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 Monday, June 20, 2011
A new ITU-T Technology Watch Report provides an overview of emerging trends in optical networking and progression towards the all optical computer. The report also surveys current and forthcoming standardization work in the field of optical technologies.

Today, the most widely used optical technology is optical fibre for high-speed interconnections, such as in server racks, connecting offices, buildings, metropolitan networks, in computers for data transfer and even continents via submarine cables. However, none of these devices is fully optical; all rely to some extent on conventional electronic circuits and components.

In the past, high costs have prevented optical components from finding their way into computers. But as optical technology matures, prices drop and the limits of miniaturization appear to have been reached, optical alternatives are finding their place in computer systems. The use of all types of optical technologies in communication networks and computers, because they consume less power, is seen as a major saving on operational costs for service providers, while at the same time helping to reduce the carbon footprint. The gradual incorporation of optical technology into the world of traditional electronics is paving the way for the era of the optical world.

Without optical technologies and optical networking related standards, the Internet as we know it today would not be feasible. Optical technologies have been the driving force behind the bandwidth growth of the Internet and enabled the emergence of bandwidth hungry applications for video and new business models such as YouTube which allows users to share video clips. According to the annual Cisco Visual Networking Index, the estimated global Internet Protocol (IP) traffic was 176 exabytes (x1018) in 2009 and  is projected to increase more than fourfold to reach 767 exabytes by 2014. This growth will be driven mainly by video, due to improvements in bandwidth capacity and the increasing popularity of high-definition and 3D television.

ITU-T standards in optical transport networks (OTN)  have played a leading role in transforming the Internet’s bandwidth capabilities. This work is led by ITU-T Study Group 15, which has developed a set of Recommendations that defines the existing OTN framework, and is currently developing future technologies such as gigabit-capable and 10-gigabit-capable passive optical networks (GPON and XGPON) to satisfy the unprecedented bandwidth requirements that will soon be demanded by service providers and consumers.

Major breakthroughs are expected in the areas of optical networking, silicon photonics, nanotechnologies and non-linear optics which could lead to major changes in the way computers, networks and data centres are designed.

A dedicated website provides additional sources of information and an overview of ITU-T Study Groups with work items related to optical technologies.

Download Report                   Go to Optical World Website

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Monday, June 20, 2011 8:44:19 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Thursday, June 09, 2011
The World Standards Cooperation (WSC) has announced the results of the poster competition for World Standards Day 2011, which attracted 45 entries and 2,000 votes.

Open to all, the competition was to design a poster for World Standards Day, 14 October, on the theme, “International Standards – Creating confidence globally”. The competition’s organizer, the WSC, comprises the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC), the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and the International Telecommunication Union (ITU).

First prize and winner of 1,500 Swiss francs goes to Caterina Fiorani, (Italy).




Runners up receiving 500 Swiss francs each are:

  • The team of Alexandra Schoenitz, Eurydice Avoine, Cornell Gorgas and Thibaud Cerdan (France/Germany)
  • Teguh Pribadi Adi Nugroho (Indonesia)
  • Eva Kohl (Germany).

The winner, Caterina Fiorani, is a young architect, working as an independent architecture and planning professional in Rome. This is how she explains the inspiration for her poster: “There are some gestures that have universal value: one of them is the open hand, which may indicate greeting, welcome, the reassurance of a peaceful attitude, a deep confidence in human skills.

“Two open hands in contact suggest honesty, and the helpfulness of man towards other human beings, which makes it possible to cooperate for a common purpose. Moreover, two hands recall the concept of work which is the principal tool through which man can achieve quality in his production, with the essential aid of International Standards, a necessary and powerful help to reach excellence.

“The whole world is represented through dots, a standardized graphic sign which symbolizes the hope for equal dignity for human beings all around the globe.  The use of colour emphasizes local differences as an added value that must never be forgotten.”

The competition was promoted via social media (Twitter, Facebook) and voting held online. It proved so popular that the deadline had to be extended to late May. The final competing entries were chosen by the WSC and displayed for voting on its Website.

