Welcome to the second of a series of articles to introduce some of the most cutting edge thinking about new computing and network architectures, bringing new forms of machine intelligence to where both digital and biological events occur.
Living in real-time
By Peter van Manen, EVP, Research & Development of Living PlanIT
“Life can only be understood backwards, but it must be lived forwards” – Søren Kierkegaard
We live, breathe and think in real-time. We should accept nothing less in the data we use to make decisions and interventions in our world. The PlanIT Urban Operating System™ (UOS) is built upon this guiding principle.
I worked in Formula One for over 20 years, developing and deploying control and data systems. In 1993 we introduced the fastest ever telemetry system into the sport, transmitting 4Mbps of data from the cars. The problem was that around a third of this data was lost to multipath, data corruption caused when direct and reflected waves interfere with each other before they are received at the garage. On many circuits, such as Monza and Monaco, another third was lost to trees and buildings that just got in the way. We would send all the data again at the end of a lap, in a sudden burst as the car passed the pits, in order to provide a complete picture of what was going on. Not real-time though. A minute or so after it was really needed.
We solved the multipath problem 7 years later, with a better and more resilient modulation approach. We also dealt with the delay, using multi-burst: retransmitting data in the areas of good radio coverage around the track. This reduced the delay in getting a full data set, critical for good decision-making for car set up and strategy.
It was another decade before we realized our ambition of real-time high-rate telemetry data. Instead of a single antenna above the garage, we opted for between 7 and 10 antennas located around the track, interconnected by fiber. This gave us line-of-sight telemetry everywhere and truly live data. It was transformational. It unlocked the possibility of live analytics and simulation of engines, tires, fuel consumption and aerodynamic performance, which has become a cornerstone of strategy in the modern Formula One era. All the teams embraced this new era of real-time information with great urgency and enthusiasm. In a world in which time is the currency of success, this was a huge achievement.
Software used to make sense of the telemetry data is now embedded in the UOS. And although things don’t always happen quite as fast in a city as they do in Formula One, the benefits of acting quickly and surely to unfolding events is just as valuable.
We use the UOS in cities to help tame the diverse data created every day. Real-time data gives us immediate access to what is happening all around us. This reduces the risk of decision-making and interventions because we can quickly see how things are affected and we can modify our actions accordingly. Real-time data also creates the historical trail that can be used to characterize normal behavior and trends. This helps with forecasting what happens next, either by projecting trends forward or by adapting simulations on the fly to keep them true.
And by seeing the trends and how they are developing, we are better placed to see unexpected and surprising events early, often before they have the chance to cause widespread disruption or harm.
What is so special about the real-time software in the UOS?
UOS gathers data from different sensors at different rates, but treats it in a coherent way.
UOS can apply local analytics to the data, including complex algorithms involving multiple inputs and outputs, enhancing data quality, context, security and privacy.
UOS can drive actuators, influencing and adapting the behavior of the physical systems that it touches.
Real-time software has been used in anger in Formula One since the start of the 2008 Formula One racing season. All the racing teams and engine manufacturers continue to use it every 2 weeks of the year between March and November.
Edgeless Computing pushes processing out towards the data that is needed for good decision-making. Operating in real-time enables those decisions to be made early enough to make a difference, and for the impact of interventions to be assessed as they begin to bite. By embracing real-time operation at its heart, the UOS both enables fast decision-making, and mitigates the risk associated with action.
Data is brought to life when it is live. It expresses the dynamic nature of people, traffic, energy and water as they move around streets and buildings.
It was a Monza test in which we introduced the new Formula One telemetry system. Monza is a circuit notoriously bad when it comes to coverage, with cars historically “disappearing” for over 30 seconds in the dense trees on either side of the long main straight. The engineers and drivers were immediately smitten and decided before the end of the first test session that it should race, and without delay.
Once you have tasted real-time there is no going back.
Living PlanIT is a technology company that created the world’s first Urban Operating System (UOS) which, in combination with the products it supports, unlocks the full potential of data to make cities better, safer and more vibrant places to live.
Living PlanIT has built an extensive partner network around the concept of a shared, unified approach to smart urban technology architecture in which machine intelligence moves ever closer to originating sources of data and control. We call this architecture PlanIT Edgeless Computing™ and it is implemented throughout the PlanIT Urban Operating System™, providing a framework for resilient and secure computer and systems architecture for digital and biological sensing, control, analytics, machine learning, applications and visualization techniques.
