vendors offering innovative solutions that solve traditional everyday security issues as well as deliver emerging technologies to solve problems of the future, such as AI, blockchain and AR/VR. Security education and insights GSX provides an outstanding opportunity for our members to gain education and insights about current security trends and threats" “GSX provides an outstanding opportunity for our members to gain education and insights about current security trends and threats, and also to see all the greatest and newest technologies out there on the expo floor,” said Kimberly Pratt, executive director of InfraGard National. “We hope ASIS members will come check out our booth and learn more about what InfraGard has to offer." “Today’s show exceeded our expectations based on the quality prospects who provided good conversations about our solutions,” said Paul Baratta, Business Development Manager, Axis Communications, Inc.; and ASIS Boston Chapter Treasurer; and member of the ASIS Healthcare Advisory Council. “It was overall a very successful day and I personally fully enjoyed the new X Stages as they provided more insight into the industry and the impact technologies are making today as well as how they will shape future engagements with our customers. We’re looking forward to the remainder of GSX!” Counter-UAV defence systems In the morning keynote, delivered by Scott Klososky, Founder and Principal of TriCorps Technologies, he addressed how the industry can leverage technology to solve challenges. Attendees were then released onto the GSX show floor featuring three new stages, including the X Stage, where they heard about revolutionary technologies poised to disrupt the industry first-hand. There was a standing-room only, live streamed school security panel as well as on-the-show floor demos showcasing the use of drones, droids and counter-UAV defence systems. Fortem Technologies, an innovative provider of AI-enabled airspace security and safety, conducted three drone shoot downs throughout the day, which has never happened on a security show floor to date. Prior to the doors opening, we saw a lot excitement about what new and exciting initiatives ASIS was bringing this year" “It has been an important show for us to be at over the years, and this year is no different. We’re seeing more convergence and integration of technology as well as partnerships, which aligns with our mission at the show,” said Eric Widlitz, Vice President of North America Sales, Vanderbilt Industries. “Prior to the doors opening, we saw a lot excitement about what new and exciting initiatives ASIS was bringing this year.” Career guide for security professionals This afternoon ASIS and the Security Industry Association (SIA) unveiled the rollout of the Career Pathways Guide in the GSX Career HQ. This new career guide provides a first of its kind review of core competencies that are needed at every stage of a security professional’s career. “Now that the first day of the Expo Hall has closed, it is evident from the standing-room only theaters and shoulder-to-shoulder packed aisles, that the industry has fully embraced the new show format and features,” said Richard E. Chase, CPP, PCI, PSP, President of ASIS International.
This week sees Nedap Security Management launch its new brand tagline, ‘Security for Life’. The words are new but the future-facing, people-first approach that it communicates is what drove the development of AEOS, the access control system by Nedap. And it’s what continues to drive the brand’s initiatives such as recent AEOS performance optimisation and its Global Client Programme. AEOS access control system Nedap invests in continuous research and development to ensure AEOS customers have an access control system that’s fit for purpose, up-to-date and has no end of life. Recently, this led to Nedap modifying and adapting 30% of the AEOS codebase and re-writing more than 3 million lines of software code. The result is huge performance improvements that are, for example, preventing delays during peak periods and enabling customers to expand their systems without hindering performance. Future-proofing security The human dimension in security management is crucial and that’s one of the main messages behind security for life" Fokko van der Zee at Nedap Security Management says: “Our world is changing more quickly every day. To give our clients security for life, we not only respond proactively to changing circumstances we stay one step ahead. We’re continually developing AEOS innovations and optimising its performance.” This focus on improving the user experience is also a great example of how, for Nedap, security doesn’t start with technology; it focuses first on people and how they live their daily lives. Fokko van der Zee explains: “For us, the human dimension in security management is crucial and that’s one of the main messages behind security for life. In our industry, brand communications often centre on technology. But we believe people aren’t looking for technology in itself – it’s the benefits of technology that help them feel safe and secure. As human beings, we have a fundamental need for this sense of security to really make the most of our life and work.” Enhancing people physical security Nedap addresses the human dimension of security management by providing a strong foundation for the physical security of people On a functional level, Nedap addresses the human dimension of security management by providing a strong foundation for the physical security of people, locations and buildings. On an emotional level, it frees people from having to even think about security or the technology that enables it. This allows them to fully enjoy their day and focus on the tasks at hand knowing that their security is being taken care of by experts. Many of the ideas behind security for life are already implemented in AEOS, which is designed to meet the needs of every client and adapt to changing circumstances. It’s the ultimate, sustainable foundation for any application of access control, anywhere – from businesses to government offices, hospitals, airports, schools, industrials sites and public venues. Streamlining physical access control Now, and in the future, Nedap will apply its philosophy to enrich AEOS further with industry-specific features that will give even greater usability. And with the Global Client Programme, for example, it’s helping multinational organisations to streamline their physical access control with increased ease and speed. A project rollout system managed by Nedap, the Global Client Programme gives multinationals a cost-effective, efficient framework for standardising security across all their buildings around the world. All of which means that Nedap is continuing to enable organisations and their people to focus on their core business – and so boost both their productivity and creativity.
