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Wireville.com

Issue: December 2011
By: Frank Bisbee


Datacom/Telecom Glossary
In This Issue

Bits N' Pieces


Bisbee's Buzz

ONE OF 7 BILLION

Today, you are one of 7 billion people on Earth. Global population is expected to reach 8 billion by 2025, according to the United Nations. It also has many wondering whether the Earth can support so many people. About half were added just in the past 40 years, and 3 billion more are expected by 2100.

Where Western powers ruled the world in 1920, today the West is aging and dying, and much of the world is on fire with anti-white and anti-Western resentment after 500 years of European domination. In 1920, Western people were nearly one-third of mankind. Today, Western man is down to one-sixth of the world's population, shrinking to one-eighth by 2050, and not even one tenth by century's end.

Global population has swelled in record time since 1987, when it hit 5 billion. At this time, world population is growing at the most rapid pace in history. In 1900, we were at 1.6 billion. In 99 years, we flipped the numbers to 6.1 billion. The world is adding more people in less time but the annual population growth rate is slowing down — from 2.1% in the late 1960s to 1.2% today — reflecting lower birth rates.

In 1999, when we passed the 6 billion mark, the world economy was in overdrive, In October 2011, we grew to 7 billion, in a recession and an economic atmosphere of pessimism. Recessions and depressions slow population growth, especially in developed nations. Currently, growth is highest in poorest countries where health care advances are keeping people alive longer while birth rates are still relatively high. The result is a yawning age gap. The share of the population 65 and older is at 21% in Germany and 23% in Japan. In countries such as Gambia and Senegal, only 2% are in that age group.

As many more people are added in the next century, more will live in cities. Even in developing nations, a growing share of the population lives in urbanized areas, a shift that is leading to denser living conditions and creating more pressure to reduce energy use and build new infrastructure.

Seven billion people are 7 billion good reasons for sustainable infrastructure development. Only 28.8% of the world's population lived in urban areas in 1950. Today, just over 50% do, and the United Nations projects that almost 69% will by 2050, when the population is expected to reach 9.3 billion. The number of people who live in cities by then will almost equal today's world population.

Global companies can go anywhere. If America is going to compete to attract businesses, they must be able provide the integrated infrastructure to electrify, illuminate, and communicate in a safe and secure green environment. The way cities compete is with infrastructure and a good quality of life. Some experts suggest that cities in developing nations have an edge of sorts because they're building from scratch and can apply the latest green technologies. In developed nations such as the USA, the challenge is to retrofit old buildings, power grids and roads. Thanks to an army of electrical contractors, many are doing it. Today's ELECTRICAL CONTRACTOR has evolved into a multi-faceted contractor that can integrate many of the critical systems that automate our world. The technologies that are being implemented by these contractors are amazing. Smart Buildings and Smart Homes deliver more and cost less to operate.

Each month the pages of the ELECTRICAL CONTRACTOR magazine (probably the best industry publication in print) are filled with valuable information about the advancements and applications of integrated systems reaching the marketplace. Technology and more powerful networks have increased the rate of advancement in the field of Integrated Solutions, and the new industry leader in this area of networking systems is the electrical contractor with a wide scope of specialized services. The list of sub-specialties is expanding faster than we can record.

What's next? The general economy may drag on for the next few years, but the technological advancements in the home and the workplace are outpacing many other industry segments. These technologies allow us to do more for less cost. The general demand for the newer and more efficient integrated systems has already begun to show up in the financial reports of the manufacturers and distributors of the products that are utilized in the new integrated systems. Business is looking up for the electrical contractor as many companies are implementing new systems to maintain a competitive edge.

Dave Evans, CISCO's Chief Futurist talked about the challenges we face, in a recent article. "Being a futurist is understanding where the world is going so you know how to act now. To use the hockey metaphor, it’s about knowing where the puck is going to end up before you start skating to it."

The information network is like the nervous system of the body. The challenge is to build integrated systems that use the network to maximize their performance… To make the systems intelligent.

Evans added "We are entering a brand new era in so many ways and the journey has only just begun. The network is the only thing that touches everything. Hardware does not, the operating system does not, the network touches it all. This is the business you want to be in right now. With the move to the cloud, intelligence in the cloud, device proliferation, the way we can communicate, it is going to be an amazing era and we have only just scratched the surface of where it is going.

It is going to dwarf the Wild West.

Dave Evans, CISCO's Chief Futurist also confirmed "We are on an exponential growth curve. People intuitively get Moore’s Law, but for some reason, they still think of it in linear terms. Not only are individual elements growing exponentially — computing and storage for example — but the way the inter-connectedness and sharing are growing exponentially.

As an example, depending on the discipline that you’re in, it’s generally accepted that human knowledge is now doubling every two to three years.

If that is a true statement, in 50 years, 95% of everything we know will be discovered in those 50 years across all domains.

Another way to look at it is that it means we only know 5% today of what we will know in the next 50. You look at research papers and patent applications and you can see a skyrocketing explosion of human knowledge.

Up until the 1900s, human knowledge doubled every 100 years or so. Today, it is every five years. That is the type of trajectory that we are on."

The need for speed is an insatiable appetite. We have learned that researchers are already working on multi-terabit per second Ethernet to carry the coming information flow. Some forecasts almost a zettabyte (one billion terabytes) may be flowing across the network by 2015.

Change can be: exciting, scary, overwhelming, and unbelievable. Rest assured that CHANGE IS INEVITABLE. Our mission remains to build the integrated infrastructure to electrify, illuminate, and communicate in a safe and secure green environment.

But that's just my opinion,

Frank Bisbee - Editor
HOTS - Heard On The Street "Monthly Column
www.wireville.com
Jacksonville, FL 32257
frank@wireville.com

 

AT&T has ended its $39 billion bid to acquire T-Mobile USA from Deutsche Telekom amid antitrust concerns

AT&T had been scrambling for weeks to save the proposed deal, which would have made it by far the most dominant U.S. wireless carrier. AT&T pulled its Federal Communications Commission application last month after the regulator came out in opposition to the merger and prepared to call for a potentially nasty public hearing.

 

Siemon Launches Interactive Data Center e-Magazine

December 18, 2011, WATERTOWN, CT — Underlining their commitment to high value information and applied data centre innovation, leading global network infrastructure specialist Siemon has launched the first edition of its new interactive data center e-Magazine. Entitled "Data Center Solutions" this resource-rich e-Magazine is designed to guide IT network professionals through critical data center decisions, placing them in the network infrastructure driver's seat. The e-Magazine is available at http://www.siemon.com/uk/promos/dc-e-brochure.asp.

The innovative e-Magazine provides in-depth coverage on an extensive range of topics, including copper and optical fiber cabling choices, energy and thermal efficiency, data center density and cable management, physical layer bandwidth and performance, network security and sustainability best-practices.

Bob Carlson, VP of Global Marketing at Siemon says, "By combining timely information and educational resources in a variety of multmedia formats, including articles, links to white papers and videos, the e-Magazine delivers valuable content that can help data center professional ensure the specific needs of theirs project are met, and the latest standards and best practices are considered. The information contained in Siemon's interactive e-Magazine is based upon continual disciplined research, voice of customer and practical experience"

Accesible through Siemon's Data Center e-Magazine:

Data center design strategies, including point-to-point vs. any-to-all structured considerations

Total cost of ownership factors - Balancing data centre CAPEX with OPEX

Real world data center case studies from leading global organizations

Physical layer security and management through intelligent infrastructures

Long-term "green" planning

"Especially within the data center, network infrastructure technologies are continually evolving and Siemon is committed to giving the market the resources it needs to make well-informed cabling decisions," Carlson added. "The Siemon e-Magazine is a good example of how we deliver value to our customers and partners by sharing our data center infrastructure expertise. With this interactive resource, readers can systematically navigate their own path to the topics that best suit their needs."

Siemon's Data Center Solutions e-Magazine can either be viewed online, or downloaded as a PDF, free of charge at http://www.siemon.com/uk/promos/dc-e-brochure.asp

To access Siemon's Network Infrastructure blog, visit: http://blog.siemon.com/infrastructure/

Follow Siemon on Twitter:  http://twitter.com/siemoncabling/

Join Siemon on Facebook: http://www.siemon.com/go/facebook

###

About Siemon

Established in 1903, Siemon is an industry leader specializing in the manufacture and innovation of high quality, high-performance network cabling solutions. Headquartered in Connecticut, USA, with global offices, manufacturing and service partners throughout the world, Siemon offers the most comprehensive suite of copper (unshielded and shielded twisted-pair) category 5e, category 6 (Class E), category 6A (Class EA) and category 7/7A (Class F/FA), and multimode and singlemode optical fiber cabling systems available. With over 400 patents specific to structured cabling, from patch cords to patch panels, Siemon Labs invests heavily in R&D and development of industry standards, underlining the company's long-term commitment to its customers and the industry.

 

ShoreTel and Windstream Announce Expanded Distribution Agreement

North American communications service provider launches ShoreTel Unified Communications Solution, ShoreTel Contact Center and ShoreTel MobilitySUNNYVALE, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- ShoreTel® (NASDAQ: SHOR - News), the leading provider of IP phone systems with fully integrated unified communications (UC) and contact center capabilities, today announced an expanded distribution agreement with Windstream (NASDAQ:WIN - News). The communications and technology solutions provider, with operations across the United States and the District of Columbia, is now able to offer its business customers ShoreTel’s complete solution set, including ShoreTel Unified Communications, ShoreTel Contact Center and ShoreTel Mobility.

After a six-month market trial in Atlanta, Ga.; Greenville, S.C.; Orlando, Fla.; Kansas City, Mo.; St. Louis, Mo.; and Tulsa, Okla., Windstream is expanding the offering of ShoreTel solutions to business customers across Windstream’s 29-state footprint. This expansion of ShoreTel is in line with Windstream’s goal to provide advanced technology solutions to businesses of all sizes.

“This expanded agreement with ShoreTel allows us to utilize the sales and technical experience gained in our trial markets to offer an expanded Unified Communications solution to customers all across our footprint,” said Don Perkins, Windstream vice president of business marketing. “Service and delivery remain top of mind to Windstream, so we are excited to provide a solution known for delivering an outstanding experience with each and every communication.”

ShoreTel’s brilliantly simple solutions make it easy for partners like Windstream to expand their portfolio and serve businesses of any size. The ShoreTel Contact Center enables companies to better serve their customers, who expect continuously high levels of service. Built on the highly reliable voice capabilities of the ShoreTel UC system, ShoreTel's Contact Center solution easily connects internal and external customers to the right agent at the right time. This results in lower costs that can help transform a contact center into a revenue center. The newest addition to the ShoreTel portfolio, ShoreTel’s Mobility solution, extends the full power of an enterprise communication system to a mobile device, setting users free to communicate from any location by enabling access to any cellular or Wi-Fi network, simply and cost effectively. Additionally, not only is ShoreTel Mobility an inherent component of the ShoreTel Unified Communications system, but it also easily integrates with other IP-PBX systems, including those from Cisco, Avaya, Alcatel-Lucent, and UC systems such as Microsoft OCS.

“ShoreTel is committed to helping customers succeed by offering comprehensive communications solutions that eliminate complexity and help reduce costs; partnering with Windstream reinforces this business promise,” said Mark Arman, vice president of business development for ShoreTel. “Windstream shares this goal, and together we are looking forward to delivering on that vision with product and service excellence, as we continue to rapidly grow with net new markets and customers.”

About Windstream

Windstream Corp. (Nasdaq: WIN - News), headquartered in Little Rock, Ark., is an S&P 500 communications and technology solutions provider with operations in 29 states and the District of Columbia and about $4 billion in annual revenues. Windstream provides IP-based voice and data services, MPLS networking, data center and managed hosting services and communication systems to businesses and government agencies. The company also delivers broadband, digital phone and high-definition TV services to residential customers primarily located in rural areas and operates a local and long-haul fiber network spanning approximately 60,000 route miles. For more information about Windstream, visit www.windstream.com.

About ShoreTel

ShoreTel, Inc. (NASDAQ: SHOR - News) is the provider of brilliantly simple Unified Communication (UC) solutions based on its award-winning IP business phone system. We offer organizations of all sizes integrated, voice, video, data, and mobile communications on an open, distributed IP architecture that helps significantly reduce the complexity and costs typically associated with other solutions. The feature-rich ShoreTel UC system offers the lowest total cost of ownership (TCO) and the highest customer satisfaction in the industry, in part because it is easy to deploy, manage, scale and use. Increasingly, companies around the world are finding a competitive edge by replacing business-as-usual with new thinking, and choosing ShoreTel to handle their integrated business communication. ShoreTel is based in Sunnyvale, California, and has regional offices in Austin, Texas; United Kingdom; Sydney, Australia; and Singapore. For more information, visit www.shoretel.com.

 

Wired Ethernet for Your Home vs. Wireless  - Article By Ed Brown

By Edward Brown, the Writing Engineer

A wireless connection for home digital devices, between the Internet, a laptop and a printer for example, seems like a good idea—buy a Wi-Fi router and you’re in business—no painful running of wires from room to room, and it works pretty well. But think about it, do a little research, and you might think twice.

What Would We Like to Connect?

For now, wireless connection between the Internet, a laptop, and a printer seems like enough (and plenty of users even complain about their problems keeping that much working). But think about it—in homes, changing the wired infrastructure is a significant job so if you’re rewiring or building a new home, you want to plan for future growth. We’re on the cusp of a connectivity revolution; so far, there may not be many homes with a significant amount of convergence between systems, but increased interconnections are inevitable. Home automation is coming and a growing number of automation products are being designed to communicate via the Internet. This growth will happen through both push and pull. Major manufacturers are betting on it by bringing new products onto the market that are designed to be controlled by local area networks (LANs) and to interact by way of the Internet. The more word gets out about the added convenience, savings in energy costs and enhancements in safety and security, the more people are going to want systems that offer these benefits.

Media

Number one on the list is HDTV. Go into any electronics or appliance store and you’ll find a wall of HDTVs. The latest and greatest in that market, and it’s just beginning, are IPTVs—web-enabled television that can directly access the Internet; but even better are network-enabled TVs that can access the Internet through your home network with a built-in RJ45 wired Ethernet connection. Just think how great it will be to sit back in your easy chair and watch TV and surf the Web on your big-screen TV, using your hand-held remote controller. You’ll also be able to download streaming video without having to go through a cable company. You can directly connect to popular websites like YouTube, Pandora, Netflix and Amazon VOD. With a networked TV you’ll be able to view the files in your laptop or PC and also be able to access other home equipment like DVRs, Blu-ray players, and games.

Another important component of home media systems, is audio. There are a number of systems that allow you to use different audio sources and different speakers in multiple rooms; and to select which player to connect to which speakers, using a control pad or wireless remote. Just think, you can have your MP3 player piped into your home office while your spouse can be listening to FM or satellite radio in another room and each of your kids can connect to their music and have it follow them throughout the house. Sources and players can be interchanged in every room. This is achieved by connecting the components to your LAN.

Economizing on Energy Costs

Media may be the sexy item that first catches homeowners’ attention, but once they come to accept the idea of interconnecting devices throughout the home, they might be easily convinced that a home network could also be a simple way to save money on their energy costs. The largest contributors to residential electric bills are heating, ventilating and air conditioning (HVAC) and lighting. In most homes, controlling lighting means an on/off switch and possibly a dimmer. But there are available systems that can be networked to coordinate lighting throughout the home. One approach is to provide a list of standard “scenes” such as: company’s coming; everyone’s gone out to work and school; someone’s just come home; everyone’s in bed; the family is away on vacation. Of course local controls in every room can override the scenes.  You can even have a remote control in your car to turn on the lights when you’re in the driveway. Occupancy sensors can be used to control lighting according to whether or not someone is in a room. Lighting control systems can be integrated with motorized window coverings so that according to the time of day, room lights can be dimmed and window shades opened. Then temperature control can be added to the network mix. HVAC can be coordinated with window shade controls, to let in less sunlight during summer months and more during the winter. The scene approach can also be used with temperature control, for example reducing artificial heating or cooling when the home is unoccupied and then preparing in advance for the homecoming. Calendar and time-based controls can be overridden from just about anywhere because the home network can be accessed via an Internet browser.

Homeowners can minimize their energy costs by maximizing their control over heating, cooling and lighting, all integrated into a single system. There is no doubt that as more systems evolve to implement these functions, more people will want to have this added value. Think of it, video and audio media plus lighting and temperature all controlled over a single network. But there’s still more.

Safety and Security

Home security systems, which include intrusion alarms, electrically operated door locks, surveillance cameras and intercoms are all available with networking connections. It’s conceivable for example that you expect Aunt Minnie to arrive from out of town while you’re at work. Instead of leaving a key under the doormat, she can phone you that she’s at your front door. From your desktop computer or even your smart phone, you can bring up an image from the outdoor-rated IP surveillance camera that views your door. After seeing that it’s really Minnie, you can unlock the door, disarm the alarm system, turn on the lights and adjust the temperature.

The fire alarm system can not only wake you in the middle of the night with an alarm horn, it can automatically report the fire to a central station, and since it can be networked with the lighting system, it can cause the lights outside of your home to flash on and off so that the emergency responders will be able to locate you more quickly. What’s more, it can automatically turn on all of the lights in the house, but not at full brightness so you won’t be blinded by the smoke; it can open motorized blinds and unlock the garage door for quicker escape and announce where in the house the fire is located. And if you’re not home, it can send you a text message.

Smart Grid

One of the problems faced by electric utilities is that although peak loading may be much higher than the average load, they have to be able to handle the highest peaks. These may only occur for a part of the day and will vary according to the season of the year.  In order to improve this situation, some utilities charge lower rates during off-peak hours.

The smart grid is the name given to the system that adds two-way digital communication to the power delivery system. The interface between the electric utility and the home consumer is a smart meter. These meters allow the utility to charge different rates throughout the course of a day and pass the information along to the consumer, who can make decisions about when to use high-load equipment such as washers and driers, water heaters and dishwashers. Taking advantage of the variable rates can now even be done automatically. You can buy major appliances with built-in network connections that make it possible for the utility to program them to turn on during lower cost periods. This is a win-win situation—it allows utilities to operate more predictably, with fewer chances of blackouts and it allows homeowners to reduce the cost of their electricity.

Telemedicine

One of our most pressing social problems is the high cost of health care, which is sure to get even higher as the population peak known as the baby boom, advances into old age. The first crop of babies born after World War II is reaching the age of 65 this year (2011). According to the U.S. Census, by 2030, 71 million Americans will be over age 65. A greater percentage of health dollars are spent on this age group than their proportion of the population would suggest. There is a growing consensus that health care costs can be significantly reduced through proactive rather than reactive care. If each patient has a digital electronic file containing base-level readings of their body functions, regular monitoring of these numbers can allow a medical professional to spot trends and intervene well before the person has gone into crisis mode. Furthermore, research indicates that people would prefer to be able to stay in their homes as long as possible rather than having to move to a health care facility. Aging people could stay at home with regular visits from an aide, while vital signs such as blood pressure, blood glucose, pulse rate, temperature and oxygen index can be regularly monitored with sensors, and the data transmitted over the Internet to the appropriate professionals. These factors are driving the growth of a field called telemedicine. The American Telemedicine Association is advocating for the acceptance of “telehealth services” by Medicare, with growing success.

Another benefit of telemedicine is that people who live in areas remote from healthcare centers will be able to communicate with primary care providers and specialists, by means of sensor data and video.

And More

A couple of other applications include:

  • Measuring the health of your home by connecting humidity, air quality and temperature sensors to your HVAC system.
  • Online learning for K–12th graders on up to college level. There are currently over a million children enrolled in online learning projects. Twenty-seven states allow full-time online learning. Pennsylvania, for example treats online charters the same as brick and mortar charter schools, providing full-time tuition-free education. Some states have started using online classes rather than snow days in bad weather.

Wired vs. Wireless Home Networks

All of these applications, plus more that will be coming, require interconnection through a home-based local area network (LAN) and most of these will be enhanced by, or will even require, connection to the Internet. The control software is generally downloaded into a home computer, which can be programmed to oversee and report on all of the systems With each new function, the amount of information that will have to be transmitted between all of the various components and with the Internet, is growing at a tremendous rate. Each application has to transmit and receive data at their own minimum rate (throughput in megabits per second). As applications are added, the total required throughput grows. This translates to the need for large amounts of bandwidth.

Some applications, such as streaming video to a home or from a home to a medical facility, or from an IP security camera, require large amounts of especially stable throughput.

Data Rate—Wireless

Within a home, the throughput of a typical wireless connection depends on a number of different factors. A standard for wireless LANs was first published in 1997 by the IEEE as 802.11. It only supported a maximum throughput of 2 Mbps so they published 802.11b in 1999 to extend the maximum throughput to 11 Mbps. Both of these were to be transmitted at an RF frequency of 2.4 GHz, which is part of the ISM (industrial, scientific and medical) band freed up by the FCC in 1985 for unregulated use. In 2003, the IEEE ratified 802.11g and in 2009, 802.11n, which were both intended to overcome earlier limitations and also transmit at 2.4 GHz. The maximum practical throughput for 802.11g is about 20 Mbps under ideal conditions. 802.11n transmits data by using four parallel streams, but even that has many limitations. Maximum practical throughput is about 50Mbps, and since the cost is 2 to 3 times that of 802.11g it is generally used only for commercial applications.

Data Rate—Wired

Category 6 unshielded twisted pair (UTP) copper cable is rated to have a minimum throughput of 1 Gbps. Properly installed, a LAN using UTP cable will be in a star configuration, which means that a separate cable will be run from a central closet to each connection point in the home. Every one of these cables will be able to transmit data at a rate of 1 Gbps, in contrast to wireless, in which a given space can only carry one signal at a given frequency.

Limitations of a Wireless LAN Connection

  • Streaming video requires 20 to 100 Mbps for each television receiver, so at best, wireless can connect video from one source at a time, for example either Internet or Blu-ray, to one TV set.
  • Because of its much lower throughput, a wireless LAN will be unable to handle much of the traffic that homeowners will be wanting within the next 5 to 10 years.
  • If you have any near neighbors, especially in a multiple unit dwelling, it is very possible that you will interfere with each other.
  • It is possible that a device like a microwave oven or a nearby medical diathermy machine, which use the same 2.4 GHz frequency as the wireless signal, will cause interference.
  • The human body can introduce a scattering effect, which is a source of instability, most troublesome for telemedicine, but also very annoying for applications like video. HDTV requires bandwidth stability and guaranteed QoS (quality of service).
  • Effective throughput will be reduced in the presence of electrical noise because some of the required bits will have to be used for error correction in the digital stream.
  • As objects are moved in the room, the antenna may need to be repositioned.
  • The Internet performs poorly over a wireless connection when there is electrical interference (noise), because TCP (transmission control protocol), which is the basis for Internet transmission, was designed for a wired connection, where information lost due to electrical noise is rare.
  • It is easier for someone to tap into your network and steal private information.
  • More power is required for transmitting and receiving wireless relative to wired.
  • The greater the number of applications running on your wireless network, the more chance there is that they will interfere with each other.
  • The more applications that are running on your wireless network, the more radio frequency radiation will exist in your home environment.

Summing It Up

The uses for a home digital network will be growing rapidly in the next 5 to 10 years. This will put a very heavy burden on the infrastructure for transmitting data throughout the home. Building that infrastructure with CAT 5e or CAT 6 wiring, “home run” from a central closet will allow for 1 Gbps to each connector—and in some rooms it might pay to have more than one run. That backbone will be enough to comfortably handle any applications that might come along in the next 10 years or more. A wireless network couldn’t even come close.

Ed Brown - Director

The WRITING ENGINEER
A leading independent professional writing service
WRITING, RESEARCH, EDITING
TECHNICAL EXPERTISE

16 W.16th Street 5CS
New York, NY 10011
www.writingengineer.com

http://www.copper.org/applications/telecomm/wired_ethernet.html.

Reprinted with permission from Copper Development Association Inc.

 

EarthLink Launches New ‘Complete' Business Product Suite

Nationwide Voice and Data Coverage Now Available from EarthLink

ATLANTA, GA — December 12, 2011 — EarthLink, Inc. (NASDAQ: ELNK), a leading IT services and communications provider, today announced the nationwide launch of its new EarthLink Complete™ suite of business voice, data, and Internet solutions. Now available in every state in the continental U.S., the Complete line integrates leading-edge hosted Voice over IP applications and private MPLS networks with equipment, mobile and security offerings to provide businesses with a fully customizable communications portfolio leveraging EarthLink's expansive network and state-of-the-art secure IP infrastructure.

