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Smart Real Estate Trends: Data Naming Conventions, Standards and Driving Tech Trends in Real Estate

Smart Real Estate Trends: Data Naming Conventions, Standards and Driving Tech Trends in Real Estate

“What’s in a name?” This simple question was posed by Shakespeare centuries ago and is still a contentious topic for debate today. In the real estate industry, naming conventions can often feel like they mean everything and nothing at the same time. That leads us to question, what does a name mean for your business? At RYCOM, the importance of a name is its ability to make the complex simple for our clients. We call this the HIVE theory of simplicity, the belief that simplifying a client’s technology is the surest way to add value to their infrastructure and is the key to innovation. This theory guides every action we take and informs how we treat naming conventions and adherence to industry standards as vital building blocks to making a Smart strategy competitive and future proof.

Why are naming conventions and standards important? We will answer this question and more as we delve deeper into naming convention trends, widely used standards and how these trends are shaping and disrupting the real estate industry.


What’s in a name?



Before we start discussing the trends in technology that are guiding our industry, let’s first discuss why assigning names and labels to data is important. Imagine one day you are asked to pull a file on “ideas” and you are given the choice of picking from a filing cabinet of folders that are labelled by topics and subject matter (Data Source A) or a cabinet with files in folders that have been left blank (Data Source B). Where do you start your search? The obvious answer is the cabinet with labelled folders – but let’s examine what makes that the obvious choice.

The importance of a name in this example is its purpose in being the first step to converting data sources into information. A name is subtle but fundamental to how information is communicated. Data means nothing without a name that can accurately describe and express purpose. The name for a piece of data, the conventions it follows, and the information it communicates are what determines if it is important information that can be used to drive business outcomes.

The real-estate technology industry has many naming conventions and is driven by underlying trends that shape and disrupt these conventions. Over the next few paragraphs, we will discuss a selection of important naming conventions to use when considering Smart strategies for your business. Picking the right naming conventions and adhering to that standard are key to making your Smart strategy competitive and sustainable along with meeting your corporate compliance or governance clauses around single-supplier dependency.


Internet Protocol is evolving to keep up with demand.

Internet Protocol (IP) has been the communication protocol of choice over the last quarter century for moving data and connecting people and places over wireline and wireless systems. IP is organized and well understood, and it provides users with the single biggest advantage of being able to choose the hardware, software and support suppliers for their business. IP version 4 (IPv4) is the current global standard to provide an address (name and location) for a piece of IP equipment or destination. In IPv4, an IP address contains enough data to allow networks to send and receive data with ease. However, with the addition of Internet of Things (IoT) devices that all need their own IP address to an already crowded space, the capabilities of IPv4 become saturated very quickly.

The need for additional addressing capacity led to the creation of IP version 6 (IPv6), which contains 340,282,366,920,938,463,463,374,607,431,768,211,456 unique external addresses – safe to say that should last a while! IPv4 and IPv6 provide lots of room for unique addresses to accommodate the explosion of IoT devices. However, the bigger the addressing pool, the bigger the challenge to manage these unique addresses (data) and the need for a naming strategy to convert these addresses to information of use. This is where Project Haystack shows its true value.


Project Haystack is creating industry standards for naming and definitions

In May of 2014, a group of industry leaders servicing the real estate industry created an initiative called Project Haystack; its purpose has been defined by the organization as the following:

“Project Haystack is an open source initiative to streamline working with data from the Internet of Things. We standardize semantic data models and web services with the goal of making it easier to unlock value from the vast quantity of data being generated by the smart devices that permeate our homes, buildings, factories, and cities. Applications include automation, control, energy, HVAC, lighting, and other environmental systems.”

Project Haystack has led to the widespread implementation of tagging in accordance with agreed-upon industry definitions and names for technologies, operations and system tags found in all real-estate asset classes. The process of tagging adds a discipline and structure to real-estate technology and systems within a building or portfolio and allows building operators to easily make decisions to act or not to act.

