Monday, March 23, 2015

NIST Report Warns IoT Could be Stalled by Timing Systems

TerraSwarm Director Edward Lee was co-author on the recently-released white paper by National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) warning that the Internet of Things (IoT) could be stalled by our lack of effective methods to marry computers and networks with timing systems.

According to NIST Tech Beat article “Lack of EffectiveTiming Signals Could Hamper ‘Internet of Things’ Development”, authors of the white paper are concerned with the way most modern data systems are designed to process and exchange data with one another and what that could mean for a world of discrete processors and mechanical devices linked by an information network.  Many of the new applications proposed, such as driverless cars and smart grids, will depend on precision timing in computers and networks, yet modern computer programs only have probabilities on execution times, rather than the strong certainties necessary for safety-critical systems.

The report reviews the state of the art in several areas central to the use of timing signals and recommends crosscutting research to improve current technology, including clock design, the use of timing in networking systems, hardware and software architecture, and application design.

The Swarm Box: A New Prototype from TerraSwarm

In an interview with Semiconductor Engineering, TerraSwarm Director Edward Lee showed off their new Swarm Box prototype. The Swarm Box, part of a new class of IoT devices termed immobiles, allows the network to have compute capabilities much closer to the physical devices it’s integrating with, increasing reliability and quality of service.  See TerraSwarm’s Swarm Box and hear the interview at “Tech Talk: Swarm Boxes”:

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

TerraSwarm Faculty Vijay Kumar appointed Dean of Engineering at the University of Pennsylvania

Professor Vijay Kumar has been appointed Dean of the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences at the University of Pennsylvania.

Professor Kumar is a TerraSwarm faculty member whose work focuses on quad rotor aircraft.

For further information, see Susan Snyder's blog item "New Engineering dean at Penn."