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Tim Kannegieter

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Everything posted by Tim Kannegieter

  1. Heritage of IoT

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  2. Project Management for IoT

    Type your questions for today's webinar in the comments to this post. The webinar is on Project Management for IoT. During the webinar, you might like to comment on any of the presenter's points, or share your own experiences managing IoT Projects.
  3. The ‘Smart Enough’ Factory.

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    Recording: This webinar has now passed. Members of Engineers Australia can view the recording for free on MyPortal. Logon and navigate to Industry Specific Applications > Manufacturing. Others can purchase the recording on EABooks. This special event marking our 50th webinar and the end of year celebration. We will be holding a webinar combined with face-to-face meetings in several EA offices in: Sydney - Boardroom Melbourne - Leadership Hub Adelaide - Grant Hosking Room Hobart - Leadership Room Canberra - The Black Mountain Room Newcastle - Boardroom Title: The ‘Smart Enough’ Factory. A digital journey and IoT Case study on Sutton Tools Presenters: Dr Steve Dowey, Technology Manager, Sutton Tools Description: There are shared global challenges to the adoption of Industry 4.0 that affect businesses on all steps of the digital journey. These are cost of implementation, a shortage of skilled employees, and a concern about security. Although these problems are global, the solutions need to be local and targeted. The ‘Smart Enough’ concept uses a data driven manufacturing and management approach to enable the promised benefits of IoT and Industry 4.0 for companies that might be struggling with implementation. Dr Dowey will share and demonstrate the technology that is deployed at Sutton Tools for its take on Lean IoT. Takeaways: Smart Enough is: Management data driven - enables transparency and immediacy of processes. Lean. Leaves control and action to the experts and systems. Feedback loop is closed by the operator / manager. Uses micro-service architectures. Complements but doesn’t need an Enterprise Service Bus or SOA. Works with legacy systems. Applying a lightweight sensor network overlay onto existing systems, leveraging web technology, RAD tools and open source. Who should attend: The talk is for SME stakeholders, lean manufacturing practitioners and anyone with an interest in IoT in manufacturing. About the presenter: Dr Steve Dowey is the Technology Manager at Sutton Tools and a Senior Research Fellow at RMIT University working with the Australian Defence Materials Technology Centre. His current projects include ‘Additive Manufactured Tooling’, ‘Tooling for Robotic Applications’ and applied ‘Industry IoT’ in collaboration with DMTC. Steve’s Industry 4.0 focus is on the ‘The Smart Enough Factory’, where the issues of legacy systems (cost), security and STEM skills are addressed to ensure the benefits of Industry 4.0 can reach the Australian SME. When: 5:30pm AEST (Eastern Seaboard) for 6:00pm start on 12 December 2017 (4:30pm in Brisbane and 4:55pm in Adelaide). The presentation will last 30 minutes followed by question time and networking. Concludes at 7:30pm. Where: The presentation by both webinar and face-to-face in the following locations. After registering you will be sent details of how to logon if attending by webinar. Rooms and locations are below. Please RSVP if attending in person by emailing iotengineering@engineersaustralia.org.au Sydney – Boardroom, Level 3, 8 Thomas St, Chatswood. Victoria - Leadership Hub, Level 31, 600 Bourke Street, Melbourne South Australia - Grant Hosking Room, Level 11, 108 King William Street, Adelaide Tasmania - Leadership Room, Level 5, 188 Collins Street, Hobart Canberra - The Black Mountain Room, Engineering House, 11 National Circuit, Barton Newcastle – Boardroom, Suite 3, Tonella Commercial Centre, 125 Bull Street, Newcastle West Cost: This presentation is free to members of Engineers Australia (EA), the Australian Computer Society (ACS), the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) and IEEE. Just provide your membership number during registration for the event. The cost for non-members is $30. How to register: Please register on the Engineers Australia event system, link above. Note, to register you need to have a free EA ID which you can get on the first screen of the registration page. Take note of your ID number for future events.
  4. Prisons and IoT

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    Title: The Internet of Incarceration: How IoT technologies could change the way prisons operate Presenters: Professor Dan Hunter, Foundation Dean, Swinburne Law School Description: Replacing prisons with high tech systems capable of detaining prisoners in their own homes and the use of artificial intelligence to predict and prevent imminent offenses may sound the stuff of science fiction, but rapid advances in technology surrounding the Internet of Thing makes such a vision a possibility worth discussing. Prof Hunter has been making news proposing just such a system, which revolves the around the use of electronic bracelets with electric shock capabilities. This effectively turn prisoners into internet nodes, capable of being monitored and controlled like any other IoT system. In this presentation, Prof Hunter will outline technology advances in prisons around the world and discusses the legal, social and engineering dimensions of making the vision a reality. About the presenter: Professor Dan Hunter is expert in internet law, intellectual property and cognitive science models of law. He holds a PhD from Cambridge on the nature of legal reasoning, as well as computer science and law degrees from Monash University and a Master of Laws by research from the University of Melbourne. Professor Hunter regularly publishes on the intersection of computers and law including using technology to make sentencing more efficient and fairer. His recent articles include recommendations for allowing prisoners to access the internet, making internet deprivation a new stand-alone criminal sanction and replacing prisons with technological incarceration. When: 12 midday in Sydney. If you are in a state with a different time zone from NSW, please determine your local time. The date is above. The presentation will last 30 minutes followed by question time. Where: The presentation is by webinar. After registering you will be sent details of how to logon. Cost: This presentation is free to members of Engineers Australia (EA), the Australian Computer Society (ACS), the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) and IEEE. Just provide your membership number during registration for the event. The cost for non-members is $30. How to register: Please register on the Engineers Australia event system, link above. Note, to register you need to have a free EA ID which you can get on the first screen of the registration page. Take note of your ID number for future events.
  5. Energy Harvesting

