Month: May 2016

John Oliver Highlights Location Issues

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By now, you may have seen the 9-1-1 segment from the HBO show “Last Week Tonight”.  If you have not seen the clip, here is the link- but please be aware that this is HBO and there is no censoring as far as language…    Last Week Tonight- 911

We normally only see 9-1-1 in the news when there is a specific problem with 9-1-1 technology (locating a 911 caller, 911 system failure, etc.).  John Oliver looked at 9-1-1 location issues on a national level  (calling out a few states in the process) and, in doing so, reached a much larger audience. The day after this segment aired, telco carriers and 9-1-1 staff nationwide were busy responding to inquiries from the media, as well as their own internal executive teams, in an attempt to clarify the issues.

Mark Fletcher explained the current situation in a recent NetworkWorld article

Network World- 911 Location Issues

Given the current environment surrounding location, one can understand why app developers are creating alternatives to ‘simply dialing 9-1-1’ by creating innovative (well..sometimes) Smartphone apps.

The U.S. is the world leader in technology. Maybe a trip to Silicon Valley is in order?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

APCO Broadband Summit

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This week I participated in my first ‘Broadband Summit”.  I gave a presentation on the network management tools (SNMP, Wireshark, Dashboard) that we have implemented within our NextGen 911  ESInet in Palm Beach County.

FirstNet was, of course,  a major topic. A number of their executive team members were present. During the two day summit, there was occasional discussion regarding the potential synergy between FirstNet and NG9-1-1.

During my presentation, I put up the following slide to depict the PSAP’s  relationship to both FirstNet and NG9-1-1.

APCO Broadband Summit Slide

FirstNet (on the right) will directly connect to the PSAP, mainly for dispatch  purposes. The other role the PSAP plays, call taking (inbound on the left), I left blank. This is simply to depict that there is no nationally funded broadband program to ensure we can implement NextGen 911 across the country. It is possible that FirstNet might be rolled out in a region with no corresponding NG9-1-1 system.  Pictures, video, etc. ‘from the scene’ would not be available prior to first responder arrival.

Another topic of interest was FirstNet Apps,  applications that will run on the new broadband  first responder handsets:

firstnet app

The app depicted above could provide visual, real time info on data such as field intelligence, nearest officers, local maps, photos of a person of interest, etc. This is, of course, what we expect as we provide a hardened, ‘smart device’ to Public Safety teams.

And finally- FCC Commissioner  Jessica Rosenworcel addressed the group. Her comments include the following:

“..take jurisdiction. Federal authority over 911 is limited and with 6000 public safety answering points nationwide, we have a system that is vast—and vastly different in different parts of the country. There are 375 call centers in Mississippi but only 12 in Nevada. Yet both states have populations of just under 3 million. In other words, we have very different ways of managing emergency calling in different parts of the country. It makes a uniform effort hard.”

A positive event. Lots of information on ‘what’s coming’ and a number of dedicated individuals pushing to ensure we ‘get there.’