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Nuva Collaboration Systems and Cereno - Executive Interview

June 3, 2010 | Chris Payatagool
Executive Interview with Jocelyn Lomer, managing director of Cereno - a UK company that is marketing the nuVa range of collaboration systems with detailed data and other information displayed on a horizontal screen - Part 1

From Richard Line, Editor - The Telepresence and Videoconferencing Insight Newsletter and link to:  

Picture: The nuVa Huddle Desk in use

Jocelyn Lomer is the majority owner and managing director of cereno. Cereno's current interest is the broadening of its audio video and web and collaboration services to its corporate client base through a deeper understanding of effective human collaboration. Prior to starting cereno, Jocelyn had ten years` experience in communications in the offshore oil exploration industry and a further ten years as a Senior Product Manager for Cable & Wireless and Esprit/GTS. Jocelyn is a Chartered Engineer, a member of the IET and holds a MBA from Henley.

Editor: What is the background of Cereno and how does nuVa fit in?

Jocelyn: Cereno started in 1999 under the trading name of ISDN datacom. Cereno has gained substantial experience in telecommunications service provision, and has now expanded into web, video and audio conferencing and collaboration. It provides managed service solutions using its own MPLS telecom network to suit companies of all sizes and sectors on a national and global scale.

nuVa is our innovative solution for data-intensive collaboration at remote sites. nuVa builds on the natural way of working. All data and documents are displayed on a horizontal screen as they would be on the desktop. In fact the whole solution emulates the appearance of your own desk with papers arranged around a central document that you are working on. In this way it provides the most natural human machine interface we have yet seen and you can remotely collaborate as well !
It combines adjustable HD quality up to 1080p and audio communications with an intuitive shared desk to allow multiple users to work together in real-time irrespective of their geographical location. Incorporating a familiar pen interface for writing or sketching and a standard keyboard for typing, nuVa provides a natural means of working whatever the application.

Editor: What else is innovative about the nuVa solution?

Jocelyn: The key differentiating feature of nuVa comes from the in-depth study as to how humans interface with collaborative machines. The whole design came out of this research. nuVa can connect up to nine end points remotely showing multiple shared documents on a single horizontal screen as if they were lying on a your own desk. The document being discussed is displayed in a large central part of the screen just as the person speaking in a multipoint video conference is displayed in a continuous presence layout. Each remote site sees the same screen; and changes in or markings on the document being worked on are transmitted in real time to the screen at all the other connected remote sites.

It is as if all sites were working in a single meeting room with the documents spread out on the table. Except that as each participating site has their own screen, they can view the document used for collaboration easily and comfortably. In this way we believe nuVa can deliver the best collaboration and innovation anywhere, for all documents are seen in context and the view is the same at all ends. In this way collaborators are fully tuned to each other's thinking delivering the ultimate in innovation.

People in remote locations around the globe can mark comments and record changes on documents as if they were together in a single office or meeting room. The users can have complete confidence that their intellectual capital is protected at all times as the system is all under the wrap of very secure defence-grade encryption.

nuVa is designed to facilitate cooperation using detailed engineering drawings, site plans, maps, CAD drawings etc.  nuVa will appeal to teams operating at different sites who want to meet to discuss engineering drawings without traveling.

nuVa is software that runs over a dedicated desk and mini hardware. We license the software to customers and bundle usage with the Cereno managed telecom service to link the customer's remote sites. Typically the bandwidth required is 64 kbs to 1 Mbs depending on the throughput required. Those with a broadband connection can use nuVa over the public Internet. But for best results we recommend using our global MPLS IP network. nuVa will work best where contention does not exist.

Editor: Can you make users feel this is a natural way of working?

Jocelyn: nuVa builds on a person's natural way of working.  It combines high quality video and audio communications with an intuitive shared desk.  nuVa uses ordinary broadband internet links and protects sessions with its innovative, multi-layer security system.  Incorporating a familiar pen interface for writing/sketching and a standard keyboard for typing, nuVa provides a natural means of working, whatever the application.

