Top 5 stories: Week of July 20-24
Here’s a look at the most popular stories on IWCE’s Urgent Communications from the last week:
1. “Newscan: Goodbye Moto, or how Chicago’s greatest tech company fell to earth” — In a narrated animation, presented by staff from Crain’s Chicago Business, the rise and fall of Motorola—the company responsible for the technology behind Neil Armstrong’s historic radio message from the moon—is retold. The presentation sheds light on the company’s innovation and lack thereof as the communications-technology company hit its zenith in the early 2000s.
2. “South Korea plans to deploy mission-critical PTT over LTE this year” — South Korea plans to demonstrate and deploy mission-critical push-to-talk (MCPTT) over LTE later this year. The urgency to revamp its first-responder communications system was initiated in May 2014, one month after the tragic sinking of the MV Sewol ferry, which resulted in the deaths of 304 passengers. Some high-school students aboard the ferry were more successful communicating during the incident with their commercial broadband wireless devices than the public-safety entities using narrowband LMR, according to Daejung “DJ” Kim, chief of the radio and broadcasting department standardization division for the Telcommunications Technology Association in South Korea.
3. Accurate GIS data critical to PSAPs migrating to next-gen 911 — The migration of public-safety answering points (PSAPs) from the legacy 911 system to the IP-based next generation has been focused on technology or funding challenges, but another major hurdle is ensuring that the geographic information system (GIS) data is National Emergency Number Association (NENA) i3 compliant. This article includes viewpoints from 911 emergency solutions officials on the matter. “Today, you could have the call route correctly, and the consequence of poor GIS data is not locating the caller on a map—but at least the call has been delivered to the correct PSAP,” according to Raymond Horner, senior technical project manager with Intrado, a 911 solutions provider. “If you don’t have that accurate [in NG911], then you would not actually route the call properly—you might have to use a default route, if you did not have the correct GIS data.”
4. “Newscan: California bill lets on-the-job firefighters take out drones” – Lawmakers in Sacramento, Calif., have taken steps to allow firefighters to stop drones that interfere with firefighting efforts, according to a San Francisco Chronicle article. The law changes would also increase the fine and jail time for drone use that impedes firefighting. The laws were proposed after firefighters in the city reported that five drones flying over the area during a wildfire hampered their efforts to extinguish the fire.
5. “Trimble integrates Zello push-to-talk app into construction-logistics software suite” —Trimble recently announced that its TrimFleet 6.5 software suite integrates with push-to-talk application Zello for Work, which will offer customers a “voice-over-IP radio replacement” for construction logistics. “They have integrated Zello into their software, so it has the advantages of two-way radio—instant live voice and group communications—but it doesn’t have the disadvantages, like distance or security,” Zello CEO Bill Moore said during an interview with IWCE’s Urgent Communications.