This new core offering provides the flexibility to use a blend of access technologies for connectivity, including DSL, T1 and Ethernet, all of which provide Quality of Service (QoS). This is a key differentiator, as EarthLink can customize a private multi-location network, prioritize network traffic utilizing multiple access technologies to meet the customer's specific requirements and guarantee critical network performance.

EarthLink Complete offers customers many benefits including the convenience of bundling all services and locations on a single bill from a single provider. EarthLink Business account teams will work with customers to design and implement voice and data solutions to address critical business and infrastructure needs including business continuity and security.

"I attended a sales training event for EarthLink's new connectivity platform earlier this fall and the excitement in the room was palpable," noted Zeus Kerravala, analyst with ZK Research and a Yankee Group affiliate. "The company is creating a unique platform with an IP foundation, combining voice and data services while leveraging multiple access methods to create differentiated communication solutions for customers from the mid market to the larger enterprise. EarthLink is clearly delivering on its integration and product roadmaps with this launch and I look forward to additional releases in 2012 as they continue to expand into the managed services arena."

The product suite includes EarthLink Complete™ Data, EarthLink Complete™ Voice, EarthLink Complete™ Security, EarthLink Complete™ Equipment, and EarthLink Business™ Mobile.

"EarthLink Complete dramatically expands our ability to offer organizations of all sizes a single-source, comprehensive solution and the scalability features to keep pace with today's dynamic business environment," said Rolla P. Huff, EarthLink Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. "We made sizeable network investments earlier this year to support this new nationwide product offering and we believe EarthLink Complete, paired with our personalized support, will empower business customers and deliver the freedom they need to focus on their core business."

In addition to offering an extensive array of connectivity options, another primary differentiator is the new, secure myLink™ customer portal. An indispensible tool that provides a centralized on-demand gateway to each EarthLink Business account, myLink empowers customers with a wealth of self-service applications, reporting and management features 24/7.

EarthLink Complete™ Voice and EarthLink Complete™ Data deliver local, long distance, toll-free and integrated Internet and data services using a fully customizable range of methods, including line side, hosted, PRI and SIP, and a full range of access types, from T1 and DSL to Ethernet and wireless.

EarthLink Business™ Mobile can integrate an enterprise-class mobile voice and data solution for customers, with hosted email services, multimedia capabilities and leading-edge devices from top manufacturers.

EarthLink Complete™ Equipment offers phone systems, data switches, routers and integrated access devices that drive efficiencies in today's communications applications, including IP telephony and messaging solutions, equipment-enabled converged voice and data networking and contact center solutions.

EarthLink Complete™ Security offers a portfolio of IT Risk Management and outsourcing services that help customers meet business goals while reducing IT security risks. EarthLink operates state-of-the-art Tier IV data centers attached to its fiber network and an advanced Security Operations Center (SOC) staffed by certified Security Engineers.

The EarthLink Complete suite is now available nationwide via the company's network of more than 75 local sales offices, by calling 855-352-2731 or visiting earthlinkbusiness.com.

About EarthLink
EarthLink, Inc. (NASDAQ: ELNK) is a leading IT services, network and communications provider to more than 100,000 businesses and over one million consumers nationwide. EarthLink empowers customers with managed IT services including cloud computing, data centers, virtualization, security, applications and support services, in addition to nationwide data and voice IP services. The company operates an extensive network including 28,000 route fiber miles, 90 metro fiber rings and 4 secure data centers providing ubiquitous IP coverage across more than 90 percent of the country. Founded in 1994, the company's award-winning reputation for both outstanding service and product innovation is supported by an experienced team of professionals focused on best-in-class customer care. For more information, visit EarthLink's www.earthlink.net

 

ShoreTel Mobilizes UC with HP

ShoreTel® (NASDAQ: SHOR) SUNNYVALE, Calif., the leading provider of brilliantly simple business communication solutions including IP phone systems with fully integrated unified communications (UC) and platform-agnostic mobile UC, today announced that ShoreTel Mobility will be part of Hewlett Packard’s fixed mobile convergence solution portfolio as a reseller of the ShoreTel Mobility solution.

The latest version of ShoreTel Mobility integrates all leading smartphones and tablets with leading IP PBX systems. By adding ShoreTel Mobility to HP’s mobile UC solution set, HP customers will be able to extend full UC and cost-saving calling capabilities to their mobile workforces.

“IP telephony, unified communications and smartphones are transforming how and where we work. By collaborating with HP, ShoreTel will continue to empower enterprises to easily turn the chaos of BYOD into a powerful, cost-saving and productivity enhancing phenomenon,” said Mark Arman, vice president of business development at ShoreTel. “With the support of our expanding base of partners, ShoreTel sees tremendous opportunity in the coming year to strengthen our position as the fastest-growing and top-three player in the U.S. and worldwide IP markets.”

Growing Demand for Mobile UC

As workers continue to be more connected, UC needs to be mobilized and infused with context such as presence and location information – anywhere and anytime. The ShoreTel Mobility solution provides the unified communications infrastructure to seamlessly extend a user’s desk phone and laptop and expands the functionality to the devices that enterprise workers are increasingly relying on as their primary communications device – their smartphone.

ShoreTel Mobility empowers organizations to create a more responsive and accessible workforce by extending deskphone and UC capabilities to mobile devices, enabling enterprises to reduce their overall telecom costs, by eliminating international roaming and direct dial costs on mobile devices, as well as rightsizing the number of business phones an organization purchases and maintains.

By offering a single mobility solution that interoperates with the industry’s broadest range of PBX and UC systems, including those from Cisco, Avaya, Alcatel-Lucent and ShoreTel, as well as UC systems such as Microsoft OCS 2007, ShoreTel provides customers maximum flexibility and choice, a unified application to manage voice, UC and security, and consistent look, feel and functionality across platforms and devices. This open approach ensures organizations and end users can pick the right ways to stay connected.

“With the growing virtual workplace, now more than ever employees rely on mobile technology to stay connected,” said Imran Khan, Vice President, Network Consulting at HP. “By collaborating with ShoreTel, customers are empowered to extend desk phone and UC capabilities to their mobile devices, allowing them to easily share information, increase responsiveness and improve productivity, all while reducing overall telecom costs.”

About ShoreTel

ShoreTel, Inc. (NASDAQ: SHOR) is the provider of brilliantly simple Unified Communication (UC) solutions based on its award-winning IP business phone system. We offer organizations of all sizes integrated, voice, video, data, and mobile communications on an open, distributed IP architecture that helps significantly reduce the complexity and costs typically associated with other solutions. The feature-rich ShoreTel UC system offers the lowest total cost of ownership (TCO) and the highest customer satisfaction in the industry, in part because it is easy to deploy, manage, scale and use. Increasingly, companies around the world are finding a competitive edge by replacing business-as-usual with new thinking, and choosing ShoreTel to handle their integrated business communication. ShoreTel is based in Sunnyvale, California, and has regional offices in Austin, Texas; United Kingdom; Sydney, Australia; and Singapore. For more information, visit www.shoretel.com.

 

DOW CHEMICAL does a deal with Chinese Cable Manufacturer

Shangshang Cable was Authorized to use DOW INSIDE License

Strengthened the Leading Cable Group’s Capabilities to  Produce Reliable and Longer Life Wire & Cable Products

Shanghai, China – December 08, 2011 – Dow Electrical & Telecommunications (Dow E&T), a business unit of The Dow Chemical Company, today announced it had signed DOW INSIDE license agreement with Jiangsu Shangshang Cable Group which is a leading wire & cable products manufacturer in China.

Under the terms of the DOW INSIDE agreement, Shangshang Cable will use DOW ENDURANCE™ insulation, semi-conductive and jacketing materials to manufacture electronics wiring and/or medium and high voltage power cables. In exchange, Dow E&T will provide the companies with cutting edge technologies, proven products and enhanced service that benefit both the customer and Dow in a demanding market.

In addition, Shangshang Cable will be allowed to market its products with a logo comprised of the “DOW DIAMOND” followed by the word “INSIDE” when the company uses the branded wire insulating and jacketing materials produced by Dow.  Shangshang can also enjoy the benefit of co-marketing opportunities provided by Dow.

Jiangsu Shangshang cable group is the leading wire and cable manufacturer founded in 1967, the company’s annual production value is over RMB 15 billion. Shangshang cable has been growing fast in recent years thanks to its strategy of developing talents and implementing the advanced technologies in its production. Shangshang’s wire and cable products cover high voltage, medium voltage, low voltage, plastic and rubber, and specialty cable.

“’DOW INSIDE’ marketing is a key component of our strategy to continue aggressive growth while offering total solutions to our existing and prospective customers in a competitive market,” said Tim Laughlin, General Manager, Dow Electrical & Telecommunications.

About Dow Electrical & Telecommunications

Dow Electrical & Telecommunications, a business unit in the Performance Plastics Division

of The Dow Chemical Company (“Dow”), is a leading global provider of products, technology, solutions and knowledge that sets standards for reliability, longevity, efficiency, ease of installation and protection that the power and telecommunications industries can count on in the transmission, distribution and consumption of power, voice and data. Understanding that collaboration is essential to success, Dow Electrical & Telecommunications works together with cable makers, other industry suppliers, utilities, municipalities, testing institutes and other organizations around the world to help develop solutions and create mutual value that will sustain these industries for years to come. For more information, visit www.dow.com/electrical.

About The Dow Chemical Company

Dow (NYSE: Dow) combines the power of science and technology with the "Human Element" to passionately innovate what is essential to human progress. The Company connects chemistry and innovation with the principles of sustainability to help address many of the world's most challenging problems such as the need for clean water, renewable energy generation and conservation, and increasing agricultural productivity. Dow's diversified industry-leading portfolio of specialty chemical, advanced materials, agrosciences and plastics businesses delivers a broad range of technology-based products and solutions to customers in approximately 160 countries and in high growth sectors such as electronics, water, energy, coatings and agriculture. In 2010, Dow had annual sales of $53.7 billion and employed approximately 50,000 people worldwide. The Company's more than 5,000 products are manufactured at 188 sites in 35 countries across the globe. References to "Dow" or the "Company" mean The Dow Chemical Company and its consolidated subsidiaries unless otherwise expressly noted. More information about Dow can be found at www.dow.com.

 

U.S. Green Building Council Welcomes New Board Directors

Board responsible for articulating and upholding the vision, values, mission of organization

Washington, DC (Dec. 8, 2011) - The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) has announced the newly elected officers and new directors to its 2012 Board of Directors. At elections that closed in November, USGBC's membership elected the following individuals to serve as directors:

  • Fiona Cousins, Arup, filling the Designer of Buildings seat
  • Marge Anderson, Energy Center of Wisconsin, filling the Environmental Nonprofit Advocate seat
  • George Bandy Jr., Interface, filling the Large-Scale Manufacturer seat
  • John Dalzell, City of Boston/Boston Redevelopment Authority, filling the Urban/Regional Planner seat

In addition, the Board named the following directors to fill appointed seats:

  • Joseph Sanches, School District of Palm Beach County, filling the Educator (K-12) seat
  • Stephen G. Bushnell, Fireman's Fund Insurance Company, filling the Insurance seat
  • Gary Jay Saulson, The PNC Financial Services Group, filling the Finance seat

The Board elected Allan Skodowski, Transwestern as chair-elect and Lisa Shpritz, Bank of America, as Treasurer. Other 2012 officers continuing in their terms are Chair Elizabeth J. Heider, Skanska, and Punit Jain, Cannon Design, as secretary. Mark MacCracken, CALMAC Manufacturing Corppration, will serve as immediate past chair. Terms will begin on January 1, 2012.

"The Board is pleased to welcome Fiona, Marge and George as new members and to welcome John back to a second term," said Chair Heider. "You are an extraordinary group elected from an extraordinary slate of candidates, and 2012 promises to be a great year for USGBC made better by your service."

"Our Board plays an indispensible role within USGBC by making key decisions about how the organization serves our membership, educates the industry, and advances our mission," said Rick Fedrizzi, President, CEO & Founding Chair, USGBC. "This engaged and dedicated group of industry leaders reflects the diversity of the rapidly growing market that we serve, and is committed to shaping the future of green building."

"I am honored to have the opportunity to serve USGBC. The Board and the organization have made a remarkable impact on the sustainability of existing commercial buildings and we are poised for further success in 2012," said Chair-elect Skodowski. "By guiding buildings down the path to certification and ongoing greener operations while enhancing the customer experience, the USGBC helps building owners improve tenant satisfaction and do what's ultimately right for our environment, all while positively impacting the building owners' bottom line."

"USGBC has undergone tremendous organizational growth since I joined the Board in 2006," said Board Treasurer Shpritz. "I am very proud of how far we've come and even prouder to have the opportunity to continue my service as treasurer as we work to fulfill USGBC's mission to make green buildings available to all within a generation."

Additionally, Howard Frumkin, from the University of Washington School of Public Health, has been appointed by the Board to serve as its advisor on public health.

USGBC's Board includes elected and appointed directors who serve terms of three years and two years, respectively. The complete 2012 USGBC Board Roster includes:

Officers

  • Elizabeth J. Heider, Skanska, chair
  • Allan Skodowski, Transwestern, chair-elect
  • Mark MacCracken, CALMAC Mfg. Corp., immediate past chair
  • Lisa Shpritz, Bank of America, treasurer
  • Punit Jain, Cannon Design, secretary
  • S. Richard Fedrizzi, USGBC, president, CEO and founding chair (ex officio)

Directors

  • Marge Anderson, Energy Center of Wisconsin, Environmental Nonprofit Advocate seat (newly elected)
  • Ann Archino Howe, Sustainable Design Studio, Site Designer seat
  • George Bandy Jr., Interface, Large-Scale Manufacturer seat (newly elected)
  • Carlton Brown, Full Spectrum Development, Green Affordable Housing seat
  • Stephen G. Bushnell, Fireman's Fund Insurance Company, Insurance seat (newly appointed)
  • Majora Carter, Majora Carter Group, Sustainable Community Leader seat
  • Fiona Cousins, Arup, Designer of Buildings seat (newly elected)
  • Walter Cuculic, SolarCity, Home Builder seat
  • John Dalzell, City of Boston/Boston Redevelopment Authority, Urban/Regional Planner seat (newly elected)
  • Nathan Gauthier, Jones Lang LaSalle, Educator (K-12/Post-Secondary) seat
  • Dennis Maloskey, Pennsylvania Governor's Green Government Council, State & Local Government Employee seat
  • Kirsten Ritchie, Gensler, Green Building Educator seat Joseph Sanches, School District of Palm Beach County, Educator (K-12) seat (newly appointed)
  • Gary Jay Saulson, The PNC Financial Services Group, Finance seat (newly appointed)
  • Thomas Scarola, Tishman Speyer, Developer/Real Estate Services seat
  • Allan Skodowski, Transwestern, Building Management & Operations seat (chair-elect)
  • Elizabeth Whalen, CalAg LLC, Product Manufacturer Executive seat

USGBC's Board also appointed two individuals to serve as Advisors to the 2012 Board:

  • Howard Frumkin, University of Washington's School of Public Health, Public Health Advisor
  • Don Horn, Office of Federal High-Performance Green Buildings, GSA, Federal Advisor

Learn more about USGBC's Board of Directors.

About the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC)
The U.S. Green Building Council is committed to a prosperous and sustainable future for our nation through cost-efficient and energy-saving green buildings. With a community comprising 79 local affiliates, nearly 16,000 member organizations, and more than 167,000 LEED Professional Credential holders, USGBC is the driving force of an industry that is projected to contribute $554 billion to the U.S. GDP from 2009-2013. USGBC leads an unlikely diverse constituency of builders and environmentalists, corporations and nonprofit organizations, elected officials and concerned citizens, and teachers and students. For more information, visit www.usgbc.org, on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

 

Soaring demand for high-speed Internet to sustain fiber's growth

The fiber optic cable installation industry will likely experience heightened revenue growth over the next five years, according to report from industry market research firm IBISWorld.

Revenue is expected to increase at an average of 5% per year to $5.5 billion in the five years to 2016. Wireless carriers are expected to expand fiber optic cable installation at higher rates, as more of them upgrade their networks and consumers increasingly demand high-speed Internet on their mobile phones.

"Broadband connections will also rise during the same period, albeit at slower rates than the previous five years," the firm said.

Larry Johnson, President of The Light Brigade (the leading fiber optic training firm) reminds us: “As we tackle the challenges of meeting the demands of high-speed Internet, data centers, new networking solutions with fiber optic cabling, we are constantly challenged to install facilities that have a barrier to obsolescence and maximum durability. Quality Control and Repeatability are crucial elements in the fiber optic cabling world.”   www.lightbrigade.com

At the same time the demand for fiber has increased, the requests for pre-terminated fiber has skyrocketed. John Culbert, President of Megladon Mfg. said the demand for the ScratchGuard® HLC® (Hardened Lens Contact) termination soaring. Megladon created the HLC® (Hardened Lens Contact) termination, which has changed the market and taken it to the next level.

Megladon Manufacturing Group took a monumental step for the Communications Network Carriers and CATV market by adapting the HLC process to angle polished connectors. Angle polished connectors have been used for years in high speed video transport applications due to inherent low reflection characteristics. The fragile nature of fiber mating surfaces, however, has continued to plague an industry that is more competitive than ever.

With the growing video on demand and streaming video content on the web, a need arises for high quality fiber optic products capable of withstanding this trend. Industry leaders and providers are having to transition into a more competent network infrastructure to conform to the now industry standard of high performance fiber optic networks.

The SCRATCHGUARD™ Fiber Optic Patch Cords (by Megladon Manufacturing Group) is a critical step forward in quality. The fiber optic connector is a crucial component and the “gateway to the fiber optic cabling network”. Damage to the connector due to repeated use has been the biggest problem for network managers, until now. The patented SCRATCHGUARD™ Fiber Optic Patch Cords have virtually eliminated the problem. “We have studied the Megladon Manufacturing products and spoken with several major network operations that are using these breakthrough products. The product exceeds anything else they have ever used.” said Frank Bisbee, Editor of the Heard On The Street column (www.wireville.com). “Jim Hayes, President of the Fiber Optic Association (www.thefoa.org) confirmed the need for education in the fiber optic communications industry as new solutions are coming to the marketplace like a tsunami.” Bisbee added.

Megladon’s HLC SCRATCHGUARD fiber optic patch cords are ideally equipped for network installers that are utilizing high speed video networks. The HLC technology provides mating surface durability and low loss; paired with an Angle Polish Connector we now have a product that significantly reduces reflection, cutting down on interruptions in any given network.

Up until now Military, CATV and high speed video applications have not been able to take advantage of our HLC patented processes due to standardization on angle polish connectors. Now they can not only experience the HLC SCRATCHGUARD durability, but we added a reduction in insertion loss and reflection over traditional angle polish products. MILSPEC requirements of rugged durability in harsh environments is a further testimonial to the Megladon technology.

In the DATA CENTER market, Megladon® Manufacturing Group Ltd., a subsidiary of TyRex Group Ltd.®, is recognized as a leader in the fiber optic connectivity technology. Founded in 1997, Megladon made it their mission to provide customers with fiber optic products that far exceed industry standards. As technology innovators, Megladon created the HLC® (Hardened Lens Contact) termination, which has changed the market and taken it to the next level.

What is Business Critical?

HLC cables are well suited for use in the harshest environments and the most demanding situations. In testing and manufacturing, HCL patch cords can withstand constant plugging and unplugging for years without substantial damage or performance loss. The HLC surface provides minimal optical signal loss making it the ideal choice for video and cable TV applications. For the military and other remote location uses, when replacements are not readily available HCL cables are far more reliable. In Municipal communications systems involving 911 and emergency communications HLC cables have dramatically reduced troubleshooting calls. In any business where the highest performance levels are required Megladon’s HLC, Hardened Lens Contact fiber optic patch cords are the clear choice. For additional information on Megladon and their patented processes please visit the company’s website at www.megladonmfg.com.

 

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Uses of Fiber Optics Today

Fiber optic technology has grown tremendously over the years and is used in many applications today. Without us realizing it, fiber optics are an essential part of our everyday lives.

First Use of Fiber Optics

One of the first uses of fiber optics was the telephone, and today, fiber optic technology has revolutionized long distance calls. It has also made wiretapping more difficult and helps to prevent electrical interference. Probably the biggest use today for fiber optics is the Internet, which is information that fiber optics cables send digitally.

Fiber Optics and the Military

Fiber optic technology is in high demand in the military today. The military has tested the cables rigorously and decided they were excellent to use in many of their applications. The fiber optic cables offer the military better performance, more bandwidth, and security for their signals - all at a lower cost.   The cables are strong, lightweight, and can also be used outdoors in any type of harsh environment. These features make the fiber optic cables an excellent choice for use in the military’s retrieval and deployment applications.

Fiber optic missile launchers and radar systems are also used in the military.  In many of their control systems, the military uses a single optical fiber to replace miles and pounds of copper wire.

Fiber Optics Used in our Transportation System

The fast-paced transportation system is becoming a fast growing market for the use of fiber optics with the increase in traffic and more demand for automated toll booths, traffic signals, and message signs that are changeable.

UAVs and Fiber Optics

A fairly new and fast growing application for fiber optics is Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs). With the ability to provide a fast and efficient way to transmit a large amount of data over long distances, fiber optics were utilized as the main communication conduit between the UAV and ground control.

Other Uses of Fiber Optics

Fiber optics are also used in applications where bright light needs to be shone on a target without a clear line-of-sight path. They are also used to route sunlight from a roof to other parts of the building.

Optical fiber illumination is used for decorative applications such as Christmas trees, signs, and art. Showcases displayed in boutiques use optical fibers for illumination of different angles with only one light source.

Special optical fibers are used for sensor applications in areas that involve oil-well monitoring and fire or leak detection.

The bandwidth offered by fiber optics enables cable television to transmit signals to their subscribers. This is very useful for the services cable companies offer. Other important fiber optic applications are used in research institutions, colleges and universities, aerospace, and chemical industries.

Fiber optic technology is definitely growing rapidly and is an essential part of our everyday lives.

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LAN (Local Area Network) and Fiber Optics

Local Area Network (LAN) is a combined group of computers, or computer systems, connected to each other that allow shared program software or data bases. LAN systems are used by colleges, universities, office buildings, and industrial plants, for making use of optical fiber.

LAN in Colleges and Universities

With the technology of LAN and fiber optic applications, college students and professors can do their research from their rooms and offices without having to go to the library. It provides access to other campus colleges, enabling staff members to perform research with other college professors.  It also enables students to take special courses from instructors at other colleges. College students in rural areas can now have quality-advanced curriculum without the high traveling expense.

Purchasing software programs for a network will save the college a tremendous amount of money and also allows for easier upgrading. Colleges can also have passwords on their programs for denying access to unauthorized users. Using passwords, they do not have to worry about programs being illegally copied.

Colleges or universities with a large number of students can add additional computers, scanners, and modems to the network for students to share.

LAN provides dollar savings for students by allowing them to e-mail their friends at home and on other campuses instead of having to pay for a long distance phone bill.

LAN and Office Buildings

More and more companies today are demanding that fiber optic applications be made available when considering an office building as a rental place for their businesses. Some companies will even pay more to rent a building or office with fiber optic applications because they feel it is very important for their business to have access to a fast communication network.

Companies that use fiber optic cables to set up their LAN do not have to worry with dangling and tangled cables, and their data is transmitted at an even higher quality and speed than with other network applications. With the fiber optic system, the company does not have to be concerned about a fire hazard because no electricity runs through the cables. Many very large office buildings use fiber optic lighting for their offices or for outdoor advertisements.

LAN and Industrial Plants

High-speed and high-quality communication links are needed in industrial plants. To monitor their processes online, industrial plants can use a fiber optic application to connect their control systems to their computer networks. A plant can also collect valuable information from other machines and plants that might help their plant’s machines run more smoothly and efficiently.

Optical fibers have many physical properties that make them an excellent choice for the harsh environmental conditions found in industrial plants such as electromagnetic interference (EMI), extreme temperatures, and even lightning strikes. Fiber optic cables are rugged, have a very large bandwidth, have long cable lengths, and are immune to electromagnetic interference (EMI).

By combining both LAN and fiber optic applications, colleges, universities, and businesses can obtain an almost endless stream of information on a daily basis. Companies can also use both of these to increase productivity while providing a convenient, safe environment for their employees and customers.

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Fiber Optics in Our Work Environment

Fiber optic technology has brought a whole new outlook for our fast-paced work environments. Fiber optic applications have helped to increase communication, profits, provide better medical benefits, and save time and money.