Editor: Can you see a growing demand for a product like nuVa?

Jocelyn: Yes we can. Collaborative working is essential in today's business world to ensure the rapid flow of ideas and understanding. According to Accenture, the highest form of organisation is one which relies on innovative and improvisational work, is highly reliant on deep expertise across multiple functions and also dependent on the fluid deployment of flexible teams.

For teams including experts at different sites, the traditional meeting is time-consuming and expensive. It is fast becoming environmentally unacceptable. nuVa provides a better and time-wise more efficient way to collaborate. We believe nuVa is the first product that truly emulates the working environment and builds on our natural way of working.

Part 2 considers the vertical sectors likely to use nuVa

  New Article   Executive Interview with Jocelyn Lomer, managing director of Cereno a UK company that is marketing the nuVa range of collaboration systems with detailed data and other information displayed on a horizontal screen - Part 2. Vertical sectors that will benefit from using nuVa collaboration.  

nuva_desktop1.jpgPicture: The nuVa Innovator in use.

Editor: What models are there in the nuVa range?

Jocelyn: There are two models: (1) The nuVa huddle desk with a 40-inch LCD screen for data sharing lying horizontal as you would find documents on a desk top; (2) The nuVa Innovator desktop model using the same approach but portable.

The nuVa huddle desk provides a large digital tablet that enables a group of colleagues to work together at each location. The nuVa huddle desk is a large horizontal desk designed to accommodate multiple people working around it at any one time.  This neat, self-contained unit also features a large, vertical screen for displaying high-resolution, life-size images of the remote collaborators.

The nuVa huddle desk allows end-users to work together on multiple documents in real-time by ensuring each site sees the same screen contents wherever that site is geographically located. It is an intuitive shared desk space - a horizontal screen for sharing documents, video and other information through a familiar pen and keyboard interface.

The nuVa Innovator is a smaller version of the full nuVa desk but provides an identical document layout.  It is ideally suited for a single user to collaborate with their remote colleagues without distracting their neighbours.  It comprises two, high-resolution tablet displays so the natural pen interface is retained.

Editor: Which vertical sectors will benefit from using nuVa?

Jocelyn: nuVa huddle desks help to make the oil services company more competitive. A major Oil Services company with well over 100 international offices has difficulty preparing international bids due to imperfect communications with international experts. nuVa allows real time sharing of all the relevant commercial and engineering documents to prepare the bid more quickly and accurately than the competition.

Then take construction industry as an example. Consider the Design Team of an International Construction Company located in the North East of England working on a construction project in the South of England. Instead of waiting for next week's face-to-face meeting, nuVa huddle desk is used to discuss the 3D CAD model. It happens instantaneously without travel thereby pushing the design phase forward in time ... reducing risk and cost whilst improving quality.
For an International Engineering Consultancy using nuVa huddle desks to work on large scale Energy projects, it is estimated that Front End Design costs are significantly reduced by up to 30% due to faster decision making.  This is because nuVa allows 3D CAD models to be shared over different continents delivering improvements in Quality, Time and Cost, and reducing project risk.
In shipbuilding, there is a strong business case for using nuVa. European yards are often selected for a large scale shipbuilding orders despite cheaper bids from the Far East because the customer expects improved collaboration with the European yard.  Had the Asian suppliers used nuVa huddle desk to link with their customer, the distance apart would become irrelevant and both supplier and customer would enjoy significant cost savings.
There are many potential uses in the oil and gas industry and particularrly on off-shore rigs. To manage oil production and ensure proper maintenance, the operator typically requires daily meetings between three control rooms every day. nuVa huddle desks enable experts with the multiple disciplines involved to share the documents and information required.
These are just a few examples. We believe there is scope for use in manufacturing industry, hospitals and many other areas. The innovative nuVa technology will create its own markets over time.

Editor: Thank you for these valuable insights.

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