Dortronics, global manufacturer of electric locking hardware and controls for the security industry, announces the expansion of its lunch and learn course offerings by adding Building Industry Consulting Service International (BICSI) Continuing Education Credits. BICSI is a professional association supporting the advancement of the information and communications technology (ICT) community. ICT covers the spectrum of voice, data, electronic safety & security, project management, and audio and video technologies. These informative sessions provide designers, specifiers, and resellers the opportunity to explore and compare the various types of door hardware, interlocking systems and their applications. Topics include mantraps, sally ports and cleanroom/laboratory air locks, and their applications. Courses on door and access control solutions Dortronics continues to offer AIA and BICSI courses in a small and relaxed environmentThe lunch and learn sessions are accredited by the American Institute of Architects (AIA) as well as recognised by BICSI. Upon successful completion of each course, participants will receive one BICSI CEC and/or one AIA Learning Unit. These informative sessions provide users with detailed information on how door control solutions are designed, manufactured and implemented, and address both off-the-shelf and custom options available. Dortronics continues to offer AIA and BICSI courses in a small and relaxed environment. Two one-hour courses are currently available: Door Interlocks: Applications and system design reviews the various types of door interlocks, mantraps, sally ports and their applications as well as discusses the different types of interlock controls and the accessories required for a fully functional system. Electronic Locking Devices for access control systems reviews electrified door locking hardware and related components which interface with electronic access controllers to provide a complete security solution.
Maxxess, the innovative security management and communications solutions, partnered with the Santa Ana Unified School District (SAUSD) to deploy a powerful new security and operations solution that leverages the power of smart mobile devices to maintain comprehensive communications and emergency management operations. Maxxess Ambit, which provides private, two-way, managed messaging and intel on a more personal and intuitive level, received its first wide-scale test during the SAUSD’s annual earthquake preparedness drill called the Great Southern California ShakeOut. SAUSD used Maxxess Ambit as their primary communications solution during the Great Southern California ShakeOut drill “The 2018 Great Shakeout drill was more realistic than in years past,” said Camille Boden, Executive Director or Risk Management for the Santa Ana Unified School District. She further added, “With Maxxess Ambit, our Emergency Operation Center (EOC) was able to receive simulated eyewitness accounts and requests for assistance from multiple staff members at schools across the District. The information with GPS locations provided by Maxxess Ambit came into the EOC rapidly, providing first responders with the specific details they would need if we really had experienced a disaster. The drill tempo was accelerated and provided real-world insight as to what the District could possibly experience in the event of a massive earthquake.” Maxxess Ambit’s “see it, say it” SAUSD used Maxxess Ambit as their primary communications solution during the Great Southern California ShakeOut drill. Maxxess Ambit’s “see it, say it” application kept SAUSD’s EOC fully informed of missing people, dangerous situations, property damage and more during the emergency simulation. This allowed the EOC’s staff to instantly generate various reports and assign the appropriate personnel to respond. One report that came in during the drill was from a school needing to be evacuated, which was immediately assigned to SAUSD’s logistics personnel. Logistics then called the school transportation service and directed them to the correct pick-up spots. The EOC at SAUSD not only took action on reports that came in but was able to anticipate issues resulting from the information collected with Maxxess Ambit. All EOC’s actions were captured for reporting and future audits within Maxxess Ambit. Mass notification During an earthquake scenario, Maxxess Ambit can broadcast a mass notification that will be sent to all users of an organisation During an earthquake scenario, Maxxess Ambit can broadcast