JimPinto.com - Connections for Growth & Success™
No. 90 : July 03, 2002

Keeping an eye on technology futures.
Business commentary - no hidden agendas.
New attitudes, no platitudes.

  • Automation Update
    • Honeywell & Siemens to swap divisions (continued)
    • JimPinto.com weblogs
  • Technology to fight terrorism
  • When will machines become 'conscious'?
  • Remote medical monitoring & control
  • 1 Billion PCs served
  • eFeedback:
    • Siemens SHOULD buy Honeywell
    • Invensys(Baan) release written by buzz-word-generator(BWG)
    • Choice between digital and film cameras

Automation Update

Honeywell & Siemens to swap divisions (continued)

In the last JimPinto.com eNews (26 June, 02) we brought the news that Siemens and Honeywell may trade the Siemens fire protection and building management businesses for the Honeywell process automation business (Industry Solutions - originally Industrial Automation and Controls, IAC), plus some cash.

Evidently, this news had not yet proliferated through the regular channels - the traffic on the JimPinto.com website and weblogs, and the daily signups for eNews, suddenly achieved a record level!

Here are some clarifications and updates:

No Hidden agendas: Please note that JimPinto.com is not affiliated with anyone; we do not support and are not against any specific company or individual. We report news from credible sources, and only after we have confirmed with at least a couple of reliable data points. When our sources have requested anonymity, we do not disclose their names under any circumstances. It matters not whether you believe or disbelieve this information. Only time will tell whether or not these were "just rumors". Our track record speaks for itself.

Honeywell Organization: We feel we need to clarify the Honeywell org-structure. Industrial Automation & Controls (IAC) is now known as IS - Industry Solutions, total sales $ 0.9b, reporting to Terry Sutter. Roger Fradin heads up Security & Fire Solutions ($1.9b), which now includes Control Products ($ 2.2b) after Bill Ketelhut exited (by mutual consent). ACS Services, sales $ 2.2b, reports to John Selldorff. All these are part of Automation & Control Solutions (Honeywell "red") that is headed up by Kevin Gilligan, who in turn reports to David Cote, Honeywell CEO.

Click The Honeywell website shows ACS organization

Ketelhut exit: Bill Ketelhut was originally at GE, where he was the product-manager of the successful Genius I/O products, during the time of Bob Collins. After at stint as President of GE-Microswitch, a GE/Honeywell collaboration, Ketelhut moved to Foxboro (Invensys); he moved to Singapore for a while and then became President of Foxboro Systems. Midst the mess of the Yurko debacle at Invensys, Ketelhut quit. He was well known at GE and they planned (he had a signed contract) that he would run Honeywell IAC (Industry Solutions and Control Products) if the GE deal had gone through. When the GE deal was squashed, Honeywell picked up Ketelhut's contract and he stayed, ostensibly to run Control Products. However, Ketehut was not active - he didn't want to stay without GE in charge. His separation a year later was by "mutual consent". It had nothing to do with the possible Siemens deal.

Honeywell denial on Siemens deal: It is highly unusual for management to comment on rumors, particularly in writing. Apparently, Terry Sutter wanted this email to make its way to JimPinto.com for publication. It is included here - exactly as received.

    Date: 02-06-27 14:48:13 EDT
    To: Industry Solutions Employees Worldwide
    From: Terry Sutter, President, Industry Solutions

    It is Honeywell's policy not to respond to rumors of acquisitions or mergers. However, I must address an unfounded story currently circulating outside Honeywell that's connected to Monday's announcement of the ACS realignment.

    I can tell you unequivocally that Honeywell is not in discussions with Siemens about the Industry Solutions business. The rumor is not true and we do not know its source. Industry Solutions remains an important ACS business and Honeywell is counting on us for future growth.

    Rumors are needlessly distracting. We have made a lot of progress on Experion PKS with customers and employees. Let's stay focused on meeting our customer commitments and achieving results. Keep working to grow our business, increase productivity, reduce our cost to serve, improve employee satisfaction, and drive Six Sigma and digitization. Thank you for all your efforts as we work to successfully close the second quarter.

    Signed: Terry Sutter

Pinto's Comments:

It is interesting that this "official denial" came at all. As the memo says, this is normally NEVER done. We guess they had to say something and do it fast.

There are 2 possibilities: a/ If there is anything afoot with Siemens, Terry Sutter does not know. Or b/ After careful consideration by Gilligan and Cote, Sutter was told to make this denial.

It is interesting to note that 2 years ago, John Weber, President of IS (then IAC) proclaimed loudly that IAC was NOT for sale - just a few days before the United Technologies deal was announced. But, Weber's discomfort was short-lived - he was gone before too long. With hindsight, Weber was correct (but not the way he intended) - IAC was not being sold. ALL of Honeywell was!

I invite (challenge) Terry Sutter top contact me directly to discuss this 'rumor'. I commit that his comments and feedback will be published without editing of any kind.

The Yahoo message board for HON has a lot of interesting comments, mixed in with the noise.

Click Read for yourself - Yahoo message board - HON

Look for lots of NEW NEWS in the next days and weeks!

JimPinto.com weblog - use it!

Use the JimPinto.com weblogs to read the latest 'chat' and review the breaking news on these important moves by Honeywell and Siemens.

If you have any comments, updates, news or views about Honeywell or Siemens, or from your own perspective, please 'blog'.

Click Honeywell weblog

Click Siemens weblog

Technology to fight terrorism

The National Research Council has developed a blueprint for using current technologies and creating new capabilities to reduce the likelihood of terrorist attacks. The lost of recommendations is long - protecting and controlling nuclear weapons and material, producing sufficient supplies of vaccines and antibodies, securing shipping containers that could hide bombs or toxins, protecting power grids more effectively, improving ventilation systems in public buildings, emergency communications for workers responding to disasters, and more research to find treatments for deadly diseases that can be spread by bioterrorism and to develop new computer programs that can "connect the dots" among apparently unrelated fragments of intelligence information.