The key advantage to Project Haystack is its open standards organization that is accessible to all and becoming increasingly necessary when you are exploring Smart strategies and future-proofing your investments and assets. An industry-accepted standard that is vendor and service supplier neutral for tagging/naming conventions allows your building and geography personnel to move around from property to property with ease, knowing that the information a building presents as critical, major or minor alarm is reflective of a common definition and name. For example, critical is critical in all buildings, and this allows you to be more effective and avoid situations where employees are looking for a “needle in a haystack” when addressing an issue in a property that is new to them.



You can adopt Haystack anytime, so if you have buildings you are considering for a Smart strategy, establishing a naming convention using Haystack should be one of the first pieces of your strategy.


BACnet forms the perfect trifecta with IPv4/6 and Haystack for Smart building strategies



BACnet is a communication protocol for building automation and control (BAC) networks that leverages existing foundational standard protocols for building systems to form a perfect trifecta with IPv4/6 and Haystack for any Smart building strategy. BACnet has become critical to any Smart building strategy because it provides the user with interoperability, a key factor in any Smart strategy. Without interoperability, there is no building control or automation and each system operates as a silo rather than working collectively towards comfort, joy and security for building tenants. Accepted by more than 1,000 companies serving the real estate industry, BACnet is an evolving standard that is available to all, sustainable and future proof.

Utilizing a Smart Building Master Integrator service, a company can integrate Internet Protocol, Haystack and BACnet to create, design, build and operate a Smart building that is standards based and is competitive going forward. Like Haystack, BACnet can be introduced into a building at any time, just ask your vendors to include the use of BACnet and challenge them to integrate into your building environment if you are doing a partial retrofit. All too often, there is a desire to take the path of least resistance in the short term and ignore the long-term consequences. RYCOM always suggests avoiding this temptation and doing the right thing for your investment that allows for improved NOI and increased CAP rate.


Wireless technology trends are changing how we connect IoT and building systems

A lot of new and exciting developments are occurring in the wireless space that are leading to the rapid deployment and redeployment of IoT devices. A new free spectrum called Low Power Wide Area Network (LoRaWAN) is quickly becoming a compelling alternative where wirelines like copper and fibre are not warranted. Like all the recommendations in this article, LoRaWAN is an open standard-based body with hundreds of new and established IoT vendors that endorse and use this standard to produce innovative IoT devices and sensors. For more information, visit the LoRa-Alliance, a collection of members that collaborate and share experiences to drive the success of the LoRa protocol.

Equally as exciting is the 4G/5G next generation of wireless networks that is the single biggest driving force in the promotion and use of IoT device today and going into the future. The great people at Mpirical have created a great visual to show how wireless connections are continuing to drive the technology trends mentioned in this article and the increased importance this places on naming conventions and upholding the use of public standards.



There is no question that the complexity of technology will increase materially over the next five- and ten-year windows as more technology makes its way into buildings, communities and all aspects of our day-to-day lives. Always looking to the future, RYCOM ensures all HIVE services adhere to standards and naming conventions that will ensure sustainable future-proof buildings, communities and cities for ages to come.


Interested in learning more about RYCOM HIVE Services and Solutions?  Contact one of our Sales Specialists today at or 1-877-927-9266 and let us show you why we are the right Smart building partner for your business.



Smart Real Estate Trends: A Deep Dive into Smart, Simple and Low-Cost Sensors

Smart Real Estate Trends: A Deep Dive into Smart, Simple and Low-Cost Sensors

Can we improve on or do things differently than in the past? This question sparked the technology revolution that continues to drive efficiencies and innovation in all aspects of our economic universe. How we approach manufacturing, manage real estate, operate critical infrastructure and interact with people in our daily lives has been impacted by complex systems working together to generate better results and break new ground. At RYCOM, we call this “Systems at Work™”, and it lies at the core of everything we do.

Smart, simple and low-cost sensors have allowed system interactions and the journey between these systems to occur and have made them materially easier. This week, we will explore this topic in more depth by taking a dive into “Smart, Simple and Low-Cost Sensors” which we originally introduced in our article Top 7 Industry Trends for Smart Real Estate.


Internet of Things (IoT) Smart CityRe-engineering “Systems at Work™”

Internet of Things (IoT) sensors are not new to the industry, and many business sectors from healthcare to logistics have seen the increased use of IoT sensors for a variety of purposes for years. Every day, this technology is employed to detect seismic events, temperature, pressure changes, heart rates, occupancy, wind speed and climate change and allow for the generation and utilization of data to make critical business decisions.


