Meet the Founder Series
Sharing Entrepreneurial Experiences with the Canberra Community
Mr Brand Hoff
“The TOWER Software Story from Micro to Multi”
Brand Hoff founded TOWER Software in 1985, he grew the company from two people to 240 people worldwide. In 2008, the company was successfully sold to
by Thursday 8th September Hewlett Packard.
When: 5.30pm for canapes Tuesday 14th September
NICTA Seminar Room, Ground Floor, 7 London Circuit, Canberra
Mr Brand Hoff brings significant expertise to NICTA in the areas of information technology, package software research and development, Web applications research, small-and-medium enterprises (SMEs), and commercialisation.
Mr Hoff has 40 years in the IT industry. In the early 1970s he developed a private data entry LAN and data entry equipment for the Commonwealth Treasury.
Mr Hoff also designed and developed one of the first national, and later international, communications networks for Treasury.
He was responsible for the purchase of the first IBM plug-compatible mainframe for the Commonwealth Government .
As Director Computer Services was responsible for the development of the Australian Bibliographic Network for the National Library of Australia.
Between 1981 and 1985 Mr Hoff established the Canberra Consulting Division of CSC, a large US systems consulting company.
Until 2001 he was Managing Director of TOWER Software Engineering, a business he founded in 1985 and which he grew to be a Canberra-based multi national. TOWER Software, famous for its TRIM product, is a leading enterprise content management firm with overseas subsidiary companies in the United States and United Kingdom and offices in Canada, New Zealand, Northern Ireland and Holland.
TOWER has achieved outstanding success in the development of the TRIM product, including three prestigious AIIA iAwards. Other awards include NSW Emerging Exporter of the Year 1997, Australian Capital Territory (ACT) Small Business of the Year 1998 and National Winner AusIndustry Innovation Award 1998.
TOWER was sold to Hewlett Packard in May 2008 after a formal takeover offer was tabled by HP.
Mr Hoff has a BA degree in Computer Studies from the University of Canberra and is fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.
He has served as Chairman of the Information Industry Development Board and as Chairman of the Knowledge Based Economy Board which advises the ACT Chief Minister and ACT Treasurer. Mr Hoff was a Member of the University of Canberra Council and holds a number of additional Board positions on ICT based SME Companies.
Tuesday, August 31, 2010
Sharing Entrepreneurial Experiences with the Canberra Community
Flexible digital search techniques
Friday Forum 2010 - Flexibly DigitalDate: Friday, 24 September 2010, 1:00pm- 2:30pm
Venue: Hedley Bull Centre, HB2, Australian National University, Canberra
Dr Kerry Taylor, CSIRO ICT Centre
Basil Dewhurst, Trove project, National Library of Australia
Donald Hobern, CSIRO Ecosystem SciencesFacilitator:Dr Paul Arthur, National Centre of Biography
A special forum held in conjunction with the National Centre of Biography's Life of Information symposium. The thick, descriptive data of humanities research and the strict categorization of digital databases are not natural partners. Current developments in data representation are breaking down these barriers. This forum discusses the theory and practice of flexible digital search techniques.
Entry to the forum session is open (just drop in).
Details of the: Life of Information symposium
ICT Initiatives for next Australian government
- Electronic polling at major centres: Difficulties were experienced with vote counting at the last election. To overcome this I suggest introducing the system of electronic polling at major centres used for the ACT local elections. With this system at the larger polling places, including pre-poll centres, voters have the choice to use computer based voting. The AEC already has an electronic voting system for people with a disability which can be adapted for all voters. I suggest the use of such a system be maximised by removing the restriction on pre-poll voting and so allowing any voter to vote in the pre-poll period without needing to give a reason. This will allow most votes to be cast and counted electronically, greatly speeding up the poll and reducing errors. Allowing pre-polling should also help independents and smaller parties, but making it difficult for a major parties to use large advertising budgets to influence the vote shortly before polling day.
- Broadband Use in Regional Australia: Regardless of it the NBN is retained, or another broadband strategy adopted, I suggest emphasis be changed to the use of broadband for the community. This should include investment in training for teachers and health workers in the use of online applications to carry out their work. This could build on the excellent work being done by federal and state funded EdNa on all levels of education, the Australian Flexible Learning Framework on vocational education and the ANU on training rural doctors. Also a programme could ensure that regional centres are equipped to use broadband, including schools, libraries, health centres and council offices.
- Broadband for Reducing Carbon Emissions: Regardless of what form of carbon emission control scheme is introduced, ICT can play a part. As I teach my Green ICT students, computers and telecommunications now make up a significant part of the cause of carbon emissions in Australia (about 2.7%) and could be used to reduce emissions (up to 15%). At a cost of $1M we could train on expert for each of the top 400 companies and government agencies in Australia to work to make reductions. Already my students have written green ICT strategies for several major government agencies and companies as assignments for their course and then submitted them for implementation in the workplace.
