Toolbox Tech on the Connected Jobsite

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With the growing amount of technology being developed and used in the world and on construction sites today. It may seem daunting to start grasping and using these ideas out in the field.

Below is a growing list of terms and recommendations related to construction technology and connected jobsites.

Connected Jobsite: A connected jobsite can entail many things from digital documents and plans, to smart devices and wearables, to complete site monitoring. The jobsite uses a wireless network to enable the communication between people, equipment, and all things digital.

Technologies

Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE): A technology that allows a beacon to actively transmit data to another device such as a smartphone or a site monitoring network.

Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA): MFA is a method of confirming a user’s claimed identity. They are granted access only after successfully presenting two or more pieces of evidence (or factors). Most commonly 2-Factor Authentication (2FA) is used by using the user’s login credentials and a code sent to their mobile device.

NFC: A protocol that enables two devices, such as a smartphone and another object, to pass data. An example of this is when you might use your smartphone to “tap to pay” at the grocery store. NFC is a subset of RFID.

QR Code: A QR code consists of black squares arranged in a square grid on a white background. This can be read by an imaging device such as a smartphone. This matrix-style barcode can embed various data from a number to a full web URL.

RFID: Radio-frequency identification (RFID) uses electromagnetic fields to automatically identify and track tags attached to objects. The tags contain electronically-stored information that is then passed to the scanning device and then processed.

Hardware

Beacon: BLE transmitting devices that broadcast their identifier to nearby smart devices to provide information or perform actions when they are near the beacon.

Drone: A remote-controlled or autonomous multi-rotor aircraft used for surveying or inspecting. These areas of a jobsite are often too difficult or dangerous for a worker. With their small size and maneuverability, they can be flown indoors as well as outdoors.

Wearables: Smart devices that can be worn and will exchange data with a manufacturer, operator, and/or other connected devices, without requiring human intervention.

Terms

Asset Management: Keeping track of a company’s tools, equipment, or other resources using a mobile/cloud application.

Mesh Network: A wireless network where each node is connected to many other nodes cooperating and routing data efficiently.

Telematics: monitoring the location, movements, status, and behavior of fleet vehicles or heavy equipment.

Tool Tracking: See asset management.

Smart Devices: Smartphones, tablets, watches… devices that allow you to connect, generally over wifi to a network and exchange data and communications.

IoT: The “Internet of Things” is a general name given to all kinds of smart devices that allow connectivity and communications to normally unconnected items.

Social Media: Interactive computer-mediated technologies that facilitate the creation and sharing of information, ideas, career interests and other forms of expression via virtual communities and social networking services.

GPS: The Global Positioning System that allows location coordinates and therefore the tracking of a device.

Site-Monitoring Network: A mesh network setup on a jobsite to monitor connected devices on or near the project.

Software as a Service (SaaS): Cloud infrastructure applications are accessible from various client devices through a client interface, such as a smart device, web browser, or an app.

The Cloud: Cloud service providers own and operate their SaaS applications at data centers and access is generally via the Internet.

Password Security: Set a date on your calendar to remind you to change your passwords at least semi-yearly (every 180 days). Develop a pattern that you can remember. Do so without using obvious or easy to guess dates, names, or patterns. #passwordisnotagoodpassword

Work Safe!