July 2010

Industry Insider

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OpenVPX System Specification Standard Reaches ANSI Ratification

The VMEbus Industry Trade Association (VITA), has announced the ratification by ANSI of the OpenVPX System Specification under ANSI/VITA 65.0-2010. OpenVPX is the architecture framework that defines system-level VPX interoperability for multivendor, multimodule, integrated system environments.

The VITA 65 working group set an aggressive goal to have the ANSI ratification completed by the spring of 2010. They have achieved that pace-setting goal by completing the criteria for a successful ballot. 

VPX is gaining design wins in many data-intensive applications where performance in throughput and high-compute density (size) are critical factors. Example applications in which VPX systems are expected to be deployed in the coming year include signal and video processing, radar, communications, transportation, and control and management.  

VPX is a broadly defined technology utilizing the latest in a variety of switch fabric technologies in 3U and 6U Eurocard format modules. The OpenVPX framework delineates clear interoperability points necessary for integrating module to module, module to backplane, and chassis. OpenVPX will evolve and incorporate new fabric, connector and system technologies as new standards are defined.

In support of the VPX family of specifications, VITA members have been rolling out a wide range of products suited to a variety of applications, from backplanes and chassis to 3U and 6U boards of various types. Nearly 100 products are already listed in the VITA product directory under OpenVPX, and more are added each week. With the completion of this specification, suppliers are now identifying their products with the profile information necessary to make product selection for specific profiles.

Companies that develop VPX products are encouraged to contact VITA to join the VPX Marketing Alliance. For more information, visit the VPX Marketing Alliance website at The ANSI/VITA65-2010 document is available from VITA.

Smart Meter Penetration in Asia-Pacific Predicted to Reach 25 Percent by 2015

According to a new research report from the analyst firm Berg Insight, the installed base of smart electricity meters in Asia-Pacific will grow at a compound annual growth rate of 91.0% between 2009 and 2015 to reach 116.5 million at the end of the period. Penetration for smart metering technology is projected to soar from very low levels to 25.0% by the end of that period. By the mid-2010s, the majority of all electricity meters shipped in the region is expected to have advanced functionalities and networking capabilities. Berg Insight anticipates that the leading economies in the region will have close to 100 percent penetration by 2020.

Australia and New Zealand commenced with massive installations of smart meters at the end of the last decade. Victoria will become the first Australian state to achieve full penetration by 2013. Mandatory rollouts are also being considered in other territories such as New South Wales. In New Zealand, the adoption of smart metering is driven by the energy industry. While many other countries have introduced regulations for the new technology, New Zealand’s government has decided not to interfere with the process.

EnOcean and Texas Instruments Agree to Expand Energy Harvesting Cooperation

EnOcean and Texas Instruments (TI) have announced the expansion of their cooperation to provide innovative wireless solutions for building automation. Through this agreement, the companies will jointly create solutions enabling self-powered wireless sensor networks. To further optimize its product portfolio, EnOcean will integrate TI components in its energy-efficient wireless modules. EnOcean’s battery-less wireless technology harvests energy from its surroundings—motion, light or differences in temperature—and enables new ecologically minded self-powered wireless applications.

Texas Instruments and EnOcean have collaborated since 2005 and TI components have been implemented in a variety of EnOcean modules. TI has also been a member of the EnOcean Alliance since 2008, working with other members of the Alliance on energy-efficient solutions for green buildings. 

“Energy harvesting wireless technology reduces the installation cost of lighting, heating/air conditioning control and monitoring by up to 70 percent. This technology enables long-term energy conservation and sustainability for our customers,” said Laurent Giai-Miniet, general manager of TI’s Low-Power RF business unit. “Cooperation with EnOcean is an important step toward gaining a firm foothold in a fast growing market. The deciding factor in the expansion of our relationship with EnOcean was their proven expertise of energy harvesting technology, with wide market experience and a broad customer base.”

Comm-Works Announces Partnership with Advanced Telemetry

Comm-Works LLC has announced that it has secured a reseller relationship with Advanced Telemetry, a developer of proprietary, smart energy and resource management systems for both residential and small commercial applications. 

“As a part of Comm-Works’ Total Energy strategy,” said Al Lampe, CEO of Comm-Works, “we found some significant synergies between our customers’ business requirements for their remote locations and Advanced Telemetry’s EcoView Energy Management System. We are excited to work together with Advanced Telemetry to offer an efficient and cost-effective solution to our customers.”

