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 Tuesday, January 17, 2012

January’s meeting of the Telecommunication Standardization Advisory Group (TSAG) has established a Joint Coordination Activity on cloud computing (JCA-Cloud). The work of the ITU-T Focus Group on Cloud Computing (FG Cloud) will now be progressed through a number of ITU Study Groups with the JCA acting as a mechanism to coordinate the many dimensions of the study of cloud computing.

FG Cloud was formed following a request by leading CTOs to investigate the standardization landscape in the cloud computing market and pursue standards to lead to further commoditization and interoperability of clouds. The end goal is a cloud computing ecosystem where interoperability facilitates secure information exchange across platforms. With its work now complete, FG Cloud, in operation since May 2010, has mapped this landscape, established official liaisons with other standards developers and, as one of its deliverables, produced a technical report providing the first comprehensive view of the end-to-end architecture of a cloud computing system.

The burgeoning cloud computing market has evolved into service-oriented business models that offer physical and virtual resources on a pay-as-you-go basis – offering an alternative to in-house data centers and stringent license agreements.

The primary objectives of JCA-Cloud will be to allocate FG Cloud’s deliverables to study groups with associated domains of competence, and to ensure that the ITU-T standardization work on cloud computing progresses in a well-coordinated manner across all the relevant study groups. TSAG decided that ITU-T Study Group 13 be designated the lead study group on cloud computing.

Alongside this internal coordination role, JCA-Cloud will also take up an external collaboration role. It will analyze the cloud computing work taking place in regional and national standards development organizations (SDOs), consortia and fora, and will act as a point of contact for external bodies seeking to coordinate or collate their cloud computing standardization work with that of ITU-T. In carrying out this external collaboration role, representatives from national and regional organizations, consortia and fora may be invited to join JCA-Cloud.

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Tuesday, January 17, 2012 2:05:19 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Monday, January 16, 2012

The January meeting of the Telecommunication Standardization Advisory Group (TSAG) has established a new Focus Group on Machine-to-Machine (M2M) Service Layer.

M2M refers to the ability of a machine to sense and measure certain variables, and communicate this information to other machines in a network. Included under the larger umbrella of the “Internet of Things” (IoT), M2M technologies have applications in a number of industries – e-health, fleet management, sales and payment, security and surveillance, intelligent transport systems (ITS) etc.

The group will study and evaluate the M2M landscape and M2M work currently being undertaken by regional and national standards development organizations (SDOs), with a view to identifying a common set of requirements.

The Focus Group will initially focus on the APIs and protocols to support e-health applications and services, and develop technical reports in these areas. It is suggested that the Focus Group establish three sub-working groups: “M2M use cases and service models”, “M2M service layer requirements” and “M2M APIs and protocols.” Strong collaboration with stakeholders such as Continua Health Alliance and World Health Organization (WHO) is foreseen.The Focus Group concept allows for greater operational flexibility and crucially allows non ITU members and other interested organisations to participate.

The group is expected to carry out the following specific tasks:

  • Research, collect and analyze the vertical market M2M service layer needs, initially focusing on e-health.
  • Identify a minimum common set of M2M service layer requirements and capabilities, initially focusing on e-health applications and services.
  • Study APIs and relevant protocols that satisfy the above requirements and capabilities to support the communications between the M2M applications and the telecom networks.
  • Develop technical reports to address the identified gaps and propose future standardization work for ITU-T developments on M2M.
  • Support global harmonization and consolidation by inputting its final deliverables to the parent Study Group and other relevant Study Groups as appropriate.

These terms of reference are subject to consultation of the next four-weeks.The Focus Group will work closely with all ITU-T Study Groups, especially Study Groups 13 and 16, with the other ITU sectors (ITU-R, ITU-D) and with other relevant UN agencies, SDOs, forums/consortia, regulators, policy makers, industry and academia. Within the ITU, the group will work particularly closely with the Internet of Things Global Standards Initiative (IoT-GSI).

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Monday, January 16, 2012 11:13:56 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Monday, January 09, 2012

TSAG, the group that acts as the steering group for all ITU-T Study Groups will trial a cutting-edge remote participation platform that will allow ITU-T members to join meetings remotely and collaborate in the six official ITU languages, with full simultaneous interpretation.

Participants simply need log on using a standard web browser to join the meeting from any location that has a good quality high-speed connection. To profit from interpreted audio feeds participants will also have to dial-in via a standard telephone line.

Logging onto the system will take participants into a ‘virtual meeting room’, where they can see a list of participants, interact with others via online chat and video links, and view meeting documents. ITU interpretation services mean verbal interventions can be made in any of the supported languages.

The new platform will greatly enrich the quality of discussions, further narrowing the ‘standardization gap’ which tends to favour participants from wealthier nations, and allowing many more people from different countries and cultures to join the discussion.

The platform is based around the Adobe Connect software suite, with compatible pods provided by Refined Data Solutions Inc. in partnership with ZipDX (multilingual functionality) and Caption First (captioning).