Living PlanIT asserts its rights to the following Trademarks: Living PlanIT™, PlanIT Edgeless Computing™, Edgeless Computing™, PlanIT Urban Operating System™, PlanIT UOS™, PlanIT OS™, PlanIT Crumbs™, PlanIT PlaceApps™, PlanIT Valley™, PlanIT Assurance™, PlanIT Labs™, PlanIT Retail™, PlanIT Life™. Any reference to these names in this content shall be considered as an assertion of these Trademarks.
Steve Lewis is the CEO and Founder of Living PlanIT. He is member of the statutory board and chair of the Living PlanIT Advisory Council.
Formerly with Microsoft Corporation, where Steve served as General Manager of Market Development and Co-Chair of the Microsoft Business Development Forum, Steve was responsible for understanding key market trends and developments to identify their strategic implications for Microsoft and the industry. He also led the company's strategic business development opportunities leveraging Microsoft's portfolio of technology, research & development, services, marketing, distribution, partner ecosystem and investment capital.
Before Microsoft, Steve spent a few years raising capital for technology investments, mergers and acquisitions and participated on the boards of early through late stage development companies. He served as General Manager of the Lotus Messaging and Collaboration division of IBM Corporation, having previously held key executive positions in areas of business development, product strategy, management, marketing, engineering and sales.
Steve frequently delivers the keynote address at industry events. He is actively involved in promoting entrepreneurship, science & technology in education, including lectures at many leading Universities. He chaired the European Business Plan of the Year Award 2010 & 2011, became World Economic Forum's Technology Pioneer in 2012, won Frost & Sullivan's Growth Innovation Leadership award for Smart Cities and IAIR's CEO of the Year Award in 2015. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of the Arts.
Chief Operating Officer
Richard Constant joined Living PlanIT as Chief Operating Officer in 2015 to support the team in the next phase of growth that the company faces. He brings over 40 years of experience in various fields as he has been advising governments and corporate clients around the world on high profile financial, corporate and public affairs & communications strategies for over 25 years. His transactional experience involves over 200 M&A situations and 100 IPOs and equity offerings. Previously Richard was Chairman and CEO of Gavin Anderson & Co (2000 - 2009).
In 1973 Richard was commissioned in the British Army. After a number of operational tours he was appointed to the Chief of the General Staff's Office. In 1986 he joined Flemings' Investment Banking, as Head of Marketing in London and New York.
In 1991 he joined Gavin Anderson & Company, where he was the Managing Director before becoming CEO Worldwide in 2001. In this role he led the firm's international expansion in Europe, Asia, incl. China and Japan, and the Americas.
He advised Governments, incl. Japan (Tsunami crisis), Portugal (Eurozone crisis), Abu Dhabi and Qatar (development of financial centers). He has farming interests in Kenya and serves in non-executive positions in farming and tourism organizations there, as well as working with wildlife organizations. He is Vice Chairman global of Reputation.com Inc., and Chairman of Bara Kali Ltd. (mining), Samburumburu Ltd. (Tourism agriculture) and a Trustee of Help for Heroes. He has served on the boards of Austin Reed Plc. (Retail) and Defense Technology Enterprise Ltd. and Fibropower Ltd. (Renewable Energies).
EVP, Research & Development
Peter Van Manen
Peter is Executive Vice President at Living PlanIT, leading Engineering. He is responsible for the development and support of the products and platforms created by the company, including the highly acclaimed PlanIT Urban Operating System (UOS). He is also responsible for the core applications and for UOS development tools used by 3rd party developers, the service and support and for PlanIT Labs, the R&D group focusing on advanced digital and biological systems. Peter has been on the Board of Living PlanIT since 2008.
Prior to joining Living PlanIT, Peter was Vice President of McLaren Applied Technologies and, before that, Managing Director of McLaren Electronic Systems. He was responsible for the development, production, deployment and support of control and data systems for the professional motorsport, high performance automotive and aerospace markets. Under his leadership the company won and retained contracts to supply standard engine control units (ECUs) to all competitors in Formula One, NASCAR and IndyCar, the three biggest motor racing series in the world. The company also won two Queen's Award for Enterprise, for innovation and international trade, under his leadership.