Fiber Optics Role in Office Networks

Office networks have found that fiber optics work very well as a backbone infrastructure. With fiber optic applications, office networks have high-capacity communication lines, which give them faster Internet connections, fax capabilities that are high-tech, and digital voice messaging. Networks use video conferencing instead of face-to-face meetings to bring clients together. This reduces the networks’ costs as well as the clients’ travel and expenses.

Fiber optic applications allow office workers that must travel to be able to connect to the Internet and upload and download work orders and information faster than ever.

With a fiber optic application, office networks have the advantage of sending more information at a time over their computers than before and using more phone lines without any disturbance. Fiber optic cables are the best types for computer networks because they send information digitally, and this is what the networks need.

Large office networks also benefit from fiber optic applications because they can fit into tight spots and go around corners. This is due to the amazing flexibility of fiber optics.

The security that fiber optic applications offer is a major benefit to firms such as banks, which are often owned by private networks.

Fiber Optics in the Medical Field

For many years, specialized fiber optic instruments have been used in the medical field. The lab and clinical diagnostics, endoscope, light therapy, x-ray imaging, dental hand pieces, surgical, and diagnostic instruments are some of the fiber optic applications.

Fiber optic applications have helped the medical field advance tremendously over the past decade. They allow the physician to see inside specific areas of the body and perform surgery on hard-to-reach areas. Fiber optic applications also provide a quicker and more accurate analysis of blood work. They are also used for the removal of abnormal skin and cancerous growths.

Patients benefit from medical fiber optic applications because they offer faster healing and less discomfort after surgical procedures due to smaller incisions.

Fiber Optic Applications in other Work Environments

Fiber optics are also helpful in many other fields today such as automotive, plumbing, electrical, engineering, carpentry, and exterminating. The automobile mechanic can check valves and pistons without removing the heads. The plumber can locate the cause of a blocked drain and pinpoint a leak easily. The engineer can see hard-to-reach places during safety inspections. All of this is due to fiber optic applications.

Fiber Optic Comfort

For businesses in need of a more pleasant work environment for their employees and customers, there is a fiber optic application available that brings sunlight in without using electricity. This would also result in great energy savings for the business.

Future Fiber Optics

As you can see, fiber optics are well-known not only in the network industry, but many others. With more and more demand, the fiber optic technology will continue to grow.

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Understanding Fiber to the Premises (FTTP)

Fiber to the Premises (FTTP) is a form of fiber optic communication delivery in which an optical fiber is run directly onto customers' premises. This new technology brings remarkable speed and an altogether new broadband experience.

Fiber to the Premises uses fiber-optic cables and associated optical electronics instead of copper wire to connect a customer to a network. A central office distributes an optical signal over an optical distribution network (ODN). At the end of this network, optical network terminals (ONTs) will convert the optical signal into an electrical signal.

The optical network terminals are located on private property for FTTP network architectures and the signal usually travels electrically between the ONT and the end-user’s device.

Direct fiber and shared fiber are optical distribution networks with competing technology.

Direct Fiber

Direct fiber is the simplest optical distribution network since each fiber that leaves the central office only goes to one customer. Even though this network provides excellent bandwidth to the customer, the amount of fiber used and the central office machinery that is required is very costly. Because of this, the direct fiber is usually used close to a central office and in a small service area.

Shared Fiber

It is more common for each fiber leaving the central office to be shared by many customers. This fiber is split into individual customer-specific fibers when it gets close to the customers. This split is achieved by either an active optical network (AON) or a passive optical network (PON).

Active Optical Network (AON)

An active optical network (AON) uses equipment such as a router, switch, or multiplexer that is electrically powered to distribute a signal. Each signal that leaves the central office is directed only to the customer for whom it is intended.

Passive Optical Network (PON)

A passive optical network (PON) is a point-to-multipoint network with a high bandwidth that brings optical fiber cabling and signals all or most of the way to the end user by non-powered optical splitters, which means less cost, longer reach, and no upgrade.

PONs rely on light waves and are capable of delivering high volumes of upstream and downstream bandwidth that can be changed to suit the user's needs. Included in a PON are an Optical Line Termination (OLT) at the service provider's central office and a number of Optical Network Units (ONUs) near end users.

Advantages of FTTP

With FTTP, new products and services can be activated remotely, either permanently or on demand, whichever the customer prefers. FTTP's performance can be monitored, and before the customer realizes there is a problem, it will be repaired. FTTP is easier to maintain and is less susceptible to harsh weather.

With this new technology, FTTP brings remarkable speed and higher bandwidth along with a wide range of services at an affordable price for businesses and home owners.

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Fiber Optics and Power Companies

The technical direction a utility provider selects for its communications network will emulate its operating and business endeavors. The more complex and demanding the requirements are, the more likely a fiber-optic network will best serve its needs.

Power Companies Gain Efficiency

Power companies are beginning to apply fiber-optics in their communication systems now more than ever. Since their power lines already reach every telecommunications customer, they can compete more and save by teaming with the traditional phone company than with the networks built by new telecommunication startups. Many power utility companies have fiber-optic communication systems in place for supervising their power grid systems. Optical ground wire (OPT-GW) is one of the most common cable technologies used by power utilities.

By using a fiber optic infrastructure, the utility company will increase its efficiency by networking operation centers, power-generating facilities, and substations.

Customer Friendly Fiber Optics for Utility Customers

A fiber optic infrastructure offers electric utility operations an upgraded internal communication network along with cost-efficient operation. These include customer friendly offerings such as remote meter reading and automatic billing. By interacting more with their customers, the utility company will find that customers will be more satisfied with the services and will show more loyalty.

Advantages of Fiber Network

Utility fiber networks are extremely useful to electric utility companies since they offer reliability. which is a major requirement in the industry. The fiber optic system offers high capacity with a feasible technical solution for easing excess capacity. Also offered is rapid upgrade, ease of deployment, and a versatile range of networks with a big advantage over other configurations.

The advantage of being less susceptible to outages is very important to electric companies. This is offered with fiber optic cables because they are made with very strong material and are not susceptible to extreme weather conditions.

By installing a fiber optic network, utility companies can have the security of lines no longer being dug up. They also don’t have to worry about access to lines by unauthorized personnel.

Fiber Optic Networks are Economical

Optical fiber is very economical for power utilities since they already own rights-of-way (ROW) and power poles. This gives the utility company the ability to install fiber optic cables alongside their existing power poles and increase their revenues for now and the future by leasing excess transmission capacity.

The low cost of installing and operating with fiber optics provides utility companies a big savings since power utility personnel already have the qualifications for installing and working with cables.

Future of Power and Fiber Optics

With all of the opportunities offered to power companies today, they can improve their operations immensely and substantially increase their revenue because fiber optics is the evolution of the electric-power business.

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Fiber Optics and Cable Television

Cable television is one network system today that is making a drastic step forward by spreading out from its long established role as an entertainment service industry which includes on-demand video and broadcast television to a high-speed data service industry.

The original design of cable television systems was the one-way, analog transmission system using coaxial cable. Today, cable television companies have found that fiber is the perfect choice for transmitting signals to multiple customer locations.

In this distribution system, each location is connected to an isolated terminal by a dedicated optical fiber and the tuner connected with each individual customer TV set is stationed in the remote terminal. Channel-selection signals are sent over the fiber from the customer location to the remote terminal. The single selected channel is the only channel transmitted over the fiber from the remote terminal to the associated TV set.

This application helps to prevent an outage for a large number of customers during a period of time and this in turn gives the cable companies a better customer relationship. It also helps to increase the company's revenue by giving them a return path in which they can use for telephone connections and Internet.

Because of the growth in demand for communication signal transmission, cable television is in the midst of advancing their existing systems with fiber optic technology.

Benefits to End Cable Users

With fiber optic technology, cable companies can offer their customers a much better quality picture while at the same time reduce their operating costs because fiber optics cost much less to maintain.

One of the main uses of fiber optics to cable companies is the large information carrying capacity, which is hundreds of times greater than copper wire. Fiber optics also offer essential protection from electrical interference and lightning.

Fiber optics are highly reliable because they do not corrode in moisture, do not short out in water, and still perform at high speeds in any type of harsh weather. Optic cables are very lightweight because of their small size, and their long lengths make them easier to install. With fiber optic cables, there is no danger of fire hazards because they do not transfer any electricity.

Signal Improvement

Without losing power, fiber optic cables can carry television signals for a very long distance because of the technology of using very thin strands of glass. In different areas of the network, both single mode and multimode signals will be used. Signals will be sent from the central office to optical nodes using single mode fiber and then it will be converted to multimode.

Optical cables use light signals instead of electricity and this makes the signals much clearer and offers a very low signal loss over a wide range frequency with no interference to other signals.

Within the next few years, most cable television companies will have fiber optics installation, making it an advanced and versatile communications network solution.

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Fiber Optic Termination

Proper fiber optic termination is extremely important when installing a fiber optic network. A network will be unreliable if this function is not performed correctly. Therefore, much attention is given to this area today, and more and more products are appearing on the market to make fiber optic termination easier and more accurate than ever.

What is Fiber Optic Termination?

Fiber optic termination is the connection of fiber or wire to a device, such as a wall outlet or equipment, which allows for connecting the cable to other cables or devices. The purpose of fiber optic termination is to enable fiber cross connection and light wave signal distribution. Proper fiber optic termination will protect the fibers from dirt or damage while in use and prevent excessive loss of light, thus, making a network run more smoothly and efficiently.

Preparing for Fiber Optic Termination

The preparation for fiber optic termination includes gathering the supplies you will need, stripping the outer jacket, cutting the Kevlar, and stripping the buffer or coating. For supplies, you’ll need safety glasses, a fiber disposal bin, connectors, fiber optic cable, epoxy and syringes (or Anaerobic adhesive), and polishing film. Tools used in fiber optic termination include fiber stripper, scribe, Aramid yarn scissors, adjustable cable jacket stripper, polishing puck, polishing glass plate, and a rubber pad to polish the PC connectors, especially for single mode termination.

You’ll also need testing equipment such as a power meter, FOtracer, reference test cables, a LED light source, and a microscope to view the connector.

Two Methods of Fiber Optic Termination

One type of fiber optic termination is the use of connectors that join two fibers to form a temporary joint. Splicing is the other type, and this involves connecting two bare fibers directly without any connectors.  Splicing is a permanent method of termination.

Fiber Optic Splicing Methods

Mechanical and fusion are the two different fiber optic splicing methods used today. Mechanical splicing aligns two fiber ends to a common centerline for the light to pass from one fiber to another. An adhesive cover or a snap-type cover is used to permanently fasten the splice.

Fiber optic cable mechanical splices are available for single mode or multimode fibers. They come in handy for permanent installations or quick repairs because they are small and very easy to use.

There are two steps involved in fusion splicing. These include the two fibers being precisely aligned and generating a small electric arc for melting the fibers and welding them together. The fiber optic cable fusion splicing has a low-loss connection, but the high precision splicer is bulky and expensive.

Buffer Tubing Protection

Once a cable enters a fiber closure, the jacket around the fiber cable is removed, and individual fibers are exposed. To prepare the fibers for splicing or termination, this process is needed. To prevent fiber cables from breaking, flexible buffer tubes are inserted into them.  This allows more resistance to crushing or other types of impact forces. The tensile strength is not so good because the fiber is not free to float, but the cable will be lighter and more flexible.

Always Follow Instructions in Fiber Optic Termination

The fiber optic termination process has become much easier today with an increased number of installers and readily-available termination products. But even if you are a professional installer, always follow fiber optic termination instructions closely. Be sure you have the exact instructions for the connector you are using because connectors are constructed differently.

There are many college classes as well as online classes that offer professional training in fiber optics termination. The basic skills you will learn in fiber optic termination include:

  • How to Prepare Cable for Termination
  • How to Strip the Fiber
  • How to Prepare the Epoxy (syringe kit)
  • How to Attach the Connector to the Fiber
  • How to Scribe and Polish
  • How to Inspect Your Connection
  • How to Test Your Connector

Fiber optic termination is so important that more than 80 types of connectors have been released from manufacturers.  There are different styles of connectors to fit with almost any type of fiber optic network plan. This is why so many companies and organizations are choosing fiber optics to build or re-design their networks today.

CABLEORGANIZER.com has a valuable website and wide array of outstanding products. Here is their complete Fiber Optic tutorial.

Fiber Optic Connectors

In the past, fiber optic connectors posed a deep concern for network installers because they were difficult to use. But today, manufacturers are making connectors that are more user-friendly and that adhere to certain industry standards. Thanks to these improvements, more and more companies are turning to fiber optic systems to build their business networks.

Functions of Fiber Optic Connectors

The fiber optic connector has several functions. It aligns the fiber with emitters in transmitters, adjacent fibers in splices, and photo-detectors in receivers. With the development of various connector styles, each one has its own advantages, disadvantages, and capabilities. All fiber optic connectors have four basic components, which are the ferrule, connector body, cable, and coupling device.

Types of Connectors

For multimode networks such as those used in buildings and campuses, the ST is the most common fiber optic connector. This connector has a long cylindrical ferrule for holding the fiber and a bayonet mount. The ST connector is considered the most popular multimode connector because it is cheap and easy to install.

The SC fiber optic connector, which is a snap-in connector that latches with a simple push-pull motion, is used in single mode systems. This connector shows excellent performance and is also available in a duplex configuration. The MU connector is more popular in Japan and looks like a miniature SC with a 1.25-mm ferrule.

A standard ceramic ferrule connector, which is half the size of an ST connector, is the LC connector. This connector is used in single mode systems, performs well, and is easily terminated with any adhesive.  A connector that is similar to the LC, but has a shutter over the end of the fiber is the E2000/LX5.

Used in multimode systems only, the MT-RJ connector is duplex with both fibers in a single polymer ferrule. Pins are used for alignment with male and female versions.

The Opti-Jack is a rugged, but neat duplex connector designed around two ST-type ferrules in a package that’s the size of an RJ-45.  This connector has both male and female (jack and plug) versions.

An inexpensive duplex connector that uses no ferrule at all is the Volition connector. This connector aligns fibers in a V-groove like a splice. Mainly used for pre-terminated cable assemblies is the MT connector, which is a 12-fiber connector for ribbon cable.

Inspecting Fiber Optic Connectors

To diagnose any problems or to check the quality of the termination procedure, a fiber optic microscope is used to inspect fiber optic connectors. The microscope allows inspection of the connector from any angle either by tilting the connector or illuminating the angle.

When inspected, the connector should have a smooth and scratch-free finish with no signs of cracks or chips on the fiber where it is either pulling back into the ferrule or protruding from the end.

Fiber Optic Connectors and Safety

As a safety precaution, a worker should always check to make sure there is no power present in the cable before looking at it in a microscope. The fiber end face of a connector should never be touched. Always keep unused connectors covered with a plastic dust cap and discard any damaged connectors.

With the wide variety of fiber optic connectors available today, companies can easily convert to fiber optic networks and start enjoying the benefits of a faster, more efficient work environment.

Fiber Optic Cleaning

One of the most important procedures in the maintenance of a fiber optic system is fiber optic cleaning. This is required to keep quality connections between fiber optic equipment. Keeping the fiber end face and ferrule on the fiber optic connectors absolutely clean is very essential. If any particles such as dust, lint or oil get on the end face, this will jeopardize the completeness of the optical signal that is being sent over the fiber.

These particles can also cause other problems such as scratching the glass surface, instability in the laser system, and a misalignment between the fiber cores. Misalignment between the fiber cores can significantly degrade the optical signal.

Steps to Follow Before Cleaning Fiber Optics

Before cleaning fiber optic connectors, make sure the cable is disconnected from both ends and turn off any laser sources. Always wear safety glasses and inspect the connectors before you clean them. Before a connection is made, the connectors have to be inspected and cleaned. A connector housing should be used for plugging or unplugging a fiber. A protective cap should be placed on unplugged fiber connectors. The unused caps can be kept in a sealed container.

When cleaning fiber optics, the end face of the connector should never be touched and also the clean area of a tissue or swab should not be touched or reused.

When using alcohol, the portion of a tissue or swab where it has been applied or the dispensing tip of an alcohol bottle should never be touched. Alcohol is flammable, so it should not be used around an open spark. Also, never leave alcohol residue on the end face because this could damage the equipment.

Cleaning Fiber Ends

The fiber end should be inspected with a fiberscope of at least 200x magnification, and if it is contaminated, it should be cleaned with the dry cleaning method.

Cle-top cleaner is recommended for the dry cleaning method. With the Cle-top cleaner, the fiber end can be cleaned with a cloth. The used cloth is then thrown away, and with just the pressing of a thumb a clean cloth will emerge. After cleaning, the fiber end should be inspected with a fiberscope. If the fiber end is still contaminated after using the dry cleaning method, repeat the process.

Inspect the connector again with the fiberscope, and if it is still contaminated, use the wet cleaning method, followed by a dry cleaning method until there is no residue.

With the wet cleaning method, an optical quality cleaning cloth and fluid are used. Even though isopropyl alcohol is frequently used as a cleaning fluid, it is slow at drying and can leave residue. Opticwipes cleaning cloth and fluid are recommended.

When using this method, dampen the cleaning cloth with the fluid and wipe the end face of the connector several times. Repeat this and then with a clean, dry area of the cloth, clean the fiber end.

The fiber should not be used if the cleaning is unsuccessful because the contamination could be due to scratching, improper polishing, or some other damage.

CABLEORGANIZER.com has a valuable website and wide array of outstanding products. Here is their complete Fiber Optic tutorial.

Fiber Optic Wire Management

With the increased use of fiber optics in industries today, much focus is placed on installing and managing fiber optics and fiber optics safety. Complex wiring requirements for companies and organizations are managed more efficiently and economically with fiber optic wire management systems. Fiber optic networks can also accommodate numerous types of communications cabling.

The fiber optic system offers flexibility to the workplace by enabling the change of a conference room overnight to a multi-media business center. It also makes upgrading easier and enables a facility to accommodate new communication technology.

But without proper wire management, fiber optics networks will be more of a hassle than a help. Here are some tips about fiber optic wire management.

Products Used in Fiber Optic Wire Management

Wire enclosure applications that blend into walls or ceilings offer an affordable and attractive solution for industrial, residential or commercial environments. For consistent data transmission in fiber optics, this application provides a 1-inch bend radius. In the industrial environment, maintaining the precise bending requirements of fiber optic cables ensures noise reduction and better performance.

Harness wraps and cable ties, which bundle and protect cables and cords while limiting the bend radius of the fiber optic cable, are great products as well.

Another wire management product that is economical, lightweight, and flexible is the wire loom. The wire loom protects fiber optic wires from vibration, puncture, and abrasion.

For areas with a lot of foot traffic, there are cord covers that are made specifically for fiber optics cables, which are able to withstand heavy loads for maximum protection. These keep fiber optic cords hidden and protected.

In the DATA CENTER market, Megladon® Manufacturing Group Ltd., a subsidiary of TyRex Group Ltd.®, is recognized as a leader in the fiber optic connectivity technology. Founded in 1997, Megladon made it their mission to provide customers with fiber optic products that far exceed industry standards. As technology innovators, Megladon created the HLC® (Hardened Lens Contact) termination, which has changed the market and taken it to the next level.

HLC cables are well suited for use in the harshest environments and the most demanding situations. In testing and manufacturing, HCL patch cords can withstand constant plugging and unplugging for years without substantial damage or performance loss. The HLC surface provides minimal optical signal loss making it the ideal choice for video and cable TV applications. For the military and other remote location uses, when replacements are not readily available HCL cables are far more reliable. In Municipal communications systems involving 911 and emergency communications HLC cables have dramatically reduced troubleshooting calls. In any business where the highest performance levels are required Megladon’s HLC, Hardened Lens Contact fiber optic patch cords are the clear choice. For additional information on Megladon and their patented processes please visit the company’s website at www.megladonmfg.com.

Protecting Your Fiber Optics Investment

Fiber optic cables are often subjected to many harsh indoor/outdoor environments such as radiation, extreme heat, corrosion, vibration, high electromagnetic interference, excessive cold, and high radio frequency interference. But with the proper wire management system, your cables can be protected from these environments.

For protection against tension and temperature changes in more harsh environments, the fiber is placed into semi rigid tubes. This allows the cable to stretch, but not the fiber. Fiber optic cables are also designed for protection against damage from water and can still function if water molecules are under the cable’s outer jacket.

Provide more safety in the workplace with the many available fiber optic wire management products. Keep workplace floors clear and safe from cords and cables with products that cover, hide, and protect them. Tripping hazards can also be avoided with fiber optic cord covers.

Use special fittings to reroute cables around corners and elbows. This will ensure proper installation while also keeping your wires safe and out of sight.

If you’re not sure where to start with your fiber optics network or if you need a dependable wire management strategy, hire an installer that specializes in the type of fiber optic network you’ll need for maximum benefits.

www.cableorganizer.com  is an awesome website filled with good information and great deals.

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CABLEORGANIZER.com has a valuable website and wide array of outstanding products. Here is their complete Fiber Optic tutorial.

Introduction to Fiber Optics

During our current age, the increasing ability to transmit more information over longer distances more quickly has expanded the boundaries of our technological development in many areas such as data networks, wireless and satellite communications, cable operators, and broadcasters.

All of this has become possible by the use of fiber optics, and as technology demands insist upon improved performance, fiber optics will continue to increase.

What are Fiber Optics?

Fiber Optics, also called optical fibers, are microscopic strands of very pure glass with about the same diameter of a human hair. Thousands of these optical fibers are arranged in bundles in optical cables and are used to transmit light signals over long distances. The bundles are protected by a jacket, which is the cable's outer covering.

The single optical fiber consists of the core which is the thin glass center of the fiber where the light travels, the outer optical material that surrounds the core and reflects the light back into it is the cladding, and the plastic coating that protects the fiber from moisture and damage is the buffer coating.

Single-mode and multi-mode are the two types of optical fibers. The single-mode, used for long distances, has small cores and transmits infrared laser light. The multi-mode, normally used for short distances, has large cores and transmits infrared light.

Fiber Optics versus Copper

Even though the fiber optic system is similar to the copper wire system, fiber optics are steadily replacing copper wires today as an appropriate means of communication signal transmission.

Some advantages fiber optics have over copper are the dollar savings because they are less expensive, fiber optics are thinner, and they have a higher carrying capacity. Optical fibers are well suited for carrying digital information. There's no electricity so the danger of fire is reduced. Fiber optic cables are lightweight, take up less space, and are also flexible.

History of Fiber Optics

Fiber optics go back as far as Roman times, but the first was an "optical telegraph," which allowed operators to relay a message from one tower to the next by a series of lights mounted on the towers. This was invented in the 1790s by the French Chappe brothers. Great achievement was made in optical science over the course of the next century.

Fiber Optics during the 1800s

Physicists Daniel Collodon and Jacques Babinet reported in the 1840s that light could be directed along jets of water for fountain displays. In 1854, John Tyndall, a British physicist, demonstrated that light could travel through water jets, thereby proving that a light signal could be bent.

In 1880, Alexander Graham Bell patented an optical telephone system which assisted in the advancement of optical technology. Also in 1880, William Wheeler invented a system of light pipes that illuminated homes from an electric arch lamp located in the basement.

Bent glass rods were used to illuminate body cavities in 1888 by Dr. Roth and Professor Reuss of Vienna. Henry Saint-Rene designed a system of bent glass rods to guide light images in an early television scheme in 1895. A patent was applied for by an American, David Smith, in 1898 for a dental illuminator using a curved glass rod.

Fiber Optics Move Forward in the 1900s

The first person to transmit an image of a light bulb filament through a bundle of optical fibers was Heinrich Lamm in 1930. Then, Holger Moller Hansen applied for a Danish patent in 1951 on fiber-optic imaging in which he proposed cladding glass or plastic fibers with a transparent low-index material, but was denied because of the Baird and Hansell patents in 1926.

An undergraduate student named Larry Curtiss was hired by Basil Hirschowitz and C. Wilbur Peters in 1955 to work on their fiber-optic endoscope project. In 1956, Curtiss made the first glass-clad fibers by rod-in-tube method. And in 1957, Hirschowitz was the first to test fiber-optic endoscope on a patient.

Elias Snitzer of American Optical published a theoretical description of single mode fibers in 1961. In 1970, the scientists at Corning Glass Works reached their goal of making single mode fibers with attenuation less then 20dB/km. They achieved this through doping silica glass with titanium.

In 1973, Bell Laboratories developed a modified chemical vapor deposition process that heated chemical vapors and oxygen to form ultra-transparent glass that can be mass-produced into low-loss optical fiber. This process still remains the standard for fiber-optic cable manufacturing.