a mass notification that will be sent to all users of the organisation, by site, by department or even by selected user groups. This allows emergency personnel to quickly monitor staff status, communicate with staff members using an organised interface, and help first responders act efficiently. As end users respond to the mass alert broadcast, a geo-tag is placed on a map to correspond with each mobile user’s location. Unlike systems that handle only one aspect of communications like a mass texting tool, Maxxess Ambit also addresses longstanding security challenges by transforming the way organisations operate on a daily basis. In a school environment, for example, a staff member can activate a duress report via Maxxess Ambit in the event a meeting is becoming emotional or tense. Real-time chat session The report would appear on the mobile devices of the school’s security team, enabling a real-time chat session while continuously tracking the staff member’s location. This unique combination of features empowers total awareness by making administrators, teachers, staff and students an integral part of the security solution. Maxxess Ambit is a cloud-based solution that does not require a capital investment in any hardware or servers and is deployed like a mobile app with all information logged into the system for compliance and audit purposes.
IDF Aluminium has installed transom closers and latch locks from Alpro Architectural Hardware at a building that provides premium co-working and flexible office space in central London near Victoria Station. Thomas House in Eccleston Square is a seven-storey structure with a facade in Regency style and a distinctive timber-clad reception that leads to two wings. It has collaborative drop-in work areas, meeting rooms and facilities to suit present-day practices. The building has been refurbished for The Office Group who pioneered shared workspaces in Britain and now offers these services across multiple London locations as well as Bristol and Leeds. Hydraulic door controls The Alpro transom closers are a means of hydraulically controlling the opening and closing of aluminium doors The Alpro transom closers are a means of hydraulically controlling the opening and closing of aluminium doors. They allow precise adjustment of the latching and closing force generated by the valve according to the weight and height of individual doors as well as type of usage. Aesthetics are a major consideration for The Office Group who briefed Soda Studio, an architectural practice known for its clean simple interiors, to create a design in keeping with the neighbouring Georgian squares. In addition to the working facilities, Thomas House has a library, music room, roof terrace and gymnasium. It is named after the early nineteenth-century architect Thomas Cubitt who created much of the surrounding area and also designed the eastern front of Buckingham Palace. Preserving interior geometry Fabricator IDF devised a solution featuring tailored SBD aluminium profiles from Jack Aluminium Systems, bespoke glazing, internal screens and the Alpro door management. The Alpro products include Europrofile cylinder deadlatches which can be combined with electric strikes to provide the added option of remote access control. All of The Office Group premises are design-led, and we have now supplied equipment to five of their sites including Henry Wood House" Peter Keen, sales director at Alpro, said: “Installing transom closers on internal doors is unusual but the concealed nature of these closers, within the transom header bar, means they are unobtrusive and meet the architect’s goal of preserving interior geometry.” He continued: “All of The Office Group premises are design-led, and we have now supplied equipment to five of their sites including Henry Wood House, a former BBC building in the West End. Our transom closers are durable and have been tested independently at 250,000 double-action cycles.” Commercial door market IDF specialises in the design, manufacture and installation of aluminium doors. The door projects are often in commercial and public sector environments where usage may be high but maintenance costs must be minimised. IDF has 30 years’ experience in the shop front and commercial door market. The company ensures a quality service by designing and fabricating all of its doors and shop fronts in-house with no use of sub-contractors. The client portfolio covers transport, local government, healthcare and education from schools through to universities.