    Introduction Energy harvesting, also known as power scavenging, is the term used to describe methods for powering IoT devices from its local environment, rather than by mains power or primary batteries. The main sources of environmental power are photovoltaic, thermoelectric, kinetic, and radio frequency. These are complement by energy harvesting and power storage systems. A key misconception is that people equate power scavenging with perpetual life, that device will run forever. However, all systems have limitations. For example, a rechargeable cell powered by a solar panel will die after a period of time or a set number of cycles. So the intelligent design of energy harvesting systems is important, and this may or may not include a battery. Kinetic Kinetic energy harvesting systems are powered by physical motion. Available wherever thing are moving. Examples range from sources of micro-power, such as switches/buttons and watches/wearables through to larger sources such as wind and water. The micro-sources produce a small spike of energy that is just enough to send a small piece of information. The larger sources do not have to be traditional wind power or hydroelectric systems. From an IOT perspective, it is possible to create miniature devices that fit inside pipes to power a single device. It is possible to fit energy harvesting devices inside pipes with moving water to power an IOT device measuring the flow in remote locations. Thermoelectric Thermoelectric energy harvesting systems are powered by differences in temperature, usually between a source at a higher or lower temperature and the ambient environment. Thermoelectric sources are often available in industrial settings which often have, for example, cold or hot pipes. There are even products that can generate power from the difference between skin temperature and the surrounding air, to power a wearable device. Solar Solar, also known as optical energy, has been used for a long time has been used in many different applications because the power density that can be generated from a solar cell is reasonable significant for its size. The main challenge with optical energy is to model how big a solar panel, and associated power storage system, needs to be to make sure that an IoT system will function through natural variations in light levels and in the worst case scenario. Radio Frequencies RF energy harvesting system, and the closely related induction charging, can extract energy from radio waves, in the same way that old crystal set radios extracted enough energy from AM broadcasts to listen to them without a batter. However, this approach has the lowest efficiency of all the harvesting techniques because the amount of power that must be broadcast in order to get a tiny little bit of power exchange over even a small distance is huge. The most useful example of this technique is the use of passive RFID tags, which normally consist of a tiny chip and very thin antenna. As the RFID tag passes through a gate or scanner, there is a wireless power exchange that's very short range. The main reason RFID tags can be manufactured for few cents and last such a long time is because have no battery. Engineering challenges The main engineering challenge is knowing when it is appropriate to use energy harvesting. There are a small number of applications where energy harvesting just makes sense, such as switches and some solar cells on devices that are visited regularly. However, many people fall into the trap of including energy harvesting in their IoT design because they can, when it fact it might not make sense to use it. For example, a kinetically charged dog tracking collar is possible but a battery may much more cost effective. Possible applications where energy harvesting does make sense are: Unusual form factors –e,g, where you've got to get something really thin, woven into clothing etc. Massive deployment applications – e.g. where it's not commercially feasible to replace or recharge batteries. Inconvenient locations – e.g. places that are really difficult to get to. Power storage Power storage option range from batteries through super-capacitors to solid-state options. The main factors to consider are cycle life, before the component needs to be replaced, the rate at which it goes flat, the overall storage capacity and the length of time the charge is available to execute the IoT device’s function. A comparison of common power storage options. Diagram curtesy of Simon Blyth, LX Group. High density rechargeable battery technologies generally have a self-discharge problem and can be hard to charge up using the small sources of power available via some sources of energy harvesting. Super capacities obviously only hold their charge for a very short time but provide an alternative in the right contexts, particularly where the device is being charged/discharged frequently. Examples may be on rotating equipment etc. Energy harvesting chips Many manufacturers are now making chip-based solutions that make it easier to design an energy harvesting system into an IoT device. Comparison of a range of chip-based energy harvesting systems. Diagram curtesy of Simon Blyth, LX Group. Selection of the right energy harvesting chip would relate to the overall architecture and design of the IoT device. Technology companies Key suppliers of energy harvesting technologies include: Micropelt Laird PowerFilm IXYS Kinetron Volture WiTricity IDT Cota Powercast muRata Panasonic Maxwell Cymbet Infinite Power Solutions Sources: Information on this page was primarily sourced from the following: A webinar titled Power Scavenging in IoT Design by Simon Blyth, CEO, LX Group
  6. Business Planning and Innovation

    Introduction: Any implementation of the Internet of Things needs to have a commercial and a productivity-driven impact in order for it to be sustainable. This influences the conceptualization and the design of things and the systems they are embedded in, as well as how they're commissioned and deployed. Broadly speaking IoT business planning and innovation is divided into the improvement of existing businesses (see below) and the startup of new businesses based on an innovative idea. Business process improvement The aim is to determine how to best improve processes with X amount of dollars. What would that look like? What would the proposal look like? In any business case you need to satisfy the requirements of accountants. To get your capital expenditure request passed, you need to be able to produce a cost-benefit analysis. The benefit is both is a function (feature set) and associated performance targets, expressed in terms of how the things act as a force multiplier for staff and equipment. The cost covers development and deployment plus ongoing expenses. The basic question is how to take an existing asset or some proposal and map that to an IOT system that is going to provide superior productivity but doesn't take an eternity to deploy and cost an excessive amount to develop? A good way to think of this is in terms of the system's impact on people, process, and plant. If things can improve productivity at those levels, then you know that your IOT system’s design and deployment models have a good chance of being sustainable. One strategy for improving productivity is to identify any general business rules and determine if these can be optimised using better sensing and control options. For example, procedures often require automatic changing of parts or consumables after a set period of time, based on average use. However, sensing the actual usage, performance or wear and tear, can enable operators to increase the time between replacements. Beyond the utility of the product, key elements that influence a business case include: Power options: e.g. tradeoffs between longer battery life versus cost of periodic replacement. This will be affected by the accessibility of the thing and the quantity of them. Network requirements: Data handling: Performance: Accuracy of measurement may or may not be important, and this will affect sensor costs. Similarly, reliability of data messages getting through may or may not be important. In some contexts, the occasional missed reading may not affect the overall performance of the system. Size: Physical size and mass will affect design and unit cost. Miniturisation can cost more and increased mass may make affect functionality. User interface: The user interface can vary from web interfaces or smart phone apps through text messaging to custom screens. In some cases changing the user experience or providing input to human decision making is important. In other cases there may be no need for a user interface at all, particularly with "smart" system that make decision autonomously. Environmental requirements: Requirements for robustness and effectiveness of enclosures will vary with environmental conditions, including temperature range and exposure to water. Geography and spatial considerations will also affect a business case, as this can influence the choice of technologies and network topology. e.g. is line of sight possible? What is the density of structures in the environment? Installation and commissioning: For large scale deployments, ease of installation and commissioning is important. Business planning IoT product, service or solution is very much a case by case issue. One of the key critical success factors is to accept this and to understand the commercial objectives, and also the technology limitations, so that a good compromise can be reached. Over-specifying any aspect is likely to increase unit cost and risks making the project infeasible. It is also important to avoid being fixated on specific implementation approaches before understanding what the options are. For example, many people automatically assume tracking solutions will require GPS but there are many other options. Examples of productivity gains can be seen in our Case Studies: Links: Business Strategy and Innovation Framework published by the Industrial Internet Consortium Sources: Material on this page has primarily been sourced from the following: Presentation by Jon Eggins, Chief Operations Officer, Genesys Electronics Design; Systems Architect, Genesys Products titled Thing One and Thing Two – Myths, Philosophy and Engineering Presentation by Simon Blyth, CEO, LX Group titled Key success factors for IOT projects
  7. Legal considerations for IoT