The Dorset (UK) police installed the first non-experimental fiber-optic link in 1975, and the first live telephone traffic through fiber optics occurred in Long Beach, California two years later.

In the late 1970s and early 1980s, telephone companies used great numbers of fibers to rebuild their communications infrastructure. In the mid-1980s, Sprint was founded on the first nationwide, 100 percent, fiber-optic network.

In 1991, Desurvire and Payne demonstrated optical amplifiers that were built into the fiber-optic cable itself. The all-optic system could carry 100 times more information than cable with electronic amplifiers.

The first all-optic fiber cable called TPC-5, which used optical amplifiers, was laid across the Pacific Ocean in 1996. In 1997, the Fiber Optic Link Around the Globe (FLAG) became the longest single-cable network in the world and furnished the groundwork for the next generation of Internet applications.

Today, the medical, military, telecommunication, industrial, data storage, networking, and broadcast industries are able to implement and use fiber optic technology in a variety of applications. 

A Growing Fiber Optic Market

In 1999, it was reported that an estimated $14.6 billion was spent on fiber optics items. These tremendous figures were greatly attributed to the growing trend of the Internet. But today, more and more companies are using fiber optics for other purposes as well - not just for the Web.

Some types of companies that use fiber optics today include computer offices, telemarketing networks, manufacturing plants, Internet broadband companies, online video providers, Ethernet users, medical offices, hospitals, financial institutions, communications companies, and many others.

Fiber Optic Set-Backs and Changes

Fiber optics has been used in many different applications over the past 10 years and went through a time period of amazing growth during the early 1990s. Unfortunately, there have been a few disadvantages of fiber optics that have held many companies back from applying this method.

One set-back has been the cost of initial set up and the time involved in changing over to fiber optics. Though future benefits might be enjoyed, many companies are just too busy or don't have the funds to make the change. Another disadvantage has been a lack of standardization in the fiber optics industry. Also, the loss of signal strength when bending the fiber optical cables around corners made this technology less appealing to companies that provide service to the homes or businesses of their customers.

These disadvantages, however, are quickly fading. Fiber optic manufacturers that provide fiber, cable, connectors, testing instruments, and cleaning supplies have been working hard to standardize the industry. More and more people are training in fiber optics to become engineers, installers, and network managers so a dose of healthy competition will likely bring fiber optic design and installation prices down.

Signal Loss Solutions for the Future

The problem with signal loss will also be minimized as fiber optic technology improves. Corning Incorporated, a major provider of fiber optics products, recently announced a new design that enables bending around very tight corners with virtually no signal loss. This new technology is called nanoStructures (TM) and will likely make fiber optics much more appealing to cable, Internet, and communications companies. The technology is also compliant with industry standards and can be installed using the same procedures as other fiber optics networks.

With new technologies such as nanoStructures, fiber optics can be used to deliver services to high-rise apartments and homes across the nation. Customers will be able to enjoy faster Internet, better quality content, and more interactive features than ever before.

Online Video and Fiber Optics

A popular trend in the Internet market today is online video. Google's YouTube and other similar services are taking the Internet by storm, and fiber optics is expected to play a big part in online video. Fiber optics will provide better, clearer pictures and will also expand the Internet's bandwidth capabilities.

The Internet today contains much more data than it did just a few years ago. More companies and individuals are using the Internet. More people have Internet in their homes than ever before. And, more people are downloading entire movies, which take up a lot of bandwidth. So, the need for bandwidth to handle all this data and activity is tremendous.

Cable modems are working great right now, but may not be able to keep up. Fiber optics may be the key to unlock the Internet's full potential.

CABLEORGANIZER.com has a valuable website and wide array of outstanding products. Here is their complete Fiber Optic tutorial.

Making Optical Fibers

The impact of the technology of optical fiber in our communication system is astounding. Many have wondered how these optical fibers are made. There are several steps involved in making an optical fiber, which include making a preform glass cylinder and drawing fibers from the preform.

Optical Glass

Optic fiberglass, a replacement for copper wires, is an ultra-high-purity silica glass that can be stretched into long, hair-thin fibers and used to transmit information over long distances. Fiber optic strands consist of an inner core of high purity glass with a high refractive index that transmits light, and an outer core of low refractive glass that keeps the light signal from seeping out the sides. The basic unit from which fibers are drawn is called a "preform."

Preform Glass Cylinder

A preform is a glass cylinder that might be several inches long and several inches thick with a different refractive index to provide the core and cladding of the fiber. The fiber's capability to reflect light is decided by the creation of the cladding glass relative to the core glass. The reflection usually occurs by creating a higher refractive index in the core of the glass than in the surrounding cladding glass.

Modified chemical vapor deposition, which is a chemical process used for producing high-performance solid materials, is used for making the glass for the preform. Vapor deposition, outside vapor deposition, and vapor axial deposition are the three methods usually used in this process.

The most common process used is the outside vapor deposition because it yields a low-loss fiber that is very well suited for long-distance cables. This process is highly automated and usually takes several hours for completion. Once the preform blank is cool, it is tested for quality control and then placed into a fiber drawing tower.

Drawing Fibers from Preform

The drawing tower has a temperature of 3,452 to 3.992 degrees Fahrenheit or 1,900 to 2,200 degrees Celsius. This tower consists of a furnace that heats the tip of the blank until a piece of molten glass falls from the blank, pulling a thin strand of glass, which is the beginning of an optical fiber. Then the fiber goes through a monitor to ensure a specified outside diameter. Next, ultraviolet lamps are used for applying and curing coatings. The fiber is wound on spools at the bottom of the draw and each fiber is assigned a unique identification number. The optic fiber cables are formed by being coated, colored and bundled in protective jackets.

Once the optical fibers are finished they are tested for bandwidth, tensile strength, fiber geometry, operating temperature and range of humidity, refractive index profile, attenuation, and temperature dependence of attenuation. Cables that are going to be used undersea must have the ability to conduct light under the water.

From Optical Fiber Production to Many Uses

The fibers, after they have passed quality control, are sold to many companies to improve capacity and speed, and to replace their old copper wire systems. Some types of companies that use fiber optics include network providers, telephone, power, and cable companies, industrial plants, and computer technicians.

Cable Designs for Fiber Optics Networks

Today in North America, there are two basic cable designs that are used for designing fiber optic networks. These are loose-tube, which are used in many outside plants, duct, direct-buried applications, and tight-buffered, which are primarily used inside buildings. Before selecting a cable design, there are still many more decisions to make after determining whether the cables will be used inside or outside.

Resistance to chemicals, moisture, and any other types of in-ground or atmospheric conditions are some environmental concerns. Some mechanical properties that are very important are flexing, tensile strength, bending, and impact resistance.

Loose Tube Fiber Optic Cable Assembly

Loose tube cables are made up of numerous fibers inside a small plastic tube that are coiled around a central strength member and jacketed, providing a small, high fiber count cable. These cables are excellent for outside plant applications since they can be made with the loose tubes filled with water-absorbent powder or gel that withstands high moisture conditions. They also give a more stable transmission under continuous mechanical stress.

Loose tube cables can be strung overhead, buried directly into the ground, and also used in conduits, since they are designed to endure harsh outdoor temperatures, have high tensile strength, and have a large bend radius and diameter. The fibers must be handled carefully and protected to prevent damage since they have only a thin buffer coating. 

Without interfering with other protected buffer tubes that are being routed to different locations, the buffer-tube design of the loose tube cable allows easy drop-off of groups of fibers at intermediate points. The loose tube cable design is also helpful in the administration and identification of fibers in the system.

Loose-buffered cables are available in all-dielectric construction, armored construction, and riser-rated constructions.

Tight-Buffered Fiber Optic Cable Assembly

Even though some tight-buffered cable designs are for outdoors, most of them are for indoor applications. These individual fibers are coated with a buffer coating and are protected during routing, handling, and connectorization by the rugged cable structure, which comes from their tight-buffered design. The tensile load is also kept away from the fiber by the yarn strength members.

The tight-buffered design is very flexible. It has low crush and impact resistance along with a low attenuation change at lower temperatures. The tight-buffered design is well-suited for "jumper cables" that connect outside plant cables to terminal equipment, and also for linking various devices in a premises network

The breakout design and distribution design are the two typical constructions of the tight-buffered cables. The breakout design has an individual jacket for each tight-buffered fiber, and the distribution design has a single jacket protecting all of the tight-buffered fibers.

Single-Fiber Cables

Single-fiber cables have a single fiber strand surrounded by a tight buffer. To terminate loose-tube cables directly into receivers and other active and passive components, single-fiber tight-buffered cables are used as pigtails, patch cords, and jumpers.

Multi-Fiber Cables

Multi-fiber cables have two or more tight-buffer cables that are contained in a common outer jacket. General building, risers, and plenum applications often use multi-fiber, tight-buffered cables. These cables are also used for handling ease and flexibility within buildings and alternative handling and routing.

With these innovative network designs, fiber optics have paved the way for easier, more efficient custom cable assembly.  Whether for an administrative, medical, or industrial network, fiber optics networking is quickly becoming the number one choice.

www.cableorganizer.com  is an awesome website filled with good information and great deals.

 

Verizon Upgrades Its IP Network Access to Enable 100G Technology to 7 U.S. network routes

Dec. 13, 2011 NEW YORK - To meet the growing traffic demand created by video, mobile and cloud services, Verizon will upgrade its IP network infrastructure in selected U.S. markets, including Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, New York and Seattle.

Verizon will extend its next-generation 100G capabilities by deploying Cisco's CRS-3 Carrier Routing System platform to terminate high-speed connections closer to the "edge" - the part of the network nearer to the customer's network facilities. This advanced platform, which will be deployed in the first half of 2012, will enable the network to seamlessly accommodate growth where traffic demand is the greatest.

"We're constantly seeking to improve the Verizon IP network to support traffic growth, improve performance and increase functionality," said Ihab Tarazi, vice president of global IP and transport planning and technology for Verizon. "Upgrading the network using Cisco's CRS-3 platform provides better scale and expanded capabilities that support traffic growth areas such as broadband access and content delivery."

Verizon will deploy the CRS-3 platform to provide 100G edge access to the IP network and upgrade its FiOS core network. Verizon has relied on Cisco's CRS-1 platform in the network for more than four years, allowing the company to easily transition to the CRS-3 platform, thereby simplifying network operations while enabling comprehensive system redundancy and network resiliency.

"Cisco's CRS and ASR technologies were designed for trail-blazing service providers, such as Verizon, that are looking to create and deploy the next generation of great services and applications." said Surya Panditi, senior vice president and general manager, core technology group for Cisco. "These routing platforms will seamlessly accommodate the extraordinary future growth of video traffic, mobile devices and new online services, and we are confident these technologies will play a key role in enabling Verizon to continue delivering advanced new FiOS experiences to its customers."

The Cisco platform will enable content providers and large enterprise customers to benefit from more efficient and quicker access in delivering traffic to Verizon's wireline and wireless consumers.

The CRS platform also plays a key role in Verizon's network evolution strategy to IPv6, the new Internet addressing system, by providing the flexibility to support the anticipated wave of IPv6 services while continuing to expand and sustain IPv4 services.

Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE, Nasdaq: VZ), headquartered in New York, is a global leader in delivering broadband and other wireless and wireline communications services to consumer, business, government and wholesale customers. Verizon Wireless operates America's most reliable wireless network, with more than 107 million total connections nationwide. Verizon also provides converged communications, information and entertainment services over America's most advanced fiber-optic network, and delivers integrated business solutions to customers in more than 150 countries, including all of the Fortune 500. A Dow 30 company with $106.6 billion in 2010 revenues, Verizon employs a diverse workforce of more than 195,000. For more information, visit www.verizon.com.

 

FOA: Looking Ahead to 2012

As we approach the end of the year, we generally review the current year’s happenings and then look ahead to the new year, with both a forecast of what we think is likely to happen and what we really hope happens. In most technology areas, the future is determined by a combination of technological development, the economic climate and, well, politics.

As we all know, the world economic climate is unstable. However, communications seems to be moving ahead in spite of economic uncertainty, and that means that fiber optics, along with other communications technologies, is growing. As usual, communications growth is driven by the consumer and business use of the Internet. Telecommunications has become an obsolete word – voice traffic has been surpassed by digital traffic for more than a decade now and represents perhaps 0.1% of all communications traffic.

Now the growth is in video, mostly entertainment, which represents over half of all Internet traffic – more in the late afternoon and early evening when everyone gets home from school or work and downloads the evenings entertainment.

Furthermore, more than half that entertainment is viewed on wireless devices, increasingly tablets, well, really the iPad which represents the vast majority of tablets in use.

What does this mean for fiber? Wireless is not wireless, you see. Cellular backhaul has been increasingly moved to fiber as smartphones – and now tablets – overloaded the wireless systems. AT&T reported that the iPhone alone caused a 8000% increase in data traffic on their wireless system in the first 3.5 years after its introduction and the iPad consumes a lot more bandwidth than any smartphone.

Cellular systems are not just using fiber for backhaul from the tower, but the massive number of antennas sprouting on towers has become too much for the big coax cables that traditionally connected them. Fiber UP the tower to the antennas is now becoming the norm.

WiFi is also growing, not just for people with laptops in coffee shops, but for taking up lots of traffic from smartphones which can switch between the two networks. Super WiFi, using the “white space” spectrum left when TV went digital, is now in trial and could provide broadband to the suburban and rural areas where fiber to the home is still not economical.

Wireless is also impacting premises cabling. The old 1980s model of premises cabling that led to structured cabling standards is obsolete – why build a network with two copper cables to the desktop when the user will have a cell phone and wireless laptop or tablet that does not interface with the wiring. Besides copper is ~$3.50 a pound and counterfeit cables are everywhere causing problems. The new standard for enterprise networks will probably be fiber backbone and maybe straight to the wireless AP. Maybe energy concerns will finally get users to consider that alternatives are better than vintage copper cabling – see http://www.cirrant.com/cirrantpdf1.pdf.

Speaking of standards, the committees are locked in their usual battles over “Cat 7” finally getting some attention, probably a waste of time, and manufacturers arguing over the compatibility of new technology.

This year will also see more work in “smart grid” which depends on fiber for communications also. Problems like the technician flipping the wrong switch and putting 5 million Southern Californians in the dark show the grid needs help. Alternative energy, big solar and wind farms, use a lot of fiber also and the plans for new builds are showing up in many states.

For the FOA, we’re growing in the US as more techs need fiber training and more trainers realize that our premises cabling cert represents the current reality – copper, fiber and wireless. Overseas, we are being asked for our help in many countries who are expanding their communications networks and need advice, reliable technical information from our Online Reference Guide and training from our FOA-Approved schools and Certified Instructors.

We continue expanding our technical reference materials and online study programs online and with more apps that allow you to carry a full technical reference in your hand. We’re even adding apps like the free “loss budget” app for the iPhone/iPad that assist designers and installers of fiber optic systems to do their job easier.

“May you live in interesting times.”

Jim Hayes, President - The Fiber Optic Association, Inc

The Fiber Optic Association, Inc. is a nonprofit professional society chartered to promote fiber optics through education, certification and standards. Over 230 FOA-Approved schools around the world have certified more than 34,000 fiber optic technicians. The FOA provides technical information free to the industry to promote the proper application of fiber optics and premises cabling. The FOA offers free online introductory fiber optic programs for everyone and training for instructors at FOA-Approved schools. For more information on the FOA, see the organization's website http://www.thefoa.org/, email info@thefoa.org  or call 760-451-3655.

 

CommScope started a partnership in China with Huawei more than a decade ago

Today, CommScope has both manufacturing and R&D facilities in China

SHENZHEN, China, CommScope, a global leader in infrastructure solutions for communications networks, has received the “Golden Partner” award from Huawei Technology Co., Ltd., a leader in providing next-generation telecommunications network solutions for operators around the world.

CommScope’s win of the 2011 Golden Partner Award is the fifth consecutive year in which it has been so honored by Huawei. The award presentation ceremony was staged at the 2011 Huawei Core Partner Convention at Huawei’s headquarters in Shenzhen, China. Representatives from its core strategic partners and senior executives from its supply chain, strategy, marketing and business units participated in this high-profile annual event.

“Huawei is poised to become the leading telecommunications equipment company in the international arena,” said Benjamin Peng, chief delivery and operations officer, Huawei. “The support of quality partners will facilitate success in this process. CommScope has been doing a great job in supporting our globalization endeavors and this exceptional award is in recognition of their great efforts.” CommScope is one of few Golden Partner Award winners among thousands of Huawei partners. “We are excited and honored for being recognized as a Golden Partner of Huawei,” said Bob Suffern, chief technology officer, CommScope. “Since we started our partnership more than a decade ago, we have been impressed by Huawei’s vision and ambition, and we remain committed to supporting its business globalization as a trusted advisor.”

CommScope has been providing solutions that include antennas, cabling and indoor coverage to Huawei for its many high-profile projects worldwide through localized resources that align with Huawei’s key supply centers, Suffern noted. “I am very pleased that these efforts have been well-received and recognized by Huawei,” he said. “This multi-faceted global collaboration leads to an all-win scenario for the stakeholders involved – Huawei, CommScope and other partners, network customers and consumers.”

CommScope entered the China market in 1997 and now operates manufacturing facilities in Suzhou and Shenzhen, along with R&D centers in Shanghai, Suzhou and Shenzhen to provide its customers with world-class and customized product design support. With a high-degree of localization, CommScope is highly acclaimed for its product quality, technological innovations as well as timely delivery.

CommScope (www.commscope.com) has played a role in virtually all the world’s best communication networks. We create the infrastructure that connects people and technologies through every evolution. Our portfolio of end-to-end solutions includes critical infrastructure our customers need to build high-performing wired and wireless networks. As much as technology changes, our goal remains the same: to help our customers create, innovate, design, and build faster and better. We’ll never stop connecting and evolving networks for the business of life at home, at work, and on the go.

CommScope? Yes, There’s an App for That

CommScope’s cSolutions, cCatalog Apps Now Available

HICKORY, NC, November 9, 2011CommScope, Inc., a global leader in infrastructure solutions for communications networks, is now providing its business partners, customers and distributors mobile access to the company’s complete product and solutions portfolio with the use its innovative cSolutionsSM and cCatalogSM applications.

The cSolutions app, available for the iPad® from Apple®, provides users with multiple levels of information about CommScope’s complete portfolio of end-to-end solutions for high-performing wired and wireless communication networks. The user can choose the market, choose the solution and then navigate through the content which includes: solutions overviews, 360-degree product views, interior product views, product photo galleries, product descriptions and links to product specifications. 

The cSolutions app offers all the functionality offered by a mobile device—you can touch, swipe, tap and spin to access the content, images and specifications you want—all at one’s fingertips. 

“Our online web catalog content is also being made available for users of any Apple mobile device, giving them the flexibility to research and stay up-to-date on all the solutions CommScope has to offer,” said Fiona Nolan, vice president, Corporate Marketing, CommScope. “Both apps are some of the innovative ways that people, who are on the go, can remain in constant contact with CommScope.” 

Available to be downloaded to an iPad, iPhone® or iPod touch® from Apple, the cCatalog app provides real-time content, allowing users to:

  • quickly access information and specifications for more than 25,000 CommScope products including its Andrew®, Broadband, Carrier, SYSTIMAX®, and Uniprise® solutions
  • view related products
  • view products by status—New, To Be Discontinued and Discontinued
  • add products to a project list
  • send email links of product specifications
  • stay current with CommScope blogs, press releases and videos 

 

SIEMON reports Major Standards Organizations Begin Work on Twisted-Pair Cabling Specifications Supporting Greater than 10 Gb/s Transmission

Siemon’s Valerie Maguire reports that both ISO/IEC and TIA have formally initiated projects to develop performance Standards for balanced twisted-pair copper cabling capable of supporting 40 Gb/s transmission.

November 22, 2011, Watertown, CT - Recent new project approvals in both the ISO/IEC and TIA structured cabling groups have set the stage to allow interest in the specification of 40 Gb/s transmission-ready twisted-pair cabling requirements to quickly gain momentum.  The early volume of expert contributions related to these projects indicates strong industry commitment and investment in copper-based Ethernet for future higher-speed applications and underscores the technical and commercial viability of these solutions.

At the October, 2011 ISO/IEC 11801 meeting in Melbourne, Australia, the ISO/IEC JTC 1/SC 25/WG 3 Working Group initiated a New Work Item Proposal (NWIP) to develop requirements for balanced twisted-pair cabling that can support 40 Gb/s data transmission.

Similarly, after initiating a new cabling project to address the need to support greater-than 10 Gb/s transmission in February, 2011, the TIA TR-42.7 Copper Cabling Subcommittee formally adopted baseline objectives for Next Generation Cabling performance in October, 2011.  These parameters are anticipated to be published in addendum 1 to ANSI/TIA-568-C.2 in 2014.

While both the ISO/IEC and TIA initiatives focus on developing a new class or category of copper cabling to support 40 Gb/s transmission, it is interesting to note that ISO/IEC also plans to develop  guidelines describing the 40 Gb/s capacity exhibited by existing classes of cabling.

Siemon’s Valerie Maguire, a contributor to both the ISO/IEC and TIA groups, has issued brief overviews of the new standards activities, available on Siemon’s Network Infrastructure Blog:

•   ISO/IEC Initiates 40 GBit/s Copper Cabling Project:  http://blog.siemon.com/infrastructure/isoiec-initiates-40-gbits-copper-cabling-project

•   TIA Adopts Next Generation Cabling Baseline Objectives: http://blog.siemon.com/infrastructure/tia-adopts-next-generation-cabling-baseline-objectives-2

To access Siemon’s Network Infrastructure blog, visit: http://blog.siemon.com/infrastructure/

Follow Siemon on Twitter:  http://twitter.com/siemoncabling/

Join Siemon on Facebook: http://www.siemon.com/go/facebook

About Siemon

Established in 1903, Siemon is an industry leader specializing in the manufacture and innovation of high quality, high-performance network cabling solutions. Headquartered in Connecticut, USA, with global offices, manufacturing and service partners throughout the world, Siemon offers the most comprehensive suite of copper (unshielded and shielded twisted-pair) category 5e, category 6 (Class E), category 6A (Class EA) and category 7/7A (Class F/FA), and multimode and singlemode optical fiber cabling systems available. With over 400 patents specific to structured cabling, from patch cords to patch panels, Siemon Labs invests heavily in R&D and development of industry standards, underlining the company's long-term commitment to its customers and the industry.

 

IT”S ABOUT TIME!!! December 13, 2011 NO TEXTING WHILE DRIVING

The National Transportation Safety Board Tuesday called for a nationwide ban on the use of cell phones and text messaging devices while driving.

The recommendation is the most far-reaching yet by the NTSB, which in the past 10 years has increasingly sought to limit the use of portable electronic devices.

If adopted by states, the recommendation would outlaw nonemergency phone calls and texting by operators of every vehicle on the road.

It would not apply to hands-free devices, or to passengers.

States should ban all driver use of cell phones and other portable electronic devices, except in emergencies, the National Transportation Board said Tuesday.

The recommendation, unanimously agreed to by the five-member board, applies to both hands-free and hand-held phones and significantly exceeds any existing state laws restricting texting and cell phone use behind the wheel.

The board made the recommendation in connection with a deadly highway pileup in Missouri last year. The board said the initial collision in the accident near Gray Summit, Mo., was caused by the inattention of a 19 year-old-pickup driver who sent or received 11 texts in the 11 minutes immediately before the crash.

The pickup, traveling at 55 mph, collided into the back of a tractor truck that had slowed for highway construction. The pickup was rear-ended by a school bus that overrode the smaller vehicle. A second school bus rammed into the back of the first bus.

The pickup driver and a 15-year-old student on one of the school buses were killed. Thirty-eight other people were injured in the Aug. 5, 2010, accident near Gray Summit, Mo.

About 50 students, mostly members of a high school band from St. James, Mo., were on the buses heading to the Six Flags St. Louis amusement park.

The accident is a "big red flag for all drivers," NTSB chairman Deborah Hersman said at a meeting to determine the cause of the accident and make safety recommendations.

It's not possible to know from cell phone records if the driver was typing, reaching for the phone or reading a text at the time of the crash, but it's clear he was manually, cognitively and visually distracted, she said.

"Driving was not his only priority," Hersman said. "No call, no text, no update is worth a human life."

The board is expected to recommend new restrictions on driver use of electronic devices behind the wheel. While the NTSB doesn't have the power to impose restrictions, it's recommendations carry significant weight with federal regulators and congressional and state lawmakers.

Missouri had a law banning drivers under 21 years old from texting while driving at the time of the crash, but wasn't aggressively enforcing the ban, board member Robert Sumwalt said.

