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Archive for November, 2009
November 30th, 2009

Posted by
Karl Roche in

Brawn F1 car

Brawn F1 car

After the launches in Berlin, New York, Washington DC, Tokyo and Beijing, it’s now the turn of London.

We have a packed week of events in IBM South Bank for the official (invite only) launch of our Analytics Solution Centre.

Tues 1st Dec, 3pm (GMT)

Tomorrow we will be video streaming the launch on Livestream. You will be able to watch on our New Intelligence web site. The Twitter back channel will be #ibmbao should you want to join in.

So why is the Brawn F1 car there?

The first Brawn GP car, BGP 001, was designed entirely using Dassault Systèmes 3D virtual design (CATIA) and collaborative (ENOVIA) platform software and has enjoyed considerable success in the 2009 Formula One season. When we say considerable, it won the driver and constructors championship.

Also on site this week we have a group of demos that tell the story of how business analytics is already helping clients. More on that later in the week.

We’ll also have more images and updates throughout the week from London, but in the meantime, here is a little video of the car again.

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November 20th, 2009

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In our new video series, Mad Science, IBM Fellow John Cohn (you may recognize him from the Discovery Channel’s “The Colony”) gives us a tour of the Burlington, VT site, and shows us how it saves hundreds of thousands of US dollars in electricity and reduces its carbon footprint by using “smarter city” technologies.


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November 20th, 2009

Following is a guest post from Johan Ekesiöö, Country General Manager of IBM Sweden.

images2 This week politicians, visionaries and representatives from different sectors come together in the city of Malmö in the south of Sweden for the 5th Ministerial eGovernment Conference in the EU with the theme Teaming up for the eUnion. During this conference representatives from the 27 Member States of the EU will lay out a roadmap for the five years to come.

As IBM’s Swedish Country General Manager I was asked to participate in the conference, and I gladly accepted. I did so because this conference is the place where decisions are made that will shape the future of eGovernment for the 499,794,855 citizens of the European Union.

For me as a the leader of IBM in one of the member states of the EU eGovernment is important in many ways, It’s important because it’s one of the areas where I can see IBM really making a difference in creating smart solutions that benefit governments on all levels, as well as the citizens. But it’s also important since it affects me and my family practically every day.

I live in the city of Stockholm, and driving to work I have been able to witness the impact the difference that the congestion charges have made on the traffic situation. When we built the system behind the congestion charges we worked closely with representatives from different governmental organisations, and I believe that this is how we should act when we build the Government solutions of the future.

Smarter government is about using the resources of the citizens in a smarter way to make societies work better. But to build the systems and the framework to make this possible we need to work together on all levels. We need use open standards and decide on a common vision for the future.

I believe that building global eGovernment services is not a technology issue. We can fix that part of the equation – it is about political will. In cities, countries and communities across the planet. And for us in Europe these precious days in Malmö will hopefully be a starting point for the following 5 years.

Johan EkesiööJohan Ekesiöö has been the Country General Manager for IBM Sweden since 2003. Over the years he has held several different roles in IBM including international assignments. Johan lives in Stockholm, the capital of Sweden with his family.

For more Smarter Planet-related content specific to Sweden, visit the blog, En smartare planet.

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Recent weeks have seen a significant peak in Smart Grid interest, much of which resulted from a speech about stimulus funds supporting Smart Grid development by U.S. President, Barack Obama.

It seems appropriate then to introduce readers of this blog to the Global Intelligent Utility Network Coalition, a group of innovative utility companies we formed two years ago aimed at accelerating the use of smart grid technologies. Collectively, the GIUNC collectively represents 100 million energy customers across five continents.

On Monday, November 16th, in partnership with Sempra Energy, we’ll be convening coalition members for the bi-annual meeting in San Diego to discuss progress, challenges and opportunities for Smart Grid development on both a local and global level. We’ll also be announcing two new members of the coalition.

We’ll be at the event capturing some of the conversations from speakers (see below) and will grab short video interviews from a number of attendees to probe deeper into the topics of most relevance. If you have a particular question you’d like us to ask participants, just leave a comment below. We’ll share the videos in the coming days.