“Through an escalating number of real-world installations, this user-friendly energy management system has proven its ability to reduce utility bills by as much as 25% and deliver a return on investment in just 6 to 12 months,” notes Advanced Telemetry CEO, Tom Naylor. “EcoView now allows Comm-Works to address the unique needs of previously underserved business owners with an affordable and effective solution specifically designed for small to mid-size facilities.”

EcoView Commercial Features:

  • On-site “dashboard” touch panel for local control of thermostat settings within limits predefined by Advanced Telemetry and the customer

  • Components communicate wirelessly enabling easy retrofit 

  • Web-based interface for real-time access, monitoring, reporting and remote thermostat control 

  • Centralized, remote control of thermostats including set points, schedules, and heating and cooling limits that eliminates suboptimal local control 

  • EcoView Commercial can monitor and manage lighting, and other devices that would benefit from scheduling

Dot Hill Systems and Xiotech to Partner for Storage Virtualization Solutions

Dot Hill Systems has announced that it has signed a letter of intent to enter into a technology partnership with Xiotech to enable new virtual storage solutions. This is Dot Hill’s first major collaboration involving the Intelligent Storage Networking (iSN) software platform acquired in January 2010 along with Cloverleaf Communications Inc. Dot Hill’s iSN software provides advanced heterogeneous storage virtualization and the ability to unify storage technologies. 

The iSN platform enables OEM partners to build custom solutions thereby gaining access to and maintaining control of critical information without limits. It is based on a powerful, flexible virtualization engine that scales to over two petabytes (2 P) of actual storage with virtual volumes, tiered storage, thin provisioning, snapshots, replication and data migration built in. For companies building private and public cloud storage systems to complement virtual servers, the Dot Hill technology provides a foundation for a new class of midrange and enterprise storage systems. 

The Intelligent Storage Network (iSN) platform can be the basis for cloud storage solutions that require sophisticated management feature sets. Dot Hill’s software provides a solution that enables companies to gain access to and maintain control of critical information without limits and across multiple tiers of storage arrays. This enables users of iSN to harness both structured and unstructured information, so they can make optimal use of resources, whether data, infrastructure, or IT staff. 

New Testing Services Help Java ME Developers Obtain the Java Verified Designation 

The Unified Testing Initiative (UTI), a global not-for-profit mobile application testing body, has announced new Java Verified testing services for simple Java Platform, Micro Edition (Java ME) applications. Java ME is the world’s most broadly deployed mobile runtime, utilized by 9 of the top 10 handset manufacturers, and powers nearly 3 billion phones in over 150 countries worldwide. The new Simple App testing criteria dramatically reduces the amount of time and money it takes to test many Java ME applications, making it easier for developers to meet App Store and industry requirements for Java Verified certification.

The primary goal of Java Verified is to provide developers with testing and resources for delivering more high-quality Java ME applications to more devices faster. The Java Verified management board includes representation from AT&T, LG, Motorola, Nokia, Oracle, Orange, Samsung, Sony Ericsson and Vodafone. Java Verified membership is open to all organizations interested in advancing high-quality mobile applications in a collaborative environment. 

The Java Verified organization has worked with all of its test houses to update the testing criteria for simple app testing, allowing developers to get these applications tested to the Java Verified standard, and signed with the Java Verified certificate, at a cost that typically averages 75 Euros for each application. Developers wishing to obtain Java Verified accreditation will work with their preferred test house to establish the appropriate level of testing for their application. Java ME developers are encouraged to visit

Myriad Group and MIPS Accelerate Android App Performance 

MIPS Technologies and Myriad Group have announced availability of a high-performance full method-based Dalvik Turbo virtual machine (VM) optimized for the MIPS architecture. Myriad’s Dalvik Turbo VM replaces the standard Android Dalvik engine, accelerating performance up to 5x on real-world Android applications running on MIPS-based devices.

With Dalvik Turbo VM, MIPS licensees can create SoCs with faster, more complex applications and richer game graphics optimized for Android smart phones and other high-performance consumer devices without requiring significant increases in device memory. The VM also provides substantial battery life improvements when running resource-intensive tasks, all while retaining full compatibility with existing software. Myriad’s Dalvik Turbo VM is operational on all current versions of Android up to and including versions 2.1 (Éclair) and soon to be available for 2.2 (Froyo).

As a founder of the Open Handset Alliance (OHA), Myriad has contributed significantly to the Android platform and today continues to heavily invest in technological advances specifically targeted at Android. These include stand-alone applications such as a WAP browser, MMS messaging, SyncML client, DRM module and IMPS client. The company is also responsible for the Compatibility Test Suite (CTS) framework within OHA, which is used for testing the compatibility of Android systems.