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By Elian Zimmermann
30 April 2020

The Importance Of Connectivity During Covid-19

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Transcript

00:06
Kevin
Hello, folks, and welcome to our webinar today the importance of connectivity. My name is Kevin McCluskey. I’m co director of sales engineering at Inductive Automation. And I’m joined by a couple of fine gentlemen from element eight. Leonard. And I’m sorry, Jaco, I believe is how you pronounce your name. I always it wrong, though. Would you each mind giving a quick introduction to yourselves as well as we kick off here? 


00:40
Jaco
Yeah, 100%. Thanks, Kevin. As Kevin mentioned, my name is Jaco Markwat. I’m the managing director of Element ATN South Africa. And also on the call with me is, or with us, rather, is Lenny Smith, who’s our customer success manager here at element eight as well. Thank you again for joining us and we look forward to spend some quality time with you today. 


01:05
Kevin
Thanks, Jaco. All right, so I wanted to very quickly start us out with an agenda. I appreciate everyone being here with us. We have some really interesting and I think exciting things to talk about here today. I can move forward here. Today’s agenda will talk a little bit about multiple things here. So we’ll start out talking a little bit about why connectivity is so important. We all realize that connectivity is important, but what makes it different? Today we have a few inspiring stories that we can talk about that are exciting to me. Roadblocks to connectivity, things that you might come across along the way that you have difficulty getting past. And some of the things about inductive automation and ignition, our product that we’re going to be talking about here, some that helps alleviate some of those roadblocks. 


02:09
Kevin
We have three different forms of connectivity and of course, this webinar. It’s about just general connection and the importance of connectivity, but it also includes details about our software. And so we’ll be talking about things from that perspective as well. We’ll be talking a bit about the latest version of ignition and the perspective module, which is something that allows for web based visualization and allows for the ability to quickly do mobile devices and web interfaces. We’ll talk about security because security is paramount for all of these systems. And we’ll actually give some examples of architectures and a demonstration of everything that we’re talking about here and then follow it up with A-Q-A. So throughout the whole presentation, as you have questions, you can go ahead and ask those questions. 


03:04
Kevin
There’s a little questions panel that you can hop into over in the Gotomeeting panel that you have there, the Gotowebinar panel. And if you ask questions, we can answer some of those along the way. If we don’t get to them along the way, we will certainly answer them at the end. And we have ten or 15 minutes set aside for questions, so don’t be shy. We love questions and there’s a lot of information that we have that we are very happy to share. So first, introductions, you got a little bit of an introduction to each one of us. I didn’t give as much of an introduction to me, so my name is Kevin McCluskey. I’m a sales engineer and I’m also co director of sales engineering with inductive automation. 


03:52
Kevin
And I’ve been with the company for about ten years, coming up on eleven years, actually. So I’ve worked with hundreds of customers who are rolling out enterprise applications all the way from folks who are doing individual installations on small systems and just adding a little bit of visualization or a little bit of data collection, all the way up to folks who are doing full rollouts for hundreds of locations and hundreds of plants, and pulling information back to central locations and dashboarding and CEO visibility into the overall operation. So there’s a whole wide range of things that our software is used in, and I’ve worked with a lot of folks. And in terms of questions, as you’re asking questions, I go anywhere from the bits and bytes down on the engineering side up to all the way to business value, really. 


04:49
Kevin
I’m an engineer at heart and I am happy to answer anything from a technical standpoint, but we’ll try not to have this be too technical of a presentation for all of this, because there’s a lot of value and a lot of things that we can show that. I feel like speak really well, not even getting into the technical weeds, but just taking a look at it at a high level and seeing some of the results that you can get in a very short time. So inductive automation is a company that’s been around for a little bit longer than I’ve been with the company. We’ve been around since 2003, and we’re based out of California, and we do a software called ignition. And you probably have heard of ignition. That’s probably part of why you’re here. But even if you haven’t, that’s great. 


05:39
Kevin
We have a nice introduction here to ignition overall, and we’re joined by element eight. So, Jaco, over to you to give us a quick introduction to who element eight is. 


05:52
Jaco
Awesome. Thanks, kev. Yeah, I suppose, first of all, it’s lovely to see some familiar names, and I suppose I can visualize the faces on the call. I haven’t seen or spoken with a few of you folks for quite a while, so it’s really nice encouraging to see you on the call. And for those of you that we have not yet met, we look forward to meeting with all of you soon over the next couple of weeks and months. So although the element eight team has been serving as individuals the industrial automation market for nearly two decades, it’s hard to imagine that, but it’s real. We are a brand new business. Our team grew up in the manufacturing and industrial automation world, and really over the past 20 years we heard firsthand from the community how frustrated they were with complicated and expensive solutions. 


