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Back From The Stack: Haystack Connect And Big Data

by Ken Sinclair

Jane and I are just back from the Haystack Connect event in Colorado Springs. It was an extremely feel-good event, very well attended, and the best part was over half of the folks attending were under the age of 40. It was amazing to see what this new energy brings to the industry.  Over the years we have been the part of many new start up communities and we simply love the feeling of unbridled optimism and willingness to donate to the cause that exists at events like this. The Haystack event showed us that this is the place where the community of automation and IoT professionals comes together to learn and share the latest techniques for connecting systems and using data to advance the efficiency of buildings, equipment systems and processes. For those circling the Haystack, it was a great venue to better understand the issues moving ahead with Big Data and IoT. This comment was made at event: "The fact that Haystack is open source we find folk are using resources who have not identified themselves as part of the community." This is a great tribute to the work done by the community.

They also created a new word "Haystackable."

The need is clear and we all need to ask those non-believers: "How do you propose to manage big data tagging?"

We were very pleased to have our first ever contributing editor of AutomatedBuildings.com at the event: Tom Hartman was on a self-learning journey to observe our changing industry.

Please read review of the Haystack event.

Pleased to have our newest contributing editor, Marc Petock, vice president, marketing, Lynxspring & Connexx Energy.  Although Marc is not new to our magazine, we thought we should make it official because of the number of articles and interviews he has provided plus ongoing support of our efforts and the industry he has provided. Take a look at his contributing editor page to see the amount and linkage to his articles and interviews to date.

Christopher Naismith, learning manager at SES Consulting and I met with several folks to discuss self-learning companies at the Haystack event and we learned lots. Eye opener for me and the other over 40 folks was: Millennial folks are by definition self-learners. We simply need to define what they need to learn. We also need to explore how to best digitalize the thoughts of the Boomer's and connect their thoughts to today's flavor of the day social media.

Chris blogged this article for us this month, Enabling Self-Learning at Work: No-one is without the innate curiosity and passion necessary to learn new things on their own.

I am passionate about creating a path of learning from old to new in our industry. I am old, and all of us old guys need the help of the younger folks in our industry to teach us the best formats, what information is useful, and how do we best present it so it is easily accessible.

It has become obvious in the last 16 years of publishing AutomatedBuildings.com that online cloud storage of searchable information in HTML is the lasting medium that will become our self-documented history.

Also our long time contributing editor, and author of five books, was there as keynote speaker: Our good friend Jack McGowan is an industry resource and asset, and has captured his thoughts on big data in his new book, "Big Data and Building Technology Integration." Be sure to read our interview this month about his new book.

I am very pleased to provide perspective on the middle chapters of Jack’s amazing book and to focus on the “Introduction to Technology” section. I have known Jack for over 30 years, and when I first met him he was writing a book and I was honored when he used some of my material for one of the chapters. He has spent much of his life as an educator of our industry so we are all pleased that he has taken on this task of sharing his insight on the big picture of our industry that is this book.

Jack has the ability to capture and organize all that is around him and contextualize into value for others. Jack has been a personal mentor plus the greatest fan ever of Jane and my efforts at creating and maintaining what is AutomatedBuildings.com. He is the rare combination of a teacher and a doer, hence his ability to prepare a book of this magnitude, volume, and embodied wisdom.

It is important to understand this book is written for people, people like you. People are our only asset. Technology may come and go but at the core of the industry are the same people that have been there for years. The problem is these core people are growing older and much of the discussion now is that we all need to plant new people, nourish them, and help them grow.

This book does an amazing job of providing a base, the actual ground where these new younger people can grow.

Your company's and the industry's technologies may come and go but the people are our only true asset that remains and recreates and keeps the industry strong.  This greatly increases the importance of the induction of new blood, younger folks with IoT smarts into our industry. If we are to build on our existing assets, the people, then we need to invest in education and transfer of the knowledge of our assets.  We need to look at new talent as an investment that can greatly increase our existing assets. As you read the chapters keep focused on how our assets the people, are needed to make these technologies achieve full potential.

Part 2: Evolving Technology Is Redefining Building Automation

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posted on 6/10/2015