To succeed in business, one must be brilliant at one thing. In many cases it’s a skill, such as art, coding, engineering or design. Or that one brilliant attribute can also be a personality trait or a business process. No business will be successful unless it is at least adequate, and preferably superb, in product development, sales, and customer engagement - not to mention finance, planning, marketing and recruiting. Too many VMS producers are trying to do all these things themselves when they should be doubling up on what they are best at and leveraging the rest. It is a new mindset. Instead of obsessing about which ‘me-too’ product to supply, software producers could make their first priority finding complementary and compatible partners. Developing a partnership ecosystem One partner might see the opportunity to sell a solution. Another partner might know a better way to distribute a product. A third partner might provide the vertical expertise to get the customer a perfectly tailored solution. By leveraging partners and developing a partner ecosystem, a company will tend to have more unique offerings and the ability to execute faster in an ever-changing world. All this additional partner horsepower is still no guarantee a company will succeed but partnerships will also give a company a feedback channel. Many stand-alone companies plod along, never quite failing, but never getting better either. Partners are less likely to tolerate business limbo. They will be quick to utilise great products, and less wedded to the concept if it doesn’t prove out. Because the partners are in close contact with the market, they are the first responders to changing or developing needs. This is why a company should listen very closely to their partners: They are the feet on the street and the ears to the beat! Open platform matters Producing software takes time, and producing great software takes even longer All of this is not possible, however, if a company produces closed platform software. This is software whose functions can only be changed by the original developers. Producing software takes time, and producing great software takes even longer. This means low agility. The partners might identify great opportunities, but before the closed platform software producer can react, the opportunities might be gone - or worse, be grabbed by competitors. The slow reaction capabilities of closed platform providers will frustrate partners and may lead to the worst of all complications in a partnership: distrust. Add-on modules and intrinsic scripting When the products are based on an open platform, however, they are adaptable. Then the partners have the ability to change the solution through the open software architecture. Not by changing the basic code (that would be open source) but by add-on modules and intrinsic scripting abilities. Total integrated solution Open platform means that the partner can easily extend and enhance the software into a total integrated solution Open platform means that the partner can easily extend and enhance the software into a total integrated solution to fulfill the customer’s needs with the minimum of effort. This gives agility, and agility means fast go-to-market abilities. Just what is needed in this fast-moving world. There are some important things to note here. The ways to extend and enhance the software have to be easy and well documented. The partners must have access to training and knowledge sharing. (It does not help to have a system for extending the capabilities of the software if the partners have to guess at the process and the documentation is rudimentary.) Open access is key It is important that the business philosophy is based on openness, giving the partners full access to all relevant information. And openness is a two-way street: By being open for your partners, you also have to be open about their business. A partner might be able to develop a highly sophisticated solution but be unable to market the solution. By building a catalogue of partner solutions easily accessible to customers, openness extends to ensure open access to the partners. Openness is not something a business can just tack on to their approach. It has to be in the DNA of the business from the start. In a Harvard Business Review article entitled ‘Predators and Prey: A new ecology of competition,’ JF Moore says: “A business ecosystem, like its biological counterpart, gradually moves from a random collection of elements to a more structured community.” Structured business ecosystem Milestone has seen this progression within the company's ecosystem Milestone has seen this progression within the company's ecosystem. They introduced training and certification requirements as part of the partnership success structure, ensuring knowledge is shared and also used in a way that is most mutually beneficial for all involved. Moore also writes: “Every business ecosystem develops in four distinct stages: birth, expansion, leadership and self-renewal.” At present, Milestone and its partners are entering into the ‘leadership’ stage, where video enabling is creating opportunities beyond those offered by a traditional video surveillance system, and into areas that provide additional business benefits to our customers. Video enabling “A leader must emerge in the ecosystem,” Moore says, “to initiate a process of rapid, ongoing improvement that draws the entire community toward a grander future.” This is the role Milestone has played in leading the industry towards the video enabling phase and redefining the industry’s expectations of what a surveillance system is capable of. In the article, Moore underlines that “executives whose horizons are bounded by the traditional industry perspectives will find themselves missing the real challenges and opportunities that face their companies.” Getting connected Connectors are those people with a wide range of contacts across different social circles In his book The Tipping Point, Malcolm Gladwell describes what he calls ‘The Law of the Few,’ which says: "The success of any kind of social epidemic is heavily dependent on the involvement of