#LI12 Plenary Recap: The State of the Art

The OnStar Story

Jeff Joyner from OnStar General Motors started the day looking at one of the earliest location-based services, OnStar. It all started back in 1995 with a project then called Beacon. It morphed from a $2000 add-on for Cadallic owners in 1996, that supported some nine calls per day to a factory installed solution in 2000 that supported 5000 calls per day. By 2005, OnStar added month car diagnostic e-mails to car owners who had the service. In 2009, OnStar went to China and in 2010 GM began looking at injury severity after accidents. In 2011 the solution supports apps such as those to remotely lock a car or find it in a parking lot. In 2011, OnStar supports about two calls per second.

Among the other interesting tidbits, were the types of calls collected per month:

  • 2500 automatic crash reports (or air bag deployed)
  • 5600 emergency calls (subscriber needs help)
  • 7000 good samaritan calls (subscriber calling about others in need)

I also found it fascinating that GM saves $2-$3M in warranty costs, by sending those monthly “car checkup” reports.

Joyner also shared a touching recorded call of a young girl who noticed her mother was not driving the right way to get home. She pushed the OnStar button and police stopped her Mom. It turns out Mom was having a diabetic reaction and was in fact not “ok.”

I find it interesting that back in the 1990s the pull of location-based services and cell phones/cell phone technology was safety. I know my Dad loved it when I first got a cell phone for work. He felt better I could get help (via AAA) or call him at any time. Today, in 2012, the number of location-based apps and energy focused on safety seems so very small. The efforts seem so focused on marketing and entertainment.

Enterprise Location Intelligence: The BI/LI/Cloud Story

Sean Maday of Google, Chris Ovens of Esri and Glenn Kronschnabl of CoreLogic shared their “vision” of the state of Business Intelligence, Location Intelligence and the cloud.

Maday restated the irony of the current abundance of data, but balkanization of that same data and highlighted Google role as making those data useable. He also announced the rebranding of Google Earth Builder as Google Maps Engine. Ovens joined Esri from SpotOn Systems and started by not doing the “location advantage talk.” Instead he focused on his role on the  location analytics team, one that needs to adopt geospatial perspectives into the CIO’s world instead of dragging that CIO into our world. Kronschnabl highligted CoreLogic’s goal of offering a data play as well as a technology play,

The questions yielded some interesting comments from the panel (paraphrased):

Maday (Google) - Do analysis elsewhere; When you want to visualize, come to Google.

Kronschnabl (CoreLogic)  - Back in the day (I was with Cognos), adding location/mapping to BI was 4 or 5 on agenda, so “check box mapping” was enough. Now it’s expected by customers due to Google’s redefining expectations.

Kronschnabl (CoreLogic) - Customers now want APIs, but we still ship data. Our emphasis is on making the data easy to consume. We don’t know all the questions our customers may need to ask, so it’s best to put data in cloud and let users go wild.

Maday (Google) - Google’s play in the enterprise geo space does not involve the company offering professional services. Instead, Google offers platforms to support consumers, we blur with Fusion Tables, but don’t, for example, support multiple heatmap algorithms.

Maday (Google) - Google has done a lot of indoor mapping. (Google Indoor Mapping coverage)

Overs (Esri) We sort of do indoor mapping - facilities mapping. There are two ways to think of it:  geocentric-spatial at center vs geo-enabled take spatial to the existing systems.

Maday (Google) We think OpenStreetMap is a great thing, but it’s large cumbersome, needs styling, needs processing needed. But lots of Googlers contribute to it.

Published Tuesday, May 22nd, 2012

Written by Adena Schutzberg

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