    Introduction Internet of Things (IoT) projects are a complex multiparty undertaking, requiring the cooperation of asset owners, technology providers, consultants, communication service providers, and a range of other stakeholders. IoT projects have a range of technologies that have legal implications such as copyright ownership of circuit board designs and firmware. Adding to this, the securing of legal rights for the use and maintenance of the ICT systems is critical to the ongoing operation of these projects. Successful delivery and operation of these assets requires effective communication, a sound understanding of the legal landscape, and practical systems and procedures to secure the strength of your legal position if things escalate Ownership of the legal rights required enable an IoT project to function throughout its life cycle should be treated as a key project deliverable. The legal rights underpinning the business model (eg. developer, service provider, product reseller, maintenance provider) should also be secured in writing to avoid legal disputes about who owns items such as software licences, firmware and hardware, and what rights each party has to use them. A common source of legal disputes in IoT projects is relying on verbal assurances rather than formally documenting agreements in writing, as verbal assurances tend to carry little weight in court. Terms and legislation relevant to IoT projects Some legal terms and legislation relevant to IoT projects are defined below: Express terms (contract): Terms that are agreed between contracted parties, either in writing or verbally. Implied terms (contract): Terms that are not expressly written in to the contract, or verbally agreed, but can be implied by the court based on common law or the actions and intentions of the contracted parties (see section below on effective contract management of IoT projects. Estoppel: This is a point of law which prevents a party from denying something. There are two kinds of estoppel: Promissory: if one party has promised another party that something will happen, and the second party relies on this promise and suffers detrimental effects it is not kept. For example, if an IoT company designs a system to monitor and send alerts about the condition of airfields, which will only be commercially viable if a major airport agrees to be a customer. The designer emails or phones the airport and lets them know that they intend for them to be a customer and the airport agrees. If the designer designs the system, and the airport later decides not to become a customer, it is possible that under estoppel, a court can rule that the airport does need to become a user of the system, or award damages to the designer. It is better if the promise and possible detriment are documented in writing. By convention: if two parties conduct business in a particular way, then one does something to contradict that. For example, if a client pays a communication provider’s monthly fees late for several months and they accept those late payments without penalty (even though the contract says fees need to be paid on time or supply will be cut off). If the communication provider suddenly decides to cut off supply due to a late payment, the court may rule against them as they have set a convention contradictory to their written contract by accepting late payments. Telecommunications law: including the Telecommunications Act 1997 and the Radiocommunications (Low Interference Potential Devices) Class Licence 2015. Australian Consumer Law (ACL): Some elements of ACL are particularly relevant to IoT projects: (Statutory) Unconscionable conduct (Section 20 of the ACL) is the principal by which a stronger party is not allowed to take advantage of a weaker party in supplying or acquiring goods. This can apply in some cases if software is purchased and does not work as expected or have the help desk support required. Misleading or deceptive conduct: The Competition and Consumer Act (2010) states that a person must not engage in conduct that is misleading or deceptive, or is likely to mislead or deceive. In 2013, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) took Google to the High Court over its display of sponsored links. The ACCC lost, because the court ruled that reasonable users would understand that the content of the sponsored links was created and endorsed by the advertisers, not Google. Warranties & unfair terms: ACL imposes mandatory warranties and invalidates unfair terms. This may be useful for small IoT businesses or consumers who purchase software or services with inflexible terms and conditions (eg. as defined on the software company’s website when purchase is made online). Other relevant legal areas include: Intellectual Property: It is important to know who owns the intellectual property of the software, firmware and hardware used in projects, as if it is produced by independent contractors for a parent company, disputes can disadvantage clients. It is also important to clarify who owns the intellectual property rights for solutions and products produced. Copyright: This is important as IoT projects use software, firmware and hardware which is subject to copyright. In one copyright case IPC Global took Pavetest to court because a developer had taken source code and firmware from IPC Global to Pavetest and used it to develop a system. Even using a small, functionally significant part of the software code can be a breach of copyright and result in damages being awarded to the copyright holder. Negligence: This may be applicable if there is a duty of care which was not carried out responsibly, and damage results. Security of Payment Act: This may be relevant when IoT systems are installed in buildings, as it ensures that suppliers of construction work and related goods get paid on time. One example of a case was between Ampcontrol SWG Pty Limited and Gujarat NRE Wonga in 2013, when Gujarat failed to meet a payment deadline. Home Building Act: This may be relevant for systems installed in residential homes. Privacy legislation: this governs confidential information that may be collected by the system. Considerations can include a privacy policy and mandatory reporting of data breaches Sources of legal disputes in the IoT industry Software rights can be a significant vulnerability for IoT projects. For example, a software supplier can tender software to competitors or threaten to disable system software as leverage during a dispute unless there has been a written agreement that prevents them from doing so. Software companies can also go out of business, or be subject to intellectual property disputes, so it is important to determine what assurances and guarantees are needed to ensure that your project can continue to use necessary software. Liability clauses are also an important consideration: if a system supplier falls behind in delivering goods required by a project, this can be a significant cost, and agreement should be made about how that will be dealt with. Direct supply of parts and services from a supplier can also be a vulnerable point for IoT companies relying on particular system suppliers unless a written distributor or supply agreement is put in place. Courts are also wary of making rulings that help companies establish monopolies in order to make their business models effective, as they want to ensure that the end user is assured ongoing supply of goods. Safeguarding legal rights for IoT projects requires a broad understanding of legal measures available. For example, an agreement to ensure that there are no backdoor channels to disable software or exploit other system vulnerabilities, such as cyber security, could be approached by ensuring there is a warranty against these backdoors being present, liquidated damages if they do arise, and court injunctions if the company supplying your software introduces backdoor channels