March 2007

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EMAIL INTERVIEW - Brian Tutor & Ken Sinclair

Brian Tutor, Product Manager, Lantronix

Brian Tutor has been with Lantronix for nearly 10 years and currently serves as Product Line Manager of Lantronix external device networking product line. Previously Brian was Tech Support Manager and has an extensive knowledge of networking.

Device Networking

Device Networking is the ability to quickly and securely connect virtually any type of equipment to the network or Internet via Ethernet or 802.11 wireless.

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Sinclair:  What is device networking and how is it used in building automaton?

Tutor:  Device Networking is the ability to quickly and securely connect virtually any type of equipment to the network or Internet via Ethernet or 802.11 wireless. This provides the ability to remotely monitor, control and manage attached equipment regardless of where the equipment is located. Equipment could be an alarm panel, HVAC systems, irrigation systems, lighting, etc. - virtually any type of device with a serial port or Digital I/O.

Sinclair:  What are the benefits of network enabling building equipment?

Tutor:  Device networking provides the ability to perform real-time diagnostics and repair, automate data capture, and the ability for the end user to be automatically and immediately notified of a problem. This can translate into improved efficiency, reduced operating and maintenance costs, and maximized uptime. In addition, networking can provide additional service opportunities which can result in additional revenue streams.

Sinclair:  What is the next evolution of device server technology?

Tutor:   The next evolution will be the move toward true autonomous control of attached equipment and a greater level of intelligence at the device level. This is the realization of fully-automated, programmable remote device management – the ultimate goal of machine connectivity. Instead of a user having to manually monitor and respond to a given problem, the device server will simplify the process by detecting a problem and resolving it automatically. Then send an email notification that a problem was detected and fixed – no human intervention required.

[an error occurred while processing this directive] Sinclair:  What other features does a programmable device server include?

Tutor:  End users would be able to easily configure the programmable device server to monitor for events and respond with pre-determined, user-defined actions adding an increased level of flexibility for the end user. With advanced technologies, incoming data from the attached device can be gathered and sent via email or RSS feeds allowing hundreds of devices to be simultaneously monitored from a single RSS-enabled web page. In addition, it will offer the highest levels of security.

Sinclair:  Can you provide an example of the automated monitoring and reporting features?

Tutor:  Device servers are often connected to security cameras placed throughout a company’s premises. With networking technology, security guards can monitor all cameras remotely. If an incident occurred, the security guard would be notified and then have the opportunity to manually locate that camera and zoom in. With a programmable device server, the security guard could program the camera to automatically pan and zoom if a person walks by the camera, and if defined by the user, trigger an alarm. Users can also program the device server to react to more than one event. For example, if a wire is cut, the programmable device server can trigger an alarm and notify security. What was once done with human intervention can now be done automatically and in real-time.


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