In the meantime, take a read through prior smart grid posts here on the blog or detailed background on

For your reference, speakers at the event include:

  • Mike Niggli, COO Sempra Energy
  • Guido Bartels, IBM General Manager, Energy & Utilities
  • Suedeen Kelly, Commissioner, United States Federal Energy Regulatory Commission
  • Lisa Bicker, President and CEO, Clean Tech San Diego
  • Byron Washom, Director of Strategic Energy Initiatives, University of California San Diego
  • Steven Hauser, Vice President of Grid Integration, National Renewable Energy Lab
  • Mason Willrich, Chair of the Board of Governors, California Independent System Operations
  • Katherine Hamilton, President, Gridwise Alliance
  • Brad Gammons, VP Solutions and Sales, IBM Energy and Utilities Industry
  • Jens Jakobsson, Vice President Power Distribution, DONG Energy
  • Terry Jones, Head, CSIRO Smart Grid Initiative, Smart Grid Australia DG Working Initiative
  • Jim Avery, Senior Vice President Power Supply, San Diego Gas & Electric
  • Arunabha Basu, Head of Technology, North Delhi Power Limited
  • Don Cortez, Vice President Regulated Operations Technology, CenterPoint Energy

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Following is a guest post from Charles Prow.

Earlier this week, I attended an executive forum that IBM and Government Executive co-sponsored on how government can use analytics as an innovation agent. It was an eye opener on many levels.

November 2000 041First, the forum drew a standing-room-only crowd to the Ronald Reagan Building’s Rotunda, showing just how much interest there is in advanced analytics in government agencies. (I counted attendees from more than 70 federal agencies in the crowd.)

Second, as Tom Davenport, the keynote speaker and author of “Competing on Analytics,” pointed out: The use of analytics isn’t new in federal agencies, which have routinely used in areas such as supply chain management — to determine troop levels in the armed forces, for example – or by the IRS to measure tax compliance. What’s different now is that more agencies are beginning to embrace analytics as a strategic tool to be more efficient and transparent and as a basis for decision making.

There were lots of proof points from panelists representing the Social Security Administration (SSA), Department of Justice, Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), the U.S. Postal Service (USPS), and Department of Homeland Security. For example, the SSA discussed how they are using analytics and predictive modeling to make quicker determinations on disability applications for those in need – they’ve shortened a process that once took months to weeks.

You may have noticed that your mail delivery is a lot better these days. The U.S. Postal Service attributes that to analytics: They’re extracting valuable insights from information on mail delivery to improve on-time delivery performance, which today exceeds 94 percent for first class mail.

The Department of Housing and Urban Development is using analytics to predict losses on reverse mortgages so they can do a better job of pricing government-based insurance premiums to cover potential losses.

IBM used the venue to announce the opening of a new Analytics Solution Center in Washington that will focus specifically on the needs of federal agencies and other public sector organizations to use information more effectively. The center will draw on resources from more than 400 professionals, including researchers such as IBM Fellow Brenda Dietrich, a panelist at the event and an expert in business analytics and mathematical sciences, along with a host of software architects and consultants who are knowledgeable about the challenges facing public sector organizations.

Not surprising, government is one of the most data intensive industries. I was impressed and encouraged by efforts underway among federal agencies to ensure that they’re not just collecting data, but acting upon it to improve public services. It’s this kind of forward thinking that will drive transparency and accountability and better decision making.

Charles Prow is a managing partner for the public sector in IBM Global Business Services.

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November 7th, 2009

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Following is a guest post from Matt English, a partner in IBM’s Global Business Services division in Australia:

The workplace as we know it today is about to change. In fact it needs to change. The availability of technology has created an abundance of opportunity for new processes – smarter processes. An aging workforce and customer expectation means change is becoming a necessity. Organisations need to work smarter.

In Australia, the aging population will in the very near future lead to a reduced taxation pool and skills shortages. In fact, by as early as next year (2010), for every ten people leaving the Australian workforce, there will be only eight to replace them. By 2020, for every ten people leaving the Australian workforce, there will be only six to replace them. With a reduced talent pool, businesses will need to do more with less.