after agreeing not to. One area that could be used in such a case if it goes to court is damage to the goodwill of the business using the software, which is a form of intellectual property. One recent example of a dispute between an IoT company and a software supplier was between Australian company TMA Australia, which installed and maintained car park guidance systems for large clients, and the supplier of the systems, Indect. Prior to the dispute, there had been some discussion of TMA being the exclusive distributor for Indect systems in Australia (they were the sole distributor at that time), but this was never agreed or formalised in writing. TMA Australia had installed 15 systems in the four years leading up to the dispute, and signed maintenance agreements over 5-10 years for those systems, which had an expected life of around 15 years. Following a dispute over late supply of parts which led TMA to withhold payment of invoices, this dispute escalated to the point where Indect introduced three-monthly software authenticity checks and threatened to disable software in installed systems. When TMA announced that it would use another system supplier, Indect refused to supply parts for existing installations directly to TMA, but forced them to buy parts to fulfil their maintenance contracts through a third party distributor. Effective contract management of IoT projects If a contract to relies on a standard terms and condition sheet to lay out legal rights of each party in an IoT project, it is important to clarify which terms and conditions are relevant, and what these terms and conditions are referring to specifically for each project. To ensure that each party has read the terms and conditions sheet, a good practice is to require initials and dates at the bottom of each page of the Terms and Conditions. This can allow companies and suppliers entering into identify and resolve issues and differences in contract interpretation early, rather than disputing them following installation of systems when the stakes and operational impacts are higher. As mentioned in the section above, there are two kinds of terms in a contract: express and implied. Express terms are specifically agreed between parties, either in writing or orally (written terms are easier to verify). Implied terms are not written into a contract or agreed verbally, but can still apply to projects if they are part of the common law (these are terms that are implied by law). Standard contractual terms that are implied by law are: goods for sale are fit for their intended purpose: eg. a sensor sold for ocean temperature monitoring operates underwater professional services will be rendered with reasonable care Implied terms cannot contradict what is written in the contract (eg. if a contract states that sensors do not need to be fit for underwater use, the court will not rule that this term was implied) , and the intentions of the parties at the time they made the agreement. They can also be terms that allow the reasonable effective operation of the contract, or be an obvious implied condition (ie. it goes without saying that…). The implied term must also be able to be expressed clearly. Complex and convoluted implied terms are less likely to be approved in court. Terms can also be implied by fact if there has been no attempt by the contracted parties to record the entire contract in writing, based on the intentions and actions of the contracted parties. For example, one term implied by fact by the court in the previous example was that Indect had to facilitate the software authenticity checks they imposed on TMA Australia, because the terms of the software licence purchase implied that it would be licenced for use for the lifetime of the system, and be fit for purpose. However, TMA Australia was unsuccessful in their attempt to get the courts to rule that because they had entered into contracts to purchase systems from Indect, it was an implied term that they should continue to receive direct supply of parts and services for the life of the system at a price which was no less favourable than that offered to other Australian distributors. This was because at the time those contracts were made, there were no other distributors of the system in Australia, and therefore the court stated that no term could be implied because it would be difficult to gauge what sort of price would result before more distributors were on board. Effective dispute avoidance and resolution It is better to avoid a dispute rather than resolving one. Some ways in which the likelihood of a dispute taking place can be reduced are: Ensure terms are agreed in writing and clearly understood by contracted parties Maintain legally acceptable documentation (eg. minutes of discussions and confirmed acceptance, merge files for a running log of projects, initialled printed documentation) Be above board with customers. Particularly for IoT operators dealing with installations in residential properties, it can be fast and inexpensive for clients to make a claim with the state or territory civil and administrative tribunal (VCAT, QCAT). If the customer wins their hearing, it might mean that both their legal costs and damages need to be paid Employ a long term strategy with project partners you are dealing with regularly. Try to lock in some agreements in writing as they occur, even if you are not in agreement on everything. Embarking on the project without any agreements in place leaves a lot of room for dispute. Should a dispute occur, it is important to consider alternatives for coming to an agreement, and the strength of each legal party before going to court. This needs to be weighed against the potential for the time, cost and reputational damage of failing to reach an agreement outside court, as well as confidentiality implications. Legal advice should be sought early to assist with this process. It is also beneficial if teams have some understanding of the technology involved. Depending on which court the action is made in, the cost of court actions in the IoT space can be in the order of tens of thousands of dollars in preparation before the trail, once the lawyers, barristers, expert witnesses and QCs are paid their fees. For each day in court, the cost in legal fees can be in the order of tens of thousands of dollars, plus the time required to attend court. Range and Precedence of statutory requirements Some IoT projects can come under more than one piece of legislation, eg. Australian Commonwealth and state or territory legislation. There are also technical standards and statutory regulations that are relevant to IoT projects. These legal requirements may contradict each other or be inconsistent, so it is important to consider which order of precedence should be given to each level. In Australian law, the order of precedence is: Commonwealth legislation: eg. Australian Consumer Law (this over-rules any contradictory or inconsistent state or territory legislation) State or territory legislation: eg. Home Building Acts for IoT projects based in residential properties (eg. smart home projects). Both Commonwealth and state and territory law over-rule regulations and standards drafted under legislation. Regulations or standards: eg. Ministers can approve Australian standards for particular products, however these will be over-ruled if they are contradicted by the overarching legislation. Technical standards: These standards apply to system design and are particularly relevant for IoT projects. They include: Electromagnetic compatibility Radio communications compliance Specific product standards Specific field-related standards (eg. technical standards for IoT projects in medical industry). Sources: The information on this page was primarily from the following: Presentation by Ashley Kelso, Senior Associate, AustraLaw titled Managing the legal risk of IoT projects
  8. IoT_Reaper virus spreading