In response, many venture capitalists (pragmatic, not patriotic) are now investing in security-related firms. VC firms are targeting new portfolio investments in companies boasting innovative security-related technology that can be utilized in the war against terrorism. While part of the interest can be attributed to a swell of post-9/11 patriotism, there is a more practical reason: the $38b in new U.S. government spending slated for homeland security.

A major sea change has occurred, as venture capitalists now openly discuss the importance of winning government contracts and taking advantage of the government's new spending priorities. The risk? This may only be a speculative spending bubble.

Click NY Times: Science-Technology Drive Is Urged to Fight Terror

When will machines become conscious?

In my view, this is not an IF question, it is merely a matter of time before machines (or techno-humans) achieve consciousness.

Most people state (from their gut) their "belief" that machines can NEVER equal humans in things like "common sense", "intuition" and "love". Time and time again this is recognized as merely a "belief", with no real justification. Of course, there is an uncomfortable feeling one gets if one admits that someday perhaps computer intelligence will exceed that of a human.

Technology futurist Ray Kurzweil insists that machines will indeed achieve consciousness within the next 30 or so years (certainly by the time my grandson gets to his father's age).

Two philosophers, a biologist, and an evolutionary theorist critique Ray Kurzweil's prediction that computers will attain a level of intelligence beyond human capabilities, and at least apparent consciousness. Kurzweil responds to these critics of "strong AI."

Click Will Machines Become Conscious?

Click Are We Spiritual Machines?

Click Pinto: The Evolution of the TechnoHuman

Remote medical monitoring & control

This discussion of 'machine consciousness' bring me to one of my favorite topics - the 'techno-human', or 'cyborg'. If we don't "believe" that machines will become 'conscious', then how about a combination of human and machine? At what level will that combination cease to be machine? Become human?

If you define a techno-human as someone whose body combines synthetic hardware with biological, there are already millions among us. Every person with a pacemaker or other implanted medical device is one. Indeed, sophisticated medical devices are making their way into more and more parts of the body, including the brain, cementing our cyborg destiny.

Next, what happens when the devices already implanted get connected to the Internet? That prospect is closer than you think.

  • Nearly all cardiac pacemakers and defibrillators collect data about the heart. This data is collected wirelessly by passing a wand-like device over the patient's chest, typically every few months at the doctor's office. Now, Medtronic has received FDA approval to let defibrillator patients collect the data themselves at home and send it to their doctors by connecting the wand to a modem. Not only will it save them a trip to the doctor's office, but the doctors will now be able to monitor their health remotely - and more regularly if needed. There are currently 2 million Medtronic pacemakers and defibrillators implanted in patients' bodies that technically have this capability, waiting to get plugged in.
  • Neurological implants are used to treat advanced cases of tremor or Parkinson's disease. With an online link, a doctor can remotely adjust the level of neural stimulation. And, the process can be automated, with computer monitoring and control.
  • Implantable sensors could be developed to monitor organ functions, blood pressure, glucose levels, blood toxins, and other variables, with remote computer analysis and control of medications and dosage.
If you, or a loved one, could have better treatment through constant monitoring and control by a remote computer, would you find any reason to refuse? This is only the beginning of just one of the major revolutions coming in the new century. eSpeak to me!

Click Business 2.0 - The Cyborgs next door

PCs: more than 1 billion served

Approximately 1 billion PCs have been shipped worldwide since the mid-'70s, according to a recent study by consulting firm Gartner. 75% of these have gone to professional, or work-related environments, while the other 25% have been for personal, or home, use. About 81.5% of PCs shipped have been desktops.

    PC usage:
    • US - 38.8%
    • W. Europe - 24.6%
    • Asia-Pacific - 11.4%
    • Japan - 9%
    • Latin America - 4.1%
    • Rest of world - 11.8%.
The billionth PC probably shipped in April 2002. But, with declining prices, increasing use of the Internet, and growing PC use overseas, the next billion should ship by 2007 or 2008.

Expanding the market will require that PCs become smaller and even less expensive than they are today, while delivering greater functionality and performance. The demand continues because of the power of the PC to leverage intellectual capital, unlocking the capabilities of individuals to succeed, and companies to profit.

Click News.com - More than 1 billion PCs served

Click Intel Celebrates The Industry's 1 Billionth PC


A knowledgeable industry insider and Siemens observer wrote :
    "Whether or not the current spate of rumors about Siemens buying Honeywell IAC/IS is true, my suggestion is that Siemens OUGHT to either get serious in this business and buy Honeywell, or Foxboro - or they should get out! Their current position is a mess of marginal products and non-existent marketing and sales."
The amazing Invensys(Baan) press-release that achieved 0.0 on the Flesch reading-ease scale, attracted a lot of humor. One marketing guru responded :
    "I love this! Remember when we were writing buzz word generators? The Invensys release was evidently written by a badly constructed BWG!"
Still on the subject of the choice between digital or film cameras, Steve Elwart [steve.elwart@ergon.com] wrote what might be the best summary of the current crop of feedback:
    "Digital cameras have been a boon for me! On the work side, we can take pictures of equipment and send it to the vendor for analysis in minutes instead of days. Great for piping layouts, corrosion analysis, and equipment repairs.

    "On the personal side, while you are absolutely right on the pain to print them out, you can take pictures of an event and put them up on the web or make a slide show in minutes. My kids love to see pictures of the grandkid's birthday party that same day!"

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