06:45
Jaco
So our team went in search of the most powerful, intuitive and unlimited solution. And here we are today. We’re hugely excited and proud to be the authorized distributor for the incredible ignition platform in South Africa and the southern african market. We’re open for business. Our technical support and enablement function is live and the team is ready to help. Our business will also. Sorry. Our website will also be live shortly which will mark our official digital launch. Certified training will also be available at our office in four ways and we’re hoping, depending on how we progress with the phasing of the Covid-19 lockdown, we’re hoping to have our inaugural live community event this October in Johannesburg. I’ve already introduced Lenny. Lenny will share some thoughts with you in a moment. But together with Clarice who heads up our marketing, we’re building out our team. 


07:44
Jaco
And it really is a team that is fueled by the passion of providing our industry community and you with a new way and experience built on ignition. And we look forward to serving you. So thank you again for joining us and thank you for the introduction and opportunity. 


08:00
Kevin
Kevin sure. Thanks. Akio. The last thing that I wanted to mention here is our inductive automation distributor program. So inductive automation is based out of the United States, based out of California, but we have presence around the world where we have folks using ignition in over 100 countries. We have thousands of integrators who are in our integrator program, but we realized that certain markets, it makes a lot of sense to have local folks. So we started our distributor program and we have a handful of distributors around the world who are companies that are very well vetted by inductive automation. 


08:43
Kevin
They’re companies who we feel you can put a lot of trust in and who are going to be able to support the local market, who are going to be able to provide a very high level of technical support, provide individual help for purchases of ignition, and be a contact locally and be folks who are able to be boots on the ground, essentially in different areas. And so element eight has gone through a very extensive vetting process, and we are very happy to have element eight on board. We are very happy about the relationship that we have, and we’re looking forward to going forward here. So obviously, we are providing a lot of support and we’re providing a good portion of this webinar. 


09:33
Kevin
I’ll be talking for a lot of this, and then element eight will be mentioning some things along the way as well, and talking through a few things. And I’ll be giving a demo. So enough said about that. But we’re really happy to be doing this right now. All right, so if we’re to launch in here, so why is connectivity so important? And my colleague Travis Cox, who’s talking about this with me recently, he liked to give this analogy. If you take a look at this, you take a look at our current situation, you take a look at the world situation right now, this difficult time. Can you imagine this time if we didn’t have connectivity? 


10:20
Kevin
Can you imagine it if we had no cell phones, if we had no ability to talk to or to get online, or to have screen sharing or to have webinars like this, or to have connection to family or friends? It would be a very different time. It’s already a very difficult time. But I think if you take a step back and really realize how far we’ve come as a society in terms of connectivity, it really opens that up. On a personal level, having that connectivity allows for that remote access, allows for the remote access to folks, to friends, to family, and allows for folks to stay connected inside emergencies, during emergencies such as our current situation, it also is something that we have come and grown to expect. 


11:18
Kevin
So if we are needing to connect with someone or with something, what’s the typical response now? You pull out your phone, you have your smartphone, you want to pull up information, you want to pull up details on something, you want to do a search, you want to take a look at information that you need, right? Then you have access to do that. And there’s an expectation at this point, I think is fair to say, that most folks want to be able to do that or expect to be able to do that in most areas of the world. And as part of that, you actually get a variety of benefits. And this applies not only to, on a personal level, of course, but if you’re talking about industrial processes, if you’re talking about places that scadas are used. 


12:12
Kevin
If you’re talking about places that IIoT platforms are used or other technologies, or just accessing your business remotely, these benefits are the same. You have speed and you can very quickly make decisions. You have the ability to access different things that you will probably need to have that information in order to make those speedy decisions. The reliability is something that used to be one of the considerations and now is seen more as a benefit because systems have become so reliable for the most part, that you normally have an expectation about that. The flexibility, the ability to be anywhere that you want and do the things that you need to do is a real benefit. 


13:00
Kevin
And if you take a look at this from the standpoint of having a mobile application or having a desktop web browser based application that you have access to a plant floor to a factory from, you have a real cost savings and a return on investment that can be pretty significant. If you can make quick decisions about what needs to happen at a specific time when something’s happening in real time, it could easily lead to avoiding a situation that would be costly or making a decision that saves significant costs at this point, this is a story that I’m going to pass this over to Jaco and Lenny here to talk a little bit about some of their personal experience with all of this. Yeah, thanks, Kevin. 


13:59
Jaco
And maybe just perhaps add some local context and urgency, really, I suppose, like everywhere we have here in South Africa, seen massive and really just precepting the disruption over the past weeks. And this Friday, South Africa will enter level four of lockdown. Starting this Friday. I’m not going to go into the detail. For those of us that are, hopefully, we’re all familiar with what that means, but this Friday will enter level four lockdown. And broadly, for the mining and manufacturing world, there will either mean 100%, for example, open cost mining, 50% capacity for other parts of mining and manufacturing, and as a broad baseline, 20% sort of capacity and functionality for all of manufacturing. 