The World Standards Cooperation was set up in 2001 in order to strengthen and advance the voluntary consensus-based international standards systems of IEC, ISO and ITU. Each year on 14 October, the members of the IEC, ISO and ITU celebrate World Standards Day, which is a means of paying tribute to the collaborative efforts of the thousands of experts worldwide who develop the voluntary technical agreements that are published as international standards. In addition to the poster, the three partners will be producing a World Standards Day message.

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Thursday, June 09, 2011 1:59:44 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
The dynamic growth in information technologies since the late 1970s — including computing, telephony, networks, and enterprise systems — has highlighted the vital importance of interoperability and standardization between these systems.
The latest newsletter from the World Standards Cooperation (WSC) explores interoperability in the health, building construction, telecom and electric power sectors and how it can result in lower costs, increased operating efficiency, improved reliability and security and new services through competitive innovation.

Read it here.
Sign up for future issues here.

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Thursday, June 09, 2011 1:49:43 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Tuesday, June 07, 2011
Four ITU-T G.hn chipset manufacturers converged on Geneva this week to test interoperability between their products. The advanced interoperability demonstrated highlights the maturity of the various vendors' designs and the completeness of the G.hn standard. Experts expect products on the market before the end of the year.
 
Hosted by ITU, the event was a joint effort of HomeGrid Forum and the Broadband Forum, and the first major opportunity for silicon vendors to test the interoperability of their products for the G.hn home networking standard. The event was facilitated by the University of New Hampshire Interoperability Laboratory (UNH-IOL).
 
ITU-T G.hn is the first global home networking standard, created to unify home networking services and devices over any wire, including coaxial cable, phone lines or power lines. Lantiq, Marvell, Metanoia, and Sigma Designs participated in the week-long event that covered interoperation in the physical layer.
 
In parallel, experts met at a workshop designed to ensure that the electromagnetic compatibility (EMC) concerns are taken into account in the rollout of the new technology.
 
“Interoperability is key to the success of any new technology,” said Malcolm Johnson, Director of the Telecommunication Standardization Bureau. “These events give vendors a unique opportunity to prove to service providers that their products are ready for market. And products conforming to the G.hn specification comply with the most rigorous EMC requirements that ensure they cause no interference to radio services.”

HomeGrid is poised to launch a formal Compliance and Interoperability program, bringing HomeGrid certified products to the market this year and giving the industry a new benchmark of technology excellence for wired home networking. Another interoperability event is planned later in the year.

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Tuesday, June 07, 2011 8:13:38 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Monday, June 06, 2011
ITU is organizing a Regional Workshop on Bridging the Standardization Gap for the Asia-Pacific Region on 4-5 July 2011 and an Interactive Training Session and Standardization Tutorial on 6th July 2011. The event will be hosted by the Pacific Islands Telecommunications Association (PITA) with the kind support of the Telecommunications Technology Association of the Republic of Korea (TTA) and the Korea Communications Commission, Republic of Korea. The Workshop and Interactive Training Session will be held back-to-back with the 4th APT Policy and Regulation Forum for Pacific from 6 to 8 July 2011.

The workshop is intended to provide concrete advice and best practices on participation by developing countries in global standards development and building national standards readiness. It will also examine standards work on key new technologies.

The Interactive Training Session and Standardization Tutorial on the second day will provide an interactive learning experience through a simulated Study Group meeting. It will be of greatest interest to those who will be, or who have begun, participating in international meetings and those who have some international experience with plans to move into leadership roles.

The event is intended for ICT standardization experts from the region, ICT companies, service providers, vendors, manufacturers, ICT regulators, national standards bodies and test labs.

For more information about the event see here.

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Monday, June 06, 2011 1:54:21 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Friday, June 03, 2011
Geneva, 02 June, 2011 – Concerns that home networking products using power line transmission (PLT) technology may cause interference with radio services led to a Forum last week in Geneva to address the issue. ITU’s own home networking standard ITU-T G.hn was considered to have electromagnetic compatibility (EMC)  and mitigation techniques that go well beyond those considered essential for protecting radio services.

Given the variety of electronic devices in our homes, strict EMC requirements are imperative. Over-the-air broadcast services in particular could be subject to interference from PLT systems.

Full press release

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Friday, June 03, 2011 9:56:35 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     |