Monday, August 30, 2010
Technology developments in the digital economy
The report also claims that sustainability concerns will drive convergence between telecommunications and utilities. However, experience with "smart meters" in Australia so far has shown few energy savings and only increased prices for consumers. ACMA also claim that location based services provide for rich commercial and social applications. However, apart from the upgrading of traditional logistics services (such as truck deliveries) there is little real evidence of "social" location applications providing real benefits or being taken up beyond the readership of "Wired" magazine.
Despite emphasising the use of smart phones, ACMA chose to release this report as a large PDF and Microsoft Word file, not suited to reading on a smart phone. Here are some excerpts from the report, converted to web format for easy online reading:
Technology developments in the digital economy
- Optical fibre networks and technologies
- Wireless technologies
- Home network technologies
- Digital identity management
- Smart technology
- Smart devices and systems
- ICT energy efficiency
- Digital community
- Mobile payment technologies
- Mobile coupon technology 110
- Location-aware community
- Web applications
- Developments in social media
This ACMA research report provides general information and analysis of technology developments related to communications services in Australia. The research aims to inform a wide audience of consumers and the community of more recent technological developments.
This report explores developments in information and communications technologies that underpin the digital economy. In broad terms, t he digital economy is defined as the global network of economic and social activities that are enabled by information and communications technologies such as the internet, mobile and sensor networks. 1 There are three broad groups of technologies currently relevant to the development of the networks that support the digital economy and consumer applications and use of services—infrastructure, smart technologies and digital community. They are the focus of this report.
Infrastructure developments continue the ongoing trend of network upgrades to provide higher bandwidth and a transition to IP-enabled platforms, with innovation improving physical properties and performance quality across networks.
Optical fibre technology has become the preferred choice in greenfield access and core transmission networks, and a high level of activity has been maintained in the recent adverse economic environment. A current challenge for industry is to create all-optical networks that ultimately provide optical packet-switching in an IP environment, with development and standards activity focused on improving the physical performance of these networks.
Wireless technologies also continue to provide mobility and cost-effective infrastructure solutions for users to access the digital economy services. The current 3G technologies that support the demand for wireless mobile services in Australia are expected to follow the global evolution to faster and more efficient technologies such as Long-Term Evolution (LTE). Technologies such as WiMAX will also play a role in providing better access solutions, with development activity directed to allow interoperability and consumer use of multimedia and smart multifunctional devices. Femtocell technology may also emerge to play an important role in overcoming future wireless capacity issues.
Home network technologies are extending the improved fixed and wireless access network capability into the residential environment. Convergence of services onto unifying IP access networks has stimulated the development of similar converged technologies in the home network environment and is allowing home automation applications. A key challenge in this environment is transitioning from models of identity management developed for legacy telecommunications networks to internet-based multimedia communications services. The home network is where the convergence of multiple services and identities is occurring, and is the focal point for customer service management. These trends highlight the changing environment ahead for both service providers and consumers.
Growth in the take-up and use of smartphones has been one of the most important developments of the past two years, with smartphones expected to drive significant future growth in mobile traffic as well as create opportunities in the digital economy for content provision, service carriage and applications development.
Sustainability concerns are another important driver that is creating a new convergence between the telecommunications industry and utilities, and driving smart applications development. Smart technologies aim to address two competing drivers—the first from increasing energy consumption levels that are the result of the wider use of communications and the exponential increase in information and data storage requirements, and the second from energy and data storage efficiency techniques.
Smart technologies and systems are being used to control the growing energy demands of the communications and information sector, as well as manage the exponential increase in information resources made available through the internet.
Applications development is active in the areas of micropayments, location sensing and home networks, which all offer new forms of participation and connectivity in the digital economy. Device and delivery technologies have moved beyond the single-service model to a complex multifunction and multiservice environment not envisaged under existing regulation. The level of complexity associated with providing diverse digital media creates challenges also for service providers and users. Cloud computing, virtualisation and the power requirements associated with managing and distributing the exponential growth in data volumes are changing the structure of service provisioning in information and communications technologies.
Digital communications services and the online environment are integral to the Australian economy and society. The Australian community is now using the internet and digitally based services on a regular basis, with the boundaries between legacy services, digital applications and devices becoming increasingly blurred. Users are now interacting with the digital economy through the use of mobile payment, contactless smartcard and location-based technologies. The combining of location-based information with other information sources in the digital community has provided a range of rich commercial and social applications. This results in an augmented reality that provides added value beyond the original information sources. These activities have revealed a new willingness for social openness that has raised concern in the area of privacy and security.
In a world where information is abundant and attention is the new scarcity, the challenge for individuals is what to pay attention to. The challenge for business, government and other institutions is in how to attract attention. In a networked society, content creation and distribution channels are available to anyone with broadband internet connectivity. It has become so integrated in the media value-chain that the distinctions between ‘social media’ and ‘media’ are difficult to make.
