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Cisco Live event showcases 'Internet of Everything'

To demonstrate that the "Internet of Everything" is already happening, Cisco Systems showcased examples of the integration of people, data, processing and connected things that make people's life easier and more efficient.

Joining Cisco chairman and chief executive officer John Chambers delivered the welcome keynote marking the 25th annual "Cisco Live" event at Moscone Center in San Francisco. He was joined by Alan Matula, Royal Dutch Shell's executive vice president and chief information officer, who outlined how the company has used the technology that allows real-time remote monitoring that sends information from the oil rigs to the office for analysis.

Bryson Koehler, Weather Company executive vice president and chief information officer, also said the big-data processing of 2.3 billion forecast points contributed to the accuracy of weather forecasting.

Meanwhile, Roger Vasquez, director of engineering at Transwestern and Metropolis Investment Holdings, talked about how Pennzoil Place Building, 36-storey twin towers in Houston, Texas, with more than a million square feet (about 93,000 square metres) of space, could lower energy costs by 51 per cent within five years with its integrated system of video surveillance, physical access control, unified communications and digital signage.

The building's electrical costs went down from US$43 million in 2009 to $2.1 million (Bt69 million) last year. "Same occupancy, same building, new system. That's a dramatic drop [in] energy consumption," he said.

Other costs such as water also went down, Vasquez said.

The building engineers can monitor and manage air-conditioning, lighting, and other building systems from wireless devices. Tenants can receive network services quicker and they are happier, he said.

Consultant Stephen Lurie, regional director of solutions and services for Zones Inc, said: "We came in to show them how they can measure the usage of energy in the building and connected it with 100,000 points inside that facility."

Steve Holtsclaw information system manager from Del Papa, a 140-year-old beer-distribution company in Texas, shared the experience of having connected distribution centres that can video-monitor all the delivery processes including in the trucks and warehouses. Sensors were attached to forklifts as well as the trucks with a wireless system.

The technology is very useful in risk management. Besides, the company was able to get the beer delivered more quickly, while the working hours for the staff went down.

Streetline CEO Zia Yusuf presented solutions that can help commuters find parking space wherever they want. Using Google Earth with camera-based sensing, information about vacant parking space will be provided real-time within 15-20 seconds, he said.

Bank of America's senior vice president for ATM/kiosk strategy and innovation, Tyler R Johnson, announced a plan to provide banking specialists' consultation through teleconference at 500 branches, 10 per cent of the bank's total number of branches.

This was aimed at fixing the problem of a shortage of specialists at all the branches while providing the customers an experience with a more human touch instead of getting information from machines or by telephone.

A two-year trial at 100 branches interacting with 10,000 customers showed positive reaction to the technology and the advice, he said.

The trial resulted in an increase in sales of financial services compared with phone consultation, he said. The specialists were trained to be comfortable in front of the camera and to use non-verbal communication in sending the messages across.

Bank of America uses Cisco Telepresence System 500 and EX90 conferencing devices to provide the service. CTS 500 is a 32-inch monitor with camera, microphone and speakers, and the EX90 is 24 inches.

In the public sector, Mayor Sly James of Kansas City, Missouri, said his city would soon launch pilot tests of smart lighting, interactive digital kiosks, and high-definition security video in downtown areas.

He said residents could be more engaged using their mobile devices.

Chambers stressed that the Internet of Everything was different from just an "Internet of Things".

"Connecting things doesn't accomplish anything if you don't change the process behind it," he said.


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