A large majority of generation Y is also now part of the Australian workforce, and over recent years organisations have deliberated how to cope with this generation which is culturally different – a generation which thrives online in social networks – they are the first generation to have a natural relationship with technology as we know it today.

Digitally aware employees entering the workforce are natural proponents of more collaborative and efficient working practices based on networking tools and other web 2.0 applications. They are natural collaborators and have a natural aptitude for technology which enables information sharing and sourcing.

So what can be learnt from this generation? And as more digitally aware employees enter the workforce, how will organisations evolve?

A recent survey conducted by IBM found that two thirds of people can’t find the help they know exists that would enable them to do their jobs better; two hours per day is spent looking for the right information and expertise; and in fact, 5.3 hours are wasted per employee, per week due to inefficient processes. 42 percent of decisions are reached with the wrong input, at least once per week.

However, organisations that work smart enhance and benefit from their people’s expertise, enterprise and creativity. Thanks to the environment we live in today, workplaces have the ability to be mobile, connected, and clever, creating efficient processes through technology. The way organisations and individuals create, use and share information will transform organisations, to make them work smarter. For digitally aware employees, this is second nature. At IBM we take advantage of this skill set, and our Generation Y employees are mentoring older employees with 20+ years in the workplace on how to embrace new social media channels and tools.

So what does the workplace of the future look like?

Future workplace trends include:

Processes will become more simple
As generation Y joins generation X in the workforce, a dominantly technology aware group will push for the use of technology to simplify work processes. Older workers will develop their knowledge to meet the demands of a new working environment

Offices will be more mobile
The growing use of wireless mobile phones, high-speed broadband connection, and personal digital assistants (PDAs), a fixed physical office location is no longer an absolute requirement for an organisation. The number of employees working from home will increase.

Workplaces will become increasingly global
With offices becoming more mobile, companies will be able to hire from all corners of the globe to get the right fit. The number of employees working from global locations, thanks to collaborative technologies, will increase.

Four-day work weeks
Technology which enables greater efficiency and productivity will also enable individuals to work smarter – work which once took 40 hours to complete could take 32 hours.

Innovation will be spurred
The move toward more open, collaborative and cooperative models encourages networks, and enables greater thought sharing. The type of open conversation enabled by collaborative processes encourages a cross-fertilisation of ideas, and innovation.

Workplaces will work smarter
Businesses will need to adapt to survive. In fact, technology has created a society in which businesses are expected to adapt, to respond dynamically. People want to work and communicate in real time, anytime, from anywhere – and they can.

A Harvard business study showed that organisations with a culture of collaboration had productivity levels up to 250% greater than competitors with a culture of competition.

Collaboration allows organisations to discover, tap and combine expertise and information in time and in context, while the connected workplace enables round-the-clock resources – this is smart work.

IBM’s Smart Work Summits going on right now in Sydney and Melbourne are discussing how organisations around the world and locally are transforming to manage their processes more efficiently, and to help their people work smarter. Peter Sheahan, Global Business Analyst and Generation and Change Guru will also be speaking on generational change, workforce trends, and building the enterprise of the future. Find out more here about the summits. Registration is free. You can also follow the events on Twitter: #IBMSWS.

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With the launch of IBM’s Institute of Business Value new study Truck 2020 underway (and Project TwitStop behind us) we’d like to share a new social media asset: a top level overview of the report from the authors themselves — Sanjay Rishi, Kalman Gyimesi, Connie Burek, Michael Monday — via a new screencasting service called Screenr.  Also take a look at the online video overview of Truck 2020 below, and links to the rest of our social media initiative to build conversation around this piece of thought leadership.

Meanwhile, you are welcome to access Truck 2020 right here:

Author Screencast


Links & Resources:

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Jetzt sind Sie gefragt:

Der Smarter Cities Scan: Wie können Städte - Ihre Heimatstadt - smarter werden?

Die Mission: Vordenker städtischer Innovationen, IBMer und Menschen aus allen Regionen der Welt zusammenzubringen, um Ideen über Smarter Cities auszutauschen und weiter zu entwickeln.

