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Happenings at Telepartner

Using the iPad to Display Critical Public Safety Information - Saturday, October 01, 2011

The iPad is a natural device to use in the field for public safety information. It's relatively low cost, includes a cellular modem, has a clear display, can be used quickly to access data.

Telepartner began prototyping the iPad several months ago. We focused on HTML5 capabilities available in the most common browsers (IE9, Chrome, FireFox, and Safari).

Getting a solid 'push' mechanism worked out to be much more efficient than using a polling method. Still, good performance take careful attention to details for every call.

At the outset we really hadn't a good understanding of how challenging nor how valuable a good push mechanism would turn out to be. Since our applications are typically used via low speed 3G wireless networks eliminating as many packets of data as possible is a critical goal.

Blackberry Phones being tested for Police Field Use - Monday, February 08, 2010

The challenges related to the use of a phone for public safety include: Security, Application Set, and Easy of Use.

  • Security - Per the requirements as established at the Federal level, two level authentication is being used in the pilot. Individual SmartCard readers now ensure that access is available only to authorized individuals. Every transaction is fully audited and available for review by authorized Admnistrators.
     
  • Application Set - The most logical first step is basic Name and Registration Inquiry. In addition field officers are able to retreive Department of Corrections photo images.
     
  • Easy of Use - As a Web based application that uses an interface similar to the CAPTAIN system, the first users have required minimal training. In fact, the single largest effort to date has been learning to manage teh security parameters imposed by the Blackberry BES system.
Public Works Vehicle Tracking - Friday, December 04, 2009

Telepartner recently was involved with the configuration of a number of municipal trucks for one of Connecticut's larger cities. The intention was to monitor the position of these vehicles at as reasonable cost as possible.

We configured a test modem and with the assistance of the department's management, estimated the traffic to be generated on a monthly basis. Modem AVL parameters were adjusted in a manner to minimize position updates when the vehicles were stationary, and increase the rate when moving. Further investigation identified the lowest possible monthly rate from the carrier. The final modem tuning was set to meet he monthly data limits set by the low tariff.

Initial reports are positive. Vehicle tracking is providing useful information to the department within the predicted budgets.

Automatic Unattended Modem Inventory - Monday, April 06, 2009

In an organization with many mobile computers all using AVL there is a high degree of probability that some of the identifiers for the vehicles are missing or inaccurate. Telepartner developed an application set that maintains an accurate, up-to-the-minute database of key modem, computer, application, and vehicle information.

Developed in Microsoft .NET, the client-server application regularly audits the client computers for any change in equipment or software. When changes are noted and updated XML file is transmitted automatically to the server. On the server every change is audited in the SQL database.

Agency Administrators with proper authorization have the option to manually add additional information, including vehicle descriptions and NIMS classifications.

Regional Public Safety Portal - Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Expanding upon the CAPTAIN Forum started in 2006, Telepartner developed a new CAPTAIN public Safety Portal bringing together a variety of services and information to the user community. Based on open source DotNetNuke technology, the portal development costs were minimal.

Agency Administrators can manage their CAPTAIN users (add, change, remove, configure, etc.), access system documentation, participate in community forums, register for announcement notifications, download system files, link to related web sites.... all with a single logon.

Security is linked with the existing CAPTAIN Active Directory thus avoiding the need for another UserID.

The portal is available to all CAPTAIN users both from the secure CAPTAIN mobile network and via an SSL connection over the Internet.

CAPTAIN NEWS Application Announced - Tuesday, October 03, 2006

A new feature in CAPTAIN enables officers to improve the manner in which they broadcast critical alerts to others and share routine departmental information. Called NEWS, this feature integrates with existing CAPTAIN messaging and greatly expands its usefulness.

An officer in the field can now share up-to-the-minute information with fellow officers in his agency, or across the region. All with just a few keystrokes. While some alerts are time critical, others may be important for many days or weeks. At the time information is entered specific addressing and expiration information is entered by the author. The system tracks all access to each information record, as well as any modifications made by the original author.

NEWS allows an officer to search historical messages, quickly identify the author, and take the appropriate action. It is expected to gain wide use in BOLO (be on the lookout for) announcements.

NEWS can also be used to post and archive departmental or shift notices to individuals, groups of individuals, or entire departments. These postings can contain text as well as attachments. For example weekly assignements, or vehicle status might be included.

As a web application, NEWS represents a continued migration towards the integration of internet based and open source technologies into te CAPTAIN platform.