Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Botswana Introduces Electronic Passports

Botswana to introduce electronic passports

MUNICH, Germany -- The government of Botswana has awarded a contract to Giesecke & Devrient for the manufacture and delivery of 150,000 electronic passports, according to a news release. G&D also will supply the data acquisition and personalization systems for travel documents.

In addition, the Munich-based technology company will be delivering Botswana's border control system with card readers. The contract was signed in Gaborone, the country's capital. It will take two years to implement the system, with passports scheduled for issue to the citizens of Botswana from 2010. The contract is worth roughly 15 million euros (U.S. $19.3 million).

Botswana is the first South African country to introduce the electronic passport.

"We are proud that the Ministry of Labour and Home Affairs has entrusted us with this demanding project," said Hans Wolfgang Kunz, head of G&D's government solutions business. "The new electronic passport will fulfill the extensive ICAO and EU specifications and achieve international recognition and validity. In conjunction with an efficient border-control system, it will ensure Botswana is well prepared to meet the increasing security requirements of international travel."

Algeira To Conduct $1B In Electrical Distribution System Upgrades

GE Securites $1 Billion Contract In Algeria

Atlanta-based GE Energy announced Tuesday a $1 billion deal to upgrade Algeria’s gas-fueled power plants.

The sale allows Sonelgaz, the North African country’s state-owned gas company, to boost electricity production at 13 power plants nationwide. The services contract, which could top $1 billion, will also improve the efficiency and reliability of 51 gas turbines installed at those plants.

As Algeria’s economy grows, so too do its energy needs. Two years ago, according to the Ministry of Energy and Mining, the country’s electricity generating capacity reached 7,077 megawatts. By 2010, it should rise to 14,000 megawatts.

“Energy companies around the globe are working to get the maximum efficiency out of their existing power plants,” Luis Ramírez, general manager of contractual services for GE Energy, said in a statement. “As they break ground on new projects they are also implementing service agreements to make the most of their investment.”

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

The Geographic Information System Used To Plot Election Results Get An A+

As a person who has to know about Location Based Services and related technology as part of my job I was blown off of my feet by the advancement in the technology to represent election results down to the county level. All of the major news organizations knocked it out of the park with their ability to provide web based information in graphical form that translated into data once the user clicked through.

I will be pissed if they take down these Interactive maps any time soon. I need to learn this stuff

Here are is a sampling of who got it right:

Fox News - Love the drill down effects and animation

CNN Gets Their Props as well - they have their local election result details in a more straight forward and presentable format

MSNBC - I like the pop up summary sheet that provides information

Wall Street Journal - comprehensive information