    According to news reports. See https://www.itnews.com.au/news/new-mirai-copycat-iot-botnet-spreading-475936
  9. Project management for the IoT

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    Recording: This webinar has now passed. Members of Engineers Australia can view the recording for free on MyPortal. Logon and navigate to Practices > Project Management. Others can purchase the recording on EABooks. This webinar is an activity of EA’s Applied IoT Engineering Community. See http://iot.engineersaustralia.org.au/ for more information. Title: Project management for the Internet of Things. Description: Project management of IoT projects can pose special challenges, which arise from the range of complex technologies which are typically incorporated into an IoT system. Project teams will typically be challenged by technologies with which they are unfamiliar, and will need to seek assistance from suppliers and expert consultants. The presentation will identify these challenges, and provide practical strategies for overcoming them. What you will learn: How to specify IoT system technical requirements Identification and selection of technology solutions Recognising and overcoming technical risks Determination regulatory requirements and how to comply with them Team skills and competencies A staged approach to development Dealing with aspects where specialist assistance may be required About the presenter: Genesys founder and CEO Geoff Sizer has a lifelong passion for electronics and technology, and an ongoing commitment to the electronics engineering profession. He has more than 35 years experience in electronic product development ranging from complex systems to simple consumer goods for a diverse range of industries and applications. Geoff is a Fellow of Engineers Australia, a Chartered Professional Engineer and registered on the National Professional Engineers Register. As a former President of the IREE, Geoff was instrumental in the formation of the ITEE College in Engineers Australia and is a past chair. He has championed the formation of the Applied IOT Community of practice.. During his career Geoff has acted as a Director or Chief Technical Officer for several leading technology When: 12 midday AEST (Sydney) on 14 November 2017. The presentation will last 30 minutes followed by question time. Where: The presentation is by webinar. After registering you will be sent details of how to logon. Cost: This presentation is free to members of Engineers Australia (EA), the Australian Computer Society (ACS), the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) and IEEE. Just provide your membership number during registration for the event. The cost for non-members is $30. How to register: Please register on the Engineers Australia event system, link above. Note, to register you need to have a free EA ID which you can get on the first screen of the registration page. Take note of your ID number for future events.
  10. 18 Oct "Apple and GE today announced a partnership to deliver powerful industrial apps designed to bring predictive data and analytics from Predix, GE’s industrial Internet of Things (IoT) platform, to iPhone and iPad. The two companies unveiled a new Predix software development kit (SDK) for iOS, which gives developers the tools to make their own powerful industrial IoT apps." More info https://www.apple.com/newsroom/2017/10/apple-and-ge-partner-to-bring-predix-industrial-apps-to-iphone-and-ipad/
  11. Low Power Wide Area Networks (LPWAN)

    Low Power Wide Area Networks (LPWAN) are a key technology underpinning the growth and broader adoption of the Internet of Things. They provide secure, low data rate, low energy and low cost connectivity over a wide geographic area which is precisely what the majority of IoT applications need. Low energy is required because many IoT devices need to operate of batteries with very long life. High data rates are not usually required for IoT applications so there is no need to pay the cost of high bandwidth internet connections typically associated with 3G and 4G cellular connections. LPWANs can be deployed independently to support a specific application and increasingly, it is possible to subscribe to publicly operated LPWAN networks. This has led to LPWAN powered IoT applications such as smart metering of water utilities, which has been limited by power and penetration of other communications technologies. Compared to other internet connectivity options, there is a quality of service trade-off against cost, capacity and energy requirements. Key elements of LPWAN technologies are: Support low power/energy requirements Long battery life of devices (10-15 years) Small message payloads (typically tens of bytes) Infrequent message transmission (typically <100 messages/day/Thing) Better penetration of buildings Wider coverage between base stations (~20km to 100km) Low cost per bit of data conveyed (dollars per year per Thing) Low hardware cost (target <$10) to make wide-scale deployment feasible. A significant caveat of LPWAN technologies is they generally do not provide guaranteed message delivery. The networks that are available are either unidirectional or provide limited back link connectivity, so that messages sent via things are not acknowledge. So therefore we don't have a guaranteed message delivery capability. This significantly impacts the sort of applications that one can consider using these networks for. There is also a significant difference in the way that the data is conveyed to the user, in that the operator of the network would typically operate their own server which would provide data communications to and from the deployed things. The user would access this data via direct connection from their server into the server of the system operator. The other key point is that LPWANs facilitate the deployment of isolated things, so significant numbers of things that are not necessarily clustered, so that the connectivity is directly from the network to the thing, and not via a local area network. There are a range of commercial technologies competing in the LPWAN space. The main LPWAN technologies active in Australia or scheduled to be available include: LoRaWAN NB-IOT Sigfox Taggle Ingenue/On-Ramp Neul Weightless The best supported technologies in terms of range of vendors and network availability in Australia are Sigfox, LoRaWAN and NBIoT. There are also a growing number of practitioners with experience and knowledge of how to implement LPWAN solutions using these technologies. Each of the LPWAN technologies have their advantages and disadvantages. The following tables compare a variety of relevant attributes. Image curtesy Dr Boyd Murray of Murray Wireless They main telecom operators in Australia have been trialing the LTE technologies and are beginning to roll them out commercially (still in soft launch mode at the end of 2017). At this point, deployment of LPWAN technologies are likely to experience rapid growth in IoT solutions. Other technologies include: DASH-7 Greenwaves IEEE802.15.4k LECIM IEEE802.15.4g (Wi-SUN) LTE-M LTE Cat-0 NB-Fi (WAVIoT) Nwave Weightless –w –n –p Design considerations: Following are some of the main design considerations when choosing the most appropriate LPWAN: Duplex: Consideration needs to be given as to whether communication needs to be bi-directional. Reasons for this may include the ability to do firmware updates. Security: Does the link allow eavesdropping? Can the nodes be hacked or can they be spoofed, or can they be hacked? Generally speaking the nodes can only be hacked if they receive data, in other words, in the downlink. If they only have an uplink, it's very difficult to hack them. Capacity: Consideration should be given to how many nodes and transmissions per day are required in a gateway. What happens if you have multiple nodes transmitting at the same time and you get dropped packets? Is there provision for retransmits or some other form of redundancy. Standards and chip sources: For commercial and operational reasons, some designers may want open standards and multiple sources for the chipsets used in their IoT solutions, while others are happy with proprietary solutions. Some solutions involve communication protocol using open standards with a proprietary chip set, while others are proprietary communication protocols with multiple chip sources. Technology approach: LoRaWAN uses spread spectrum modulation technology which allows it to operate below the noise floor, while most other LPWANS use narrow-band technologies that pick up the signal in a very narrow slice of spectrum usually operating 8dB to 10dB above the noise floor. Spectrum: Another consideration is whether to use a technology that employs licenced or unlicensed spectrum. If it's class licenced or unlicensed, how much interference are you going to get from other users who are using that? For example, WiFi is using 2.4 GHz ISM band, many other users using the 915 MHz ISM band. The other users in the urban regions can actually increase the noise floor by up to 20 Db. Global roaming: Some IoT applications need to be able to track objects from one country to another. Various countries operate on different frequencies so it in this case it would be important to choose a technology that can cope with this. Deployment and Operational costs: A key consideration is the cost of installing and maintaining a network. Some solutions allow you to deploy your own network but all the nodes but you would have to maintain them. With other solutions you dont own the network so this is not a consideration but you might then have to pay for SIMs and the network connection. Sources: The information on this paged was sourced primarily from the following sources: Narrow band communication technologies by Geoff Sizer, Chair of Engineers Australia’s ITEE College and CEO, Genesys Electronics Design Low Power Wide Area Networks and LoRaWAN by Justin Spangaro, Founder and CEO Airlora Communications A webinar titled How Low Power Wide Area Networks are revolutionising the wireless world by Dr Boyd Murray, Founder & Principal Consultant, of Murray Wireless A webinar titled ‘Smart Metering for Water with the Internet of Things’ by Rian Sullings, Manager Smart Metering & IoT, WaterGroup Pty Ltd Links: The Pacific Lora Users Group
  12. IoT and STEM Outreach