Peter has worked for many years in high-impact industries that demand high levels of performance, reliability and safety. He has worked on making: trains faster in underground coal mines; heavy-haul iron ore trains more robust in undulating terrain; long-overland conveyors quieter; and detecting deterioration early in critically-ill children in acute care.
Peter is Australian and has also UK citizenship. He has two degrees in Mechanical Engineering and is a chartered engineer.
EVP & Treasurer
Harley has been appointed to the Living PlanIT Board of Directors and will now head up Living PlanIT's PlanIT Valley business unit. He brings his great expertise in working with leading finance and insurance institutions, manufacturers and mall operators on significant financing instruments including debt instruments, bonds, letters and lines of credit, and lease negotiations to PlanIT Valley. Over the past 7 years he has held the positions of CFO, most recently the companies COO & Treasurer. He continues his role as Treasurer.
Harley is an entrepreneur who has managed and founded multiple businesses with expertise in the financing of residential and commercial real estate development projects including mixed use, business, manufacturing, apartment and single family properties. In 1984 he co-founded The Acumen Group, a residential and commercial finance company specializing in residential mortgage backed securities and commercial brokerage finance. Harley later founded and managed TFO Inc., which was an owner and operator of retail stores and shopping malls.
Harley began his financial career consulting for the advertising industry on US and foreign currencies.
Harley is a graduate of Northeastern University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration with honors, with majors in both International Business and Finance. He was also a varsity letterman in rowing and a former crew coach.
Chief Financial Officer
Dieter Launer is the Chief Financial Officer of Living PlanIT. He joined Living PlanIT from Microsoft Switzerland, where he was the CFO. Before that he was the Managing Director for Finance and Delivery at Atos Origin Schweiz AG, where he led changes in the business model, financial operations and the organization.
Previously he held various senior management positions in finance in the software industry, at Novartis (post-merger Sandoz/Ciba) and at a family business. He also co-founded in 1995 an Internet access provider in Switzerland.
Dieter aligns business and finance by creating transparency in the numbers and providing accredited business insights to drive growth. He has led organizational changes from concept to implementation in finance organizations to increase efficiency and focus in supporting business functions.
Dieter graduated from University of Augsburg with a MBA in Business Administration, focusing on Finance and Auditing. Post-graduate he was an assistant teacher of Business Administration at the University of Bayreuth.
VP Sales & Marketing
Rosemary is Vice President Sales & Marketing at Living PlanIT and is responsible for the day-to-day effective management of the business unit. In this role she works closely with the CEO on the company's most important partnerships and relationships. She has additional responsibility for working closely with the COO on all aspects of the company's organization and strategy of continuous improvement. She is responsible for spinning up the necessary business units, including building the company's Partner Program and Sales organization. She has more than 20 years of experience in working for technology companies in technical and business development roles.
She joined Living PlanIT from Microsoft Corporation where she was responsible for the development of the services business for one of Microsoft's Global Accounts. She also led the “Women in Technology” initiative for Microsoft in Western Europe, which focused on retaining and developing the involvement of women in technical enterprises and professions.
Before Microsoft she served as Country CEO for a software start-up, after working in Business Development for Hewlett–Packard, Compaq and Siemens internationally for several years. She started her career in Software Development and Product Management. Rosemary has a Bachelor's Degree in Hotel Management and a Masters in Computer Economics. She is actively involved in philanthropic organizations focused on entrepreneurship and enabling small businesses that show social responsibility. She also sits on the board of the Swiss ICT Women in Technology organization and is a mentor to start-ups for the Microsoft Ventures program.
VP, Head of Corporate Development
Dan is Vice President, Head of Corporate Development, responsible for building and leading strategic corporate development building corporate level strategic partnerships and alliances including design wins, strategic partners and investors, managing the company deals pipeline and participating in the assessment of target markets.
Dan chairs the independent UK smart city trade association SmarterUK, bringing together stakeholders from across sectors, championing smart city development within the UK and helping to shape the strategic policy environment for smart city solutions.
Before joining Living PlanIT, Dan was a British Member of Parliament serving on the Energy and Climate Change Select Committee and the Science & Technology Select Committee. He has strong expertise in energy, environment and clean tech policy, serving on the Parliamentary Bill Committee for the Energy Act 2013 and chairing a number of high profile All Party Parliamentary Groups.