The rapid pace of emerging technologies and their adoption will continue to shape and inform our lives at all levels of interaction. Understanding their current development will assist the ACMA, government, industry and community in ensuring that all Australians reap the benefits that these technologies offer to the digital economy.
Methodology... The report focuses on developments and relevance to the emerging digital economy since the release of the ACMA’s Trends in communications and media technologies, applications and services in March 2009. 2 ...
This section provides an overview of the major trends and developments in communications infrastructure technologies that underpin the digital economy. ...
Optical fibre networks and technologies
Optical fibre technology is increasingly used for network upgrades globally, as well as being an area of significant investment activity within Australia. ...
With growing demand for higher bandwidth in existing fixed and wireless networks, optical fibre technologies can provide high capacity ... 3
Long-haul international submarine cables is an active area of optical fibre deployments. Telstra, 4 Pipe, 5 Southern Cross 6 and the AJC 7 ...
... With its 290km underwater cable to Tasmania, Basslink Telecom has deployed one of the world's longest unamplified optical fibre backhaul solutions. 8 Telstra has announced it will upgrade fibre capacity of its Next IP network between Melbourne and Sydney with a tenfold increase using wavelength division multiplexing (WDM) technology. 9 Nextgen Networks, owner and operator of Australia’s third-largest fibre optic network, consisting of 8,500km of fibre optic cable from Brisbane to Perth, plans to extend its network by laying 6,000km of fibre optic backbone links that will pass 100 regional locations, a result of its successful bid for the Federal Government regional broadband tender. 10
... The Asia–Pacific region has shown to be the most resilient, with optical network market growth up 33 per cent in the last twelve months. 11
... In the first six months of 2009, more than 5.5 million new fibre-to-the-home/basement (FTTH/B) ... 12 ...
In Australia, optical fibre is now preferred in greenfield access networks. Telstra, 13 Pivit, 14 OptiComm 15 and TransACT 16 have all deployed FTTH access networks. The Australian Government proposes to ensure that fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP) technology is installed in all new substantial greenfield property developments. 17 ... National Broadband Network (NBN) that will use a FTTP ... 18... ongoing developments to improve silica fibre performance through materials purity and fibre fabrication. 19
Improvement in physical properties such as bend tolerance is another more recent area of focus. 20 ...Technological advances in index-matching gel and its use in fibre connections have also improved performance parameters. 21 ...
Service providers in Japan have a target of 30 million fibre-connected homes by 2010. 22 ... In Australia, the trend in fibre-access networks is towards the deployment of factory-prepared connectivity products in the ‘last mile’. 23
... Data centres are currently undergoing a transformation that is driven by server virtualisation, power efficiency, enterprise cloud computing and the direct connection of fibre channel storage to IP-switching. Fibre channel over Ethernet enables the convergence of data and storage networks over a 10GBit Ethernet fabric. 24 ...
In wireless access networks, the global and Australian focus of technology activity is on upgrade paths to provide higher data rate capability and support for IP-enabled mobile applications ... 25
Mobile network operators’ network upgrades will likely follow a technology path to 4G LTE from 2G GSM and 3G High Speed Packet Access (HSPA)—Wide band Code Division Multiple Access (WCDMA) suite. ... GSM and WCDMA-HSPA family of systems has gained almost 90 per cent market share of all mobile technologies globally. 26 ...
Long-Term Evolution 27 (LTE) is optimised purely for IP-based traffic 28 ...
HSPA is an evolutionary protocol of 3G Universal Mobile Telecommunication System (UMTS) that uses Wide band CDMA.
On 16 December 2009, the Global Mobile Suppliers Association (GSA) published the latest GSM/3G market update. 29 In summary:
... In Australia, the short- and medium-term regulatory focus is on making available 2.5 GHz and 700 MHz bands for the deployment of next generation mobile access networks. Both these bands have been identified in the ACMA Five-year Spectrum Outlook as the main target bands for LTE. 30 The Australian Mobile Telecommunications Association (AMTA) has welcomed the release of spectrum for next generation mobile broadband such as LTE. 31
the world’s first LTE networks (TeliaSonera) are operating in Sweden and Norway
the number of operators committed to LTE deployments has doubled in the last eight months, with up to 19 LTE networks expected to be launched by the end of 2010
66 operators have committed to HSPA Evolution (HSPA+), which includes 37 HSPA+ networks commercially launched in 24 countries. Of these networks, 34 support peak downlink data speeds of up to 21Mbits/s, while the other three networks support 28Mbits/s.
WiMAX is a standards-based wireless broadband access technology that enables the carriage of IP-based services. It is used for both mobile and fixed networks to provide the ‘last mile’. WiMAX supports Quality of Service (QoS) to prioritise different types of traffic over its network. ... WiMAX have reached 519 networks in 146 countries, ... 32 ...
