Kavi Blog

Articles on collaborative technologies, team effectiveness, Kavi customer success and occasional product news.

2016 Annual User Group Meeting

Kavi User Group participants

User Group participants

We held a fun and engaging User Group meeting last week in Alexandria, VA, with attendees from over 30 customers. A few highlights

  • We had a customer presentation from Klaus Moschner, Program Manager for NGMN, Next Generation Mobile Networks. Klaus honored us with a visit all the way from Frankfurt, Germany.
  • Teresa Ambrosius, Standards Manager for the Academy Standards Board of the American Academy of Forensic Science gave us an update on the transition of standards from NIST’s Organization of Scientific Area Committees (OSAC). JP Jones, Program Manager for OSAC, also filled in the NIST side of the story.
  • We held two interactive working group sessions where customers collaborated in teams to help us prioritize features and product enhancements for future development.
  • Last, but certainly not least, we honored Peter Symes of SMPTE with our thanks and some special gifts. Peter is retiring at the end of December after an illustrious career as SMPTE’s Director of Standards. Peter has been a valued customer and user of Kavi over many years and has contributed to helping us make the product better in many ways. Peter was also awarded the Presidential Proclamation Award by SMPTE for his years of service to the industry. Here’s a video of Peter being interviewed at the SMPTE Annual Awards Gala.

Pictured in the photo above:

  • Megan Bixler, Technical Program Manager, APCO International
  • Michael Meleedy, Business Operations Manager, SNIA
  • Victor Carneiro, Web Developer, NEMA
  • Harriet Costa, Technical Staff, Industrial Internet Consortium
  • Mauricio Roldan, Manager of Engineering Services, SMPTE

The Importance of Consensus in the Standards World

cascade-siskyo

Photo by Bob Wick, BLM

After the Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument was created in 2000, conflict arose between ranchers and researchers over land usage. The U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM) intervened and created a working group to coordinate a wide range of stakeholders, including ranchers, researchers, local communities, environmental interest groups and elected officials. After a long and transparent fact-finding, public-awareness and discussion process, the committee released a new plan that took each point of view into account. As a BLM representatives later explained in a report, “Through the process, the key stakeholders also recognized that their interests would be advanced by coming to an agreement instead of accepting an outcome that did not include their interests.” read more…

Product Updates and Previews

Our software development focus at Kavi over the recent past has been on building the technical foundation of a modern SaaS solution that will serve our customers well into the future.

Around mid-year, we hit a development milestone that paved the path for the majority of our Workspace 5 customers to upgrade to the new version. We have upgraded around 12 customers so far this year, with many more in the queue. We’ve established a process for a smooth upgrade to Workspace 6 for customers who are ready.

On this blog post, we summarize the innovations we’ve delivered this year and we share our priorities for upcoming development.

Our aim with Workspace is to continue to improve it and position it as the most cost effective “system of record” for mission-critical work. Workspace is a very powerful alternative to much more expensive solutions like SharePoint and custom-built solutions. Our main theme for the next major phase of development is to make it easier to use, more flexible and more connectable. read more…

UAS: When Technology Outpaces Standards

It seems, suddenly, that drones are everywhere. Military organizations, technology companies, recreational enthusiasts, academics and industry are all dreaming of new possibilities for unmanned aircraft systems (UAS).Drone

Regulations and safety standards, however, have not been able to keep pace with the technology. At a recent conference of the Society for Standards Professionals, Cortney Robinson of the Aerospace Industries Association described the deluge of drones entering our skies: There are currently 600,000 commercial UAS in U.S. airspace, and the FAA predicts that number will rise to 2.7 million by 2020. The swift emergence of UAS has already overwhelmed many regulators who have no rules in place, and countless regional organizations have cobbled together guidelines. Robinson is heading up the development of what may be the most promising option: ISO/TC 20/SC 16, a UAS standardization initiative by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO). read more…

Collaborating for Good

The private sector has a long history of supporting charitable causes through foundations, volunteerism and grants. In recent years, a growing number of businesses are coming together to enact social change both within and across industries. The resulting collaborations are mission-oriented and powered by the same model as traditional trade organizations. In this new context, however, the model is being used exclusively to make the world a better place. hands holding young plant

One of the most prominent examples of this new form of social movement is B Corps, companies certified by “a nonprofit organization that serves a global movement of people using business as a force for good.” Members meet a rigorous set of standards relating to social accountability, sustainability, and performance.
read more…

Building a Collaboration Strategy

MeetingFor organizations that rally around a central, defining mission, creating a culture of collaboration is essential to success. There are many factors that can interrupt effective collaboration: globally dispersed teams, telecommuting, flexible schedules and our distraction-laced modern life. Technology tools can help overcome some of those challenges, but building a true culture of collaboration depends on a more complex mix.

I explored this topic in a recent article for CMSWire and shared three steps to build a better collaboration strategy that will support an organization’s mission. To succeed, organizations need to look beyond technology and tools to build a culture of transparency and knowledge sharing, streamline processes to improve productivity and develop an infrastructure that nurtures collaboration.

As these organizations represent a growing phenomenon among businesses, leaders across industries are paying close attention to what sets these forward-looking companies apart. Read the full article at CMSWire to learn more about common collaboration challenges and how fostering a team-oriented culture can help an organization achieve its mission.

Millennials Are Increasingly Shaping Workplace Collaboration

As Baby Boomers move into retirement, Millennials have become the generation with the largest portion of the labor market, representing nearly one-third of workers in the United States. Increasingly, as they step into leadership roles, we are seeing a shift in how organizations manage people and projects.Millenial collaboration

“We’re in the midst of a momentous generation swap that will ultimately change management and leadership as we know it,” Geil Browning wrote in Inc. “The Baby Boomers have known traditional top-down leadership their entire careers. As they retire, that linear structure will not be as prevalent.”

read more…

A Portland, Oregon Standards Story

Portland is sometimes called “Stumptown,” a reference to what the early immigrants found when they arrived on the banks of the Willamette River. The native landscape had originally been blanketed with old-growth fir, spruce and other big trees, which, WoodSkyscrapers after extensive logging, left huge stumps throughout the developing region. That wealth of forest provided the lumber for the growth of Portland, the Northwest and many parts of the U.S.  read more…

Why Standards Matter

William Sellers

William Sellers

A little more than 150 years ago, a mechanical engineer named William Sellers initiated the first successful standardization fight in history, establishing a set specification for the standard screw thread. Sellers had proposed the adoption of a system of screw threads that was easier for ordinary mechanics and machinists to cut than a similar design already in use. His struggle was about far more than a particular standard, business columnist James Surowiecki argued in a case study published in Wired: It was about the importance of standardization itself.  read more…

Work Worth Doing

There’s an often-repeated story about a janitor working his shift at NASA who, when asked what he was doing, responded that he was “helping to put a man on the moon.” From its very inception, NASA has been a mission-driven agency, with missions that both required and inspired dedication and focus at every level of the organization. What’s more, the organization’s mission and purpose remain constant today, nearly 60 years later. IoT image

Whether non-profit or for-profit, public, private or governmental, a mission-driven organization is differentiated by its authentic commitment to higher-order goals and its efforts to promote responsible practices along the supply chain. These entities represent a growing phenomenon. Their impact exceeds their collective size in terms of generating path-breaking ideas that can shape entire industries, author Michael V. Russo wrote in the Harvard Business Review.
read more…

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