Die Plattform: Die innovative, einfache und schnell wachsende Tumblr Plattform, Heimat der Smarter Planet | Tumblr Seite und der Ein Smarter Planet | Tumblr Seite unterstützt das Smarter Planet Blogwird in die Smarter Planet Webseite auf übernommen.

Das Ziel: Die Teilnehmer werden gemeinsam ein Smart Cities Open Model erschaffen. Mit Hilfe von IBM Data Mining Expertise und Software werden die Multimediabeiträge aller Teilnehmer analysiert. Das resultierende Blueprint wird anschließend Städten und gesellschaftlichen Initiativen als Grundlage für Projekte zur Verfügung gestellt, die unsere städtischen Zentren smarter machen sollen.

Neue Intelligenz aus Analyse
Die Zielsetzung des Programms unterstreicht die Mission der neuen Business Analytics & Optimization Beratungsdienstleistungen der IBM: Neue Intelligenz aus der Analyse von tief greifenden und unterschiedlichen Daten, welche Unternehmen und komplexe Organisationen wie Städte nutzen können, um erfolgreich und effizienter zu funktionieren.
Die kreativen Ergebnisse werden auch in die Arbeit unserer Business Analytics Center rund um die Welt in Berlin, Tokyo, Peking, New York, London und Washington, D.C. einfließen.

Wie funktioniert der Smarter Cities Scan
Gehen Sie auf und klicken Sie auf “Post Your Ideas” um beizutragen. Beiträge können Bilder, Videos, Link, Zitate, Text oder Kombinationen davon sein. Alternativ können Sie Ihren Beitrag auch per email - natürlich auch per Handy - an senden.

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Keel Beach, Achill Island, Ireland. Courtesy Giuseppe Peronato.

One of the challenges dedicated surfers face here in the Northeastern part of the U.S. is that great swells are rarely accompanied by good weather. Prime surf season begins once the storms begin to pick up in September and extends through the winter. And while storms bring great swells, they also bring higher ocean pollutants as storm runoff carries bacteria from streets, drains and even sewers down to the beaches. If you want to surf good waves here, it’s something you have to deal with. I even have one particular friend whose ear infections became so frequent his doctor gave him a standing antibiotics prescription. The problem is, one never really knows which beach is safe at any given time.

If you’ve followed this blog for a while, you probably know where this is going. What if we could instrument our beaches with sensors to measure environmental conditions, then use the Internet to connect the sensors and feed that information to consumers in real time. We could be much more informed and better evaluate the risks we are willing to take. Good idea, right?

The government of Ireland thinks so.

As one of the first governments to comply with the European Union’s recently enacted Bathing Water Directive, Ireland’s Environmental Protective Agency has been working with us at IBM to collect and analyze large amounts of complex environmental data from more than 130 of Irelands beaches and lakes. This information is available for the general public at the online portal called, Splash.

EPA bathingwater 1

While on a much broader scale, the work is similar to the IBM-Galway Bay water management project where we have been attaching solar-powered sensors on buoys in the bay to collect massive amounts of data to help evaluate weather and environmental conditions to aid the local fishing industry. In this case, Ireland’s Environmental Protection Agency, IBM and An Taisce, the National Trust for Ireland the National Trust for Ireland is collecting data across beaches and lakes with the primary purpose to give citizens accurate, timely information on water quality.

From today’s press release:

The system also enables more efficient reporting by local government authorities and state agencies. Prior to the Splash portal, public reports such as water samples and compliancy with standards were not available until the year after they were collected and created. With Splash, this information is available immediately, in map-based format, and adhering to the requirements of the European 2006 Bathing Water Directive. Ireland is the first of the 27 EU member states to implement this online smarter solution for beach water quality reporting.

One hopes this kind of system is adopted not just by the 26 other EU member states, but by governments around the world. Accurate and current information on water quality will create greater expectations from consumers, which in turn motivates governments to act for greater quality. A benevolent cycle. And the world’s surfers will appreciate it.

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