What Do Darth Vader, Chewbacca, and the Energy Industry in America Have in Common?

They’re all going to be at the Energy Thought Summit.  What’s that?  Well, my friend, keep reading and you’ll find out.  (Maybe watch the video too.)

Energy Thought Summit (ETS) is happening this month in Austin, Texas.  On March 24th – 25th the energy industry is taking over the Paramount Theater for a two-day event that promises to be an excellent forum to discuss and debate the state and the future of energy.   This is an event I’m excited about.

ETS Launch Party

So, what was it about ETS that really sucked me in?  It wasn’t Darth Vader, Chewbacca, the Teslas car, or the game on the ETS site that is kind of addictive.  (Although neither of these hurt, at all.  Something tells me these guys like to have a good time.)  The speaker list did it.  Yes, I’m a bit of a geek and the opening keynote is Steve Wozniak…seriously, it is Steve Wozniak.  You know, the co-founder of Apple and chief scientist at Fusion-io? He helped develop the first computer I ever used!
It doesn’t stop there, though.  Envisioned and created by Zpryme, the company that brings us Smart Grid Insights, ETS has pulled together a speaker list with individuals on the cutting edge of the energy industry.  This event is geared toward the up and comers who will be leading us into the future of energy. Panels surround topics such as:

paramount-theatre-austin-texa

  • Utility Executive
  • Smart Grid Realization
  • EV
  • Game Changers
  • M2M
  • Cybersecruity
  • Big Data/Analytics
  • Utility of the Future
  • Smart Cities/Communities
  • Disruptive Technology
  • Smart Consumer/Home
  • Grid Edge Opportunities
  • Standards, Policies, and Emerging Business Models

With a goal of generating conversation around these topics, ETS has created an atmosphere of debate and discussion both offline and online.  Tickets have been released in three batches.  The initial two ticket releases have already sold out.  According to their website on March 17, 2014, only 103 tickets remained for the entire event.  So, you can still grab a ticket to this event to take part in the dialogue.  Unfortunately, I’m going to have to rely on my colleagues’ notes of the panels they attend. (So, you guys better take some excellent notes for me!  I’m just saying.)

‘Til next time,

Jessica

 

 

For All of Us Who Told Our Parents Video Games Were Not A Waste of Time

Image representing Nintendo as depicted in Cru...

Image via CrunchBase

Anybody out there every play pong?  I bet those guys never dreamed that a video game would develop into what we see today.  Even when Nintendo first released Super Mario Brothers, who would have thought that gaming technology would impact so many industries?  In conversations I’ve had with several people in the energy industry over the last few months, gaming technology has come up.  This isn’t the have-you-played-the-new-Black-Ops kind of discussion either.  (Although, that comes up from time to time too.)  In the oil & gas space it has been about integrated operations, and that has inevitably led in to the topic of how many aerospace companies are crossing over into O&G these days.  It also put me in mind of a webcast  from a few months ago that is still available to view.  Really fascinating stuff!

Use of Gaming Technology and 3D Humans to Manage Worker Exposure to Radiation at Nuclear Plants

Utility workers at nuclear facilities are exposed to radiation that must be kept below certain levels to be considered safe. ALARA, an acronym for “As Low As Reasonable Achievable,” is a principle set forth by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission that gives employers an absolute duty to ensure the safety and health of workers in every aspect related to the work in radioactive environments.

During this session, Siemens PLM Software and Microsoft will examine the unique challenges utilities face when training for and planning ALARA human work processes. A special guest speaker from the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) will talk about the ground breaking work they did to create an algorithm to estimate radiological dosage in nuclear plants. Siemens PLM Software and Microsoft will discuss commercial off the shelf software available today to help utilities improve employee health and safety programs by utilizing advanced IT tools for ALARA planning, while also improving work efficiency in the plant. Demonstrations will include Siemens PLM Software’s work planning application Tecnomatix with “Jack and Jill”, the virtual humans and the Kinect for Windows system.

You may have noticed that I get a kick out of the new technology that shows up…everywhere.  If you know of something new that you want to tell me about, drop a comment!  Commenting not your thing?  No biggie, email me, ilovegeekology101@gmail.com.

 I’d love to hear about it!

