Now only 8 weeks away, Critical Communications Europe, is the Critical Communications World Series 1st event to focus exclusively on Europe. As a conference producer, I spend a lot of my time researching and trying to find the very best in the industry to bring the events to life. I spoke to some amazing people who have contributed heavily towards the event, but what struck me most was the amazing work that goes on around us. In this blog post, I wanted to share some of my favourite stories and highlights from the research process, and in turn invite you to share your stories on what makes European Critical Communications such an extraordinary field to be a part of.
The following is a selection of my favourite stories. I am absolutely certain there is a lot more out there that deserves attention as well, so make sure you add your thoughts in the comments section. You never know, they might just get an invitation to speak! Carl Smith, Event Producer, Critical Communications Europe
ASTRID Blue Light Mobile – This is a story that really captures the imagination. We are very familiar with MVNOs over here at IIR Telecoms, so seeing ASTRID take this step has been fascinating. ASTRID’s, Christian Mouraux presented on this at Professional LTE in October last year. Despite the talk running well over the allotted time, the audience were completely captivated. I am sure there will be a lot of interest in hearing the latest test results from Christian in Amsterdam this March. http://www.tetra-applications.com/item.html&objID=24740
Nødnett Upgrade – Nødnett’s upgrade was a great story to listen to. I had the privilege to speak with Cecilie Løken shortly after her promotion to COO at the Norwegian Directorate for Emergency Communication. Listening to how tight the schedule was for the upgrade work was, and how everybody pulled through an incredibly tense night was pretty exciting. The successful upgrade speaks volumes of the great work from not only the Norwegian Directorate, but Motorola as well. http://www.dinkom.no/en/About-The-Directorate/News-Archive/Nodnett-upgraded/
London Olympics – The London Olympics is still a great example of everything that makes Critical Communications great. From a technical stand point, Airwave provided a fantastic service, but it was really the level of planning from the Metropolitan Police that really makes this an emphatic case study of best practice. As ever, John Adams of the Met, is full of great stories. I managed to catch up with him at Professional LTE where he mentioned there was a lot that he had to contend with behind the scenes during the Olympics. This is a topic he’s going to be picking up on at Critical Communications Europe. So remember Murphy’s law ‘Anything that can go wrong, will go wrong’ And at the worst possible time! https://www.airwavesolutions.co.uk/media/airwave-in-action/london-2012/
World’s Largest TETRA network – BDBOS and Germany can now claim to have the world’s largest TETRA network. This is a great achievement, and something to be extremely proud of. At Control Room Communications in Vienna last December, Sven Franke of BDBOS delivered a fascinating presentation. As we were all getting increasingly excited over the potential for social media, Sven’s talked focused on highly relevant challenges that we were all in danger of forgetting. It’s this kind of relentless and pragmatic approach, that will no doubt help build on what is already an impressive network. To avoid national stereotypes, I will also point out that Sven is also one of the most light hearted people I have had the pleasure of meeting. http://www.cassidian.com/en_US/web/guest/cassidian-completes-core-network-german-bos-tetra-network
Driverless Trains – I like trains, so this is still fascinating to me. I’ve had some very interesting conversations with Frederic Jans-Cooreman of STIB as part of my research for Critical Communications Europe. As soon as Frederic found out I was a frequent traveler on the Jubilee line here in London, he opened my eyes as to how the rolling stock is managed. Needless to say, I now pass all of this on to anyone who’ll listen to me on the tube. http://www.railway-technology.com/news/newsparis-launches-driverless-trains-on-metro-line-1
SmartSantander – This is something that still amazes me. The research being carried out in Santander would be unbelievable if it wasn’t all there to see with your own eyes. This is a platform that will see a lot of development over the next few years, and the implications on public safety/transport/utilities is absolutely phenomenal. The ground work has already been set down here, so now it’s only up to our imaginations to see just how far the Internet of Things can take us. http://www.publicpolicy.telefonica.com/blogs/blog/2011/11/18/smart-cities-innovation-becoming-a-reality/
144 Notruf Niederösterreich – Christof Constantin Chojka presented at Control Room Communications on How the Emergency Communication And Coordination Centre Of Lower Austria has pioneered control room communication. One of the accusations around public safety is resistance to change. But here we had a master class in how to embrace current IT options to provide a better service and manage your work force more effectively. The presentation was so popular, that we just had to get him back for Critical Communications Europe! https://www.144.at/homepage/startseite.html
Transport For London Social Media – As a Londoner, it might seem that I’m showing some favouritism with this one. However, it takes an awful lot for any Londoner to say something positive about TFL. One of the things that really stood out from Esmon George of TFL’s, presentation at Control Room Communications was just how far along they are with their social media programme. What I realised was, that they’re doing it so well, that I have been taking it for granted this whole time. Live updates, mobile phone optimised departure times, twitter feeds….everything you could possibly need. There was a lot to learn from Esmon at Control Room Communications…http://www.tfl.gov.uk/social-media/
If there is a story you’d like to share or highlight, make sure to post it in the comments section. If there is enough support for anyone we’ve missed from Critical Communications Europe, we might just be able to get them along for you!