Increased demand over the past five years has led to the development of smaller, smart, faster, cheaper and more powerful sensor technology. This trend towards more effective sensors enables companies like RYCOM to rapidly embed IoT sensors into systems using cases that leave behind a trail of digital sensor crumbs that connect places, things and people. Through this technology, it’s possible to obtain greater insight into how things are done today and how they can be modified to better support tomorrow.



Going Beyond Systems at Work™

Equally as important as the opportunity to re-engineer “Systems at Work™” is the ability to capture and retain decades of latent experience from the processes and the people that operate them. Today’s IoT sensor technology allows us to see things digitally as they occur and send commands to intervene when needed. Also, IoT sensors enable the continuous collection of data so that we can learn about trends, assess and optimize.



It’s important to note that most IoT sensors on their own are simple uni-functional devices, but they operate as part of a collective of sensors – acting like a HIVE™ that provides structure, extracts information and provides continuous insight into Systems at Work™. The real collateral benefit from IoT sensors is the ability to choose the right sensor that can be deployed into existing environments that are capable of providing digital visibility into aged systems, processes, technology and things. As technology speeds up the world, we can simplify existing working systems by breaking them down into understandable pieces, which allows greater visibility into complicated systems and operations.



Deceptively Simple Technology Can Serve as the Building Blocks for Complex Solutions

IoT sensors provide continuous, remote, digital visibility into discrete elements and collected data from Systems at Work™. This data can be continuously analyzed, viewed locally or remotely, and establishes the foundation for monitoring and management of system performance that will make autonomous decision-making a natural next step. IoT sensors represent the raw data that enables advanced analytics to occur, creating decision rules and allowing sophisticated algorithms to learn and create the building blocks for AI.

It’s easy to fall into the trap that simple equals inferior or less important. As with most things in life, this is not true when it comes to this important building block technology. An IoT sensor provides a lens of simplicity into a complex environment where it can be used to drive innovation and efficiencies for your business.


Interested in learning more about RYCOM HIVE™ Services and Solutions? Contact one of our Sales Specialists today at or 1-877-927-9266 and let us show you why we are the right smart building partner for your business.


HIVE™ | Systems at Work™



RYCOM and BUENO talk transforming building operations and business through data and analytics during IBcon LIVE News Desk interview.

RYCOM and BUENO talk transforming building operations and business through data and analytics during IBcon LIVE News Desk interview.

RYCOM was proud to attend and participate in IBcon 2017 – the Intelligent Buildings Conference in San Diego June 14 to 15. The conference – held annually to showcase the latest tools, technology and industry insights in the smart and connected real estate industry  – was centered this year on reaching new heights in commercial and corporate real estate innovation. What better place than the IBcon LIVE News Desk for RYCOM’s CEO and President, Casey Witkowicz, to sit down with the Managing Director of BUENO, Leon Wurfel, to discuss the impact of analytics on building operations and business.

Now, more than ever, properties are facing operational and inflationary pressures as they make efforts to differentiate their assets while navigating the disruptive challenges of digital. RYCOM’s innovative HIVE SMART Platform, powered by BUENO, helps to relieve these pressures by harnessing purposeful data from all interacting building systems and providing easy-to-understand, actionable insights – fueling better business decisions and acting as an extension of a site’s operations team. Utilizing the HIVE SMART Platform can help you accomplish your differentiation strategy, make operational improvements and hedge against inflation today and far into the future.


For more information about the HIVE SMART Platform, contact us at or give us a call 1-877-927-9266.

Top 7 Industry Trends for Smart Real Estate

Top 7 Industry Trends for Smart Real Estate

Leading the strategy, design, deployment and optimization of smart strategies in the real estate industry through its HIVE™ solutions and services, RYCOM has a unique, in-depth view of this exciting and emerging industry.