... Freedom4 is set to offer full mobile WiMAX services in the UK with its nationwide 3.6GHz spectrum after being granted a licence variation. 33
In Australia, Internode through its Airspan Network offers 802.16d at 3.5GHz in Adelaide; SPAusNet plans to use 802.16e at 2.3GHz in Melbourne; Energy Australia plans to deploy 802.16e at 2.3GHz in Sydney; BigPond using Alcatel-Lucent equipment solutions is set to deploy 802.16e at 2.3GHz in Melbourne; BigAir Group through its Airspan Network offers 802.16d at 5.8GHz in Sydney; Unwired with Cisco has deployed 802.16d at 2.3GHz and 3.5GHz in Sydney; and Allegro Networks with Alvarion is planning to deploy 802.16d at 3.6GHz in Brisbane. 34
The 2.3 GHz band is a WiMAX profile band and is also identified for the ITU global standard for international mobile telecommunications (IMT-2000). 35 Under the ACMA’s Five-year Spectrum Outlook , the current arrangements in this band provide sufficient flexibility to allow for the use of all technologies covered by IMT-2000 standards. 36 More recently, Vividwireless deployed an 802.16e network in Perth covering approximately 150 base stations using 2.3 GHz spectrum licence, with other Australian capital cities expected to follow.
... Intel launched notebooks with its embedded WiFi/WiMAX minicard in the US, Russia and Japan. 37 ... roaming over different WiMAX networks globally, as it believes that full interoperability has now been achieved at the equipment level ... 38 Mformation ® Technologies Inc.... partnership with Sequans Communications ... work for any WiMAX service provider. 39WiFi
WiFi 40 generally refers to wireless local area network technology that provides short-range, high data rate connectivity between portable data devices and access points connected to a common wireless network.... while WiFi access points may be dense in urban areas they are far less numerous in suburban or rural areas, limiting coverage and performance in these areas. 42
A further development of the WiFi standard IEEE 802.11u will enable interworking of several WiFi networks ... Final approval for 802.11u is scheduled for June 2010. 43
Another WiFi standard development, IEEE 802.11v, which is likely to be finalised in July 2010, enables improved WiFi management protocols such as power management and support for location data... 44
In yet another development, IEEE 802.11z is geared towards enabling peer-to-peer connections. ... 45
... Industry is touting the 802.11n standard as the Ethernet-replacement. 46 Planned future advances in 802.11n will support spatial data streams and meshing nodes via the 802.11s standard (due in September 2010) ... 47Femtocells
Providing high-speed connectivity and portability over the last few metres in the home is an area of considerable activity. A femtocell ... 48 ... they are expected to dramatically improve the indoor mobile experience. 49 ... substitution from fixed to mobile services could accelerate. 50 ...
Home network technologies
... Technologies have evolved to facilitate a home network solution with a focus on exploiting existing legacy home cabling to support digital IP networking. The HomePNA (formally the Home Phone Networking Alliance) is an association of companies that develops and standardises technology for home networking and the HomeGrid Forum, a similar global body, has agreed to promote the new ITU-T G.hn global wired home networking standard.
G.hn provides gigabit per second data rates and operates over legacy cabling systems such as mains powerlines, phone lines and coaxial cables. 51 ... smart grid products, which include a ‘low complexity’ profile targeted at smart grid applications. 52 Some of the smart grid products that will benefit from this agreement include smart meters; in-home displays and smart thermostats; plug-in electrical vehicles and electrical vehicle supply equipment; smart appliances such as washing machines, dryers, dishwashers, heating, ventilating and air-conditioning systems; and energy system interface devices. ...A number of industry bodies has identified the 60GHz radiofrequency spectrum as suitable for short-range, high-speed data transfers. The WiGig Alliance ... 53 ...
The WirelessHD consortium is another industry-led effort to define a worldwide standard for the next generation wireless digital network interface for consumer electronics and personal computing products. 54 ...
In February 2009, NICTA, Australia’s Information and Communications Technology (ICT) Research Centre of Excellence, held the first public demonstration of a prototype system using its world-first 60GHz Gigabit wireless (GiFi) chip technology. 55 ...
The ZigBee Alliance, which promotes a set of low-power wireless home networking technologies based on the IEEE 802.15.4 physical radio standard... 56 At the end of May 2009, the Alliance’s Smart Energy public application profile was endorsed by the European Smart Metering Industry Group (ESMIG). 57
Consumer electronics based on ZigBee RF4CE, released in July 2009, is expected to increase the presence of ZigBee in homes. 58 ... ZigBee Smart Energy, Home Automation and Health Care public profiles already provide improvements in these markets. 59 ...RF4CE provides another public application profile that can be used to create multivendor interoperable solutions... 60.