14:46
Jaco
So it is a phased approach, but I suppose with that, there’s really the opportunity for us to improve our strategy and operations and the way that we do business as teams, as individual contributors and teams. So Covid-19 has really exposed the vulnerabilities in supply chain and operational resilience of our manufacturing here in South Africa. And it has really highlighted the need for a more lean, agile and adaptable approach and the kind of always on capability or mentality, really, that Kevin mentioned. And it has also very rapidly accelerated our team towards a fully digital workplace where probably most, I would safely say most teams were not prepared for or enabled for. And the best digital workplace really brings together all of these tools into one cohesive, productive environment. 


15:40
Jaco
And really the starting point or what the best digital workplace really enables is a mobile working from any device anywhere, or that always on mentality that Kevin, that you mentioned, and what does that really look like? For example, our system integrators and our users here in South Africa. Lenny. 


16:08
Leonard
Cool, perfect. Thanks, Jaco. So yeah, as a system integrator, I’ve been speaking to some of the system integrators during the week, and some of them, depending on your client base, and obviously are you delivering essential service and to which industries you are actually delivering services. But a lot of the sis that I’ve been speaking to are starting to actually run out of work. They’ve done what they could and they’re pretty much stuck at home. But there’s a massive opportunity, because as people are coming into and out of lockdown phases and potentially going back to different phases, and who knows what that’s going to do from a manufacturing perspective. But customers at this point in time, just like we are providing online digital learning experiences, et cetera, customers want this data right here in their fingertips for their plants. 


17:01
Leonard
Now, as Kevin mentioned, that ignition’s got the new perspective module, which is pretty much their web development module. We can easily put onto a site, connect to legacy or current systems, and actually provide that connectivity and that data and information right then into the user’s hand. Now, the beauty about this is that we’re actually allowing the integrator to actually develop these projects right then there in the house. They don’t have to break the curfew or the extensions of what lockdown has been imposed to them, and they can do it right then there from their home. And it’s very simple to actually get access to this data. All that needs to happen is you need to get a URL available to your client at the end of the day by using this new web module. 


17:48
Leonard
So integrators can still play a massive part by sitting at home and developing these solutions to get this digital transformation. And all information to the people at their homes. And developers can continue this, they can continue develop, they can continue to provide services, although we are bound to the confinements of our homes. Now, from the end user perspective, not all of the end users might be able to return to work. As Jaco mentioned, open cost mining only 100% of the workforce, but other mining might only be 50%. So there will still be a massive amount of people that’s sitting at home that needs to have access. 


18:31
Leonard
We’ve got one story that we’re working on where the facility is about 200 km away from where the people are situated in lockdown, and they need that data now with this to get that data, they’re revamping their entire information management model to see how they can remotely get that. And obviously ignition plays a massive role into that. A lot of companies are still running with just the minimal skeleton crew on site, but potentially the maintenance manager must still be at home and they need to work together to solve problems on these sites. So be able to give this information to everybody, to keep everybody into the loop is extremely valuable and probably will be extremely valuable for potentially after lockdown. I can definitely see that this is opening up a complete new way of work. 


19:20
Leonard
How people will work in the future and the ability to get that information quickly from anywhere, from a mobile device, from your home, on your smart tv, is definitely something that will happen and sure will continue as we go forward. But you can probably imagine. Tell me, Lenny, you’re sounding like it’s a very simple process. I’ve got legacy stuff. There must be some roadblocks. It can’t be just as simple as employing a module, but I’m sure, Kevin, you can maybe talk through all of those and tell us that it is actually that simple and possible to. 


19:57
Kevin
Know. And I’m an engineer at heart, as I mentioned before, so I’m certainly not going to tell you that for 100% of the cases it’s that simple. But I can tell you for 90 95% of the cases, there’s a very good chance that it could be that simple. And I’m excited to show off some of this because there’s a ton of power here. I have a background inside integration myself. I worked for a systems integrator for a number of years before coming to invective automation, and back then, nothing like this existed. So it’s really fun to talk about. Thanks for going through all of that. Let me jump to the next item here. So, roadblocks to connectivity, if we’re taking a look at the typical roadblocks. As I said, I used to work for a systems integrator, so I’m pretty familiar with these roadblocks. 


20:49
Kevin
Legacy proprietary software or communications can be one of those significant roadblocks. Restrictive licensing models. If you’re trying to use software and you want to open it up to lots of folks, sometimes it’s per seat or per tag. Licensing difficulty in deploying applications where there’s separate client installs, or there could be different deployment rules that need to come into play, or different networking things that are difficult, or it’s difficult to get security right tied to a specific operating system. You might have to have a version, you might even have to have a specific patch set in an operating system to get things going non standards based for some of these technologies and doesn’t use the latest technology. 


21:36
Kevin
So some of these are using sets that are feature sets, libraries that are very old, that are not able to take advantage of some of the connectivity that you might need today. And then there’s that Otit divide. Of course, we’re talking a bit about ignition and our software, so this is a little bit in contrast to that. So for inductive automation, each one of those points, we’ve worked really hard to try to eliminate those roadblocks. We have integrated routes and our whole company, our CEO, our founder had an integration business that he ran for 2025 years before starting inductive automation. So there are very deep integration roots in terms of the pain points that were trying to solve. Connectivity is part of our DNA, it’s part of what we do. 