people with a particular and rare set of social gifts." This is based on the 80/20 principal, “which is the idea that in any situation roughly 80 percent of the 'work' will be done by 20 percent of the participants." He goes on to identify three types of people with these gifts: Salesmen, who are skilled in persuasion and negotiation; Mavens, who collect and disseminate useful information; and Connectors. Connectors are those people with a wide range of contacts across different social circles who can make introductions and create links between otherwise disparate individuals. Milestone, key connector in physical security industry In the wider scheme of things, Milestone effectively acts as a ‘Connector’ in the business ecosystem and in the overall physical security industry. Milestone brings together companies who are brilliant in their respective fields and make it easy for them to work together to create a valuable solution for the customer. The company provides the environment for that to occur and work closely with them to ensure that the end result is useful and effective. At Milestone, partners realised that significant investments in education and training was required to create the demand for the company's products and solutions that the conservative physical security industry required. The value of partnership was learnt and the ‘open’ approach adopted, which was a central part of the thinking behind our software. Adopting the Scandinavian management model Milestone effectively acts as a ‘Connector’ in the business ecosystem and in the overall physical security industry Milestone extended this approach to the entire business model, creating the ecosystem that has been the driving force for success. And while the company embraced the best of the Scandinavian management model, its inclusiveness and encouragement of creativity, they still needed to have the courage to make changes to the business, changes which would ensure the best possible position to take on whatever challenges the future might hold. Milestone partner ecosystem Milestone have always worked in a partner-driven business mode. The company from the start was designed to be open and partner oriented. The Milestone partner ecosystem is a fundamental part of its mindset and daily operations. It is one of the major reasons for getting the company to the position where it is today. To be in a company without the partner component would be like cutting the internet and phone cables while reverting to telex and written paper letters! The company would be developing products in the dark, not knowing the demand. Open business world Today, Milestone's partners are delivering optimal solutions to mutual customers, building a better and open business world with video as a business enhancer. All thanks to the company's open platform and community approach. To have a flourishing partner ecosystem, one must think not as a corporation but in human terms. Because companies don’t think, humans do. In all senses of the word, there is one thing that will contribute more to the success of a partnership than anything else; 'Give before hoping to receive'.
Opengear, a provider of solutions that deliver secure, resilient network access and automation to critical IT infrastructure, today announced CSC – IT Center for Science Ltd, a Finnish center of expertise in Information and Communications Technology, has deployed Opengear Smart out-of-band appliances to streamline a major upgrade project and improve day-to-day remote management. CSC, a non-profit organisation with 70% ownership by the state of Finland and 30% controlled by Finnish higher education institutions provides services for research, education, culture, public administration and enterprises, to help them thrive and benefit society at large. CSC's primary customers are the Ministry of Education and Culture and organisations within its field of operations, higher education and research institutes and public administration sector. Planned network upgrade As Antti Ristimaki, Senior Network Specialist for CSC explains, "Getting from our data centres to some of the sites we look after might take many hours and so having remote out-of-band access is vital for us." CSC has used a legacy out-of-band (OOB) console server solution for several years, but with a major network upgrade planned for 2018-2020 it was decided that more flexibility was needed to help the small networking team support clients at around 40 sites spread across the country. "What we liked most about Opengear was its small footprint and high-quality software along with the 4G mobile connectivity option which provides us with the option to deploy the OOB console server at site before we have any working in-band access," says Ristimaki. Setting up the devices took very little time and we are now remotely managing the process" Remotely configure networking equipment CSC has already deployed Opengear ACM7004-5-LMR - Resilience Gateway appliances at around 10 locations across the country, which were initially used to help remotely configure networking equipment at sites connecting to its newly upgraded backbone network. Having a remote access server at distant locations makes it easier to reliably commission and configure new network equipment from its main offices at Espoo and Kajaani. At the final stage, there will be around 40 Opengear Resilience Gateway appliances across the country. "Setting up the devices took very little time and we are now remotely managing the process - which has proved surprisingly simple using 4G LTE and even 3G connections," Ristimaki adds. Built-in CLI tools The built-in CLI tools provided by the Opengear software have proven to be useful especially when commissioning the console server itself. Through this accessibility, CSC has integrated the management of its Opengear Smart OOB devices into its own internally developed network management and orchestration platform based on Ansible. CSC is also using Opengear to help record, and in the event of any problems, rollback critical firmware upgrades and configuration changes for core networking elements at remote sites.