    Yes, agree with pretty much all that. I would tend not to be too dismissive of the value of learning the principles of coding. At my daughter's age, the concepts of IF/THEN constructs and all the other coding principles are all very new and worthwhile I think. And primarily at this stage, I think my aim is just to get her enthusiastic about learning, so the scratch level programs have been great and she still has some way to run with it. However, I take your point that she will pretty quickly run out of runway to learn with just coding which is why I am already thinking about what next. Your point about teachers asking what will you drop is very valid. They don't teach this stuff in normal school time for that very reason. However, as a parent I have oodles of after school time and holidays to fill which I would like to be as enriching as possible, hence my interest in this. I'm not actually particularly focused on coding or even STEM. However, I did attend a DATA 61 event where one of the keynote speakers was 9 years old and was a little blown away by the potential of young people to create a future using data. As you say, its what you do with the data rather than coding as a skill that will make the difference. However, I think understanding how to manipulate data via coding will be \ a modern day skill that should sit alongside other skills like literacy and mathematics. But how to develop it over time in a reasonable fashion? I put up a proposal in EA about a year ago to launch a STEM Outreach Community, whereby deliverers of STEM education services such as yourself could collaborate and learn from each other. It hasn't got traction yet but I remain hopeful. Cheers Tim
  13. AIIA IoT MER: The Smart Mining Conference

    See https://www.aiia.com.au/events/upcoming-events/south-australia-events2/southaustralia/the-smart-mining-conference
  14. Smart metering for water with the IoT

    At 12pm 10 October 2017, this community hosted a webinar will be held on Smart Metering for Water with the IoT. In the comments on this post are some of the questions asked by the audience. Feel free to respond to the questions directly. To post a question/comment you need to: (register and) logon to this community site in the top right hand corner Navigate to Forums > IoT Engineering and locate the post with name of the webinar
  15. Interesting news on how a computer manufacturer aims to get on the IoT bandwagon. http://www.theaustralian.com.au/business/technology/dell-bets-big-on-internet-of-things/news-story/892c8d8495756ab387e021579dba7f22
  16. Multiple media reports out that Vodafone has launched their NB-IoT network, with two clients to trial it. Limited geographic coverage around central Sydney and Melbourne with wider roll out next year. See https://www.itnews.com.au/news/vodafone-switches-on-nb-iot-network-475139
  17. IoT and STEM Outreach

    Hi Heath, Just followed up on your link. Well done you! MiniSparx sounds like a great initiative. Newcastle based only? Re Scratch, I don't think there is any issue with Scratch and the demise of the industry in the article you linked sounds more like a law of supply and demand issue. My 6.5yr daughter has done four days now on Scratch and has the basic concepts mastered. She still struggles with slight more complicated things. The main point is that she is using a computer screen to create things rather than just mindlessly watch YouTube videos. What it has make me think about is progression. By the time she is 9 or 10 she will be beyond basic programming stuff. What would be good is a pathway to progress kids through ever more challenging things such as robots and even the IoT stuff Chi Bihn Le talked about. Ideally this would extend over their entire schooling. I was actually imagining her graduating from highschool with a fully fledged ICT degree. Its not has crazy as it sounds because I'm continually amazed at my daughter's ability to absorb complex ideas and use the tools to create quite sophisticated aps and she is not yet seven. She is not particularly bright either. She just has what every young child has when the learning is fun. It also has to be affordable. I pay about $40 a day for normal school holiday activities at the local school after ours care. Admittedly that is cheap but I pay about $100 per day for the code camp stuff, so the temptation to leave her in there is great.
  18. Smart metering for water with the IoT

    You mentioned "new business models for the water industry". What are they?
  19. Smart metering for water with the IoT

    Can you easily instrument existing mechanical meters? What are the challenges involved? Answer transcribed from webinar response by Rian Sullings (WaterGroup P/L): In Australia there are roughly 24 million water meters. Coincidentally, a similar number to the population, so most houses have a couple of people in them, but then if you consider all the other buildings and infrastructure, it adds up to a similar number. The vast majority of those meters are mechanical. They have moving parts. They're similar to a clock. They've got a register (like a car odometer). The meters themselves are designed to last for 10 or 15 years in situ. They wear out over time. They become less accurate. It is possible to replace an entire water meter with a smart-enabled meter, but it's also possible to retrofit devices on to those mechanical meters to make use of the physical asset that's already sitting there and will likely sit there for years to come. Most of the mechanical meters that have been deployed in Australia for the past decade or two have a provision for a data output. I think the thinking was that, "We don't quite have the technology yet, but we know we will in the future, so let's put data outputs on all the mechanical meters." The most common way of extracting the data is by attaching a sensor into the meter. If you imagine the register, it's a number of dials and they rotate as the water flows through. On some of those dials there is a magnet and that magnet makes revolutions with the dials or gears. For example, every 10 litres that passes through the meter, a dial might make one full revolution, so then you can use a reed switch or a hall effect sensor to detect when the magnet is close to or further away from the sensor. Then you can count how many times the water meters turns over time. You can use data logging to timestamp that.
  20. Telstra's NB IoT network launched