22:31
Kevin
Where we started with IT technologies and OT technologies at the same time started after the web started after it was 2003 when we started. So these technologies were already in place. We didn’t really have a legacy that we needed to hold on to or protect. And we also started with a modular platform idea so we can add and adapt to new technologies without abandoning old technologies. So we’re coming in with a solving problem attitude. Ignition works really hard to provide access to just about everyone. We have an unlimited licensing model, so unlimited tags, unlimited clients, and if you hear that and you’re used to some of the other softwares out there and you haven’t heard that before, you might say, but Kevin, how do you do that? That’s not possible. Nobody else does that. Well, we made an early decision to do that. 


23:35
Kevin
So all of our default packages are unlimited in terms of licensing, when it comes to tags and when it comes to clients and when it comes to designers, that’s all built in. We wanted to just take the roadblocks away and make it so that it was easy to do things. And as you can see, fun and affordable. We really wanted it to be a lot of fun and a joy to work with. Our mission statement, inductive automation. Our mission is to create industrial software that empowers our customers to swiftly turn great ideas into reality by removing all technological and economic obstacles. That’s kind of our north star. That’s what we go for as a company every day. 


24:18
Kevin
And the Otit friction that we’ve seen a lot of times, ignition really helps bridge that gap as well, because ignition uses a lot of IT technologies that live right in the middle there. So ignition is going to be able to talk to active directory and it’s going to be able to talk to identity providers. If I throw in a few technical acronyms, Sam’l and OIDC and some of these other technologies, it’s almost entirely IP based. It’s going to run over Ethernet networks or anything that can ping other devices. There’s access and there’s support for SSL and TLS and SQL database connections and encryption just about everywhere. And so we set it up in a way that a lot of IT departments just understand it. 


25:11
Kevin
Whereas a lot of traditional software has a lot of different packages to install ignition as a single package, and you install that and the modules come with it and you’re good to go. And it runs on a lot of standard IT technologies. Instead of requiring a certain patch set on Windows, it’s fully cross platform and it’ll run on different items. And I’ve already mentioned some of these things here as I got excited about that OtId slide. But the unlimited licensing model mentioned that cross platform compatibility, Linux, Windows, OS X for the server and then for the clients, you have web based clients, you have mobile devices. And then we also have options for desktop clients. So those are cross platform as well based on it. Standard technologies, scalable for server client architecture that we have inside ignition, web managed web based. 


26:08
Kevin
We have a nice web interface for managing things. Modular configurability with multiple different modules that can be loaded in. And if you take a look at the connectivity, there are three main forms of connectivity. So if we start with data, which is devices, plcs and tags, getting access to that data is vital to any project and we try to make that easy. So unlimited licensing model is inside ignition. You don’t have to worry about the number of tags or the amount of data that’s going through the IIoT. Protocols like MQTT allow for some access to some of that stranded data in a really easy way, low bandwidth way. If you’re not using those, you can still get access to that data. But there are a lot of options for communication and connectivity there. 


27:00
Kevin
We have found that about 90% of data is stranded in the field, it’s not pulled in. There are tags that aren’t collected simply because someone doesn’t want to load down a system or they’re worried about the number of tags that they have licenses for. Ignition takes away that worry since you don’t have a tag limitation. Of course the hardware does at some point, but that’s somewhere between 500,000 and a million tags in general. So if you’re running a dedicated I O server, if you’re running everything together, it might be 250,000, but it’s still at least a quarter million tags that you’re going to get per server. And then you can link multiple servers together if you want to. So those numbers normally find for any smaller medium sized installation, large installations. 


27:46
Kevin
We have a lot of folks who are doing what’s called a scale out architecture, so you can really grow to millions or tens of millions or hundreds of millions of tags inside an overall system that is composed of a few different ignition gateways, ignition servers. We have native drivers for about a dozen driver suites. We of course talk over UA as well out to other driver suites. And one important note about ObcuA is that we can fairly easily connect to lots of existing SCADA systems. So ignition is not necessarily something that you put in place and you replace things with. Ignition can be a system, and a lot of folks do this for remote connectivity, where you install it right alongside something that exists. 


28:40
Kevin
But it makes accessing that data, creating reports, having visuals for folks, especially remote folks, makes that much easier than it would be if you were to try to spin up another server of maybe the existing system. So having ignition right next to it, connect over OPC, publish that out to clients, can be a very quick thing to do. MQTT is another good example of a protocol that’s easy to connect to. Ignition has the gateway network to communicate between servers, cloud injectors to go to Aws and Azure and Watson and Google Cloud platform. Ignition edge. If you need to run either an HMI or you need to do small data collection unit and you need storing forward inside that, it acts in both of those capacities. It also acts as edge computing. 