‘Til next time,

Jessica

Big Data = Big Opportunity, But What A Pain in the…Processor

 

 

In the oil & gas Industry there’s a lot of change and growth happening. As more and more systems become automated and integrated, regulations change, and the market and competitive environment shift, information and knowledge become increasingly more important. Managing that influx of data becomes essential.  Whether this is used in the search for natural resources, understanding the global market, or managing safety and environmental risks, data is essential to make these business decisions.    In this white paper, Drilling for New Business Value, managing Big Data is the topic for discussion.

 

As the oil and gas industry continues to grow in complexity with changes in regulations, tighter margins, and possible infrastructure threats, executives need an easy way to view the increasing volumes of available data, make smarter, faster decisions, and create action plans in real-time. Leading oil and gas companies are recognizing that Big Data and Business Intelligence is not just the domain of “back office” analysts, but it is paramount to optimizing day-to-day operations across a broad spectrum of field workers, engineering, management, and sales and marketing roles. Read more here.

 

When I read the white paper, I was floored by the sheer volume of data out there.  I had to take a moment to try to wrap my head around the number of zeros this would entail.  The paper cites industry analysts IDC,

 

“the digital universe now includes 2.7 zettabytes of data. (A zettabyte equals almost 1.1 trillion gigabytes.)” Vesset, Dan and Benjamin S. Woo. “Worldwide Big Data Technology and Services 2012-2015 Forecast.” IDC. March 2012.

 

Okay, so I knew there was a lot of digital information floating around out there, but until today, a zettabyte was a term I had never heard of.  My company alone has 80+ websites and portals…I can’t even consider all of the social media universe.  Seriously, Tumblr alone with all the GIFs and pictures?  YouTube?  My puny brain is sparking with size of these numbers.  (How many zeros is in a trillion again?)  I kind of feel like the CD someone put in the microwave, just to see what would happen…Zettabytes? Yottabytes?

 

‘Til next time,

 

Jessica

 

 

 

Call Thor…We May Have A Paying Gig For Him

Lightning

Lightning (Photo credit: Pete Hunt)

So, I came across this article today when I was surfing through my energy sector news.  Lightning being used to charge cell phones.  How awesome is that? Being the big geek that I am a few things crossed my mind as I was reading.

1.  Lightening Crashes by Live immediately started playing in my head. (Sound tracks are important.)

2. Holy cow, that is really awesome!

3. Thor might have a paying job now.

4. Does this mean that those guys from Stardust that catch lightning could be real one day? (Harnessing lightning is kind of like a battery…right?)

Okay, changing the geek channel here for a minute.  According to this article I read, Southampton University in the UK and Nokia have been working together to develop technology that will seriously allow you to charge your personal cell phone via lightning.  Neil Palmer, the head of the Tony Davies High Voltage Laboratory, led the team in creating artificial lighting bolts.  They channeled this artificial lightning into the smartphone battery.

“Using an alternating current, driven by a transformer, over 200,000 volts was sent across a 300mm gap, giving heat and light similar to that of a lightning bolt,” Palmer explained. “The signal was then stepped into a second controlling transformer, allowing us to charge the phone.” Scientists Charge Mobile Phone with Lightning, CNET,  October 2, 2013 9:55 AM PDT

This shows that an airborne current can be used to charge a device, according to the team leader.  This is all proof-of-concept stuff here, but I live in Oklahoma.  You may have heard that we have some pretty wicked storms.  Although I’m an iPhone girl, I would be willing to make a switch to a Nokia Lumia 925 if I can charge it with lightning.

Taking a step back to look at the larger picture.  Consider the impact of this kind of technology on an area without reliable electricity?  This really makes me want to head off on a tangent about studies that I’ve read about how huge access to energy, electricity, ect. is for developing countries, but I’ll save that for another day.  Nobody wants to steal Thor’s thunder…(I couldn’t resist.  I apologize.)

Now, considering that a car manufacturer had to place a warning on their commercial to warn consumers “do not attempt this at home” when they showed a car driving across the ocean floor…yes, they warn you not to try to charge your cell phone with lightning at home.  Please don’t let me read about anybody dancing around waving their cell phone around in the air during an electrical storm.