Digital identity management
Digital identity management is at the core of information and processes that support communications in the digital economy. ... 61 ... establishing, modifying, suspending, archiving or terminating identity information... 62 ... discovering the (location) of an individual’s identity information. 63
Smart devices and systems
SmartphonesA smartphone is generally recognised as a mobile phone based on software platforms such as Symbian, Windows Mobile, Android, OS X iPhone, Palm OS, Blackberry OS or LiMo. 64 ... Samsung recently announced its open mobile platform, Bada, 65 and Nokia, usually associated with Symbian, has announced it will release a handset based on the Linux-based Maemo 5 platform 66 in 2010.... During 2009, YouTube has experienced a 2000 per cent growth in the number of videos uploaded from mobiles. 68
Gartner also predicts the rise of location-based services (LBS) ... 69 ...
Smart energy systems
... Smart meters are capable of capturing energy usage information over short intervals, typically 30 minutes or less.... 70 ...
During 2009, smart metering has been implemented through a range of state-based initiatives. Victoria is the first state in Australia to implement an extensive rollout of smart meters to 2.2 million homes and 300,000 businesses to better manage their energy needs, cut carbon emissions and help increase retail competition, with a view towards future smart electricity grids. Installation of the smart meters began in September 2009 and is scheduled to be complete by 2013. 71
Lochiel Park, in Campbelltown, South Australia, is trialling an electricity load management device (LMD) where, unlike traditional use of smart metering that manages demand by using a time-of-day price model, the trial employs in-home zoned load management with circuit breakers that can cut power to areas when demand exceeds the threshold, as determined by the resident. Lochiel Park was opened on 11 October 2009. 72
A trial of smart meters for water efficiency began in New South Wales in April 2009 to drive water conservation efforts in Sydney homes. 73 As part of the 16 month efficiency trial, 468 smart meters were installed in Sydney homes, including 160 with digital touch-screen displays. The meters were designed to provide real-time data on water use by monitoring water usage and detecting water leaks.
Under the Water Smart Australia projects, funded by the Australian Government’s Water for the Future framework, 74 Wide Bay Water Corporation’s ‘Innovative Smart Metering Program for Hervey Bay’ 75 had completed installation of all meters and data loggers as of November 2009. This project allowed for the installation of a system that allows water meters to be read remotely from the residential water network, enabling a time-use billing system to encourage customers to use water in off-peak times and also allowing for the diagnosis of different types of water leaks....
Smart grid technology enables the interaction between power supplies and appliance consumption in order to manage and reduce base load.... 76 Ensuring that smart grid requirements are incorporated into communications network planning and development is a key challenge.... 77
Intelligent housing systems 78
Other examples of smart applications are being tested in the home environment. In the Living Tomorrow (LT) complex in Brussels...
Intelligent transport systems
Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS) encompass a range of wireless and wired technologies, commonly known as dedicated short-range communications (DSRC), which transfer data over short distances between in-vehicle mobile radio units and roadside units. This facilitates the transmission of real-time information between vehicles, or between vehicles and road network operators. 79
... ITS has the potential to increase the efficiency of freight and public transportation, and reduce vehicle wear, pollution and fuel consumption. It will also prove vital in road safety through emergency vehicle notification systems, collision avoidance systems, driver assistance systems and automatic road law enforcement. 80
... The ITU-T Focus Group CarCom (FG CarCom) sessions at the Infrastructure, Telematics and Navigation (ITN)-hosted event, held in October 2009, discussed the evolution of speech-based Human-Machine-Interfaces (HMI) in cars, the main focus of which was hands-free communication in cars. 81 ...
In February 2009, all EU member states were directed to implement the harmonised use of the radio spectrum in the 5875MHz–5905MHz band for safety-related applications of ITS. 82 ... IEEE is developing 802.11p to be used in future Vehicular Ad Hoc Networks (VANETs). 83 802.11p will employ 5.85–5.925GHz spectrum ... 84 The Task Group is currently working to resolve comments associated with the recent draft of 802.11p. 85.
ICT energy efficiency
Achieving improvements in ICT energy efficiency is subject to two countervailing pressures: efficiencies in technology and exponential growth in consumption. This has been an area of ongoing incremental changes, particularly in communications transport and information storage.
Power in the ICT sector contributes to its significant carbon footprint, estimated to be between two and three per cent of the global total footprint. 86 ...... Moore’s Law continues to govern advances in semiconductor processing capacities through miniaturisation and integration. 87 This has led to a downward trend in energy required in switching devices, resulting in a 40 per cent efficiency gain per annum. 88 ...
Data centres are a vital part of the service delivery chain. The volume of information stored by them is doubling every 18 months. 89 In order to cope with such rapid expansion and reduce associated power costs, more efficient storage practices, server consolidation and virtualisation are being adopted. While individual server power efficiencies are improving, the effect is eclipsed by the growth of data centre services that currently represent approximately one per cent of the global power consumption. 90 Power management and cooling can comprise up to 50 per cent of energy consumption for a data centre. 91 This has led to an upward trend in emissions from power consumption in data centres that has doubled worldwide between 2000 and 2006, and is predicted to quadruple by 2020. 92
... Cellular communications are estimated to consume 0.5 per cent of worldwide electrical energy, with the networks’ component accounting for 99 per cent and handsets one per cent. 93 More than 50 per cent of energy consumption can be attributed to base station equipment and a further 30 per cent to mobile switching equipment. Power management software upgrades are now being adopted to increase 2G base station efficiency by 33 per cent. 94 The move to new energy-efficient 3G technologies and architectures has also seen reductions in base station power requirements of up to 50 per cent over traditional designs. 95 In mobile core networks, the use of flat all-IP-based architecture has also contributed to power consumption efficiency.