Dan was the founding Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Smart Cities Group and a member of the UK Government Ministerial Smart City Forum. Prior to Parliament Dan trained at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst and served in the British Army for nine years. After that, Dan served on the board of a National Health Service Trust as a non-executive director. He was the youngest member of the board.
Dan has a Joint Honours Bachelors Degree in Economics & Management Studies and a Masters Degree in Creative Writing. He holds two Guinness World Records for skiing to the Magnetic North Pole and crossing the Atlantic Ocean unsupported in a wooden rowing boat.
Chief Technology Officer
John Stenlake, previously the Worldwide Automotive Technologist for Microsoft Corporate and Chief Architect for Ford Motor Company, is the Chief Technology Officer for Living PlanIT, providing corporate leadership for our continued innovation and use of technology. John has personally led the architecture, design, development, and initial deployments of the award-winning PlanIT Urban Operating System for over more than 5 years.
John has more than 30 years' experience in Information Technology development, management, strategy, implementation, and consulting.
Prior to joining Living PlanIT, John worked for Microsoft Corporation for 6 years, the last 3 of which were spent as the Director of Technology Strategy for the Automotive Vertical worldwide. John worked closely with multiple Microsoft product groups in order to ensure that the right offerings are brought to the Automotive market, as well as working closely with select customers on advanced vehicle and IT projects.
Prior roles inside Microsoft also include CTO, Manufacturing in the US, and Senior Architect in the Manufacturing Industry Architecture Team for Microsoft Consulting Services. In these roles John consulted with multiple customers on enterprise application architecture and strategy, and in particular drove messaging, uptake and deployment of Service Oriented Architecture.
Before joining Microsoft, John spent twenty years with Ford Motor Company both in Europe and in the US. John's team led the development and deployment of Enterprise Architecture within Ford.
John holds Master of Arts and Bachelor of Arts degrees in Mathematics from Oxford University in the UK and has been recognized as a Member of the British Computer Society and also as a Chartered Engineer. He has also received charter member certification as a Microsoft Certified Solutions Architect (MCSA).
Nuno manages the Biologicial Systems Department and runs a team of scientists. Nuno is a senior executive with verifiable year-after-year success in achieving revenue, profits and business growth objectives within start-up, turnaround, and rapid-changing environments. He has extensive experience with highly engineered systems, which require deep understanding of critical business drivers in multiple markets and industries. He led and motivated worldwide teams in various disciplines including sustainable energy programs, integrated water strategies, biosensors, carbon converter and bio-generators.
Nuno has been with Living PlanIT since 2008 and developed several integrated and intelligent solutions that incorporate the smart city framework such as Waste to Resources, sustainable water strategies, mobility strategies, energy strategies, infrastructure strategies, microbial communications, bacteriabots, advanced biofuels, biosensors strategies, Urban Microbiome strategies and machine learning using support vector machine.
Before joining Living PlanIT Nuno was the Technical Director at CEIIA (Excellence Engineering Center), after leaving Tate & Lyle where he was the production and maintenance director for 5 years. He started his career in the defense sector where he led several Innovation and R&D projects, always focusing on innovation, quality, applicability, maintainability and performance, while also managing multi-disciplinary teams.
He holds a Degree in Production Engineering with honors from the Universidade Autónoma de Lisboa, Portugal.
VP Legal & Corporate Affairs
Johanna is Vice President Legal and Corporate affairs and joined the Living PlanIT team as a partner responsible for law, corporate affairs, communications, program management. She is also currently responsible for Human Resources.
Prior to Living PlanIT, Johanna worked at various law firms specializing in domestic relations, criminal and real estate law including litigation.
Johanna has a broad liberal arts background in areas including anthropology, sociology, philosophy and communications and graduated from McGill University with a Bachelor of Arts with Honors.
Fluent in English, Italian, French and Slovak.
Chief Network Architect
Andrew is the Chief Network Architect at Living PlanIT, working on solutions that integrate the PlanIT OS and other Living PlanIT products into solutions that address the various markets and verticals.
