I am excited to announce that I have decided to rejoin my friends at Ubisense, where I worked from 2002 until I went to be CTO at Intergraph in 2005. I was a co-founder of Ten Sails, the company that provided early stage funding to and later merged with Ubisense.
There are two main parts to the business: Precise Real Time Location Systems (RTLS), and geospatial consulting. I’ll be involved with both sides of the business.
The RTLS technology tracks objects to an accuracy of a foot or so, using local sensors. Many, but not all, the applications are indoors, where it is especially hard to track location accurately. The difficulty is that whatever type of sensing technology you use, signals tend to reflect off walls, floors and ceilings, and direct signals are frequently blocked by furniture, people or other obstacles. This means it is very easy to get false readings that can result in serious errors in location calculation. Ubisense uses a technology called ultrawideband (UWB), enabling many interesting applications that can’t be implemented with less accurate sensing technologies.
There are potential applications in many different industries: right now we have good traction in several, including manufacturing, transit, military training, plant safety, and logistics. And many people’s favorite “unexpected” application seems to be cow tracking! The technology has really matured since I was last at Ubisense. I’ll talk in much more detail about the technology and applications in future posts.
On the geospatial consulting side of the business, Ubisense is primarily focused on implementation services to GE Smallworld customers (Smallworld continues to be the leading geospatial software platform in utilities, according to Daratech). As readers of my blog know, I am enthused about the potential of applying the new generation of geospatial technologies to more traditional GIS application areas. So I’m excited about the opportunity to work with Smallworld customers on a geospatial strategy that enhances the strengths of their existing system for complex applications by adding in newer, simpler geospatial technologies to help broaden the use of their geospatial data.
Since this is a full time role, I won’t be continuing in my role as Chief Technology Advisor at Enspiria, where I was previously spending a week a month or so. I very much enjoyed my time working at Enspiria and wish them all the best. But I will continue with my two advisory board positions, at FortiusOne and PublicEarth.