The innovation also represents a significant milestone in ITU’s efforts to become carbon neutral, reducing the need for delegates to travel to and from meetings.

Pre-registration is necessary in order to use the new platform. For more information, see TSAG TD 311 and http://www.itu.int/ITU-T/tsag/remote-participation.html for details.

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Monday, January 09, 2012 10:15:07 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Thursday, December 22, 2011

Geneva, 21 December - Key standards (ITU-T Recommendations) on smart grid have been approved at a recent ITU SG 15 meeting.

Recommendations ITU-T G.9955 and G.9956 define three international next generation narrowband powerline communications (NB-PLC) standards. The approved family of standards will enable cost-effective smart grid applications such as distribution automation, diagnostic and fault location, smart metering, demand response, energy management, smart appliances, grid-to-home communications and advanced recharging systems for electric vehicles.

The standards are an ideal platform for smart grid applications because of their use of power lines as a communications medium which is under the direct and complete control of power utilities.

Full press release

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Thursday, December 22, 2011 11:27:20 AM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 
 Tuesday, December 20, 2011

ITU is inviting applications for the post of Chief of the Operations and Planning Department, Telecommunication Standardization Bureau (TSB), at ITU headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland.

Standards from the ITU are at the heart of modern information and communications technologies (ICTs). For more information see: http://www.itu.int/ITU-T/info.

The Telecommunication Standardization Bureau (TSB) provides essential logistical support to ITU-T’s 10 Study Groups including electronic working facilities and meeting management. It also manages promotion, workshops, membership, documents, finance, the website etc. It is the body responsible for providing cohesion to ITU-T’s standards making process.

The successful candidate should have an excellent knowledge of the ICT industry and, in particular, the ICT standardization landscape. Familiarity with ITU-T rules and procedures, its meeting activities and its products would be an advantage, as would previous involvement in the development of standards.

The senior management level (Director level in the United Nations system) post demands strong organizational skills and diplomacy. Under the general direction of the TSB’s Director, the incumbent will plan and coordinate the activities of the Operations and Planning Department; a role conferring, inter alia, the following responsibilities: Establishing work plans for the Department and Services under his/her supervision; directing the delivery of technical editing and publications services; directing the TSB’s IT programme and the development of new electronic services for the ITU-T membership and website; directing the delivery of a range of administrative services (operational planning, budget/finance services, Human Resources, procurement, meetings, logistics etc.); and organizing the delivery of support to the TSB’s assemblies, meetings and workshops, and to its major high-level global and regional events. The incumbent will also be expected to provide authoritative advice to the Director and the Deputy to the Director on all the matters for which he/she is responsible, and will contribute to TSB strategy and policy through their participation in the TSB management committee.

An attractive package of salary (approximately USD 213,046-244,756 with dependants; USD 196,923-224,263 without dependants [Net of Tax]) plus international allowances and benefits is offered (subject to eligibility).

The closing date for applications is 31 January 2012.

A detailed vacancy notice and application form including remuneration can be downloaded at www.itu.int/employment. Applications using the form must be sent to recruitment@itu.int or by post to ITU Human Resources Administration Division, Place des Nations, CH-1211, Geneva 20, Switzerland.

Applications must reach ITU by the closing date.

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Tuesday, December 20, 2011 12:49:29 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     | 

ITU is inviting applications for the post of Programme Coordinator, Telecommunication Standardization Bureau (TSB), at ITU headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland.

Lack of conformity and interoperability of ICT equipment is a major concern, especially in developing countries. Ensuring the interoperability of ICT products and services is one of the founding principles of the ITU.

The successful candidate should have an excellent knowledge of the ICT industry and, in particular, the ICT standardization landscape. Familiarity with ITU-T rules and procedures, its meeting activities and its products would be an advantage, as would previous involvement in the development of standards.

The management level (Professional level in the United Nations system) post demands strong organizational, technical and inter-personal skills. Under the direction of the Head of the Workshops and Promotions Division, the incumbent will be tasked with coordinating the TSB’s Conformity and Interoperability programme; a role demanding the design and implementation of the programme, as well as the provision of expert technical input and advice where necessary. The incumbent will also be responsible for the coordination of events, seminars and workshops relating to conformance assessment and interoperability testing, and will be required to administer the programme’s budget and reporting procedures.

An attractive package of salary (approximately USD 124,047-166,220 with dependents; USD 115,789-154,533 without dependents [Net of Tax]) plus international allowances and benefits is offered (subject to eligibility).

The closing date for applications is 31 January 2012.

A detailed vacancy notice and application form can be downloaded at http://www.itu.int/employment/. Applications using the form must be sent to recruitment@itu.int or by post to ITU Human Resources Policies Division, Place des Nations, CH-1211, Geneva 20, Switzerland.

Applications must reach ITU by the closing date.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011 12:47:35 PM (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #     |