Below, RYCOM shares the top 7 industry trends and requirements it has observed across all real estate asset types, sizes and verticals:

  1. Smart, simple and low-cost sensors that can connect to any type of equipment. By providing read-only information or two-way communication that can send and accept data and commands, sensors (IoT) can connect virtually anything or anyone.
  2. Data naming conventions like Haystack that provide vendor-agnostic names for each piece of data from any system or person – no matter the brand or system. This is crucial for reporting, command, control and individual value.
  3. Software as a Service (SaaS) Cloud platforms that collect all sources of data and then correlate, converge and perform analytics to create customizable information (dashboards) for different user needs. These are secure and available from any place, at anytime, to anyone.
  4. Data Analytics and Workflow (DAW). Standalone, integrated or cross-functional systems data used to develop economic and efficiency benefits, and offer new features and capabilities – enabling differentiation and innovation.
  5. Fault Detection, Diagnosing and Support (FDDS). Provides the ability to triage and diagnose based on reporting systems with visibility remotely or locally. FDDS applies experience use-cases to create both technical and behavioural alerts of major or significant events.
  6. Command & Control (C&C). Providing local or remote all-system visibility from a single portal, C&C can either initiate a predefined sequence automatically or invoke based on alerts and conditions.
  7. Continuous optimization and support. Ongoing 24/7 monitoring of data and system conditions that feeds the framework to either automatically or manually optimize the building based on changing conditions.
Welcome to RYCOM HIVE™

Welcome to RYCOM HIVE™

RYCOM is pleased to announce the launch of HIVE™ – our suite of integrated solutions and services that are specifically designed to add value to organizations, driving business outcomes, and enable long-term success for our clients across North America.

HIVE™ is the result of 20 years of tested, industry-leading innovation. It brings together an integrated suite of services designed to add value to a company by understanding the role technology can play in maximizing operational efficiencies and productivity. HIVE™ does this by creating unified platforms and networks, frameworks for compatibility and integration, and the ability to harness purposeful data, so your business decisions are always based on the latest information. By nature, HIVE™ is made stronger by each cell in the structure and when multiple systems and deep skill sets are working together as one. HIVE™ partners work much the same way ­– by bringing leading-edge, game-changing capabilities to the table. Never at rest, HIVE™ is always capturing, measuring, and analyzing KPIs and data to facilitate proactive management, to find problems before they happen and to create Systems at Work™.

What exactly is HIVE™ and how can it impact your company? Read more to learn about the HIVE™ Approach, Services and Partners that make up this innovative suite of solutions brought to you by RYCOM.

The HIVE™ Approach

We understand that every business has a unique set of requirements that can be supported with a unique complement of technology. It’s why we begin with the business drivers that influence them. Projects can range from the simple to the complex, but one thing you can count on is that they’re constantly changing. HIVE™ ensures your business has the flexibility to be on target not only for today but tomorrow as well. This adaptable nimbleness means we can seamlessly integrate ourselves into any project at any stage, using any or all of our tools – to Strategize, Design, Deploy and Optimize – depending on what is needed. Behind every successful enterprise is a team of innovative, creative and passionate people who are invested in the success of your company as much as you are.

Click here to learn more about the HIVE™ approach.

HIVE™ Services

Our Integrated HIVE™ Services are made up of telecom, technology, infrastructure, data and managed/unmanaged support services – all designed with your business in mind. Our years of experience in these areas have made us multi-disciplinary Master Integrators who understand that the pace of business is always evolving and know the pressure on your business to meet the needs of a digital world. That’s why your technology choices should be just as flexible. Deployed separately or as part of a solution, our services cover every aspect of your company’s technology backbone – removing risk by preserving your existing investment and creating opportunities for sustainable choices as your needs grow now and into the future.

Click here to learn more about HIVE™ service.

HIVE™ Partners

By nature, a hive is made stronger by each cell in the structure. HIVE™ partners work in much the same way. We bring together the best and the brightest in the industry, combining our strengths with theirs to increase innovation exponentially. These partners seek us out because we have demonstrated success and, after a couple of decades of experience, a legacy of accomplishments. Our carefully chosen partners bring unique strengths to the table and are fundamental building blocks for the HIVE™ suite of solutions and services. Together, we make your systems stronger by combining forces and by investing ourselves in the success of your enterprise.

Click here to learn more about HIVE™ partner.

Interested in learning more about RYCOM HIVE™ Services and Solutions? Contact one of our Sales Specialists today at or 1-877-927-9266 and let us show you why we are the right smart building partner for your business.