Desktops and storage virtualisation 96... Virtualisation allows users to consolidate physical resources, simplify deployment and administration, and reduce power and cooling requirements. 97 ... the advent of desktop virtualisation technologies will most likely improve application interoperability across organisations, thereby enhancing the user experience and minimising IT infrastructure and management issues. 98... The next two years is considered important in resolving protocol limitations, performance and offline support to allow desktop virtualisation to become more widespread. 99
Cloud computing systems
Shared computing services accessible over the internet that can expand and contract on demand topped Gartner’s list of the 10 top technologies for 2010. 100
Cloud computing can be thought of as a means of deploying applications that abstract computing, storage, network and application resources in order to provide uniform, on-demand scalability and reliability of application delivery. The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) definition of cloud computing states that ...‘it is a model for enabling convenient, on-demand network access to a shared pool of configurable computing resources (for example, networks, servers, storage, applications and services) that can be rapidly provisioned and released with minimal management effort or service provider interaction.’ 101 It encompasses any subscription-based or pay-per-use service that, in real time over the internet, extends IT’s existing capabilities. 102
At present, cloud computing takes several forms, from Amazon’s Web Services and the Google App Engine 103 to the full-on application of Salesforce.com. 104
In an increasingly converged communications environment, in which a mobile phone can be used to access the internet and send instant messages, an internet connection used to make voice calls, or a fixed-line service used solely for internet access, it is becoming difficult to isolate consumer trends by communication service types alone. ...
Mobile payment technologies
Near Field Communications (NFC) enables a form of micro-payment that uses two devices to communicate peer-to-peer, providing contactless transactions... 105
... Many countries have adopted FeliCa, mostly in the transport and entertainment sectors... 106
FeliCa-compatible mobile phones have been marketed as mobile phone wallets... 107 ...
Another application is Square, developed by Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey. 108 Square allows anybody with a mobile phone or laptop that has a headphone jack to accept credit card payments using a small plug-in dongle... 109 ...
Mobile coupon technology 110... Currently, almost all mobile coupon systems are based on delivering a code... Currently, mobile/web coupons average 20 per cent redemption rates. ... Coupons.com, leveraging the iPhone platform, has a new application where consumers can browse local businesses for savings. Coupons are browsed based on the consumer’s GPS location and the application displays a map, leading the customer directly to the merchant offering the savings. 111
... In conjunction with Cellfire and Motorola, new imaging scanners are capable of reading the 2D barcodes. Assisted by mobile communications, coupons are available in multiple venues, including newspaper circulars, postcard mailers and email communication. Cellfire supports more than 800 phone models in the US market including iPhone, Blackberry, Windows Mobile and Java. 112
Smart posters with embedded NFC tags will bring static billboards to life... 113 ... dynamic NFC-display advertisement billboard. 114 ...
According to Juniper, by 2014, consumer usage of mobile coupons will generate a redemption value close to $6 billion globally. 115
The combining of location-based information with other sources of information in the digital community has provided a range of rich commercial and social applications. ... One such system is Skyhook Wireless. 116 The security of Skyhook’s WiFi Positioning System (WPS) is studied by researchers from ETH-Zurich. 117 ... rely on the existing commercial, public and private access points. 118 ... relative strengths of several location technologies including WPS, GPS and cellular tower triangulation. 119 ...
... In articles presented at WWW2008 120 and WWW2009, 121 authors from Microsoft Research Asia describe how location information can be used to identify the modes of transport used by travellers and where they stop... Micello 122 , 123 , 124 is developing indoor mapping applications; for example, to provide up-to-date information on places of interest on campuses and shopping malls.
Location information developments are of regulatory interest, particularly in the context of developing capabilities for national emergency warning systems.
Augmented reality ...... AR applications over 2009 has been enabled through computing intensive smartphones (such as Android and iPhone devices) equipped with a GPS, magnetometer, digital compass and camera. 125 ...US-based web analytics service Social Radar reported that ‘… 87 per cent of social media posts, comments and chatter around augmented reality has been positive’. 126
However, some concern has been expressed about potentially unintended civil society consequences ... 127 ... digital or information shadow that can parallel an individual’s activities or mimic convictions in real life. 128The evolving web
In addressing the term ‘Semantic Web’, the Price Waterhouse Coopers Technology Forecast, Spring 2009, used the term ‘linked data’ to describe accessing and sharing data on the web ... 129 ...
With the rise of microblogging and social network updates, a new data source has been added to the web ...131 ...