    According to a CRN News report, Telstra has turned on its national IoT network. See https://www.crn.com.au/news/telstra-quietly-switches-on-internet-of-things-network-473757 I cant see any announcements of Telstra's website though. If you know any more please link in the comments. Meanwhile, Telstra has announced the first four IoT startups to to be supported by its Muru-D incubator. https://www.telstra.com.au/aboutus/media/media-releases/Telstra-announces-first-IoT-focused-cohort-with-muru-D-MEL1
  21. Opportunities in Big Data

    Description: The topic of Big Data presents many challenges but also new opportunities. The recent success of deep learning is an example of the latter, where big amounts of training data enable large artificial neural networks to achieve super-human performance on tasks such as object detection and classification. Forward-looking companies and organisations around the world are currently massively investing in this domain. In this seminar we will look at some relevant basic algorithmic concepts but also report on experiences and plans of our research team when navigating through a time that some people call the “Big Bang of Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning”. About the presenter: Stephan Chalup (Ph.D., Dipl.-Math.) is an Associate Professor at the University of Newcastle in Australia where he is leading the Interdisciplinary Machine Learning Research Group and the Newcastle Robotics Lab. He studied mathematics with neuroscience at the University of Heidelberg and received his Ph.D. in Computing Science from the Machine Learning Research Centre at Queensland University of Technology (QUT) in Brisbane in 2002. Over the past fifteen years he published over 90 research articles in areas such as artificial neural networks, machine learning and autonomous intelligent agents. He is on the editorial boards of several journals and has presented research seminars, for example, at Harbin Institute of Technology in China (HIT), at Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) in Germany, and at The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in the USA. When: 5:30pm midday AEST (Sydney)
  22. See this report: https://www.arnnet.com.au/article/627814/sigfox-shows-20-cent-iot-wireless-module/?fp=2&fpid=1
  23. Opportunities in Big Data

    until
    Description: The topic of Big Data presents many challenges but also new opportunities. The recent success of deep learning is an example of the latter, where big amounts of training data enable large artificial neural networks to achieve super-human performance on tasks such as object detection and classification. Forward-looking companies and organisations around the world are currently massively investing in this domain. In this seminar we will look at some relevant basic algorithmic concepts but also report on experiences and plans of our research team when navigating through a time that some people call the “Big Bang of Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning”. About the presenter: Stephan Chalup (Ph.D., Dipl.-Math.) is an Associate Professor at the University of Newcastle in Australia where he is leading the Interdisciplinary Machine Learning Research Group and the Newcastle Robotics Lab. He studied mathematics with neuroscience at the University of Heidelberg and received his Ph.D. in Computing Science from the Machine Learning Research Centre at Queensland University of Technology (QUT) in Brisbane in 2002. Over the past fifteen years he published over 90 research articles in areas such as artificial neural networks, machine learning and autonomous intelligent agents. He is on the editorial boards of several journals and has presented research seminars, for example, at Harbin Institute of Technology in China (HIT), at Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) in Germany, and at The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in the USA.
  24. until
    Recording: This webinar has now passed. Members of Engineers Australia can view the recording for free on MyPortal. Logon and navigate to Industry Specific Applications > Utilities. Others can purchase the recording on EABooks. Title: Smart metering for water with the Internet of Things Presenters: Rian Sullings, Manager Smart Metering and IoT, WaterGroup What you will learn: How IoT is revolutionising the water industry How to fast-track IoT implementations Key challenges in adopting IoT and how to overcome them Description: The application internet of things technologies to high water users is delivering significant results, as evidenced by WaterGroup receiving awards for the highest impact of IoT technologies to date. The company has developed low cost, high volume remote sensing devices using new low power wide area communication technologies and advanced data analytics to develop new business models for the management of water use. Users are more easily able to identify water leaks and consumption trends, to generate insights and facilitate smarter action. About the presenter: Rian Sullings helps people understand their utility resource use to improve efficiency and reduce costs with the latest IoT tools and business models. With a key focus on the adoption of new technologies, Rian has been instrumental in the successful adoption of smart metering and remote sensing by some of Australia’s largest utilities and water users. Some of his achievements include the successful delivery of millions of dollars of water saving IoT projects for organisations such as QANTAS, Coles, Sydney Water, Honeywell, and the Department of Education, as well as the development of the first Sigfox enabled smart water metering device outside Europe and North America. When: 12 midday in Sydney. If you are in a state with a different time zone from NSW, please determine your local time. The date is above. The presentation will last 30 minutes followed by question time. Where: The presentation is by webinar. After registering you will be sent details of how to logon. Cost: This presentation is free to members of Engineers Australia (EA), the Australian Computer Society (ACS), the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) and IEEE. Just provide your membership number during registration for the event. The cost for non-members is $30. How to register: Please register on the Engineers Australia event system, link above. Note, to register you need to have a free EA ID which you can get on the first screen of the registration page. Take note of your ID number for future events.
  25. Sensors and Embedded Systems