29:35
Kevin
So if you have some process you need to run, if you’ve gone relatively advanced or you’re looking to, and you want to do machine learning models that are running on the edge, ignition edge can take those and execute them locally. And that might even be a system that doesn’t have connectivity locally or connectivity centrally. Generally speaking, most folks do, and most folks want to. And in order to access that from your mobile device, you would want to have that connectivity. But technically, ignition edge can run standalone as well and yeah, you can deploy in any architecture. So a lot of folks do this on premise. A number of folks are doing things through the cloud. And one thing that ignition really excels at is combining those disparate systems together into a single location. Next form of connectivity here is configuration. 


30:30
Kevin
So inside ignition you have configuration uis, you have a drag and drop designer. There’s a single environment for doing the configuration of a project, for building out different items on the right hand side, you see it there, and you’ll see a little bit more in just a moment as I pull up and create a demo here for you. It’s on premise, it can be remote, it can be over VPN for clients. There’s no installation, there’s no restoring backups, there’s no licensing. That’s easy to just pull these things up inside a web browser for the configuration on the web pages. That’s very simple too. If you’re doing the design environment to design a project, then it’s a very simple install that comes on. It’s called the designer launcher. It takes 2 seconds. Concurrent development. It says enhanced in eight. 


31:27
Kevin
That’s eight isn’t a limitation for only having eight developers. Eight is the new version of ignition called ignition eight that we came out with last year. That is basically the concurrent developments. Even better in ignition eight. So you can have multiple folks working on systems at the same time. You could have ten or 20 or 30 or even 100 folks who are all working on the same project at the same time. And then one person would make changes to a specific resource, and then other folks can load that change and see the updates and make changes themselves. And the changes are automatically deployed to clients. As soon as you choose to publish a change, it will show up for all of the clients. There’s no separate update process for the clients. There’s no deployment of things. 


32:17
Kevin
It’s a single button press deployment to send out the changes to folks who are looking at it in a web browser or in a desktop client. The application, this client, this runtime is the third form of connectivity here that we have mentioned. As you can see in our graphic, the idea is that ignition runs everywhere. If you aren’t familiar, that little board right there is a raspberry PI. And so we decided to throw that in just to show that ignition can scale down all the way to a simple embedded kind of a toy pc. Right? But we don’t have a lot of folks running on Raspberry Pis, and it’s normally not seen as an industrialized device, but we do have a handful, and ignition does run on a raspberry PI if you want or you needed to. 


33:05
Kevin
But we’ll run just about anywhere so you can see and control your process anywhere. If you have this set up in a way that gives access. And of course security is built into everything. We’ll mention that a little bit more here, but the idea that you can run this wherever you want to or wherever you need to is very important. The fact that there’s no installation, no restoring backups, no licensing, makes it relatively easy to just spin up new clients whenever you want. This ignition perspective module is the HTML module that we have been talking about and alluding to. It leverages HTML five css as a very high level of security. Lots of security tools, and we have a security hardening guide as well if you wanted to take a look at that or pass it on to your IT department. 


33:58
Kevin
If they’re doing a security evaluation, it goes over the high level security tools and a little bit of the lower level as well in terms of the technologies that are supported behind the scenes. But we support pretty much all the standard security tools that are seen as security best practices these days for both web applications and just general IT applications. Additional run anywhere. And I’ve mentioned that several times now. But in browsers and phones, there’s no plugins, it’s native, it’s direct. You don’t have to download separate things or separate installer or inside the web browser. Click the CXE to install this piece to make all of this work. You don’t have to do any of that. It just is direct inside the browser itself. And it’s a very familiar experience for folks. 


34:49
Kevin
So everyone’s familiar with Google Drive, Office 365 AWS services online are something that is very common these days. And taking advantage of those same paradigms and the understanding of users of how those work helps to make perspective something that’s really effective for folks. Can access it anywhere. We have an iOS android app as well. You can install those if you want access to the native items inside there. So GPS locations, the camera if you wanted to take pictures of things, or if you want to do the camera for barcode scanning, for example. Also, no plugin, no installation other than the apps. If you did want to do the apps, you can install those. If you don’t want or you don’t need those features from the apps, you don’t need them at all. 


35:44
Kevin
And you can send those secure web links around and just share those with other folks if they have access, if they’ve been granted permissions, then they would be able to see the same things that you can see. So you can send a link to a specific window or a screen directly as a web link. You can get data to more people, faster speeds. That’s a big part of what all of this is about. So being able to share it out on these mobile devices makes it so it’s easy to see, and on desktops, and sharing those links and having that data just available makes it so that it’s not tied to specific users. Not tied to specific devices. 


36:28
Kevin
One thing that is pretty useful here as well, if you have security set up, you can actually set up control over this in addition to monitoring. So being able to pull something up and control a location from a mobile device or from a web browser is very powerful. We actually had a company over here who was able to do a lot more social distancing and was able to essentially take a lot of their managers and their folks out of their offices, their line leads, their supervisors, and just leave a skeleton crew running. 