Siemens Rail Automation is a supplier of signalling systems to the rail industry worldwide. The signalling system is fundamental to the safety of a rail network as it maintains safe separation and prevents collisions. Signallers rely on the safety critical signalling features to ensure safe operation in both normal and degraded conditions. Thorough initial training and regular refresher courses in a realistic environment is essential to maintaining the signallers’ competency and knowledge of operating procedures. Siemens collaborated with Matrox to implement a unique, IP-based simulation environment for their European-rail-network client with an innovative use of streaming and recording of multiple video feeds. Simulator for signal monitoring A simulator allows a trainer to vary scenarios—by changing the weather, introducing obstacles on the line, incidents in stations, broken-down trains, or other things that affect the scheduling of movement of rolling stock. Additional screens from other collaborative applications, such as timetabling, are displayed for the trainee The trainer needs to monitor a trainee’s reaction(s) to a particular scenario, as it transpires. To be able to view the entire session later, for analysing, and pinpointing areas of improvement, each individual trainee’s performance needs to be recorded as well. The trainee operator’s signalling desk contains multiple monitors for the signalling application that shows, amongst other things, the state of the signals, dynamic speed limits, state of points on the track, and train positions. Additional screens from other collaborative applications, such as timetabling, are also displayed for the trainee. Trainers too have multiple screens where they define and manage the training scenario. Networked training ecosystem Siemens Rail Automation met their client’s need by leveraging Matrox’s video wall and enterprise encoding portfolio as building blocks to create an end-to-end, IP-based simulation system—all on the client’s 1 Gigabit Ethernet network. At the individual trainee stations, ‘operator’ workstations host a Matrox multi-display graphics card to power an eight-monitor, 4x2 desktop configuration. In the same PC system are two Matrox Maevex 6100 quad 4K enterprise encoder cards. Capable of simultaneously capturing, streaming, and recording up to four 4K inputs, Maevex 6100 in this case captures quad Full HD inputs, composites them as a single 4K signal, and streams them to a collaborative video wall. Doing so ensures that the time correlation between the individual screens is not lost—a cursor moving across a desktop from screen to screen is seen as it happens. One of the training objectives is to support the team working between the signallers and planners Monitoring trainee cursor movements This is important for the trainer to get a realistic picture. A jerky or delayed cursor movement could be construed by the trainer as indecision or hesitation on the part of the trainee. If the cursor movement by the trainee—including between screens—is smooth, it is imperative for it to be seen live and recorded as being smooth. In addition to the above are three dual-monitor timetabling workstations and a quad-monitor trainer workstation, each with a Matrox graphics card and Maevex 6100 encoder card to stream desktop content to the collaborative display wall. The timetabling workstations are used by trainee timetable planners to make on-the-day changes. One of the training objectives is to support the team working between the signallers and planners. Reviewing training sessions On the video wall are 12 monitors in several arrangements that enable the trainer to control the simulation environment and monitor trainee signallers and planners. The video wall can also be used collaboratively to replay and review the training session. This is all from a single, low-footprint Blue Chip Ultima 2M system that hosts a combination of Matrox Mura IPX decoder cards and Matrox Mura MPX input/output video wall cards, which work together to seamlessly decode and display the various incoming streams. The rail network uses Matrox MuraControl for Windows video wall software to manage the incoming IP sources, presenting the information on the wall in a way that looks like the original setup at the trainee’s desk. Matrox provided product and configuration training for Siemens personnel, onsite at Siemens Rail Automation’s headquarters Product and configuration training These ‘video wall copies’ allow trainers and other decision makers to remotely, and instantaneously, see the trainee’s reaction to a given situation. Desktop views are easily switched between trainees. Additionally, Maevex 6100 allows training sessions to be simultaneously recorded to network storage from where the simulations