Real Real-Time

By October 2, 2014 No Comments

We do a lot of pitches at APX – to prospective customers and partners of various types. There’s definitely some common themes that our discussions typically revolve around. One of them is how a real-time system can be harnessed to improve day-to-day business.
Often (well, pretty much always) we’ve found that companies operate in a semi-connected, fairly rigid, batch oriented process environment. Even when people have ready access to business applications the typical work by a user gets performed, the system gets accessed, a database is updated and the process continues on down the path.
The problem here is that it is not real-time. Changing work tasks, realigning people and machines, checking important data, expediting transactions, and notifying people of some sudden important change usually takes minutes/hours/days… This holds true for nurses, field service personnel, assembly workers, pick and pack staff, security guards, utility linemen, you name it.
With Skylight we’ve addressed the core problem. We wire up users, machines, sensors and applications into a real-time communications fabric. This keeps track of the state of all these devices and acts as a signaling network to connect them for real-time communication sessions. When you have a real-time fabric, you can take advantage of it in some powerful ways.
One is what I refer to as the push versus pull – rather than having users (or sensors or machinery) request or wait for data, you can now push it to them immediately. When AnchorPoint has access to real-time data streams about what is going on in your real-world operating environment – you can apply complex event processing and interesting policy trigger logic to affect what is happening immediately.
Imagine a nurse with Smart Glasses walking the hospital floor, she can continuously monitor vitals wherever she is. She can get an alert sent to her in real-time for specific conditions (no pagers, no PA systems!). Alternatively, a warehouse worker with a smart phone gets a expedite requests sent immediately, specifically to him since he’s closest to the container location. Or a welcome message is automatically displayed because of a biometric match of an important customer walking in the door. Or a corporate control room that can see what is going on all around the production line, directly see an individual’s work in progress and control devices remotely.
All this is possible today with Skylight. Someone mentioned to me that this was like a “real time machine cloud” – which not only sounded really cool, it captures a lot about what I’m talking about here (if you sprinkle regular people into that cloud too). But more importantly, and it can yield big benefits – making business operations super fast and super flexible.

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