Andrew has over 20 years' of technology experience and leadership in the Information Technology and Network Services industry and has headed up the design and delivery of major Living PlanIT projects. Andrew has a strong background in Software Development, Network Design, Change Control, Operations, Management, Support and Network Service provision.
Prior to joining Living PlanIT, Andrew was CTO at XOU Solutions, an original source "Software as a Service" company that he founded delivering truly agent-less IT and Networking Asset identification and management software to ISP's, Managed Service Providers, and Global Enterprises allowing customers to be compliant with software licensing agreements and maintenance programs including Cisco Shared Support.
Before XOU Solutions, Andrew enjoyed a successful career in the design, installation, operation, and management of ISP and next generation service networks for the likes of UUNET, KPN Telecom, Unipalm PIPEX and QoS Networks.
VP Corporate Development
Prior to joining Living PlanIT Keith accumulated over 30 years business experience in both the IT and environmental/sustainability industries primarily focused in the sales and marketing arena in developing and managing customer and partner relationships.
In his years working as an IT industry professional Keith managed relationships with blue chip clients and partners within complex infrastructure software and service environments in business sectors including: messaging migration; directory management; virtual classroom and on-line learning platforms at organisations including Lotus Development, IBM, Worldtalk, Centra Software and SkillSoft.
Most recently Keith was a founding Director of L'atelier Limited, an environmental consultancy assisting commercial clients to manage and reduce their energy consumption and carbon emissions. Keith was responsible for the development of the sales and marketing strategy for the business, establishing key relationships with property developers, building owners and occupiers.
Keith brings a unique combination of experience and business skills from these two sectors into his role within the Living PlanIT business development and management team.
VP, Head of PMO
Bernd is responsible as Head of PMO for coordinating the project management function at the corporate level of the company with the objective of ensuring that the PMO functions across the business units are aligned and add value to the Rhythm of Business of the company. He works closely with the COO on all aspects of the company's organization and strategy of continuous improvement. He works closely with the COO to introduce efficient systems that enhance all operations and make the company fit for purpose and sustainable.
Bernd has 20 years of business experience in management consulting and program management, leading change within major international companies across a series of industries, with a special focus on organization, sales & marketing and IT.
Bernd joined Living PlanIT from Capgemini where he served as Managing Consultant, Worldwide Automotive Industry. Bernd was responsible for establishing, driving and coordinating the overall strategic direction for change, communication, and project management. He had a leadership role to catalyze disruptive innovation, re-define the automotive retail digital experience while propagating and monetizing valuable software and interactive services.
Prior to Capgemini, Bernd held various management positions primarily in the areas of organization, sales, marketing & IT, at DaimlerChrysler during the start-up of the Smart Car range and project management at AXA's corporate headquarters.
Bernd graduated from WIU with an MBA in International Business. Bernd also holds degrees in business management & economics, linguistics & culture. Bernd is a fellow of both the RSA and ESLIDER.
VP Corporate Communications
Michael leads Corporate Communications. Michael facilitates numerous cross departmental activities to promote operational excellence and commercial development. He advises corporate strategy to ensure that company vision, market objectives, product development, branding and messaging are aligned around the Living PlanIT ethos of improving quality of life through technology.
Prior to joining Living PlanIT Michael held a number of positions in organizations promoting regional and national community development and social empowerment ranging from youth education programs to political campaigning.
Michael has a degree in Political Science and graduated Cum Laude from the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Other areas of study include anthropology, psychology, sociology, communications and life sciences.
Michael is fluent in English and has an elementary knowledge of Portuguese, French and Slovak.
Chairman of the Board
Ian Taylor is Chairman of the Board of Living PlanIT. Ian was a member of the British Parliament for 23 years until 2010, during which time he served as the Minister of Science & Technology 1994-97. He was Chairman of the All-Party Parliamentary & Scientific Committee, the Space Committee and sat on the Commission on National Security. Since leaving Parliament, Ian has been appointed to senior positions in the field of science, technology and space, including: Chairman of the Steering Group of the UK National Space Academy, Chairman of the Supervisory Board of the Rainbow Seed Fund (investing government funds in spin-outs from the science research base), Chairman of Lunar Missions (responsible for the Lunar Mission One project), Member of the UK Science & Technology Facilities Council. He has been an advisor to ESA and is a consultant to Inmarsat on a space project for Africa.