    Types of sensors Sensors can measure virtually anything. Examples include GPS, moisture, water levels, tank levels, carbon dioxide, volatile organic hydrocarbons, particulates, radiant temperature, temperature, wind speed sensors and more. In addition to measuring specific attributes, there are other kinds of inputs to IoT systems such as machine vision. Applications of sensors with IoT connectivity are wide, including smart metering of utilities such as water and electricity. Interfacing sensors to an IoT system Sensors, at a very basic level, are inputs to an IoT system. Sensors typically physically interface with IoT system using a communication bus such as I²C, serial and USB, 0-10 V or 4-20 mA using. These systems use sensors and electrical contacts that have been around a long time so all the normal considerations with conventional sensors apply for IoT. For example, the digital signals from contact closures need to have debounce protection. Similarly, outputs from an IoT system may be digital or analogue and will interface to actuators that make changes to things, such as opening or closing of gates, opening or closing valves, switching pumps etc, often using electrical or solid state relays. Again there are well known things that needs to be addressed, such as the characteristics of the load including the voltage, the current, whether it is an inductive load. Sensors typically interface with RF modules, which have analogue and digital I/O pins. Many RF modules also have optional integrated microprocessor. RF modules also require an antenna connection. One challenge of IoT systems is discovering where the IoT devices are on a network. A key technology for addressing this is the W3C's Semantic Sensor Networks. Cost and power limitations of sensor communications for IoT The cost and power requirements of communications technologies can limit the amount of sensors deployed in IoT solutions. Many communications technologies used for IoT, such as wifi, are power hungry. Others, like satellite, are expensive. Low power solutions are emerging, including the Sigfox low power wide area (LPWA) network. Aggregating sensors in an array around a user terminal for satellite communications can reduce the power and cost of satellite communications for IoT applications, by eliminating the need for a dedicated uplink and downlink for each sensor. Visualisation of IoT sensor data Technologies such as augmented reality can be used to provide a visual display of IoT sensor data overlaid on the physical device which is updated live in the cloud for 'in context' visualisation of device data. Hardware The following diagram gives a representation of the architecture of a typical deployed Thing. In many cases you typically have a single sensor, a single actuator and battery storage, but when you generalise a Thing to a slightly higher level the following elements may all be represented. The sensors and actuators shown above are just a few examples. They will interface to an intelligence in a micro-controller via, typically via an interface of some sort. The microcontroller would typically be a system on chip with thousands of options. Ultimately the microcontroller is responsible for communicating via an interface which could be low power Wide Area Networks among other communication options. In addition to designing an IoT device from scratch, it is also possible to buy a single board computer such as Raspberry Pi and configure this for use in many IoT contexts. Firmware Firmware is the software on the microcontroller embedded into the Thing. The following diagram presumes a typical configuration of one or more sensors and one or more actuators with input and output drivers that communicate with a network. All this is managed by an operating system. At the simplest level there is a master polling loop microcontroller architecture but typically the more advanced microcontrollers available are running RTOS which give you a high level of sophistication. Linux is also a possibility and Contiki is often tied to 6LoWPAN communications. The structure of the firmware includes input and output drivers, middleware that takes the information and converts it via an applications programme, interfaced to some form that the business logic of the device can decide what to do with that information. That can include communications up via the network or control commands from the network. It can also include local logic operations that relay input drivers or input devices and sensors to output drivers that drive actuators so you can have local control functions standalone from the network. The firmware includes a communications driver to interface with the communications device be it a radio or a UART etc. Behind that is a communications protocol stack. For example, for a Bluetooth low energy or for 6LoWPAN the communications must be managed in terms of the packet payload encapsulation, and the various layers in the communications protocol. An important aspect that's sometimes overlooked is the connection manager. The purpose of the connection manager is to establish the network communications and to then monitor and manage that. If the communication drops out it must re-establish communications. It typically to include some form of health heartbeat, so even when the Thing is not reporting data, the device is telling the server that it is alive and happy. Conversely you could have a ping from the network down to the Thing so that the Thing knows it has the necessary connectivity to fulfil it's part in the IoT system. Overlaid on top of all of these software layers is energy management, that applies top to bottom in terms of how much energy we use for communicating with our sensors and actuators, how much energy is used for communications traffic and how much is consumed by the logical processing functions of the device. Another overlay top to bottom is having the appropriate security at the network level and then appropriate integrity in all of the processing layers. Design Considerations In terms of your typical Thing, we're really talking about standalone battery powered devices, so we need energy storage and desirably some form of external source into that, or it may be a self-contained primary cell. It's paramount that we carefully manage the energy. You'll hear power management tools often mentioned in IoT but it's not actually power we're trying to manage, it's energy. How many transmissions or sensing operations can we get out of the Thing, per day, per week, per month, and how many years will that battery last while performing that function. Getting that equation right is absolutely critical to having a practical thing. So an early starting point in considering the design of a Thing is to look at the energy budget over the life-cycle of the device and of its internal energy storage. A design decision must be made on whether to select a RF and microprocessor combination module or a separate module for each function. A particular application might require microprocessor specifications that are not met by an integrated microprocessor. Or, it might be cheaper to implement intelligence on a separate microprocessor rather than paying the difference in cost between the RF module, and the combination RF module with an integrated the CPU. It is hard to hard to separate sensor selection and the design of embedded electronics from consideration of the communication technologies available. The regulatory maximum power level for all "things" is at at the usual 920 MHz is one watt, which is 30 dBm. A key influencing factor is the receiver’s sensitivity. The various communication technologies vary in their sensitivity (e.g. Bluetooth is 90 dBm. Zigbee is typically -100 dBm).LoRa can be up to 138 dBm which is why they are suited to the applications requiring long range. They can get distances of up to 15 kilometers. The reason for that is they've got three bandwidths. There's seven spread factors, giving normal bit rates from 290 bits per second up to 37 1/2 kilobits per second. Other design considerations include the choice of antenna and the range of radio frequency (RF) considerations that must be taken into account, to ensure any IoT device is compliant with Australian regulations and the system will work as intended in the deployment environment. Another consideration is to determine if the data needs to be encrypted, typically using the Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) and the associated security considerations. Power budgets must also be taken into account, especially where battery operation is required. What data rate is required and how much power will that use? Is there an option for recharging. What battery options are available for the device package and budget. These questions can affect the design or choice of sensing devices and embedded electrics dramatically. Another design consideration is the level of uncertainty which may be introduced by the context, or environment, in which the sensor is used, and whether its performance will vary over time. This is discussed further in the section on design thinking for IoT. Sources: Material on this page has primarily been sourced from the following: Presentation by Phillip Lark, Engineering Manager, Braetec titled Front End Integration: Connecting sensors to the cloud Webinar titled Satellites and the new industrial frontier – how new space technology is intersecting with the Internet of Things by Flavia Tata Nardina, Co-founder and CEO, Fleet Space Technologies
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