Developments in social media
The term ‘social media’ describes media or content that is authored by the user and it can take many different forms ... 132
Social media drivers
‘Self-expression and sharing expertise continue to be primary motivations’, according to the 2009 Technorati (US-based) survey, with respondents rating personal satisfaction as their primary measure of success. 133 The survey also found that the majority of bloggers (72 per cent) are hobbyists. 134 ... social media has evolved into an integral part of the media ecosystem. 135 ... US study where two-thirds of marketers have used social media in some capacity in 2009. 136
... by October 2009 YouTube reported it was serving over one billion views per day, 137 up from a reported 100 million videos served each day in July 2006. 138 YouTube was reported to have experienced a 2000 per cent increase in mobile video uploads in 2009, due to the impact of smartphones such as iPhone and Google’s Android-enabled devices. 139
While social media engagement is of considerable influence internationally, engagement by Australian companies appears to be lagging behind international developments. 140 A recent survey by Deloitte’s found that Australian companies were behind in exploring the potential of social media for ‘awareness and promotion; productivity savings; lower cost customer service; increased employee engagement and more’. 141 ...
Social networking drivers
The growth in social networking online has been phenomenal internationally, with Australians as individual users embracing the trend over 2009. 142 ... participative websites relating to social networking and user generated content (UGC) are also attracting increased web traffic. 143
... Overall, 70 per cent of internet users (nearly nine million Australians) visited a social networking site in June 2009. 144 In November 2009, Nielsen reported that Facebook accounted for 29 per cent of the time Australians spend online, amounting to 7.55 hours each per month. 145 Nielsen’s data indicates that Australia now ‘leads the world for time spent each month on social network sites’. 146
In July 2009, Universal McCann (UM) reported that social networks are becoming the dominant platform for content creation and content-sharing. 147 ...
... In October 2009, Telstra reported that over one-quarter of Australians with 3G mobiles access the web on their mobiles. Of those using the mobile web, 40 per cent use it to access social network sites. 148 The high growth in mobile web traffic to social network sites was reported to be due to ‘people’s desire to connect and share the details of their lives more often’. 149 ... Facebook’s director of mobile, Henri Moissinac, was reported to have said that ‘we used to see that happen once a day on the computer, but now we see them doing it 10 or 15 times or more (via mobile)’. 150 Moreover, the anticipated future growth of Twitter is said to be in tandem with the growth in smartphone use and advanced location-based services. 151 Online interactive game-playing is also a popular activity on social network sites, with a reported surge in Facebook gaming applications use. 152
Social openness... The social web is driving the development of software that integrates social networking and social media with online gaming platforms. 153 Geo-location applications enable users to broadcast their locations, either in public or in accordance with their selected privacy settings. 154 Social media activities have been found to provide users with a more diverse social network. 155
Social networking sites continue to grow as integrated hubs for entertainment, information and communication. 156 Blogs, tweets and YouTube videos created by Facebook users’ friends, as well as information created by news services, can all show up in Facebook News Feeds — in real time. 157 In a recent speech, ABC Managing Director Mark Scott said that ‘… we are now creating widgets so people can take ABC content they like … and allow them to share it through their own social networks. They become our distributors’. 158Information overload
... Power no longer lies in distribution but in controlling ‘the limited resource of attention’. 159 For those wanting to successfully market a product or service, or to give guidance and to inform online, they must strive to be relevant to their target group. ‘To be relevant today requires understanding context, popularity, and reputation. [New skills are required to be] … living in the streams, consuming and producing alongside “customers”.’ 160
... Social search will not be useful unless it is real-time and relevant. 161
Social media influence
Social media in Australia has been described as ‘a powerhouse of consumer influence’ and businesses are increasingly recognising that Twitter, YouTube, blogs and Facebook are used as marketing and support tools by companies in Australia. 162...
... iPhone ... been a flurry of applications development over 2009, with 65,000 having been developed by August 2009, up from 25,000 in January 2009. 163 With some online media content sitting behind third-party pay walls, there are expectations of revenue growth from online content accessed by mobile phone applications. 164
... Gartner was reported to be of the view that smartphone ‘app stores’ are ‘increasingly sidelining mobile carriers ... 165 ..
In December 2009, the Australian Government published a Government 2.0 Taskforce report to advise and assist the government to make public sector information more accessible and usable, and to increase engagement with the community. 166 The Taskforce sponsored projects that promote Government 2.0 initiatives. One such initiative was the Emergency 2.0 Australia project, announced on 11 November 2009, which examined how social media can assist in emergency management. 167
In March 2009, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) announced User-Generated Content (UGC) guidelines ... 168
Meanwhile, the ABC’s widget initiative enables the broadcaster’s content to be linked to and aggregated on social network sites or any other website of the user’s choice. 169 ...
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78 L Murray, Engineering and Technology, Engineering Innovation—tomorrow’s world , 21 November 2009 – 4 December 2009.