"Without the enforcement, the laws don't mean a whole lot," he said.

Investigators are seeing texting, cell phone calls and other distracting behavior by operators in accidents across all modes of transportation with increasing frequency. It has become routine for investigators to immediately request the preservation of cell phone and texting records when they launch an investigation.

In the last few years the board has investigated a commuter rail accident that killed 25 people in California in which the train engineer was texting; a fatal marine accident in Philadelphia in which a tugboat pilot was talking on his cell phone and using a laptop; and a Northwest Airlines flight that flew more than 100 miles past its destination because both pilots were working on their laptops.

The board has previously recommended bans on texting and cell phone use by commercial truck and bus drivers and beginning drivers, but it has stopped short of calling for a ban on the use of the devices by adults behind the wheel of passenger cars.

The problem of texting while driving is getting worse despite a rush by states to ban the practice, Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said last week. In November, Pennsylvania became the 35th state to forbid texting while driving.

About two out of 10 American drivers overall — and half of drivers between 21 and 24 — say they've thumbed messages or emailed from the driver's seat, according to a survey of more than 6,000 drivers by the NTSB www.ntsb.gov    
And what's more, many drivers don't think it's dangerous when they do it; only when others do, the survey found.

At any given moment last year on America's streets and highways, nearly 1 in every 100 car drivers was texting, emailing, surfing the Web or otherwise using a handheld electronic device, the safety administration said. And those activities spiked 50 percent over the previous year.
The agency takes an annual snapshot of drivers' behavior behind the wheel by staking out intersections to count people using cell phones and other devices, as well as other distracting behavior.

Driver distraction wasn't the only significant safety problem uncovered by NTSB's investigation of the Missouri accident. Investigators said they believe the pickup driver was suffering from fatigue that may have eroded his judgment at the time of the accident. He had an average of about five and a half hours of sleep a night in the days leading up to the accident and had had fewer than five hours of sleep the night before the accident, they said.
The pickup driver had no history of accidents or traffic violations, investigators said.
Investigators also found significant problems with the brakes of both school buses involved in the accident. A third school bus sent to a hospital after the accident to pick up students crashed in the hospital parking lot when that bus' brakes failed.
However, the brake problems didn't cause or contribute to the severity of the accident, investigators said.

Another issue involved the difficulty passengers had exiting the first school bus after the accident. The bus' front and rear bus doors were unusable after the accident — the front door because the front bus was on top of the tractor truck cab and too high off the ground, and the rear door because the front of the bus had intruded five feet into the rear of the first bus.
Passengers had to exit through an emergency window, but the raised latch on the window kept catching on clothing as students tried to escape, investigators said. Exiting was further slowed because the window design required one person to hold the window up in order for a second person to crawl through, they said.
It was critical for passengers to exit as quickly as possible because a large amount of fuel puddled underneath the bus was a serious fire hazard, investigators said.
"It could have been a much worse situation if there was a fire," Donald Karol, the NTSB's highway safety director, said.

 

ShoreTel Mobility and Ruckus Speed Enterprise Migration from Desk Phones to Smartphones

Affordable, Wireless Mobility Solution Ensures Enterprise VoIP over Wi-Fi

SUNNYVALE, Calif. , Dec. 12, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Ruckus Wireless™ and ShoreTel® (NASDAQ: SHOR - News), the leading provider of brilliantly simple IP phone systems, today announced plans to deliver a Mobile Unified Communications (UC) Starter Kit, combining Wi-Fi and voice over IP (VoIP) products, which is specifically designed for the small and medium-sized business (SMB) sector.

The Ruckus ZoneFlex Smart Wireless LAN (WLAN) offering is a verified system within the ShoreTel Innovation Network, ensuring tight coordination between the two platforms for end-to-end interoperability. For mid-size enterprises looking to test mobile unified communications over Wi-Fi, Ruckus and ShoreTel have also created custom, discounted product bundles for their respective channel partners. 

The ShoreTel/Ruckus bundle delivers advanced UC and wireless networking capabilities necessary to support corporate voice and data requirements all in an affordable and easy-to-use package. The Ruckus ZoneFlex Smart Wi-Fi system extends ShoreTel's VoIP reach beyond the wired environment – allowing customers to use smartphones, tablets and Voice over Wi-Fi phones over the existing enterprise IP voice system, while maintaining superb voice quality.

"With the growth of mobile devices and consumerization of IT, there is now huge demand by enterprises for the use of diverse smartphones using advanced Wi-Fi and VoIP technology," said Denis Maynard , vice president of worldwide sales for Ruckus Wireless. "ShoreTel and Ruckus now give organizations a complete turnkey system that takes advantage of the best VoIP and Wi-Fi technologies to easily and securely integrate employee smartphones into their existing network framework."

Helping the Mid-Market Capitalize on the 'Bring Your Own Device' Trend

As the corporate workforce becomes increasingly mobile, desk phones are giving way to smartphones, while powerful tablet devices marginalize PCs. As these smart devices pop up everywhere within companies, more Wi-Fi will be needed to achieve the same performance as traditional laptops, according to a recent report by Gartner.(1)

Combined, the ShoreTel Mobility and Ruckus Smart Wi-Fi systems are ideally suited to address these growing concerns. IT professionals can now empower their users with enterprise unified communications on their personal smartphones while leveraging the IP PBX platform already in place – all while reducing costs and securing enterprise communications.

"Research reveals that half of enterprise knowledge workers are using smartphones as their primary communications device – a number that continues to grow, particularly as younger generations enter the workforce," said Mark Arman , vice president of business development for ShoreTel. "There have been limited options available to support enterprise mobility for the mid-market sector. Ruckus shares our dedication to ease of use and implementation, and we are pleased to partner to bring about a much-needed affordable Wi-Fi-integrated VoIP solution to market." 

Availability

The ShoreTel/Ruckus bundle includes:

  • ShoreTel Mobility Router 2000 appliance (supporting up to 100 users; upgradable versions available) bundled with 10 user licenses
  • Ruckus ZoneDirector 1100 (supporting up to six APs and is license upgradable to 50 APs)
  • Ruckus Premium Partner Support
  • Ruckus ZoneFlex 7363 802.11N APs (includes three APs to start, and license can extend to additional APs if needed)
  • Ruckus ZonePlanner Software

The ShoreTel/Ruckus product promotion is being offered for a limited time through ScanSource, which distributes both ShoreTel and Ruckus products throughout North America .

About ShoreTel

ShoreTel, Inc. (NASDAQ: SHOR - News) is the provider of brilliantly simple Unified Communication (UC) solutions based on its award-winning IP business phone system. We offer organizations of all sizes integrated, voice, video, data, and mobile communications on an open, distributed IP architecture that helps significantly reduce the complexity and costs typically associated with other solutions. The feature-rich ShoreTel UC system offers the lowest total cost of ownership (TCO) and the highest customer satisfaction in the industry, in part because it is easy to deploy, manage, scale and use. Increasingly, companies around the world are finding a competitive edge by replacing business-as-usual with new thinking, and choosing ShoreTel to handle their integrated business communication. ShoreTel is based in Sunnyvale, California , and has regional offices in Austin, Texas ; United Kingdom ; Sydney, Australia ; and Singapore . For more information, visit www.shoretel.com.

About Ruckus Wireless, Inc.

Headquartered in Silicon Valley, Ruckus Wireless is a supplier of advanced wireless systems for the mobile networking market. The company markets and manufactures a wide range of indoor and outdoor "Smart Wi-Fi" products for mobile operators, broadband service providers and corporate enterprises. Ranked as the top telecom company in the 2009 Inc. Magazine 500 list and named a World Economic Forum Technology Pioneer, Ruckus Wireless has realized dramatic growth. With nearly 50 patents granted to date, Ruckus invented state-of-the-art wireless technology that focuses and directs signals over the best performing paths, automatically adapting them to changing environmental conditions. This unique capability extends signal range and ensures consistent reliable distribution of delay-sensitive multimedia content and services over standard 802.11 Wi-Fi. The company has raised $51 million in funding from premier investors such as Sequoia Capital, Focus Ventures, Sutter Hill , Motorola, T–Ventures, Telus Ventures and Firelake Capital. The company is led by Ms. Selina Lo, president and chief executive officer. For more information, visit Ruckus Wireless at http://www.ruckuswireless.com.

 

The History of IDEAL Industries – an American Icon

How do you start a company that will one day be known as a global leader in networking tools and electrical testers? Launch a commutator dresser from your mother's kitchen in Chicago, Illinois, and then develop and manufacture a product that remains an Electrical Industry must-have for close to a century. At least, that’s how IDEAL Industries founder J. Walter Becker did it back in 1916.

Eight years after he began what was then known as the IDEAL Commutator Dresser Company of Chicago, Becker moved his business operations to a new headquarters and manufacturing facility in nearby Sycamore, Illinois. Just two years after that, IDEAL Industries forever changed the electrical industry with the introduction screw-on Wire-Nut® Wire Connectors, which to this day have saved electricians countless work hours by eliminating the time-consuming solder and tape splicing method.

Over 93 years after the development of the Wire-Nut®, innovation is still a hallmark of IDEAL Industries. Though the company was originally founded to serve the electrical industry, as technology has rapidly advanced, so has IDEAL, to the point that they're now a leading developer and manufacturer of network cable testers, installation tools and project consumables, including fish tape, wire pulling lubricant, heat guns, super tough wire strippers, and some of the best installer tool kits available, anywhere at any price..

Did you know?

·         IDEAL Industries got its name from the type of products and business relationships that J. Walter Becker wanted to build: ideal.

·         After nearly a century in business, IDEAL Industries is still a privately-held company, and among its shareholders are fifth-generation descendants of J. Walter Becker.

·         Even though they started in the American Midwest, IDEAL Industries now does business in 88 different countries around the globe.

Ideal Industries is an outstanding example of quality products – MADE IN AMERICA quality products. Over the years, Ideal tools have become the benchmark for durability and pinnacle for precision.

Infrastructure Convergence

The Internet of everything: The idea here is that we are building on pervasive computing where cameras, sensors, microphones, image recognition -- everything -- is now part of the environment. Remote sensing of everything from electricity to air conditioning use is now part of the network. In addition, increasingly intelligent devices create issues such as privacy concerns. Eventually IT will need some central unified network and management of all these devices.

Interestingly, many experts are now predicting that the heir apparent to build the new infrastructure physical "highway systems" is the ELECTRICAL CONTRACTOR. The EC has the opportunity and the capability to grasp the future convergence of many new technologies as well as the established energy distribution networks. Integration of power, control, communications, security, and life safety systems are the biggest revenue opportunity for contractors in the next 2-3 decades. Ideal Industries continues to provide the contractors with the best tools and components to tackle the toughest challenges.

In 2011, as the economy recovers, Ideal Industries is getting a head start on the competition. Many of the best examples of companies that have already grasped the challenges of the future are family-owned small to medium sized corporations. For example, Ideal Industries has done an excellent job of maximizing the productivity of their employees and building a reciprocal respect between the company and the employees. Add training, the results will make everyone happy including the staff, owners, and customers. We live in challenging times. Attitudes are as important as the technologies that we integrate into our lives and work.

Ideal IndustriesMADE IN AMERICA  www.idealindustries.com Check them out.

REPEATABILITY: “You get tough top quality tools from Ideal” said Kevin Moy, Lead Tech – Cabling Installation Team, Communication Planning Corp. “When it positively has to be done right the first time, I recommend the tools made by Ideal without any reservations.”

 

Verizon realigns enterprise and wholesale businesses under common group

Verizon (NYSE: VZ) CEO Lowell McAdam is wasting no time making his own stamp on the service provider's global enterprise business unit by realigning its business, government and wholesale operations under one common organization.

Led by John Stratton, who served under McAdam as the EVP and COO of Verizon Wireless, Verizon Enterprise Solutions will oversee all of Verizon's products and solutions for both traditional businesses and government customers.

The new group will oversee all of the telco's wireline and wireless solutions for both businesses and government customers, including enterprise mobility, cloud and IT, strategic networking and advanced communications offerings, as well as specialized solutions for key industries such as health care, travel & transportation, retail, utilities and financial services and IT consulting services. In addition, the group will have oversight over the wholesale services.

"Enterprise and government customers are looking for complete solutions. By aligning our efforts, we will be uniquely positioned to meet business customer needs," said McAdam in a statement.

During his tenure as COO of Verizon Wireless, Stratton oversaw the service provider's nationwide operations and delivery of services to consumer, business and government customers.

Joining Stratton under the newly formed group will be four well known executives spanning the business, wireless, wholesale, IT and cloud business, including: Bob Toohey as chief operating officer; Mike Millegan, global president - Wholesale; Ajay Waghray, current CIO of Verizon Wireless; and Kerry Bailey, currently group president of Verizon's Terremark IT solutions arm, will serve as the chief marketing officer. 

McAdam's move to consolidate the business and wholesale operations under one common unit is designed to give its business and government customer's total common spot to access new wireline and wireless services. While it will take time to properly market this new unit to its customers, the idea of having a common group to deliver services will likely appeal to existing and new accounts that want the service provider to better understand their unique needs.     

 

Attend Courses at BICSI World Headquarters in Tampa - Course Update

World Headquarters Course Update
Don’t miss out on these opportunities to advance yourself and your career. Improve your skills and achieve your credential in February 2012 at BICSI World Headquarters in Tampa, Florida. Follow the links below for additional information and to register for a course or exam. Reserve your seat today!

Have you registered to attend the 2012 BICSI Winter Conference & Exhibition, February 12-16? Maximize your conference experience by signing up to take BICSI courses before or after the event in Orlando, Florida. Click here to view the Winter Conference training courses and examinations.


Courses and Exams in Tampa, Florida

Registered Communications Distribution Designer (RCDD)

DD100: Introduction to Voice/Data Cabling Systems, February 27-28
DD100 introduces you to cabling pathways and spaces, different types of cabling, transmission characteristics of cabling, how to work with contractors, how to evaluate the work and how projects are implemented.

DD120: Grounding and Protection Fundamentals for Telecommunications Systems
, February 6-8
This 3-day course teaches you the latest knowledge on grounding, in addition to the protection of customers’ cable and equipment investments.

DD125: Advanced Grounding and Bonding
, February 9-11
The DD125 course is an advanced 3-day course that gives the student the ability to move far beyond the traditional textbook instruction and apply real-world information in a practical, hands-on environment.

Electronic Safety and Security (ESS) Designer

ESS100: Introduction to Electronic Safety and Security, February 29-March 1
ESS100 is the first course in the electronic safety and security (ESS) series. This introductory course discusses security design basics and theory, as well as current and future trends in electronic safety and security.

ITS Installer/Technician

IN101: BICSI ITS Installer 1 Training, February 20-24
IN101 is an intensive 5-day, 40-hour course designed to provide entry level ITS cabling installers with the background, knowledge and basic skills needed to function effectively on the job. ITS Installer 1 examinations will be held February 24-25.

IN225: BICSI ITS Installer 2, Copper Training, February 27-March 2
Whether new installation or existing premise, BICSI’s ITS Installer 2, Copper Training Course gives you a competitive distinction by allowing you to showcase your skills as a copper system specialist. IN225 is a 5-day course that provides the foundations of a copper-based structured cabling system installation. ITS Installer 2, Copper examinations will be held March 2-3.

IN250: BICSI ITS Installer 2, Optical Fiber Training, January 30-February 3
IN250 is a 5-day course setting the groundwork for optical fiber-based structured cabling system installation. ITS Installer 2, Optical Fiber examinations will be held February 3-4.

TE350: BICSI ITS Technician Training, February 6-10
TE350 is an intensive 5-day course that provides the necessary skill set of a structured cabling systems technician. ITS Technician examinations will be held February 10-11.

Save Now!
Register for three or more courses at the same time and save 10 percent! Offer also valid if three or more students from the same company preregister for the same class at the same time.

Don't forget! Preregister for a course at least 45 days in advance and save five percent. (BICSI CONNECT courses and training provided by companies outside of BICSI are not eligible for this discount.)

Register today! For more information or to reserve your seat, follow the above links, or contact BICSI toll-free at 800.242.7405.

 

BOMA International Makes Staff Changes to Support Growing Programs and Initiatives

(WASHINGTON – December 1, 2011) The Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA) International has announced several staff changes that will take effect January 1, 2012. BOMA’s Advocacy division and its Codes, Standards and Regulatory Affairs division will merge into one division under the direction of Karen Penafiel, CAE, who currently leads the Advocacy division. Ron Burton, currently Vice President of Codes, Standards and Regulatory Affairs, will continue to support BOMA’s codes efforts as an independent contractor, forming the consultancy PTW Advisors, LLC. Consolidation of these two critical divisions will enhance collaboration and operating efficiencies to cover a broad range of legislative, regulatory and code challenges in 2012.

Penafiel is an expert in commercial real estate policy and regulatory issues, having spent more than 20 years at BOMA International. She has been instrumental in the development of BOMA’s energy and environmental policy, including the creation and adoption of BOMA’s 7-Point Challenge, which asks members to reduce energy consumption by 30 percent by 2012. To date, organizations representing three billion square feet of office space have signed onto the Challenge. She has also spearheaded the creation of the BOMA Green Lease Guide, authored BOMA’s guidance books on utility deregulation and has helped make energy consumption data more accessible to property managers in commercial office buildings, among other accomplishments.  

Joel Corley, currently BOMA’s Advocacy Assistant, will be promoted to Manager of the BOMA 360 Performance Program, a program that recognizes commercial properties that demonstrate best practices in building management and operations. The program evaluates properties in six major areas: building operations and management; life safety/security/risk management; training and education; energy; environment/sustainability; and tenant relations/community involvement. To date, more than 325 buildings have earned the designation and the momentum continues to grow.

About BOMA International
The Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA) International is an international federation of more than 100 local associations and affiliated organizations. Founded in 1907, its 16,500-plus members own or manage more than nine billion square feet of commercial properties. BOMA International’s mission is to enhance the human, intellectual and physical assets of the commercial real estate industry through advocacy, education, research, standards and information. On the Web at www.boma.org.

 

CABA NewsBrief

 

Large Building Automation

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http://www.caba.org/Content/Pictures/Picture.ashx?PicId=118970

§                     USGBC launches demand response partnership program
The program relies and builds on the infrastructure already in place thanks to previous efforts of wholesale electricity market participants, utilities, commercial buildings and solution providers to increase grid reliability, reduce energy costs to commercial buildings and provide positive environmental outcomes. AutomatedBuildings.com (12/1)

§                     U of Illinois set to break ground on net-zero energy building
Construction is set to begin on the $95 million Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) Building at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, designed by SmithGroupJJR. The building will house 230,000 sq ft of instructional, research and office space in the heart of the university’s engineering campus. The move will consolidate functions currently dispersed over multiple locations into a single facility. Illuminating Engineering Society (12/14)

§                     Siemens safeguards Turkish airport with fire safety, building automation systems
Siemens is safeguarding Sabiha Gökçen International Airport in Turkey with its security, fire safety and building automation systems. Over 200 cameras, 28 recorders, a Sinteso system of 9,000 fire detectors and 400 CO detectors were installed at the airport. SourceSecurity.com (12/15)

§                     Noveda working on LEED automation technologies
Noveda Technologies, the leader in web-based real-time energy and water monitoring, announced today that they are partnering with the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) and its LEED Automation program to develop an application supporting the LEED program. This application will be available through USGBC's online App Lab and is designed for use with Internet browsers, tablet PCs, and smartphones. Sacramento Bee (12/15)

§                     March Networks agrees to takeover by Infinova in deal valued at $90M
March Networks president and CEO Peter Strom said the transaction will create one of the 10 largest global players in the video surveillance industry. SP&T News (12/9)

§                     Carrier acquires India-based building automation firm Sauter Race
Carrier Corporation, a heating, air-conditioning and refrigeration solutions provider and a business of US-based United Technologies Corp, has acquired Sauter Race Technologies, a building automation and management systems firm, for an undisclosed sum. The acquisition will enable Carrier to provide end-to-end building management systems and solutions in India. VCCircle (12/2)

§                     Building automation industry continues to grow
Building automation is gaining traction in both European and American markets, according to a new report by IMS Research, a leading independent market researcher. The report found that the building automation industry will total more than $1.7 billion in the Americas and over $1.6 billion in EMEA, in large part due to the growing push for greater energy efficiency in those regions – in spite of construction growth projections remaining flat through 2012. Construction Digital (12/8)

§                     Siemens Building Technologies adopts Vela Systems field management software
Vela Systems announced that Siemens Building Technologies Division has entered an enterprise-wide contract to use Vela Systems field management software across its U.S.-based operations and projects. Siemens Building Technologies offers a comprehensive range of building automation systems, HVAC controls and fire safety and security solutions. Siemens combines innovative technologies with comprehensive building and energy efficiency services to achieve smarter more efficient buildings for its customers. PR.com (12/14)

§                     Britain's first green building skills hub opens
A new national construction center in the U.K. will provide thousands of young people with the building skills they need to refurbish the nation's homes so they become greener and cheaper to run, Communities Minister Andrew Stunell announced. Build.co.uk (12/14)

§                     Trane launches GE software-based data center management tool
Heating and cooling product manufacturer Trane has launched an intelligent building automation platform that uses GE software. Tracer XT was developed in response to data center customer requests for more ways to reduce energy consumption, improve building operations and optimize system management, Trane says. Environmental Leader (11/30)

§                     Zoning changes to promote green buildings in NYC begin public review
The City Planning Commission's proposal to amend New York City's zoning rules to make it easier for buildings to incorporate energy-efficient and sustainable additions such as solar panels, storm-water detention systems, skylights, wind turbines and wall insulation, began a public review process. "This is the most comprehensive citywide initiative dealing with energy efficiency and green building in the U.S.," said Amanda Burden, chairwoman of the City Planning Commission. "This is about being a greener city, providing cleaner air and water as well as saving money on utility bills." Crain's New York Business (12/12)

§                     Tyco completes acquisition of Visonic
Tyco International Ltd. announced that it has completed the acquisition of Visonic Ltd., a global developer and manufacturer of electronic security systems and components, for approximately $100 million in cash. SP&T (12/6)

§                     HVAC industry optimistic about 2012
Pre-AHR Expo survey shows HVAC stakeholders have positive expectations for 2012
Despite widespread concern about the global economy, manufacturers appear to be very optimistic about the economic outlook for the HVACR industry. According to a recent survey of more than 1,000 AHR Expo exhibitors worldwide, nearly three-fourths (72 percent) of the total respondents expect a better year (59 percent) or a much better year (13 percent) in 2012 compared to 2011. ACHR News (12/5)

§                     BT, Orange establish telepresence connectivity agreement
BT and Orange Business Services have agreed to let each of their own respective video exchange customers conduct telepresence meetings using each other's network. This pact will help both service providers' telepresence customers more readily reach their key partners and suppliers in both public and private videoconferencing endpoints. FierceTelecom (12/9)

§                     USGBC: Retrofits create more LEED-certified existing buildings
The cumulative total of LEED-certified square footage for existing buildings currently exceeds that of new LEED construction for the first time, according to the U.S. Green Building Council. "The U.S. is home to more than 60 billion square feet of existing commercial buildings ... [and] greening these buildings takes hands-on work, creating precious jobs especially for construction workers," said Rick Fedrizzi, USGBC president, CEO and founding chairman. GreenBuildingPro.com (12/8)

§                     New Smart Grid Interoperability Panel governing board members announced
The newly elected Governing Board members of the U.S. Smart Grid Interoperability Panel (SGIP) have been announced. Metering.com (12/9)

§                     CTBUH announces the projected world's tallest 20 skyscrapers in the year 2020
Within this decade we will likely witness not only the world’s first kilometer-tall building, but also the completion of a significant number of buildings over 600 meters (around 2,000 feet) – that’s twice the height of the Eiffel Tower. Two years ago, prior to the completion of the Burj Khalifa, this building type did not exist. And yet, by 2020, we can expect at least eight such buildings to exist internationally. Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat (12/1)
Click here for CABA's Industry Events Update

Home Systems

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§                     NPD: Tablet buyers lean toward Wi-Fi, away from 3G/4G
Between April and December, the portion of tablet computers in the U.S. using Wi-Fi to connect to the Internet rose from 60% to 65%, according to The NPD Group. More tablet buyers are choosing Wi-Fi over 3G and 4G data communications because of the cost of cellular data plans, since they find Wi-Fi connections are "good enough" for what they want to do with tablets, said Eddie Hold, a vice president at NPD. Electronista (12/12)