37:15
Kevin
They were a manufacturer over here, and they were able to completely switch over so that managers and supervisors were pulling up ignition and able to manage things from home without having to be there, because they could launch ignition from their devices and they could see it over their VPN to their network, which made a huge difference for the company’s ability to continue to be effective. They’re part of critical infrastructure, one of the companies deemed over here as critical to the economy and to the environment, so they had to keep running, but they preferred to have folks working from home where they could, and it opened up a lot more possibilities there than they would have had otherwise. One note on security, for those of you who do have a little bit of background inside this, HTPs, SSL, TLS, it’s all tied to that. 


38:14
Kevin
So you have standard certificates. That’s part of PKI, public key infrastructure that is using the web standard technologies there. Technically behind the scenes, that’s TLS 1.2. As soon as 1.3 becomes the new standard, ignition will support that as well. We always support the latest security features that are common, and it is very important for us to have this security in place because of the types of things that ignition runs. We are in critical infrastructure. We are in a lot of industries that require a very high level of security. We do nuclear radiation detection systems. We have integrators or customers who are doing that with ignition. We have folks ignitions running in airports or running certain parts of airports. And so it’s very important that security is one of our top focuses. We do have role in zone based security. 


39:15
Kevin
Federated identity provider support, single sign on two factor authentication. If you pull up a phone and you press a button and then it says we’re sending you a separate confirmation. So maybe that’s through duo or something else. We actually, at inductive automation internally use a duo for our systems for two factor authentication. We have full support for federated identity providers over Sam’l and OIDC, SAML and OIDC, which are the two most common standards there for talking to ping, Nocta and some other systems. And so this mentions those federated identity provider support features a little bit more extensively here as well. And these are some of the really common identity providers that you see out there. ADFS is one of the major ones because that’s for Microsoft, that’s active directory federated services. And tie right into that. 


40:09
Kevin
If your company is using that or your customers are using that, it’ll tie into anything else that’s standard Sam’l or OpenID connect as well. If we take a look at an example of an architecture here, this is an example of a VPN architecture where basically you have the ignition server that is sitting on site, sitting on premise that ignition server can be super lightweight. If you’re just putting this beside another SCADA system and you’re connecting it up and you’re accessing all of those tags, that system can be just a very lightweight system depending on the number of tags and screens that you’re serving out. 


40:54
Kevin
So seeing folks go as small as a dual core system with two or four gigs of memory, and then that either is bound up as a new virtual machine, or that could be a physical system and then connected over OPC over to an existing SCADA system. Alternatively, ignition can be as pictured here, where it’s connected up directly to plcs. It could be installed beside another SCADA system. Or some folks decide they love ignition and they want it to be replacement for their existing SCADA system. And we love having that conversation too. So it’s not required by any means to do that. And some folks actually take a look at ignition and say, well, it just makes sense over here. We just want web visualization, or they might do that and then later on feel like they want it to grow. 


41:44
Kevin
Any of those are a possibility. Ignition’s licensing scales based on the use of it. So in terms of the cost, you can get a lightweight license or you can get a heavier weight license depending on what you’re doing, what we’re showing right here is ignition is sitting on premise and then remote down at the bottom at home. These clients, designers, any folks who are accessing the system could be connected over VPN over to that ignition server. This is one possibility. A lot of folks are doing this. If that VPN isn’t in place though, or if there’s a desire to serve this out over the Internet in a way that is not going over a VPN directly to someone’s office, this is the general set up for that. 


42:32
Kevin
So you can run an ignition server in the cloud that can have a secure connection back to the office and that can be set up completely read only. That can be set up with encryption all the way everywhere and then down at the bottom that can be an encrypted connection up to the cloud, much like your banking website using HTTPs, TLS, SSL, have communication back and forth there. And from home you just go to a web address and have access to the admission gateway. So I get very excited about this. I will quickly go through a demo because I want to leave some time for questions here at the end as well. If you have any questions that you’re thinking of right now, you can seed some of those questions too. Go ahead and just type those into the questions panel inside. 


43:24
Kevin
Gotomeeting and we’ll get to those as soon as the demo is done here. But I will go through, we will hop over and I will do a quick demonstration of what all of this looks like. So I have a fresh installation of ignition that is sitting in the cloud right now. And this is sitting on a website that is at secure IA IO. I will give you a link actually in a moment so you can take a look at this yourself too. But the first thing I’m going to do is pull up the designer and inside the designer I’m going to create a project. It’s going to be completely fresh. As I said, I wanted to give you a sense of exactly what this looks like. So basically all that we’ve done is downloaded ignition and connected it up to a database. 


44:21
Kevin
And other than that, which takes about 2 seconds. So I just didn’t want to show you that piece of it. I wanted to skip past the database connection part just for the sake of time, but I’m going to create a new project here. This is the designer that I’m launching. I’ll give it a project template. That’s that perspective menu nav right there. And I might as well give it a default database as well. We’ll connect up to that and this is launching. There’s one other thing that I did with the server which was to install the security certificate actually. So this is fully encrypted communication back and forth. So if I come under here, this is perspective going to open up home. And all this says is welcome to perspective. 