are played back on demand to the individual trainee, or to other interested parties. To complete the offering, Matrox provided product and configuration training for Siemens personnel, onsite at Siemens Rail Automation’s headquarters. Successful implementation Siemens Rail Automation has deployed the IP-based signalling simulator as part of a major project in a leading European-rail-network organisation where it is performing in line with the rail industry’s stringent standards. Similar deployments for other clients are being planned. Using Matrox’s video wall and recording technologies has been instrumental to the successful implementation of this IP-based signalling simulator" Using the standard network to stream the various elements of the simulator in real time has offered many benefits to the client. The video wall displays copies of the trainer’s own screens, as well as a selected trainee’s screens. This IP-based implementation is easily scalable and allows multiple trainees to be participating in the same training session—with the trainer able to select which trainee to be overseeing at a given time. Andy Powell of Siemens Rail Automation says, “Using Matrox’s video wall and streaming and recording technologies has been instrumental to the successful implementation of this pioneering IP-based signalling simulator in our client’s organisation. Without Matrox, this clearly wouldn’t have been achievable.”
The Wisenet hybrid recording solution has been installed at New Cross Hospital, Wolverhampton by electronic security specialists, JKE Security. “The medium term objective is to provide the hospital with a complete end-to-end Wisenet solution incorporating the very latest video surveillance technology,” said Dan Mather, director of Derby based JKE Security. “However, New Cross Hospital is not alone in having to carefully manage its budgets and with this in mind, the priority has been to install a hybrid recording solution which comprises a combination of HD+ and NVRs. This has enabled the images from all existing analogue and IP cameras installed throughout the hospital to be recorded at the highest possible resolution.” New Cross Hospital, which is run by the Royal Wolverhampton Hospitals NHS Trust was originally built circa 1900 as a workhouse. It now provides 700 beds, employs almost 9500 staff and is the largest teaching hospital in the Black Country. In 2004 the United Kingdom's first purpose built specialist heart centre was opened on its site.AHD technology enables the Wisenet HD+ DVRs to record high-definition images Large storage capacity A total of 17 recording devices have been installed. These include 4 x Wisenet 32 channel XRN -2010 NVRs which each have 21 Terabytes of on-board storage and 13 x Wisenet HD+ 16 channel SRD-1694 DVRs, each with 5 Terabytes of storage. Using AHD technology, the Wisenet HD+ DVRs are able to record high-definition images transmitted over the hospital’s existing coax cabling. “An important aspect of this project is that the Royal Wolverhampton Hospitals NHS Trust wanted a recording solution which would be totally compliant with the new GDPR data protection regulations,” said Dan Mather. “Having taken advice from Midwich, the distribution company which we source our video surveillance products from, and having attended a 3 day training course conducted by Hanwha Techwin, we had the confidence to recommend the Wisenet hybrid recording solution to the Trust both in terms of its compliance with GDPR and the user-friendliness of the recording devices.” For the first time in years we are now able to view our entire system on one platform, which is functional and easy to operate" Effective healthcare security “Having successfully completed the first phase of the upgrade, we are looking forward to installing over 200 x Wisenet cameras throughout the hospital in the near future in order to provide security personnel and the hospital’s managers with a powerful tool to maintain a safe and secure environments for doctors, nurses, administration staff and patients.” Paul Smith, Trust Security Manager and Local Security Management Specialist said “We looked long and hard for a suitable solution of integrating our older systems with newer IP systems on the site. For us the best option came in the form of the Wisenet software and recording units and for the first time in years we are now able to view our entire system on one platform, and a platform that is functional and easy to operate." "All of our pre-existing cameras have been synced with the new software with the assistance of JKE Security Ltd. I look forward now to the next stage which will be to replace end of life cameras for the much more technologically advanced kit, which will enable us to use the smarter functions of the Wisenet software.”