§                     Parks Associates to co-locate CONNECTIONS™ Conference at TIA 2012
The Telecommunications Industry Association (TIA) and Parks Associates, a leading international market research and consulting firm focused on the connected consumer and residential technology solutions, have agreed to co-locate the 16th annual CONNECTIONS™: The Digital Living Conference and Showcase at the TIA 2012: Inside the Network Conference and Exhibition being held June 5-7, 2012, in Dallas, Texas. In addition, Parks Associates will host a "Connected Home Pavilion" as part of the TIA 2012 exhibition and demonstration area. TIA (12/14)

§                     Consumers must make energy-efficient home improvements to lower utility bills
You need to make at least four energy-efficient home improvements to notice a drop in your utility bills, but most Americans stop after just a couple of improvements, Shelton Group's latest Energy Pulse survey found. Alliance to Save Energy (12/6)

§                     ZigBee Alliance & Energy@Home collaborate European Energy platform
The ZigBee Alliance and Energy@Home will cooperate on the creation of an integrated residential energy value added services platform for Europe by leveraging four ZigBee standards. Under a liaison agreement announced today, the groups will focus on blending the strengths of ZigBee Home Automation, ZigBee Smart Energy, ZigBee Telecom Services and ZigBee Gateway to create the platform. ZigBee Alliance (10/4)

§                     Website: Kindle Fire, iPad 2, iPhone 4S among top devices of 2011
ReadWriteWeb has selected its top five Internet devices of the year, picking the iPhone 4S for the top spot. It cited the voice-driven Siri personal assistant feature of the new iPhone as a driver. Other selections include the iPad 2, the Kindle Fire and the Xbox 360 with the Kinect motion detector. ReadWriteWeb.com (12/12)

§                     TV and digital use is up, while print and radio decline
Americans are spending more time with media, according to an eMarketer study. Daily time spent watching live programming on television sets increased 10 minutes over last year, to an average of four hours and 34 minutes. Internet time was up 7.7%, and mobile increased 30%, making up for dips in radio listening and print. The study says that mobile time has crossed the hour-a-day benchmark for the first time. The report concludes that ad spending on magazines and print is misaligned with consumption times. eMarketer (12/12)

§                     Panel execs debate DLNA utilization in smart TVs
Internet-connected television sets have been slow to fully embrace the Digital Living Network Alliance interoperability standard. At the recent CEA Industry Forum, executives of LG Electronics and other companies discussed the trend and offered a variety of perspectives. "Today, video-on-demand through apps on the TV is not an easy thing to do," said Peter Redford, CEO of iLook Corp. "Most people are not able to successfully connect it up and watch it by using their [TV's] own app. An app on the iPhone can do it much more easily. CE Pro (12/12)

§                     Video: Samsung demos flexible, see-through display
Samsung has released a video of its latest flexible, see-through display just one month after it announced the technology would be available in 2012. It is incredibly doubtful that the prototype AMOLED device, demonstrated in the YouTube video, will be among the products the electronics giant expects to release next year. However, it is an impressive example of how this technology could be used in the future. InAVate (12/9)

§                     Microsoft is searching for TV exec in Xbox Live push
Bloomberg News reports that Microsoft wants to recruit an experienced television executive to bring along original programming for the Xbox Live game and video service. Bloomberg, citing people with knowledge of Microsoft's plans, also reports that the company has hired Tom Schneider, a partner at Stratis, to head up the search. Bloomberg (12/9)

§                     Will quantum-dot television be the next big thing?
Light-emitting crystals called quantum dots are the next wave in thinner, more colorful television sets, according to this news analysis. Nanoco, a spinout from Manchester University in the U.K., says it is working with "major Asian electronics companies" on developing flat-screen TVs with the quantum-dot technology, with the first models possibly out in late 2012 and flexible displays in three years or more. The Telegraph (12/11)

§                     Verizon scores new spectrum from Comcast, Time Warner and Bright
Verizon has a pretty serious head start in the LTE race. To make sure it stays at the front of the pack, Big Red has entered an agreement with SpectrumCo (a joint venture between Comcast, Time Warner and Bright House) that sees 122 AWS spectrum licenses transferred to the carrier for $3.6 billion and some commercial agreements. The deal will allow the companies to become authorized retailers for each others products, eventually giving the cable companies the ability to offer Verizon Wireless service as wholesalers. Engadget (12/2)

§                     Telefonica: No "killer app" for M2M, but many drivers
Machine-to-machine technologies will get a boost from advances in the automotive industry and the energy sector, including the emergence of the smart grid. That's according to Telefonica's Gilli Coston, who says the growth of M2M will not be driven by any single application but rather by communication trends and by expectations -- particularly among young people -- for always-on connectivity. Total Telecom Magazine (12/8)

§                     Broadcom to pioneer 802.11ac for gigabit Wi-Fi
Broadcom says it is adopting the emerging 802.11ac Wi-Fi standard to enhance the capabilities of its next generation of consumer networking products. The new specification, which unlike earlier versions relies on 5GHz spectrum, supports throughput speeds of 1.3Gbps over longer distances. Although the standard isn't expected to be certified until December 2013, products are expected to start rolling off assembly lines by the end of next year. The Register (12/8)

§                     Voice-controlled televisions to hit market next year, OEMs say
The industry's leading device and electronics manufacturers are working to revolutionize the way consumers interact with television sets by replacing remote controls with voice-activated interfaces, observers say. Apple's Steve Jobs reportedly was close to revealing new television interface technology before his death in October, and Microsoft already has a platform for making the leap thanks to its Kinect hands-free game controller. At least one industry pioneer, Nuance, says about 5% of TV sets on shelves by Christmas 2012 could be controlled by voice. Bloomberg Businessweek (12/7)

§                     Broadband Forum introduces new specifications
The Broadband Forum has announced its new “Technical Specification for MPLS in Mobile Backhaul Networks” (TR-221), which is set to become a key enabler for mobile operators as they migrate from traditional TDM networks to packet-based transport technologies and from 2G/3G to 4G and LTE services. Broadband Forum (12/8)

§                     Building the connected home market
Connected homes are starting to pop up around the globe. Research shows that 1.8 million home automation systems shipped globally this year, and expectations are for that number to reach 12 million shipments by 2016. According to a new report from ABI Research, the market for custom-designed and installed home automation systems has shifted. While, traditionally, the majority of these systems were installed in new builds, new data says 60% of all mid- to high-end home automation installations are actually retrofits and renovations. New builds now represent the remaining 40% of installations—down from approximately 90% before the recession. Connected World Magazine (12/7)

Member Press Releases

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§                     AMX and ViewSonic Partnership Simplifies Projector-Controller Integration
AMX®, the leading provider of solutions that simplify the implementation, maintenance, and use of technology to create effective environments, today announced ViewSonic as its newest InConcert Partner. Through the partnership, ViewSonic’s PJD6 Series DLP projectors, comprised of the PJD6253, PJD6223 and PJD6553w, are outfitted with AMX technology compatibility, making integration with AMX Controllers simple with little or no programming.


CABA members can post their media releases by logging into the CABA Web site.

  CABA Research Spotlight

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§                     Sizing the Clean Economy
This report from the Brookings Institution examines the U.S. clean energy economy. It seeks to quantify the existing market, growth prospects, and methods that might spur industry developments. The clean energy sector employs more people than the fossil fuel industry. 26% of the work is in manufacturing. The report recommends government incentives for a low carbon economy. The clean energy economy is now driven by a vision of more jobs and a growing industry segment, not just environmental concerns. Read the full report as published in CABA's Public Research Library. Paid CABA membership provides you access to the world's largest collection of connected home and intelligent building research: CABA Member Research Library.

  Education & Training 

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§                     Verizon Wireless to host CABA's Digital Home Forum
CABA's Digital Home Forum event, to be hosted by Verizon Wireless at its Verizon Center in Basking Ridge, NJ on Tuesday, March 21, 2012 will bring together leading companies involved in the integration of consumer electronics and other cutting-edge technology throughout the home. Register now and receive 15% OFF your registration. Register now. CABA invites organizations to use the event as an opportunity to learn about current trends in the digital and connected home from a wide range of companies working in this space and explore future research opportunities. Also the next CABA Connected Home Council (CHC) meeting will be held Wednesday, March 22, 2012 and all Digital Home Forum attendees will be invited to attend this complimentary meeting chaired by Michael Clay of Verizon Wireless. The face-to face meeting is scheduled from 9 am to 11 am ET at the Verizon Center in Basking Ridge, NJ for attendees, and by conference call for non-attendees. Seating is limited so please confirm your attendance for both the Forum and CHC meeting with Tony Disipio at 613.686.1814 x228 or disipio@caba.org.

§                     Event: ShowStoppers @ CES 2012
A special invite to CABA member companies
... Cut through the clutter and noise. Shake hands at CES with more than 1,000 pre-qualified journalists, bloggers, analysts and key industry influencers – to score news coverage, product reviews and executive interviews. ShowStoppers @ CES 2012 is the annual blockbuster event where reporters and industry analysts discover the future of business, consumer, lifestyle and digital technologies for work, for home, for play – hot products from cool companies, companies they know, companies they haven’t discovered yet. Away from the noise and distraction of the show floor. It’s the one event where industry leaders, innovators, award winners, visionaries, startups and upstarts make new connections, promote brand, take leadership and open new business markets. Produced by ShowStoppers, now in its 20th year, the global leader in producing press and business events in the US, Europe, Japan and India. Producer of the official press event at IFA. Official partner of CEATEC Japan. Official sales agent for Convergence India.

 CABA News

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§                     CABA completes "Aging in the Connected Home" Research Project
The Continental Automated Buildings Association has completed a research study that identifies connected home product, service and business opportunities based on the needs and expectations of North American seniors. The research was sponsored by Ascension Health, Ingersoll Rand/Trane/Schlage, TELUS Corporation, and United Health Group. CABA members can view the executive summary in the CABA Research Library. Learn more.

§                     CABA to profile smart grid for intelligent buildings research
CABA will be unveiling its "Smart Grid's Impact on Intelligent Buildings" research study on Monday, January 23, 2012 during ASHRAE/AHR Expo in Chicago. This research assessed the business opportunities around the integration of smart grids into intelligent controls and building automation systems within the commercial buildings market. The following organizations sponsored the research completed by CABA and BSRIA: Belimo Air Controls Inc., Cadillac Fairview Corporation, CommScope Inc., CoR Advisors, Diebold Incorporated, Energent Incorporated, GE Energy Services, Grundfos Pumps Corp., Honeywell International/Tridium, Hydro-Québec, InfoComm International, Ingersoll Rand/Trane/Schlage, Johnson Controls, Legrand/Ortronics, Natural Resources Canada, Philips Research North
America, Priva North America, Public Works and Government Services Canada, Robinson Solutions, Schneider Electric, Sempra Utilities, Shell International Inc., Siemens Industries Inc., Southern California Edison, US General Services Administration (GSA), Verizon, and Viridity Energy. If you are with one of these organizations and wish to attend the live presentation or join the webinar, please contact Tony Disipio (disipio@caba.org) for meeting or webinar logistics.

§                     CABA seeks sponsors for CES, AHR and IBS events in January
CABA hopes to see you at the 2012 International CES, in Las Vegas, NV on January 10 – 13, 2012 and at the 2012 AHR EXPO, in Chicago, IL on January 23 -25, 2012. In February we look forward to seeing you at the International Builders Show in Orlando FL. February 8 – 11, 2012. CABA traditionally holds a reception at each of these events. CABA members and attendees find them a great networking opportunity, providing a chance to explore future CABA initiatives and research opportunities. If you would like to learn how your organization can become involved as a sponsor for the upcoming CABA Connected Home Council Reception at CES, Intelligent & Integrated Buildings Council Reception at AHR (Siemens and Johnson Controls already committed) or the CABA reception at the IBS 2012, please contact George Grimes, CABA's Business Development Manager, at 613.686.1814 x226 or grimes@caba.org.

§                     IBM extends invitation to network at CES 2012
IBM would like to extend an invitation to join them in their suite at the 2012 Consumer Electronics Show for cocktails and hors d’oeuvres. While at the 2012 Consumer Electronics Show, IBM would be pleased if you would join them in the IBM suite for a discussion on innovation and future trends with leaders in the industry on January 11, 2012 at 5:30 pm at the LVCC, North Hall, IBM Suite N236. For the latest information on IBM at the 2012 CES, visit: ibm.com/events/CES2012. For more information go to: ibm.co/rN8NH0. Also stop by to pick up information about CABA's research opportunities and meet CABA representatives who will be in attendance.

§                     CABA introduces BiQ Awards, Johnson Contols & Siemens sponsor reception
CABA’s Integrated & Intelligent Buildings Council (IIBC) will be presenting the first annual Building Intelligence Quotient (BiQ) Awards. CABA hopes you will join us at the IIBC meeting and reception, Tuesday, January 24, 2012 at the Hyatt Regency McCormick Place for the presentation of these prestigious awards. For more information on the BiQ go to: www.caba.org/biq. If you would like to attend the Awards presentation, please contact disipio@caba.org as space is limited. The meeting, sponsored by Johnson Controls (Diamond Sponsor) and Siemens (Silver Sponsor), will be held at 3:30 pm and the reception will follow immediately afterwards at 5:30 pm with drinks and appetizers. And don’t forget to visit the CABA exhibit at the AHR Expo in the South Hall at booth #3642.

  SmartQuote 

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Business opportunities are like buses, there’s always another one coming."

-- Richard Branson
British entrepreneur

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Center for Green Schools at U.S. Green Building Council Releases "Best of Green Schools 2011" List Recognizing Leadership in Creating Sustainable Learning Environments

From net-zero schools to game-changing policies, recipients recognized for efforts to green U.S. school infrastructure

WASHINGTON, D.C. (Dec. 12, 2011) -The U.S. Green Building Council's Center for Green Schools, working in conjunction with its founding sponsor, United Technologies Corp., today released its inaugural Best of Green Schools 2011 list recognizing school administrators and government leaders in 10 categories for their efforts to create sustainable learning environments.

Recipient schools and regions from across the nation - from K-12 to higher education - were recognized for a variety of sustainable, cost-cutting measures, including energy conservation, record numbers of LEED® certified buildings and collaborative platforms and policies to green U.S. school infrastructure. Their commitments to measurable and innovative sustainable building goals serve as models for schools and campuses everywhere.

"The Best Of Green Schools 2011 recipients represent high notes for the green pschools movement over the past year and were selected from the thousands of examples of leadership we have seen from schools, districts, campuses, cities and states," said Rachel Gutter, director of the Center for Green Schools at USGBC. "Tomorrow's future leaders are in school today. This year's designees recognize the importance of educating high-performing, 21st century leaders in high-performing, 21st century classrooms. Why green our schools? Three words: education, sustainability and jobs."

According to published reports, green schools save on average $100,000 per year on operating costs - enough to hire two new teachers, buy 200 new computers, or purchase 5,000 textbooks. On average, green schools use 33 percent less energy and 32 percent less water than conventionally constructed schools, and if all new U.S. school construction and renovation went green today, the total energy savings alone would be $20 billion over the next 10 years.

"Our commitment to green schools is a reflection of our belief in the importance of energy efficiency, sustainability and education," said Sandy Diehl, Vice President, Integrated Building Solutions, United Technologies Corp., and a Center for Green Schools advisory board member. "These leaders are taking action today to help improve our schools by saving energy and tax dollars and by creating healthier environments for students and teachers."

The recipients include:

Moment for the Movement - U.S. Department of Education, Green Ribbon Schools: Green Ribbon Schools is the first comprehensive and coordinated federal initiative to focus on the intersection of environment, health and education.

Region - Sacramento area: Mayor Kevin Johnson has led the charge to bring together mayors and superintendents from across the Northern California region to create a $100 million revolving loan fund for green school retrofits.

State - Ohio: With 315 LEED registered and certified projects, including 19 schools registered in 2011, Ohio leads the nation with more green school projects underway than any other state.

City - Philadelphia: The School District of Philadelphia made significant steps in 2011 toward the greening of the city's 291 public schools.

School - Lake Mills Middle School (Lake Mills, WI): In March 2011, Lake Mills Middle School became the first public school in the nation to achieve LEED Platinum certification.

Higher Ed Innovator - University of Texas at Dallas: The University's new LEED Platinum Student Services Building, which was the recipient of this year's Innovation in Green Building Award, was designed to improve departmental efficiency and interaction, includes terra-cotta shades on the building's exterior to provide a unique energy efficient shading strategy and was built $1.1 million under budget.

Collaborators - Kentucky Reps. Jim DeCesare (R) and Mary Lou Marzian (D): This bipartisan team has led Kentucky's green school efforts and is a model for teaming on green school collaboration. Together, they've worked with their colleagues in the Kentucky General Assembly to unanimously adopt resolutions in support of green schools, and have encouraged other states to work across party lines on similar efforts.

Convener - Boston: In September 2011, Mayor Menino hosted the Research Summit on Childhood Health and School Buildings, which brought together a team of interdisciplinary researchers to explore the connection between school facilities and student health. Boston's public school district is also home to one of the first Center for Green Schools Fellows - a sustainability coordinator who will work within the school district for three years, bringing together faculty, administration, facilities staff, teachers and students to advance whole-district sustainability initiatives.

Policy makers - District of Columbia City Council: In May 2010, the Washington, D.C. council unanimously passed the Healthy Schools Act of 2010, building upon the District's existing LEED Silver requirement and encouraging schools to achieve LEED Gold certification. 2011 updates to the bill included participation in the U.S. Department of Education's Green Ribbon Schools program, making D.C. the first - before any state - to sign up for the voluntary federal program.

K-12 Innovation - Public-Private partnership in Illinois: A report outlining a plan to green all K-12 schools in Illinois was released in March 2011 as a result of a public-private partnership commissioned by the Illinois' General Assembly's October 2009 adoption of House Joint Resolution 45.

Please visit centerforgreenschools.org/bestof2011 for more information on each of this year's recipients.

About the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC)
The U.S. Green Building Council is committed to a prosperous and sustainable future for our nation through cost-efficient and energy-saving green buildings. With a community comprising 79 local affiliates, nearly 16,000 member organizations, and more than 167,000 LEED Professional Credential holders, USGBC is the driving force of an industry that is projected to contribute $554 billion to the U.S. GDP from 2009-2013. USGBC leads an unlikely diverse constituency of builders and environmentalists, corporations and nonprofit organizations, elected officials and concerned citizens, and teachers and students. For more information, visit www.usgbc.org, on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

About the Center for Green Schools at the U.S. Green Building Council
The Center for Green Schools is how USGBC is making sure every student has the opportunity to attend a green school within this generation. From the kindergartner entering the classroom, to the Ph.D. student performing research in a lab, the Center provides the resources and support to elevate dialogue, accelerate policy and institute innovation toward green schools and campuses. High-performing schools result in high-performing students, and the Center works directly with staff, teachers, faculty, students, administrators, elected officials and communities to drive the transformation of all schools into sustainable places to live and learn, work and play. For more information, visit www.centerforgreenschools.org, or on Twitter and Facebook.

About United Technologies Corp.
United Technologies Corp.(NYSE: UTX), based in Hartford, Connecticut, is a diversified company providing high technology products and services to the global aerospace and building industries. UTC's products include Pratt & Whitney aircraft engines, Sikorsky helicopters, Carrier heating, air conditioning and refrigeration systems, Hamilton Sundstrand aerospace systems and industrial products, Otis elevators and escalators, UTC Fire & Security systems and UTC Power fuel cells. More information can be found at www.utc.com and at www.powerofefficiency.com.

 

Cerro Wire Donates More Than 15,000 Feet Of Wire To Extreme Makeover: Home Edition Project

Cerro Wire LLC, a leading manufacturer of copper electrical building wire and cable, announces that 15,000 feet of their wire was used in the Springfield, MA house that will be featured on the ABC network’s hit show, Extreme Makeover: Home Edition. The episode will air on December 2, 2011.

Program production staff worked around the clock to get the entire house built in just seven days, and said they were excited to bring some light to this home and to the family. The home required 15,375 feet of wire and it took more than an hour to open all the packages that arrived in several truckloads. The wiring was completed in just under nine hours.

Cerrowire donated NM-B residential wire in sizes 14 AWG through 8 AWG.  Cerrowire’s Cirtex® NM-B with ground is 600 Volts UL-rated nonmetallic-sheathed cable, available in sizes 14 AWG through 2 AWG.

Lead builder Nick Riley, of N Riley Construction, based in Chicopee, MA said, "When I heard about the customer service and quality that Cerro Wire is known for, I knew without a doubt that they'd be the one we'd pick for the job. The project went off without a hitch. We are so grateful for their contribution, and it’s been a real pleasure working with them."

Dale Crawford, Cerro Wire’s Marketing Manager, said, “We were delighted to be selected to supply the wire for this incredible project. The project is going off without a hitch and it’s been a real pleasure working with the electrical contractor, construction team, and the entire production team. The family is going to be really happy."

Cerro Wire Announces Packaging, Shipping & Delivery Advantages

Improves safety and efficiency of inventory and stock keeping

Cerro Wire LLC, a leading manufacturer of copper electrical building wire and cable, announces its unique packaging, shipping, and delivery advantages, which make wire reels easier and safer to ship, and improve inventory and stock keeping.

Wire reels are labeled with large tape announcing the wire size, making it far easier to view wire size from a distance than standard labeling practices. Wire size is also printed directly on the wire in a large size (MaxPrint) to improve identification. Items placed on a pallet of mixed goods are carefully organized, with products grouped together and labeled with an itemized label which includes a piece count for that pallet, making verifying inventory with shipping manifests more efficient.  Barcode scanners insure a very high rate of accuracy in the picking process. Cerro Wire also labels special cut reels, so the customer knows exactly where that reel needs to go on a job site.

For reels that must be shipped upright on their flanges, Cerro Wire uses an innovative vertical cradle pallet, which ensures that the reels do not roll in the truck and can be unloaded easily in an upright fashion. Most other wire manufacturers nail reels in place, so the customer has to remove nails and other packaging materials before unloading the reel. Manufacturers that ship large reels flat on their sides force distributors to use unsafe flipping techniques to unload the reel that risk breaking reel flanges and risk damaging wire.  Cerro Wire ships it the way the customer wants it, whether vertical on a cradle pallet or flat on regular pallets.

“We have given a tremendous amount of thought to developing packaging and shipping techniques that help our customers tell how much of each type of stock keeping unit is on a pallet,” said Barry Medendorp, Director of Supply Chain. “Nothing is hidden, labels face out and we layer all goods; we also group items together so products are easy to locate.”

In addition to improved packaging and shipping practices, Cerro Wire offers industry leading fill rates, shipping the vast majority of its orders in 2 days or less and 100% complete. Delivery times are quick because the company emphasizes in stock availability and flexible multi-site manufacturing. 

About Cerro Wire LLC

Cerro Wire LLC, a leading manufacturer of copper electrical building wire and cable, supplies its products to wholesale electrical distributors and retail home improvement centers across North America. Cerro Wire’s Electrical Distribution Division offers building wire for residential, commercial and industrial use. Our operating philosophy focuses on customer service, low cost operations, simplification and innovation. Our employees operate manufacturing and distribution facilities around the United States. Cerro Wire is a Marmon Wire & Cable/Berkshire Hathaway company. Please visit our website at www.cerrowire.com for a complete description of our products and services. To get the latest industry news and updates, follow us on LinkedIn and Twitter. For more information, please contact Dale Crawford at 256-773-2522, or via email at dcrawford@cerrowire.com.

 

DuPont spent $1.2M in the 3Q to lobby on chemical regulation

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Du Pont Co. spent $1.21 million in the third quarter to lobby the government on a range of issues from chemical regulation to childhood obesity, according to a disclosure report.

That's the same amount the Wilmington, Del., chemical manufacturer spent a year earlier and in the second quarter, according to quarterly disclosure reports it has filed with the House clerk's office.

From July to September, E.I. du Pont de Nemours & Co. discussed several issues including competition in agriculture, nutrition laws, chemicals used on crops, climate change, taxes and trade. The company also discussed security for chemical facilities, trade and rail competition.

In addition to both houses of Congress, du Pont lobbied the Environmental Protection Agency, the Food and Drug Administration, the Executive Office of the President and other federal agencies, according to its Oct. 20 report. These expenditures do not come close to the actual amounts spent on influence peddling (which is outside the strict definition of lobbing).

 

Frank Hughes Retires as President and CEO of Graybar Canada and Peter Horncastle to Assume Leadership of Graybar Subsidiary

ST. LOUIS, Dec. 8, 2011 – Graybar, a leading distributor of electrical, communications and data networking products and provider of related supply chain management and logistics services announced today that Graybar Canada President and CEO Frank Hughes is retiring after 40 years with the company, effective January 5, 2012. Upon Hughes’ retirement, Peter Horncastle will be named Executive Vice President and General Manager, assuming leadership of Graybar Canada.

