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Fujitsu Laboratories of America Technology Symposium 2010 Sessions Overview
Fujitsu Laboratories of America Technology Symposium 2010 Sessions Overview
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Fujitsu Laboratories of America Technology Symposium 2010 Sessions Overview

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An overview of the sessions we will host at our 4th annual technology symposium, to be held in Sunnyvale on June 9th, 2010, by invite-only. The theme is "Smart Grid: When Energy Meets the 'Internet …

An overview of the sessions we will host at our 4th annual technology symposium, to be held in Sunnyvale on June 9th, 2010, by invite-only. The theme is "Smart Grid: When Energy Meets the 'Internet of Things'". The document includes topics of each keynote and panel discussions, and examples of key questions we plan to ask.

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  • 1. Fujitsu Laboratories of America Technology Symposium 2010: Session Overviews Smart Grid: When Energy Meets the “Internet of Things” Smart Grid Landscape Most people have heard of the “smart grid” by now, but there is still a bit of mystery about what it really is, and what it is going to take to become a part of our every day lives. There is an expanding ecosystem of players emerging in this space, from startups to established corporations, across many industries– energy, telecom, and information technology. In this keynote, we will explore the competitive landscape and look at what some of the innovative companies are doing to connect all the dots in this realm. Energy Evolution and Modern Utility Challenges Some people claim the energy industry is undergoing a revolutionary transformation. Others argue it hasn’t changed much in the past 100 years, and its future transformation faces many obstacles. Most would agree however, that it must evolve for the sake of the planet and our health. As the costs and externalities of fossil fuels increase, and innovation in renewable energy sources moves forward, how will the economics change for the utilities? How can technology help their businesses evolve and prosper? What about the low-hanging fruit of energy efficiency? How can the utilities engage better with the consumers? What are the evolving standards and how will they help? What are the barriers to adoption of renewable sources and a “smarter grid”? Energy Goes Wireless and Meets the “Internet of Things” The “Internet of Things” may have become just another buzzword for the “universal addressability of dumb things”, but as IPv6, RFID, embedded processors, and sensors become more ubiquitous, what will it mean for energy? What happens when our household appliances start talking to each other through self-configuring wireless networks, then talk to us and our extended social networks, and talk back to the utilities? Will this just generate more data than we are capable of processing? Will we be able to make sense of it, and improve the way we collectively use energy? Will it solve the modern utility challenges and help us overcome our dependence on fossil fuels? Bridging the application-to-hardware gap using C++ and C++0x We have grand plans for smart, sophisticated, correct, secure, large-scale software, for easy to develop and deploy applications, and advanced frameworks. We also have hardware of unbelievable sophistication, complexity, and variety. In between, there is a vast logical gap, potentially (and conventionally) filled by inflexible, performance destroying, and un- maintainable low-level software. This presentation focuses on how to use C++ and C++0x to develop systems software to bridge that gap in ways that lead to more reliable, more adjustable, and better performing code than traditional uses of C and assembler.
  • 2. Network Security Challenges To those in the traditional Internet security industry looking at the emerging smart grid, there is a feeling of “Déjà vu”. Security, once again, may be at risk of becoming an afterthought. And this time, it will not only be our information that is at stake, but also our energy supplies. What lessons can we learn from the Internet? What happens when we start giving “smarts” to dumb objects? How can trusted computing and other IT and communications-based security solutions be applied to the smart grid? What is unique only to the smart grid? What standards are evolving around it and how important are they? What about simple inadvertent human errors that can wreak havoc? Building Consumer Buy-In for Smart Homes in the Smart Grid What’s in a Smart Home? There’s technology - Home Area Networks (HANs) and Home Energy Management Systems (HEMS) that offer residential consumers remote, automated control of smart or dumb appliances. There’s energy policy - dynamic pricing and demand response programs that will be operational influences in Smart Homes. However, the most reliable HAN technologies and the easiest HEMS user interfaces mean nothing if residential ratepayers do not get WIIFM – “What’s In It For Me?” messages. In other words, we all fail if we end up with smart homes and dumb consumers. What are the messages that need to be communicated to create energy-smart consumers? Who is responsible for communicating these messages? How will these be communicated? Are there lessons to learn from other industries or business sectors that can be applied here? Before we get entranced by technological visions of the Jetsons, we need to effectively communicate those visions in terms of immediate and long term benefits to ratepayers, taxpayers and consumers. Plugging Into the Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Utilities already have a big challenge with ROI because they have to “build for peak”, that afternoon of the hottest summer every year when all the air conditioners are running full blast. Now as dozens of car companies big and small start building plug-in electric vehicles for the growing market of energy-conscious customers, it presents a new potential peak for them to build around. Can they solve it this time without more utilities and power lines? How can IT and communications technologies come to the rescue? How will battery innovation impact things? What will be the role of demand/response and dynamic pricing? What about innovative business models? What if the energy mix doesn’t change to more renewable sources? Is the EV only as clean as the utility that feeds it? The Business of Smart Energy All this talk about saving the planet and our health is great, but where’s the money? If “less is more” is the mantra, how can more money be made while less energy is being consumed? How can we account for externalities better without imposing carbon taxes or cap and trade? Can consumers save money while the companies make more money? How do business models need to evolve? Who is investing in smart energy, and why?

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