45:13
Kevin
This is our template project where I could come in, I can change anything that I want and I could say welcome, let me say welcome attendees. And so this is for your webinar attendees right now. And I could come in here and I could say I want to show some things. And so on this system we don’t have any tags. There’s nothing that’s really showing up under here because we don’t have any device connections. I’ll just pull up and we can take a look at how many folks are currently running. So the session count, I’ll just drag it out right here and we can show this as a label right there and might as well just list out what this is. I’ll come over here and I will say that this is sessions. 


46:07
Kevin
In other words, the number of clients, number of folks looking at this and it’s just me right now. That’s one very simple, very boring, but I’ll make this page a little bit more interesting in a moment. I’m going to come in and launch this. So launch the session. This pulls up inside a web browser. I can see sessions one and the other thing that I can do is I can share this with everyone. You can immediately see this. So keep in mind all I did was install ignition and then I put that certificate in place. Go ahead. As mentioned that everybody has a mobile phone, right? So go ahead and pull that out and point it at this screen. If you have a QR code reader, you can use that QR code reader and read this QR code right here. 


47:00
Kevin
If you don’t, that’s completely fine. You can just type in that address and this is going to give you a client session that is going to load up and be connected to our server here. The server is sitting in the cloud as mentioned. All it has is an ignition installation. And this server is in AWS in our case. So we spun it up inside AWS. It could easily be azure, it could be Google cloud compute platform, or it could be anything else that has Internet access. So with your phones there, if you’re able to scan this, if you have an iPhone, you should be able to just point at this and scan it. If you have other devices, you could just type the address in right there into the device at that. Httpssecure IA IO. 


48:01
Kevin
I thought this would be a cool thing to show off so that you could follow along if you wanted to with these web sessions that we have with what I’m taking a look at right now. So if I switch back over to the designer, I can update this. I’ll pull off that session indicator since we don’t really need it there and I will start showing some other things. Basically I’m going to connect to my remote system in this case. And I have a plant system. I have a system that I’m calling a plant system that is on my local system here. It has a whole set of tags. If this was connected over UA to another system, you’d see it in the same way. 


48:52
Kevin
So I’ll launch this up, I’ll show you what these tags look like inside the designer, just to give you an idea. So this is a separate designer and this is connecting to what you’d see as an on premise or a plant location. Open this guy right here’s and inside this on the left hand side we have a whole set of tags. So in my cloud system we don’t have any tags. In this system we do have tags. So I’m pulling this up right now. And the tags that I have here, I want to share, I want these to be available online. I want to see this refrigeration system for example. I want to see these motors that are right here and I want to see those remotely. So what I’m going to do is set up that remote connection. 


49:45
Kevin
That remote connection is as simple as setting up a few different points here. So I’m going to come to my local system at my plant. I’m putting plant inside air quotes because it is on my laptop. But you get the basic idea. This is exactly the same as it would be at a plant. I’m going to come down here and do a connection up to that server in the cloud. So I’ll do the gateway network. This is an outgoing connection. So this is firewall friendly. I’m going to connect up to secure Ia IO. I am going to use protection right here, ssltls. That’s going to encrypt the connection and all the rest of that’s fine. So I hit create new outgoing connection on my cloud server. 


50:32
Kevin
I’m going to come back over here, I am going to log in and I’m going to accept that connection. So we’ll go to the gateway network. We have an incoming connection right here. I will approve that connection. This is part of the security. Make sure that you know who it is and that it’s approved. And now that connection is incoming right there and I’m connected, I’m set up. I’ve got a good status for all of this. We can see that active gateway network connection here. And then I’m going to set it up so I can access those tags remotely. 


51:08
Kevin
So I’ll come over to my tag providers, set up a remote tag provider and tell it I want to connect to this gateway right there so we can see this is the one that’s connected from my local system and I’ll connect up to that tag provider called default. I’ll call this plan, call this site and capitalization doesn’t really matter, but sometimes I care. So now that’s set up and that is all good to go. I’m going to come back over to the designer and at that central designer I can take a quick look and I will be able to see this up and running there. So come back to this designer. This is the set of providers and under site. This is all streaming from my local system over in this case a cellular network up to that location. 


52:12
Kevin
And you can see all of these tags coming in. You can see real time data coming in from these tags as well. I have this streaming and to make this interesting, I can pull these out and we can show these on the screen. So I can do it through labels if I wanted to. I can do it through other visualizations. So maybe I actually want this to be a tank visualization that I’m taking a look at there that is going to show the different levels. So there’s 79% right there for example. And if I come into my humidity, I can take a look at that, I can take a look at my other temperatures. I’m going to hit save really quickly and if you’re following along on the web, you’re going to see this pop up as well. 