Graybar Canada is a subsidiary of Graybar, headquartered in Halifax, Nova Scotia, with 30 branch locations across the country and more than 500 employees.

Hughes started his long career with Harris & Roome Supply in 1972, holding positions in sales, branch management, and electronics and operations management. He acquired an ownership stake in the company and stayed with the organization after it was purchased by Graybar. For Graybar, Hughes served as executive vice president and general manager and was promoted in 2000 to president and CEO of Graybar Canada. He also served as chairman of Graybar Canada’s board of directors and has been a member of Graybar’s board of directors since 2004.

Horncastle has been with Graybar Canada since 1989, starting his career in the warehouse. He has since garnered a variety of experience, serving in counter and sales positions, as branch manager, sales and marketing manager and regional vice president. Horncastle was elected to Graybar Canada’s board of directors, effective January 5, 2012.

“We are grateful to Frank for his 40 years of service and dedication,” said Bob Lyons, Graybar’s Senior Vice President, North America Business. “We wish him well in retirement and look forward to working with Peter as he leads Graybar Canada into the future.”

About Graybar
Graybar, a Fortune 500 corporation and one of the largest employee-owned companies in North America, is a leader in the distribution of high quality electrical, communications and data networking products, and specializes in related supply chain management and logistics services. Through its network of nearly 240 North American distribution facilities, it stocks and sells products from thousands of manufacturers, helping its customers power, network and secure their facilities with speed, intelligence and efficiency. For more information, visit www.graybar.com or call 1-800-GRAYBAR.

About Graybar Canada
Graybar Canada, an employee-owned company, is a wholesale distributor for thousands of items from leading manufacturers of electrical and communications and data products and related services. Headquartered in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Graybar Canada operates over 30 locations across the country and is organized into specialized product divisions: Electrical Supply, Industrial/Automation, Lighting, Comm/Data, Utility, Security, Technology, and Oil & Gas. Graybar Canada’s trained specialists and top-quality products enable them to provide customers with a complete solution.

Committed to quality through its customer service, products, supply and distribution, and performance, Graybar Canada is a subsidiary of Graybar Electric Company Inc., a Fortune 500 company, and one of the oldest and largest North American electrical distributors.

 

Graybar Appoints Kathleen Mazzarella President

ST. LOUIS, Dec. 8, 2011 – Graybar, a leading distributor of electrical, communications and data networking products and provider of related supply chain management and logistics

services today announced that Kathleen M. Mazzarella has been appointed president, effective June 1, 2012.  Mazzarella currently serves as executive vice president and chief operating officer, a position she has held for the past year.  In her new role, she will continue to set the strategic direction for Graybar’s sales and marketing function, while overseeing the day-to-day operations of the overall business. Also on June 1, 2012, Graybar’s Chairman, President and CEO, Robert A. Reynolds, Jr. will serve as executive chairman.  He will remain actively involved in the company as the lead executive, overseeing the company’s strategy and providing guidance to the executive team. 

“As Chairman, President and CEO, Bob has done a remarkable job of leading the company,” said Mazzarella.  “I have enjoyed working with him over the years and look forward to learning from his experience during this transition.”

Reynolds added, "In Kathy's 31 years with Graybar, she has consistently demonstrated a passion for the business, a commitment to Graybar’s values and an exceptional ability to achieve results.  Appointing her to this position reinforces Graybar’s philosophy of managing the company for the long-term.  Her leadership will enhance the way we work to our customers’ advantage, both today and in the future.”

Graybar, a Fortune 500 corporation and one of the largest employee-owned companies in North America, is a leader in the distribution of high quality electrical, communications and data networking products, and specializes in related supply chain management and logistics services. Through its network of nearly 240 North American distribution facilities, it stocks and sells products from thousands of manufacturers, helping its customers power, network and secure their facilities with speed, intelligence and efficiency. For more information, visit www.graybar.com or call 1-800-GRAYBAR.

 

DuPont and Honeywell in EU antitrust probe – Not First Time For DuPont

BRUSSELS Dec 16 (Reuters) - EU regulators are investigating whether agreements between U.S. conglomerate Honeywell International Inc. and U.S. chemicals company DuPont related to a new refrigerant for car air conditioning systems may have breached EU antitrust rules.

The European Commission said the investigation was prompted by complaints, but did not identify the complainants.

"The Commission will investigate whether joint development, licensing and production arrangements entered into between the two companies in relation to these refrigerants restrict competition on the markets," the EU executive, which acts as competition regulator in the bloc, said in a statement.

"The Commission is also examining whether Honeywell engaged in deceptive conduct during the evaluation of (the new refrigerant) 1234yf between 2007 and 2009," it said.

It said complainants accused the company of not disclosing its patents and patent applications while assessing the refrigerant and then failed to grant licenses on fair and reasonable terms.

The new refrigerant is intended to replace an existing product which does not comply with new EU environmental rules on global warming.

Honeywell makes products ranging from cockpit electronics to control systems for large buildings.

HISTORY

Elastomers Antitrust Matters

Information related to this matter is included in Note 19 to the Consolidated Financial Statements under the heading Elastomers Antitrust Matters.

Elastomers Antitrust Matters

Since 2002, the U.S., European Union (EU) and Canadian antitrust authorities have investigated the synthetic rubber markets for possible violations. These investigations included DuPont Dow Elastomers, LLC (DDE), as a result of its participation in the polychloroprene (PCP) and ethylene propylene diene monomer (EPDM) markets. DDE was a joint venture between The Dow Chemical Company (Dow) and DuPont.

In April 2004, DuPont and Dow entered into a series of agreements under which DuPont obtained complete control over directing DDE’s response to these investigations and the related litigation and DuPont agreed to a disproportionate share of the venture’s liabilities and costs related to these matters. Consequently, DuPont bears any potential liabilities and costs up to the initial $150. Dow is obligated to indemnify DuPont for up to $72.5 by paying 15 to 30 percent toward liabilities and costs in excess of $150. On June 30, 2005, DDE became a wholly owned subsidiary of DuPont and was renamed DuPont Performance Elastomers, LLC (DPE).

In July 2007, DuPont DPE pled guilty to conspiring to fix prices and paid a fine of CDN $4, approximately $3.8 USD, resolving all criminal antitrust allegations against it related to PCP in Canada.

 

IDEAL Master Series Network Service Kit Gives Contractors Everything They Need to Install or Repair Datacom Systems

SYCAMORE, IL, November 18, 2011 -- IDEAL today introduced its Master Series Network Service Kit to cost-effectively meet the needs of contractors for a complete set of professional-level tools to install and repair the twisted pair cable deployed in data communication networks.

Any facility with a LAN or enterprise would benefit from the Master Series kit. In addition to hand tools used in cutting, stripping and terminating Ethernet cabling, the kit contains troubleshooting test equipment to help contractors wiremap and trace the networks they maintain, uncovering opens, shorts, split pairs, reversals or miswires.

Not only does the kit contain the tools needed to get routine MAC tasks done, but it also will handle the bigger jobs in record time. Fully loaded, the kit contains:  Ratchet Telemaster™ crimper, Punchmaster™ punch down tool, Probe pick and spudger Coaxial stripper, cable splicing kit, LinkMaster™ tester, 7-in-1 Twist-a-Nut screwdriver, Tone generator and amplifier probe kit, Smart6™ modular tester and other supplies stored within a large mouth bag with easy access to tools.

The IDEAL master Series Network Service Kit is immediately available.

ABOUT IDEAL INDUSTRIES, INC.
IDEAL INDUSTRIES, INC. has been serving the electrical industry since 1916. IDEAL is one of the world's leading manufacturers of professional quality tools and supplies serving installation professionals in the construction, maintenance, data communications and original equipment manufacturing industries.

To learn more, please visit www.idealindustries.com.

 

It's TIme to Sign up for NECA 2012 SHOW Sept. 29th – Oct. 2nd at The Mandalay Bay Resort & Convention Center, Las Vegas

NECA 2012 SHOW Sept. 29th – Oct. 2nd at The Mandalay Bay Resort & Convention Center

Everything under one roof just for your success. Planned by the National Electrical Contractors Association

www.necanet.com

Sign Up Now
2012 Floor Plan

Exhibitor Prospectus

Reserve Your Space Here 

Important Information

Space Rates
General Information
Learn More About NECA

Julie Duda, Exhibit Sales Manager

NECA
julduda@necanet.org

(770) 632-0044 T
(770) 632-7922 F

What They're Saying About the San Diego Show last month... 

"Best Conference Yet!" Steven Horst, Graybar 

"NECA support team was the best before, during and after the show!" LuzMaria Ronse, Schneider-Electric

"NECA is my favorite tradeshow in the electrical industry. The convention is very well put together and provides exhibitors with many opportunities to make their participation a great success! The level of professionalism on display by the show organizers, exhibitors and attendees continues to make the NECA Show the show of the year."  
Derrick Delliquadri, Vision InfoSoft

"The NECA Show is an excellent marketing vehicle for Snake Tray to reach a core market audience for our products. Attendees have projects and are key decision makers. It is marketing money well spent." Molly Hays, Snake Tray 

"Decision Makers were there and interested in our product." Annette Kull, The Advance Metalworking Co, Inc.

Read on...

www.necashow.org 

NECA 2011 A Smashing Success

BETHESDA, MD - The National Electrical Contractors Association wrapped up its 2011 Convention and Trade Show several exciting days of education and exploration at the San Diego Convention Center.

Close to 5,000 attendees enjoyed inspiring presentations from retired four-star Gen. Stanley McChyrstal and "extreme leadership" guru Steve Farber, plus 275 exhibitors from across the electrical construction industry.

 

KONE Joins BOMA International as a Supporting Partner

(WASHINGTON – December 12, 2011) KONE Inc., a leading provider of elevator and escalator equipment and services, has announced that it has joined the Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA) International’s Partnership Program.  As a BOMA Leadership Circle Partner, KONE pledges to support BOMA’s vital programs in advocacy, education, research and membership.

BOMA International´s Partnership Program, developed in 2004, allows companies to invest in their own success and viability, as well as that of the building management industry. With three levels of participation—Cornerstone Partner, Leadership Circle Partner and Supporting Partner—the Program demonstrates the commitment of leading organizations to support BOMA International with the resources to advance its advocacy, education and research initiatives that benefit the entire commercial real estate industry.

KONE develops and delivers solutions that enable people to move smoothly, safely, comfortably and without waiting in office buildings. KONE provides eco-efficient solutions for elevators and escalators for the entire life cycle of the product--from design, manufacturing and installation to maintenance and modernization.

“We are very pleased KONE has joined our Partnership Program and we look forward to working together to serve BOMA members,” commented BOMA International Chair Boyd R. Zoccola, executive vice president, Hokanson Companies Inc. “With their expertise and leadership in the industry, they are a welcome addition to our Partnership Program and we look forward to advancing commercial real estate together.”

“KONE is pleased to join BOMA International as a Leadership Circle Partner and we look forward to a successful year and mutually beneficial partnership,” said Vance Tang, EVP and Area Director for Americas, KONE.  “Working with BOMA allows us to bring our ideas to leaders within the industry, make connections with key decision makers and support premier programming.”

***

About BOMA International
The Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA) International is an international federation of more than 100 local associations and affiliated organizations. Founded in 1907, its 16,500-plus members own or manage more than nine billion square feet of commercial properties. BOMA International’s mission is to enhance the human, intellectual and physical assets of the commercial real estate industry through advocacy, education, research, standards and information. On the Web at 
www.boma.org.

About KONE

KONE is one of the global leaders in the elevator and escalator industry. The company has been committed to understanding the needs of its customers for the past century, providing industry-leading elevators, escalators and automatic building doors as well as innovative solutions for modernization and maintenance. The company’s objective is to offer the best people flow experience by developing and delivering solutions that enable people to move smoothly, safely, comfortably and without waiting in buildings in an increasingly urbanizing environment. In 2010, KONE had annual net sales of EUR 5 billion and approximately 33,800 employees. KONE class B shares are listed on the NASDAQ OMX Helsinki Ltd in Finland.www.kone.com

 

NAED Training Surges as Annual Campaign Gets Underway

NAED Foundation Recognizes Generous Support From CED, Philips, Siemens 

ST. LOUIS … The National Association of Electrical Distributors today announced training across its comprehensive suite of professional development programs is up nearly 45 percent since 2010.

The increase comes as the electrical industry gears up for a changing economy with investments in and updates to workforce training. Fundraising for the 2011-2012 Annual Contribution Campaign supporting the NAED Education & Research Foundation is already nearly halfway to its $200,000 goal.

“From rapid advances in technology to developments in alternative energy, dramatic changes are transforming the way we in the electrical distribution channel do business,” said Foundation Chair Joe Huffman, vice president of supplier relations with Consolidated Electrical Distributors Inc. “Training is vital to remaining competitive and preparing our people to best serve the evolving needs of our customers.”

Among its top supporters, the NAED Education and Research Foundation has received a $15,000 donation from CED and $10,000 donations from both Philips and Siemens Industry, Inc.

“We are honored to receive such generous donations from CED, Philips and Siemens,” said Michelle McNamara, NAED senior vice president and executive director of the NAED Education and Research Foundation. “These contributions will help us continue pursuing the education and research programs that are so important to the ongoing success of our members.”

For more than 40 years, the NAED Education & Research Foundation has provided members with the latest industry information, valuable education tools and industry research initiatives. Past tax-deductible donations have led to industry-leading preparatory courses for the Certified Electrical Professional program and the newly launched Branch Manager University, among other initiatives.

The NAED Foundation’s Annual Contribution Campaign runs through June 2012. For more information about contributing to the NAED Education & Research Foundation, contact Erika TenEyck at eteneyck@naed.org.

NAED is the trade association for the $70+ billion electrical distribution industry. Through networking, education, research, and benchmarking, NAED helps electrical distributors increase profitability and improve the channel. NAED’s membership represents approximately 4,400 locations internationally.

 

NEMA Publishes NEMA AB 5 Establishing Levels of Selective Coordination for Low Voltage Circuit Breakers

ROSSLYN, Va, December 12, 2011—The National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA) has published NEMA AB 5 Establishing Levels of Selective Coordination for Low Voltage Circuit Breakers.

AB 5-2011 examines selective coordination at high levels of short circuit fault current in the instantaneous region of the circuit breaker time-current curve by use of selective coordination tools.  NEMA AB 5 includes molded case circuit breakers and insulated case circuit breakers, specifically instantaneous selective coordination at high levels of fault current. The intent of this standard is to insure that circuit breaker manufacturers are consistent in the methods that they use in validating the information that is published in selective coordination tools.

The contents and scope of AB 5-2011 may be viewed at www.nema.org/stds/ab-5.cfm.  A hard or electronic copy may be purchased for $80 by visiting global.ihs.com or by contacting IHS at

800-854-7179 (U.S. only), 303-397-7956 (international), or 303-397-2740 (fax).

NEMA is the association of electrical equipment manufacturers, founded in 1926 and headquartered in Arlington, Virginia. Its member companies manufacture a diverse set of products including power transmission and distribution equipment, lighting systems, factory automation and control systems, and medical diagnostic imaging systems. Worldwide annual sales of NEMA-scope products exceed $120 billion.

 

BICSI and Concert Technologies Enter Into Marketing Agreement for the 2012 BICSI Cabling Skills Challenge and 2012 Cabling Icon Contest

Concert Technologies, the leading global technology rollout company, has announced a marketing agreement with BICSI, the association supporting the information technology systems (ITS) industry with information, education and knowledge assessment. In conjunction with this agreement, Concert Technologies has developed Cabling Icon, the ITS industry's first social media-based, interactive contest to find the world's best ITS Installer/Technician.

BICSI brings important educational and training aspects to the 2012 Cabling Icon contest. The 2012 Cabling Icon may apply to participate in the fifth annual BICSI Cabling Skills Challenge, which will be held at the BICSI 2012 Winter Conference & Exhibition in Orlando, Fla., February 12-16.

Read More

About Cabling Icon

Cabling Icon was developed by the Concert Technologies team as the industry's first entirely interactive contest to find the world's best information technology systems (ITS) installer or technician. The goal of the competition is to increase awareness of the ITS industry, camaraderie among installers/technicians and increase the opportunity for education and career advancement in the ITS industry.

Visit www.cablingicon.com for contest rules and instructions on how to enter the 2012 Cabling Icon contest. Contestants and audience members can interact by liking Cabling Icon on Facebook, viewing video entries on YouTube or joining the discussion with #CablingIcon on Twitter.

www.cablingicon.com

About Concert Technologies

Concert Technologies has a wide breadth of services designed to complete your technology rollout as quickly and efficiently as possible. With over 200,000 rollouts completed and more than 15 years of industry experience, we have the system of methodologies in place to provide you with the technology rollout services needed to achieve your business goals.

 

BICSI SIGNS WITH PEARSON VUE FOR COMPUTER-BASED TESTING

Tampa, Fla., Nov. 21, 2011 — BICSI, the association supporting the information technology systems (ITS) industry with information, education and knowledge assessment, is pleased to announce that it has signed with Pearson VUE, the computer-based testing business of Pearson, to deliver BICSI’s eight credentialing examinations, including its cornerstone credential, the Registered Communications Distribution Designer (RCDD). 

The exams will be transitioned from paper-and-pencil delivery to computer-based testing and will be available globally throughout the Pearson VUE Authorized Test Center network of more than 4,500 sites in 165 countries. Computer-based delivery of the Data Center Design Consultant (DCDC) exam will begin in February 2012, with the remaining exams to follow.

“We are pleased to be working with BICSI to deliver their credentialing programs,” said Robert Whelan, president and chief executive officer of Pearson VUE. “Our expansive test center network is ideal for IT certification programs, as it combines global reach and coverage with a secure testing environment. We look forward to working with BICSI to grow their certification program.”

“Moving our credentialing program from paper-based exams to computer-based testing is a major milestone for us,” said Brian Hansen, RCDD, NTS, CSI, President of BICSI. “Our partnership with Pearson VUE allows BICSI to utilize Pearson VUE’s global test center network to expand our credentialing program while providing a major benefit to our members and non-members alike.”

In addition to the RCDD and DCDC, BICSI will begin offering computer-based testing for the Registered Information Technology Professional (RITP), Registered Telecommunication Project Manager (RTPM), Electronic Safety and Security (ESS) Designer, Network Technology Systems (NTS) Designer, Outside Plant (OSP) Designer, and Wireless Designer (WD) credentials throughout 2012 and 2013.

###

About Pearson VUE

Pearson VUE (www.pearsonvue.com) is the global leader in computer-based testing for information technology, academic, government and professional testing programs around the world. Pearson VUE provides a full suite of services from test development to data management, and delivers exams through the world’s largest and most secure network of test centers in 165 countries. Pearson VUE is a business of Pearson (NYSE: PSO; LSE: PSON), the international media company, whose businesses include the Financial Times Group, Pearson Education and the Penguin Group.

Contact: Adam Gaber, +1 212.641.6118

About BICSI
BICSI is a professional association supporting the information technology systems (ITS) industry. ITS covers the spectrum of voice, data, electronic safety & security, and audio & video technologies. It encompasses the design, integration and installation of pathways, spaces, fiber- and copper-based distribution systems, wireless-based systems and infrastructure that supports the transportation of information and associated signaling between and among communications and information gathering devices.

BICSI provides information, education and knowledge assessment for individuals and companies in the ITS industry. We serve more than 23,000 ITS professionals, including designers, installers and technicians. These individuals provide the fundamental infrastructure for telecommunications, audio/video, life safety and automation systems. Through courses, conferences, publications and professional registration programs, BICSI staff and volunteers assist ITS professionals in delivering critical products and services, and offer opportunities for continual improvement and enhanced professional stature.

Headquartered in Tampa, Florida, USA, BICSI membership spans nearly 100 countries. For more information, visit www.bicsi.org.

 

RAD Names New Chief Technology Officer

Dr. Yaakov Stein Has Served as Company’s Chief Scientist Since 1999

MAHWAH, New Jersey, November 29, 2011 – Dr. Yaakov (Jonathan) Stein has been named Chief Technology Officer (CTO) at RAD Data Communications.

Dr. Stein has served as RAD’s Chief Scientist since coming to the company in 1999. In his new role as CTO, his responsibilities will include analysis of relevant technology trends, steering RAD’s participation in standardization forums, supervising IPR issues, research cooperation with academia, and special research projects.

Dr. Stein has authored numerous academic papers, standardization contributions, and patent applications. He has chaired and given invited lectures at international conferences and is an active participant in several telecommunication industry standardization forums. He has co-authored and contributed to many IETF RFCs, ITU-T Recommendations and MPLS Forum (now Broadband Forum) Implementation Agreements. He presently co-chairs the IETF’s Timing over IP Connection and Transfer of Clock (TICTOC) working group. His book, Digital Signal Processing – A Computer Science Perspective, was published by John Wiley and Sons in 2000.

From 1980 to 1989, Dr. Stein was employed as a research scientist for the Israeli government, and by Comverse Technology from 1989 to 1998, first as Neural Network Applications Team Leader in Tel Aviv, and then as DSP and Advanced Technology Manager, stationed in New York. Between 1995 and 1998 he served as Adjunct Professor of Computer Science at Polytechnic University in New York. He has served in a similar capacity at Tel Aviv University since 1998.

Dr. Stein obtained his BSc (1977), MSc (1979) and PhD (1989) degrees in theoretical physics from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

RAD Wins Best Product Award for Carrier Ethernet

Demarcation at Carrier Ethernet APAC Congress

Singapore, December 2, 2011 – For the second time this year RAD Data Communications has won a Best Product Award at a Carrier Ethernet World Congress event.

This latest award, for Best Carrier Ethernet Demarcation Product in Asia-Pacific, was presented at the Carrier Ethernet APAC 2011 in Singapore. The winning product is RAD’s ETX-203A Carrier Ethernet Demarcation Device.

“The ETX-203A stands out among its peers by its incomparable price-performance advantage,” said Amir Karo, Vice President of Marketing at RAD Data Communications. “This is especially relevant in APAC, where, until now, high CapEx has slowed the introduction of premium Carrier Ethernet services.”

The award was determined by a panel of judges from leading industry analyst firms Informa, Infonetics, and Ovum and presented under the auspices of IIR Telecoms & Technology, organizer of the event, and in the presence of the Metro Ethernet Forum.

At Carrier Ethernet World Congress 2011, held in Amsterdam in October, RAD’s ETX-205A won the award for Best Carrier Ethernet Demarcation Product in Europe, the Middle East and Africa. RAD is the only vendor to have won two such Carrier Ethernet Awards this year.

RAD’s ETX-203A is a richly featured, extremely price-competitive intelligent Carrier Ethernet demarcation device, specifically designed to reduce carrier TCO (total cost of ownership) in mass deployments of Carrier Ethernet-based services. Incorporating RAD’s own Carrier Ethernet ASIC, the ETX-203A delivers SLA-based connectivity at the customer premises, ensuring end-to-end QoS and high availability for business services, cloud access and mobile backhaul.

The ETX-203A is available in both fixed and modular versions. The modular format is the industry’s first completely modular demarcation device, enabling operators to deliver Carrier Ethernet services over different media from a single part number.

“While it is an honor to win a Carrier Ethernet Award, it is a singular honor to win two in one year,” Karo said. “This distinction testifies to RAD’s industry leadership in developing cutting-edge solutions for Carrier Ethernet access.”

About RAD

Founded in 1981, RAD Data Communications has achieved international recognition as a major manufacturer of high quality access and backhaul equipment for data communications and telecommunications applications. These solutions serve the data and voice access requirements of service providers, carriers, and enterprise networks, as well as utilities and transportation systems. The company's installed base exceeds 11,000,000 units and includes more than 150 carriers and operators around the world, including AT&T, China Mobile, Deutsche Telekom, France Telecom/Orange, Hutchison, KDDI, Telekom Austria, TeliaSonera, Telstra, T-Mobile, Verizon, and Vodafone. RAD is an active participant in industry organizations such as the IETF, Broadband Forum, ITU, and MEF. Its customers are supported by 33 offices and more than 300 channel partners in 165 countries. RAD’s environmental management system is ISO 14001 certified. Its operations facilities and processes comply with the industry’s most stringent standards and are completely non-polluting. RAD is a member of the RAD Group of companies, a world leader in networking and internetworking product solutions.  RAD Data Communications site: www.rad.com    Twitter: http://twitter.com/RADdatacomms

 

Telecom Industry Veteran Named to Head FTTH Council

(WASHINGTON) - The Fiber-to-the-Home (FTTH) Council, an organization dedicated to expanding the deployment of ultra high speed all-fiber networks, has named telecommunications executive Heather Burnett Gold to serve as its new full-time President.