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146 Ibid .
147 Universal McCann, Power to people, Wave.4 , July 2009, viewed 10 December 2009, http://universalmccann.bitecp.com/wave4/Wave4.pdf .
148 M Shaw, Speaking Sensis, Is mobile the great marketing enabler? , 2 October 2009, viewed 10 December 2009 , www.speakingsensis.com.au/tag/mobile-phone .
149 G Thom, News.com.au, Twitter, Facebook use on the rise on mobile phones , 16 September 2009, viewed 15 December 2009, www.news.com.au/technology/story/0,28348,26080656-5014239,00.html .
150 Ibid .
151 S Subramanian and T Weiss, Trends Spotting Blog, Twitter users share early adopters symptoms , 12 November 2009, viewed 15 December 2009, www.trendsspotting.com/blog/?p=1675&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+trendsspotting-feeds+%28trendsspotting+blog%29 .
152 E Eldon, Inside Facebook, Asia: Philippines, Taiwan, Indonesia Gained More than 1M Facebook Users Last Month , 15 October 2009, viewed 15 December 2009, www.insidefacebook.com/2009/10/15/asia-philippines-taiwan-indonesia-gained-more-than-1m-facebook-users-last-month/ .
153 B Dywad, Mashable — The Social Media Guide , LEAKED: Facebook is Coming to the PlayStation 3 , 11 November 2009, viewed 15 December 2009, http://mashable.com/2009/11/11/ps3-facebook/ .
154 Biz. Twitter Blog, Location, location, location , 20 August 2009, viewed 15 December 2009, http://blog.twitter.com/2009/08/location-location-location.html .
155 Pew Internet and American Life Project, Social Isolation and New Technology , November 2009, viewed 15 December 2009, www.pewinternet.org/Reports/2009/18--Social-Isolation-and-New-Technology.aspx?r=1 .
156 Nielsenwire, Time Spent Viewing Video on Social Networking Sites Up 98% Year-Over-Year in October , 19 November 2009, viewed 15 December 2009, http://blog.nielsen.com/nielsenwire/online_mobile/time-spent-viewing-video-on-social-networking-sites-up-98-year-over-year-in-october/ .
157 The Facebook Listening To v1.0 application updates a user’s Facebook status when listening to songs with the WinAmp application. Facebook applications include Hulu and Invision.TV to watch and share videos from selected websites.
158 M Scott, ABC, The Drum Unleashed , The Fall of Rome , 14 October 2009, viewed 15 December 2009, www.abc.net.au/unleashed/stories/s2714143.htm .
159 D Boyd, Web 2.0 Expo, Streams of Content, Limited Attention: The Flow of Information through Social Media , 17 November 2009, viewed 15 December 2009, www.danah.org/papers/talks/Web2Expo.html .
160 Ibid .
161 M Palsule, Skeptic Geek, Why Google Social Search Will Beat Facebook , 28 October 2009, viewed 15 December 2009, www.skepticgeek.com/socialweb/why-google-social-search-will-beat-facebook/ .
162 G Farrer, The Age, Medium puts rocket under the message , 27 October 2009, viewed 15 December 2009, www.theage.com.au/technology/technology-news/medium-puts-rocket-under-the-message-20091026-hgtg.html .
163 B Parr, Mashable — The Social Media Guide, iPhone App Store: 65,000 Apps and Counting , 15 August 2009, viewed 15 December 2009, http://mashable.com/2009/08/05/flurry-iphone-apps/ .
164 R Wray. The Guardian, Media organisations turn to mobile phone applications to raise revenue , 5 October 2009, viewed 15 December 2009, www.guardian.co.uk/media/2009/oct/05/mobile-phone-applications .
165 L Coleman, Communications Day, Carrier dominance wanes, smartphones rise: Gartner , 20 November 2009.
166 Department of Finance and Deregulation, Engage: Getting on with Government 2.0: Report of the Government 2.0 Taskforce , December 2009, 27 January 2010, www.finance.gov.au/publications/gov20taskforcereport/index.html .
167 M van der Vlugt, Government 2.0 Taskforce blog, Emergency 2.0 Australia , 11 November 2009, viewed 15 December 2009, http://gov2.net.au/blog/2009/11/11/emergency-2-0-australia/ .
168 Australian Broadcasting Corporation, Editorial Policies , User-Generate Content (UGC) Amendments to the ABC Editorial Policies, Effective 1 March 2009 , viewed 10 February 2010, www.abc.net.au/corp/pubs/documents/EdpolsAmdts-Mar2009.pdf.
169 ABC News, ABC gets record funding boost , 13 May 2009, viewed 10 February 2010, www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2009/05/12/2568513.htm.
110 H Wilcox, Juniper Research Whitepaper, Mobile Coupons and NFC Smart Posters Strategies, Applications and Forecasts 2009–2014, Wave and Save with mobile coupons , November 2009.
From: Technology developments in the digital economy, Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA), 27 August 2010.