Push to talk iTurret

Speakerbus

Speakerbus develops mission critical audio and video systems providing instant global connectivity solutions to the financial services community.

When Speakerbus wanted to launch a new product to replace their existing legacy product, they developed an Embedded Linux based product and they wanted to showcase this product at prestigious SIFMA Trade Show.  It was required to demonstrate a working solution consisting of three prototype units, able to communicate using SIP protocol over a standard Ethernet network. 

At very short notice successfully managed hardware and software integration to demonstrate capabilities of a new product at a prestigious trade show. Pragmatic decisions were taken to choose most appropriate working components out of many which were in various stages of development. Team members were persuaded to make most workable solution possible.

The demonstration was very successful generating great interest in target market segments resulting in product becoming a flagship product of company.

Mindmap of Speakerbus iTurret

Challenge

  • It was required at a very short three days notice to get three working iTurret units ready for demonstration at the Securities Industry & Financial Market Association Exhibition 2007 in the USA.
  • The hardware devices were there but in open form on Engineering desks  they needed to be assembled into presentable units, software modules were all in different stages of development and were handled by different Engineers.
  • The units on Engineers' desks all had slightly different configurations, slightly different software capabilities as every engineer was in the middle of development.
  • Even the Software Development manager was overwhelmed with newer and enhanced feature development in software and was unable to provide quick decisions and directions to enable the product demo. It was required for somebody to take initiative and lead the team so that the demo would become a reality.
  • It was required to gather suitable working versions of software modules, integrate them properly while also giving them a specific unique identity. It was also required to assemble three units for demonstration and aim was to make them as close to final product as possible.
  • Software setup was required on related other networked servers so that these units can work with the server. 
  • Apart from the group I worked with, rest of the company was Windows centric and had no exposure to Linux at all.  The whole project was Embedded Linux based. Hence I had to provide some training to the people from whom I wanted some work.  This involved training the IT Support people about how Linux works etc.

Action Taken

  • Initiative was taken up to guide the team and make the demonstration possible.
  • Three units were brought together, re-flashed identical software onto them, got them assembled into their proper cases with working keypads and working display panels.
  • Hardware engineers and Software engineers in distributed across UK were co-ordinated and third party software developers in Moscow who were developing the keypad drivers.
  • IT Support group was trained to get familiar with Linux, and helped them install and configure Linux on a Rack Server for use during this demo and configured as a local time server as well as a Asterisk SIP Server.
  • Each of the units were customised to be unique by creating individual configuration files for each of them.  They were configured to work with a Redhat Enterprise Linux based SIP Server.
  • The company was persuaded to use "Subversion" as a software version control system and the Linux server for the project's software version control system was managed.
  • For actual deployment system was developed for Centralised Management System for the devices using TCP Sockets, XML and coded in C language.

Result

  • Three fully working units were demonstrated to selected audience in the target market segment. 
  • The demo was very successful and generated a lot of interest in target market segments.
  • The company gained a proven process for software development and project management