Gold, who has worked for more than 27 years in the telecom industry, was until recently Senior Vice President of External Affairs for XO Communications, where for seven years she guided the $1.5 billion company's regulatory and public policy strategy in Washington and in state capitals.   She was also responsible for the development and implementation of the company's Cost of Service strategy, including vendor selection and management for an approximately $600 million annual budget.

Her previous experience includes five years as President for the Association for Local Telecommunications Services (ALTS) during the period surrounding the passage and implementation of the Telecommunications Act of 1996.  She has also served as a founding principal of The KDW Group, a telecom consulting firm, and as Vice President of Industry Affairs for Intermedia Communications.  She was recently honored by the Washington Business Journal as one of its 2010 Women Who Mean Business.

"We are delighted that an accomplished telecom pro will be leading the FTTH Council into its next phase of growth and success, and helping us guide America toward its all-fiber future," said J. Michael Hill, President and CEO of On Trac, Inc. and Chairman of the Council's Board of Directors.  "Heather Gold's impressive business skills and policy experience will be an enormous asset to our organization."

Gold succeeds Dan O'Connell, who resigned last month to take a senior vice president position at Comcast.

"I am thrilled to step into this role and have the opportunity to build on the Council's success in unifying all elements of the fiber to the home industry, from equipment makers to network builders and FTTH service providers," said Gold.  "The Council has become a leading voice for bringing broadband consumers the super-fast connectivity they want, and I intend to work hard to help the FTTH industry deliver on that promise."

"So many things are happening in the FTTH world today, with new fiber-access technologies being introduced, new gigabit networks coming online and communities across North America clamoring for high-speed networks because they know how important bandwidth is to their economic survival.  I am excited to be a part of this dynamic industry," she said.

Gold can be reached at heather.b.gold@ftthcouncil.org.

About the Fiber-to-the-Home Council
Now in its tenth year, the Fiber-to-the-Home (FTTH) Council is a non-profit association consisting of companies and organizations that deliver video, Internet and/or voice services over high-bandwidth, next-generation, direct fiber optic connections - as well as those involved in planning and building FTTH networks.  The Council works to create a cohesive group to share knowledge and build industry consensus on key issues surrounding fiber to the home. Its mission is to educate the public and government officials about FTTH solutions and to promote and accelerate deployment of fiber to the home and the resulting quality of life enhancements such networks make possible.  The Council organizes North America's largest annual FTTH event, the FTTH Conference & Expo, which will be held September 23 - 27, 2012 in Dallas, Texas.   More information about the Council can be found at www.ftthcouncil.org.

 

BOMA - Real Estate Leaders Examine Work Space and Workforce Dynamics in 2025

(WASHINGTON – November 21, 2011) The Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA) Foundation and the Georgetown University School of Continuing Studies and its Masters of Professional Studies in Real Estate Program brought together the best and brightest minds in real estate on November 10 for their second annual Thought Leader Symposium, 2025: A Vision for Commercial Real Estate. The program featured experts from academia and industry to debate key factors-- technology, globalization, sustainability and demographic shifts—and how they will affect the workplace and the workforce over the next 15 years.

“If the last 15 years are any indication of the pace of change in our industry, the next 15 will be phenomenal,” said BOMA Foundation Chair Marilyn Wilbarger, director of property management, City of Key West, Fla., in her opening remarks. “Our thought leaders are going to give us a lot to think about in terms of how we should strategize to ensure that our future buildings are places where people want to work.”

Industry Overview

Katya Naman, CCIM, senior vice president, Lowe Enterprises, Inc., and BOMA International Chair Boyd Zoccola, executive vice president, Hokanson Companies Inc., presented an outlook on what the next five years hold for commercial real estate. They identified several trends, including an increase in density in office buildings, the rise of transit–oriented development and the need for green incentives.

The Workspace

Naman moderated a diverse panel featuring speakers from government, architecture and corporate real estate advisory firms, who discussed workspace trends and the potential demand for office space in 2025. Mobility was at the heart of the discussion, with all panelists agreeing that teleworking will continue to gain momentum.

As teleworking becomes more prevalent, many companies will need less space per worker. GSA’s Chief Asset Officer Gavin Bloch spoke about the agency’s mandate to increase teleworking among employees and dramatically increase density in their buildings. James B. King, AIA, LEED, AP, principal, AREA Advisor LLC, discussed a recent thesis project on the impact of teleworking on demand for office space written by a student in Georgetown’s real estate program. “The thesis concludes that there will be no need to develop new buildings to accommodate workers in the future—the space already in existence will need to be reconfigured to fit future needs,” he explained.

The key to future success in commercial real estate, the panelists agreed, is innovation. Property management firms will also have to think carefully about how they can provide the spaces and services that future tenants will need. Commented Martha A. O’Mara, PhD, CRE, managing director, Corporate Portfolio Analytics, “To compete, landlords are going to have to think about what they do besides offer plain vanilla office space.”

The Workforce

BOMA President Henry Chamberlain, APR, FASAE, CAE, moderated a panel that looked at the Workforce in 2025. Chamberlain kicked off the discussion by noting that as productivity within companies continues to increase, developing and retaining a talented workforce is a core priority and challenge for commercial real estate firms. Panelists discussed how the goals and priorities of an emerging workforce are helping firms evolve to meet new expectations.

“Technology is critical and archaic systems will be a deterrent to candidates,” said Matthew A. Metro, principal, The Maison Group Inc., who also noted that companies should  empower employees to use new technologies and media to market their companies and attract the best talent.

Panelists also discussed how the concept of career development is changing with the incoming workforce. “The corporate ladder concept is starting to go away,” suggested Kristen Reese, director of talent acquisition, Bozzuto Group. “Satisfying careers don’t necessarily have to go up, but tend to go more in waves of different experiences.” Reese also explained that the hierarchy trickle down of information is being replaced by more collaborative experiences.

But what is ultimately going to attract and retain the best talent? Reese noted that it may come down to something very basic, “If someone is looking for a job, they are going to want to know if people are happy working there.”

In his closing remarks, Chuck Schilke, associate dean of Georgetown University’s Master’s Program in Real Estate, touched on the ways in which the workforce of 2025 will affect commercial real estate: “A five-generation real estate workforce will collaborate in the workspace of the future.  This promises to give the future real estate workforce a long-term perspective that will foster more sustainable and energy-efficient buildings.”

Read more.

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About the BOMA International Foundation
The Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA) Foundation is an independent, tax-exempt organization (501(c) 3) whose mission is to serve the commercial real estate industry by fostering a future vision, forward thinking research, innovative thought and global best practices.  The Foundation is dedicated to sponsoring and encouraging innovative research and educational activities that advance the commercial real estate industry and profession.  In addition, the Foundation initiates programs that seek to enhance the public appreciation of real estate and its significance in society.  The Foundation is affiliated with the Building Owners and Managers Association International, the nation's oldest and largest commercial real estate organization.

About the Georgetown University Master of Professional Studies in Real Estate
The Master of Professional Studies in Real Estate degree program at Georgetown is a fully-accredited comprehensive graduate real estate program in Washington, D.C., which teaches practical real estate skills at the highest academic level in a supportive social environment. All courses are taught by top real estate professionals from major real estate organizations who know their fields in depth, are strong communicators, and genuinely care about students. In classes averaging 20 students, students take five foundational real estate courses in ethics, law, finance, markets, and accounting, four upper level track courses in a choice of tracks in Real Estate Development, Real Estate Finance, Construction Management, and International Real Estate, followed by one capstone senior thesis course. The program emphasizes private sector real estate while also taking full advantage of the Washington location to emphasize public sector real estate, environmental and energy aspects, and corporate real estate.

 

Siemon Adds Ruggedized Armored Cable to its Line of High-Speed MTP Plug and Play Fiber Optic Cabling Solutions

Armored cable offers 7X the crush resistance of standard fiber to protect high-performance channels, eliminating the need for fiber ducting and cutting material and labor costs by up to 50%.

December 1, 2011, WATERTOWN, CT — Siemon announces the addition of multiple armored cable options to its comprehensive line of high-performance MTP-based plug and play fiber cable assemblies.  Available in 40Gb/s and 100Gb/s-capable OM3 and OM4 multimode fiber cable constructions as well as standard 62.5/125 and 50/125 multimode and singlemode, these plug and play assemblies feature flexible, spiral wrapped aluminum interlocking armor offering over 7X the crush resistance of standard assemblies. This added durability supports rugged-environment intrabuilding backbone and horizontal installations and eliminates the need for ducting to protect non-armored fiber cable.  Compared to the installation of non-armored fiber with separate innerduct or conduit, the use of armored cable can cut installation costs by up to 50% or more for both materials and labor.

Available in 12 to 144 fiber counts in increments of 12 fibers and in custom lengths, Siemon’s armored plug and play fiber cable assemblies are user-configurable to precise application requirements and efficiently put high-performance, high-density fiber connections exactly where they are needed.

These new armored fiber cable assemblies join Siemon’s full line of high-performance MTP plug and play fiber optic cabling solutions. Constructed of high-quality fiber optic cable and components for future-proof support of critical links up to 40Gb/s and 100 Gb/s application speeds, the Siemon plug and play system's factory terminated and tested connections guarantee maximum channel throughput without the performance variability of field terminations. 

In both armored and non-armored varieties, Siemon OM3 and OM4 multimode MTP assemblies have passed independent third-party testing by Experior Labs, confirming 40Gb/s and 100Gb/s-readiness and performance margins in accordance with the latest IEC 1280-4-1 Edition 2 and TIA/EIA-455-171A standard.  These latest IEC and TIA/EIA testing procedures use new Encircled Flux methods, which limit the negative impact on the accuracy of multimode fiber Insertion Loss and Return Loss test results. Encircled flux compliance reduces test variability by up to 75% versus the previous test methods, helping eliminate false pass results that can degrade overall network performance. The more accurate encircled flux test methods indicated industry-leading performance margins of up to 60% for all Siemon product tested.

To ensure these high performance levels are maintained in every plug and play assembly , Siemon performs 100% automated end-face inspection of all fiber interfaces to IEC 61300-3-30 Ed 1.0 to limit contaminants and surface defects that significantly degrade system performance.  Siemon also tests all of its plug and play assemblies for Insertion Loss and Return Loss in both directions for both 850n and 1300nm wavelengths and ships individual test results with every assembly. 

The full Siemon plug and play fiber optic system includes low-profile MTP to LC or SC modules, MTP pass-through adapter plates and an extensive offering of pre-terminated MTP to MTP, and MTP to LC cable assemblies.

For more information on Siemon's new armored MTP plug and play fiber optic cable assemblies, as well as other Siemon network cabling innovations visit:

Follow Siemon on Twitter:  http://twitter.com/siemoncabling/
Join Siemon on Facebook: http://www.siemon.com/go/facebook

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About Siemon
Established in 1903, Siemon is an industry leader specializing in the manufacture and innovation of high quality, high-performance network cabling solutions. Headquartered in Connecticut, USA, with global offices, manufacturing and service partners throughout the world, Siemon offers the most comprehensive suite of copper (unshielded and shielded twisted-pair) category 5e, category 6 (Class E), category 6A (Class EA) and category 7/7A (Class F/FA), and multimode and singlemode optical fiber cabling systems available. With over 400 patents specific to structured cabling, from patch cords to patch panels, Siemon Labs invests heavily in R&D and development of industry standards, underlining the company's long-term commitment to its customers and the industry.

 

Square Footage of LEED-Certified Existing Buildings Surpasses New Construction

Uptake signals green building market sea change

Washington, DC - (Dec. 7, 2011) - LEED-certified existing buildings are outpacing their newly built counterparts, according to the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC). As of this month, square footage of LEED-certified existing buildings surpassed LEED-certified new construction by 15 million square feet on a cumulative basis.

"The U.S. is home to more than 60 billion square feet of existing commercial buildings, and we know that most of those buildings are energy guzzlers and water sieves," said Rick Fedrizzi, President, CEO & Founding Chair, USGBC. "Greening these buildings takes hands-on work, creating precious jobs especially for construction workers. Making these existing buildings energy and water efficient has an enormous positive impact on the building's cost of operations. And the indoor air quality improvements that go with less toxic cleaning solutions and better filtration create healthier places to live, work and learn."

Historically, USGBC has seen the stock of LEED-certified green projects overwhelmingly made up of new construction projects, both in volume and square footage. That began to change in 2008, when the LEED for Existing Buildings: Operations & Maintenance (O&M) program began experiencing explosive growth. In 2009, projects certified under LEED for Existing Buildings: O&M surpassed those certified under its new construction counterpart on an annual basis, a trend that continued in 2010 and 2011.

"This new data marks the first time that LEED-certified existing buildings have surpassed LEED-certified new construction cumulatively," Fedrizzi continued. "The market is becoming increasingly aware of how building owners can get better performance through green operations and maintenance, and tools such as LEED for Existing Buildings: O&M are essential to cost-effectively driving improvements in our economy and environment. LEED as a rating system is continuing to evolve an ever greater emphasis on performance, not only in energy, but also water, location, indoor environmental quality, and materials."

Projects worldwide are proving that green building doesn't have to mean building new. By undertaking a large renovation, the recently LEED-certified Empire State Building has predicted it will slash energy consumption by more than 38 percent, saving $4.4 million in energy costs annually, and recouping the costs of implementation in only three years.

The second tallest building in the world, Taipei 101, earned the tallest honor - LEED Platinum. The skyscraper was designed to use 30 percent less energy, reducing annual utility costs by $700,000 a year. San Francisco's Transamerica Pyramid also earned LEED Platinum as an existing building, 39 years after it was originally built. The landmark's onsite co-generation plant saves an average of $700,000 annually in energy costs.

"USGBC is also a strong supporter and working to implement the White House's Better Buildings Initiative to make America's commercial buildings more energy- and resource-efficient over the next decade. The plan catalyzes private-sector investment through a series of incentives to upgrade existing offices, stores, schools and universities, hospitals and other commercial and municipal buildings.

A newly issued report by Capital-E found that efficiency financing has the potential to soar from $20 to $150 billion annually, creating over one million jobs, making the American economy more competitive, enhancing national security, and helping slow the impacts of climate change.

In their Green Outlook 2011 report, McGraw Hill Construction found that by 2015, the green share of the largest commercial retrofit and renovation activity will more than triple, growing to 25 percent to 33 percent of the activity by value-a $14 to $18 billion opportunity in major construction projects alone.

To learn more about existing buildings, visit usgbc.org/LEED/EB.

About the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC)
The U.S. Green Building Council is committed to a prosperous and sustainable future for our nation through cost-efficient and energy-saving green buildings. With a community comprising 79 local affiliates, nearly 16,000 member organizations, and more than 167,000 LEED Professional Credential holders, USGBC is the driving force of an industry that is projected to contribute $554 billion to the U.S. GDP from 2009-2013. USGBC leads an unlikely diverse constituency of builders and environmentalists, corporations and nonprofit organizations, elected officials and concerned citizens, and teachers and students. For more information, visit www.usgbc.org, on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

LEED
The USGBC's LEED green building certification system is the foremost program for the design, construction and operation of green buildings. Over 43,000 projects are currently participating in the commercial and institutional LEED rating systems, comprising nearly 8 billion square feet of construction space in all 50 states and 120 countries. In addition, nearly 15,000 homes have been certified under the LEED for Homes rating system, with more than 65,000 more homes registered.
By using less energy, LEED-certified buildings save money for families, businesses and taxpayers; reduce greenhouse gas emissions; and contribute to a healthier environment for residents, workers and the larger community. Learn more at usgbc.org/LEED.

 

Telecommunications Industry Association Welcomes 5 Industry Leaders to Its Board of Directors

New Members Are Executives at ACS Solutions, Ericsson, Motorola Mobility, Numerex, and Tarana Wireless

Arlington, Va. – The Telecommunications Industry Association (TIA), which represents the manufacturers and suppliers of global communications networks, welcomes five new members to its Board of Directors.

Joining the TIA Board are:

  • Bryan Glutting, CEO, ACS Solutions
  • Dr. Vish Nandlall, Head of Strategy, Marketing and CTO, Customer Unit, Region North America, Ericsson
  • Stratton J. Nicolaides, CEO and Chairman of the Board, Numerex Corp.
  • Geoff Roman, Senior Vice President, CTO, Motorola Mobility
  • Steve Sifferman, Chief Operating Officer, Tarana Wireless, Inc.

"We welcome our newest board members, the information and communications technology leaders who will help TIA guide our member companies and our industry into a new year of innovation and growth," said TIA President Grant Seiffert.

About TIA
The Telecommunications Industry Association (TIA) represents the global information and communications technology (ICT) industry through standards development, policy and advocacy, business opportunities, market intelligence, and events and networking. Since 1924, TIA has been enhancing the business environment for broadband, mobile wireless, information technology, networks, cable, satellite and unified communications. Members' products and services empower communications in every industry and market, including healthcare, education, security, public safety, transportation, government, the military, the environment, and entertainment. Visit tiaonline.org.

TIA is accredited by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI).

View video news programming on TIA Now at tianow.org.

TIA's 2011 Market Review & Forecast, is available for purchase online at the TIA store. An unprecedented discount for the market intelligence package has just been extended until Dec. 15, 2011. The package includes a broad array of current, industry-related white papers free of charge while supplies remain. TIA members receive a discount of more than 60 percent off of the cover price. Review copies are available for qualified media.

TIA's Board of Directors includes senior-level executives from ACS Solutions, ADTRAN, Alcatel-Lucent, Cisco Systems, Dow Chemical Company, Ericsson, Inc., FAL Associates, GENBAND, Inc., Henkels & McCoy, Juniper Networks, ILS Technology, Intel Corporation, LGE, Microsoft, Motorola Mobility, Motorola Solutions, Nokia Siemens Networks, Numerex Corp., OneChip Photonics, Panasonic Computer Solutions Co., Qualcomm, Sumitomo Electric Lightwave Corporation, Tarana Wireless, Inc., Tellabs, TE Connectivity, Walker & Associates and WirefreeCom, Inc.

 

Siemon Announces Network Infrastructure Blog

Combining Siemon’s extensive data center and enterprise cabling knowledge with news, opinions and guidance from experts across the global network infrastructure market, http://blog.siemon.com/infrastructure/ delivers educational resources, industry intelligence and actionable advice on a wide range of network infrastructure issues.

XXX 2011, Watertown, CT, USA — Siemon, a globally recognized leader in network cabling solutions, has launched a new blog dedicated to helping data center and enterprise network professionals stay up-to-date on the latest advances, global standards updates, market intelligence and strategies in network infrastructure.

Focusing on key issues in the data center and converged low-voltage enterprise network, http://blog.siemon.com/infrastructure/ leverages the expertise of Siemon subject matter experts from around the world, bringing unique perspectives and ideas that network professionals can use to improve their own infrastructure strategies.  This valuable expertise is extended by a growing list of contributors and guest bloggers representing leading organizations from a wide range of network infrastructure segments, including active equipment manufacturers, chip developers, system integrators and more.

Recent Siemon Network Infrastructure posts include:

·         Update on new ISO/IEC 40Gb/s Copper Cabling Project - http://blog.siemon.com/infrastructure/isoiec-initiates-40-gbits-copper-cabling-project

·         Report: 10GbE to overtake 1GbE by 2014 - http://blog.siemon.com/infrastructure/new-report-10gbe-port-count-to-overtake-1gbe-by-2014

·         Overview of TIA’s Next Generation Cabling Objectives - http://blog.siemon.com/infrastructure/tia-adopts-next-generation-cabling-baseline-objectives-2

Backed by a team of contributors monitoring an extensive list of traditional and social media resources for the latest news, advancements and industry happenings, Siemon’s Network Infrastructure Blog also provides an easy way for professionals to keep up with the rapidly evolving network infrastructure market.  

Topic areas covered include:

·         Standards activities updates from active standard leaders and contributors

·         Data center design strategies

·         Energy consumption and cooling

·         Converged low-voltage networking

·         Building “Green” infrastructures

·         Intelligent automated building infrastructures

·         Higher-speed networking: 10, 40 and 100Gb/s

·         Infrastructures for cloud, colocation and virtualized data centers

·         Network security strategies

To access Siemon’s Network Infrastructure blog, visit: http://blog.siemon.com/infrastructure/

Follow Siemon on Twitter:  http://twitter.com/siemoncabling/

Join Siemon on Facebook: http://www.siemon.com/go/facebook

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About Siemon

Established in 1903, Siemon is an industry leader specializing in the manufacture and innovation of high quality, high-performance network cabling solutions. Headquartered in Connecticut, USA, with global offices, manufacturing and service partners throughout the world, Siemon offers the most comprehensive suite of copper (unshielded and shielded twisted-pair) category 5e, category 6 (Class E), category 6A (Class EA) and category 7/7A (Class F/FA), and multimode and singlemode optical fiber cabling systems available. With over 400 patents specific to structured cabling, from patch cords to patch panels, Siemon Labs invests heavily in R&D and development of industry standards, underlining the company's long-term commitment to its customers and the industry.

 

Telecommunications Industry Association Joins Board of Sustainable Technology Environments Program (STEP)

TIA Will Share Its Standards Developing Experience and Resources to Help Establish Industry-Accepted Sustainable Technology Benchmarks

Arlington, Va. – The Telecommunications Industry Association (TIA), which represents the manufacturers and suppliers of global communications networks, is continuing its tradition and commitment to furthering environmental and sustainable technology development by joining the Sustainable Technology Environments Program (STEP).

TIA President Grant Seiffert joined the board of directors of STEP, which was recently created by the manufacturers, designers, integrators, programmers, and users of technology to guide project and building owners to implement technologies and practices that will produce economic benefits to their organization, while preserving the planet.

TIA, with other high tech nonprofit associations (BICSI, CompTIA, Infocomm), is working to define sustainability for the electronics and broadband industries.

"The goal shouldn't be green buildings, it should be a sustainable economy where services are delivered to rural poor as easily as they are to urban rich," said Seiffert. "Broadband and the communications services TIA members enable make the world more productive, efficient and connected."

As a standards developing organization, TIA engineering committees have worked for many years on improving technology to increase energy efficiency in structures such as data centers. "TIA can lend its expertise in standards development to help meet STEP's goal of establishing technology industry benchmarks for sustainability and materials practices," said Seiffert.

STEP focuses on the technology systems that operate within sustainable buildings, employing a five-phase approach to planning, implementing, and measuring the impact of a project. Conducted by the providers of technology and the building owner, STEP engages the best practices and standards for sustainability. Its rating scale is adaptable to any technology project within a built environment.

To inquire about participating in TIA standards developing efforts, please contact Germaine Palangdao at +1.703.907.7497 or at gpalangdao@tiaonline.org.

Learn more about TIA standards development and view TIA's engineering committee meetings calendar at tiaonline.org/standards/. Sign up for news feeds on new TIA standards projects and publications.

TIA is accredited by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI). Read ANSI's report, "Standards Boost Business" at standardsboostbusiness.org/.

 

About TIA
The Telecommunications Industry Association (TIA) represents the global information and communications technology (ICT) industry through standards development, policy and advocacy, business opportunities, market intelligence, and events and networking. Since 1924, TIA has been enhancing the business environment for broadband, mobile wireless, information technology, networks, cable, satellite and unified communications. Members' products and services empower communications in every industry and market, including healthcare, education, security, public safety, transportation, government, the military, the environment, and entertainment. Visit tiaonline.org.

View video news programming on TIA Now at tianow.org.

TIA's 2011 Market Review & Forecast, is available for purchase online at the TIA store. An unprecedented discount for the market intelligence package has just been extended until Dec. 15, 2011. The package includes a broad array of current, industry-related white papers free of charge while supplies remain. TIA members receive a discount of more than 60 percent off of the cover price. Review copies are available for qualified media.

TIA's Board of Directors includes senior-level executives from ACS Solutions, ADTRAN, Alcatel-Lucent, Cisco Systems, Dow Chemical Company, Ericsson, Inc., FAL Associates, GENBAND, Inc., Henkels & McCoy, Juniper Networks, ILS Technology, Intel Corporation, LGE, Microsoft, Motorola Mobility, Motorola Solutions, Nokia Siemens Networks, Numerex Corp., OneChip Photonics, Panasonic Computer Solutions Co., Qualcomm, Sumitomo Electric Lightwave Corporation, Tarana Wireless, Inc., Tellabs, TE Connectivity, Walker & Associates and WirefreeCom, Inc.


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