53:02
Kevin
But if you’ve got that session open on your browser or inside your mobile device that immediately comes through right there. I can pull these out, show a few different types of displays here too. So here’s an led display. And one of the other cool things that I can do is I could set up really easily some basic control too. So I’ll come down, maybe I want to do it to a slick processor here that I have connected. This is an n 70 tag. If I drag this guy out to the screen and actually if you’re familiar with Hoa, I’ll give it a nice display for that. So I’ll come under my components, grab that multi state button, drop it on the screen right here, and then bind this guy up for the control and for the indicator there. Control can be bi directional. 


54:00
Kevin
I could take this guy out and make it into a simple, we could do a boolean that has a slider here that was going back and forth, so you could pick different values inside that slider, for example. And I could go side to side for that value that’s coming in here. This value happens to not be anything right now because it’s zero, but it’ll update in a moment there. And then I’m going to come over and save that off and switch back over and give write access. So everything defaults to read only access. So I’m just going to come into the service security and say that we aren’t going to let anyone edit tags, but I am going to allow for writing back to tags, in this case to allow control. So switch this guy to read, write, hit, save there. 


54:55
Kevin
And now you’ll see if I pull this up and if you haven’t pulled it up, this hand off auto that is showing up right there is bi directional communication over that. And then there is the ability to slide things. And you folks are doing a lot with this already. So I can see things happening based on what folks are pulling up inside your own systems, what you’re pressing right now. So it’s great to see that folks are following along with this and playing with it. I’m going to give you a couple of other things that are pretty nice. So on the left hand side, there’s charts and alarms as well. If you click over to either one of these, if you click to alarms, you’ll notice these alarms are here right away. 


55:41
Kevin
These are alarms that are configured at my site and they’re automatically streaming through. The other thing that you’ll notice under charts here, this is a static chart, but I can easily add in some history. And because I’m recording that history at site, it’ll just come through immediately. So I’m going to do that. Take me about 2 seconds. So I’ll go under my chart right here, open up that chart view that has that default set of data. And if you go to the chart, you’ll see it update. As soon as I make the binding right here, I’m going to go to a tag history binding, pop over, and in this case, I’m going to take a look at that provider. It’s under site, of course. And what do we want to show on the screen. 


56:27
Kevin
Maybe the cumulator level is interesting and the ambient humidity, those will be good. I will go for the last, I don’t know, last ten minutes might be interesting. Set it up so that it’s pulling hit. Okay. Right here. And then that’s going to pull that information in. You’ll see that update on a second by second basis right there. And that will pull in directly into your screen that you have open right now. I have it set to only a resolution of 100 points. I’ll increase that to 1000. That’ll give us higher resolution here and you’ll be able to see even more detail inside this system as it moves forward. Those are the things that I wanted to show very quickly before jumping over and talking a little bit about and going through the questions that we have here. 


57:20
Kevin
So we don’t have much in terms of questions, but if you do have questions, please add them right now to the question panel. I know that we’re right at the end of the hour and I want to respect everybody’s time. I will pop right back over here and pop to the questions that we do have. And we actually have a few thank you messages for folks who had to leave right at the top of the hour. And we don’t have any specific questions. So maybe as we wrap this up, if you do have additional questions, if you do have anything you want to add, go ahead and put those questions in there. Just a quick review. Basically what we set up right now is this. It’s this architecture that you see right here. That gateway network is connected. 


58:13
Kevin
I have the site server, I have the cloud server. And then that remote home is what I just launched. And you just launched as you were taking a look at all of this to see the system in real time and to do the control that were just looking at right there. The way that this is set up is a simple installation that could be just inside this VPN architecture example with a single ignition server that’s there. Or if it’s in the cloud, I could set it up in the way that I just showed. Either way, it’s quick, it’s simple, it’s drag and drop for most of the things that you are going to set up. And we encourage you, if you’re interested, to play around with it, give it a try. You can try it absolutely free. Two hour demo. 


58:59
Kevin
We have a great site called inductive university that is instructive, that will walk you through how to do a variety of things. And we also have some fantastic folks with local support on the call right now. And we have these folks available to you at any point. So you have contact information on your screen right there. You’ve got a phone number, you have email addresses, and you have some smiling faces to show that they’re friendly. It’s good to be here with everyone. Any last closing remarks from you folks at element eight? 


59:39
Jaco
Yeah, thanks very much, Kevin. That was super easy and valuable. I hope everybody online found it valuable. And, yeah, just thank you again to everyone for joining us. Do check out our website, make contact with us. We’ll be sure to reach out to you as well. And thank you again for your time. And thanks to you, Kevin. 


59:59
Kevin
Absolutely. We’re very happy to be here today, and we look forward to additional webinars that we can share with you and share with everyone else. So with that, I think we will wrap up here. I appreciate everyone’s attendance today. And as mentioned, please feel free to reach out to element eight for any ignition questions or any contacts or any purchase requests, or to talk through technical details or architectures or anything else that you might have. So we are happy to be supporting everyone in this, and we’re happy to be with you and with element eight and appreciate it once again. Take care, everyone. Bye.