Social Intelligence and Analytics

By Oleg

Social software is growing fast and becoming more and more important. If you haven’t had a chance to see our previous post about Social Innovation, you can do it here. So, our social dimension becomes one of the keys  to establish working relationships, innovation and process management.

However, social software brings new complications in our life. The growing amount of social-related information can simply shout down your workday. You can spend your working day connecting with people via social networks and communities, following Twitter messages and others.

How can we live efficiently in the ocean of social information and how can we get more value from social networks – I think this is a key question we’ll need to answer in the near future. I’d like to bring a few examples of applications from very basic and known to newcomers and innovators that explore the domain I call Social Intelligence.

My first example is pretty obvious. I’m sure you are using Google. However, an interesting new feature you can explore with Google Social Search. When you’re logged in into your Google Profile, all your searches become “social”, so you can see information related to you from different social dimensions- blogs, social networks etc.

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Another example. If you are on Twitter, you may find it difficult to run after all your connections and messages. However, if you want to focus on a specific area, domain or information you can use Twitter Search. Twitter search will allow you simply find all relevant tweets according to the keywords. In addition to that you will be able to convert results of your search as RSS feed and follow them up in your RSS reader.

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From the area of well know and established tools I’d like to move to less known companies in the domain of social analytic software. There are many new and  innovative companies exploring the social domain these days and , of course, will not be able to go after all of them. However, I’d like to flash in front of your some interesting examples that drove my attention from company called Trampoline Systems.

So, I’m sure you will be able to get advantages of existing tools and feature in Google and Twitter, so your  social connections will run faster and more efficiently as well as explore new fields of social intelligence. I see a significant value that social analytic software can bring to our everyday lives, and I’m sure we’ll see more and more examples in the future.

What are some others that you like?

Best, Oleg

3DVIA Mobile 1.1: What’s Better

By Kate

Hi there,

I just met with Gerald so he could show me 3DVIA Mobile 1.1.  There are a couple of nice new features I like and hope you’ll enjoy.

For example, you can email your 3D mashup to folks directly from 3DVIA Mobile.

Or, when you import a 3D model into your photo, no matter the lighting of the photo, dark, bright or anything in between, the lighting of the 3D model automatically adjusts.  Yes, we have perfect lighting, Mesdames, Messieurs.

And here’s one for the digitally challenged: if you’re not multi-touch fluent, i.e. you can’t easily command an object’s size and placement with two fingers, in one click you can access zoom, pan and rotate buttons to help you.

Flying plane

So that’s what I-the-amateur like best.  But here are a few things Gerald-the-expert prefers:

  • Full screen 3D display for a more immersive experience
  • iPhone 3GS supports models with 100,000 triangles for more complexity and definition
  • You can levitate objects, which is very useful to make airplanes fly in your living room!

You like?

There’s more of course, but you didn’t think I’d tell you everything, did you?  ;-)

Go get 3DVIA Mobile 1.1 and discover the rest by using it!  It’s a FREE upgrade for those already sporting 3DVIA Mobile.

And for newbies, it’ll cost ya a whopping $1.99, although sorry, no set of knives with that.



Why Are My Street Lights Off?

By Tim

candlelight2My first thought was the lights were out due to a storm, an accident, or a fire. But there was no evidence of any such calamity. Then I remembered that, to save money, my town of Plainville, Massachusetts was planning to turn-off the street lights. Apparently, tonight was the night for a majority of the lights to be turned-off. The town’s action reminded me of mother always saying, “Shut off the lights, you’re causing our electricity bill to get out of control”.

As a kid – I thought electricity was magic and endless, and I certainly thought it was free! I finally realized that electricity was not free when I received the first bill that I had to pay on my own.  Electricity is so pervasive, especially in developed countries, that most of us take it for granted, and maybe just a bit magical, until we find our streetlights turned off, or experience a multi-day power outage like I did after the Loma Prieta earthquake in California in 1989 and again in 2003 during the major Northeast blackout.

Electricity, as most of us know, is produced in a variety of ways. While Nuclear generated power gets a lot of attention, according to the U.S. Department of Energy, it only produces about 20 percent of the electricity in the United States. More than half of the U.S. electricity comes from burning coal. The remainder is produced through hydroelectric, or natural gas and even smaller amounts are created by wind and solar power systems.

Energy discussions can quickly devolve into controversy. I plan to leave the eco-political debates to others and focus a series of blog posts on the innovative use of realistic simulation to improve the efficiency and safety of energy creation and exploration.

Ensuring Nuclear Power Safety

From the onset of the civilian nuclear power era, there has been a strong awareness of the importance of safety. Originally designed for 30- to 40-year operating lives, the systems, structures, and components of nuclear plants  simply wear out, corrode, or degrade. Identifying and correcting such issues can extend the operating license of a plant by several decades, which is why the upgrading of older facilities is now a major focus of nuclear regulatory bodies and plant operators.

Wolfgang Hienstorfer, TÜV

Wolfgang Hienstorfer, TÜV

Recently, my team had the privilege of interviewing Wolfgang Hienstorfer, head of the department of structural analysis at TÜV SÜD ET, a leading global technical service corporation, located in Filderstadt, Germany.  “The structural integrity and operational management of nuclear facilities must be secured far into the future — whatever the type or age of the plant’,” stated Mr. Heinstorfer”. His team at TÜV independently tests, inspects, and certifies nuclear facilities for licensing by the German government.

To assist in the accurate evaluation of nuclear plant systems, structures and components, the group employs Abaqus finite element analysis (FEA) software from SIMULIA.  

Pressurized thermal shock analysis of a reactor pressure vessel

Pressurized thermal shock analysis of a reactor pressure vessel

Abaqus eanables the engineers to analyze stress loads over a wide range of scenarios such as rapidtemperature and/or pressure changes, earthquakes, and radiation embrittlement. The software analyzes everything from key mechanical components —including pumps, piping systems, vessels, supports, and tanks — to fuel assemblies, building structures, and lifting devices such as cranes.

Hienstorfer sees FEA as having an integral role to play in both operational evaluation and ongoing monitoring of nuclear facilities to assist in complying with regulations. “We depend on FEA for computer modeling and virtual testing of reactor pipelines, vessels, and materials under extremes of stress and time,” he says.  “It definitely provides guidance to engineers to build both safety and longevity into their nuclear power plant designs.”

Read the complete TUV case study online at Power Magazine or you can download a PDF of the story from SIMULIA’s INSIGHT Magazine.

Do you think engineers can continue to make Nuclear Energy safe?

What do you think of my town’s decision to save money by turning off the streetlights? (Maybe they should have positioned it as a ‘Green Initiative’?).

Check back soon or subscribe to 3D Perspectives for additional posts on Energy and Realistic Simulation.

Enjoy the magjic of electricity,


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