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October 2010 » Departments

CE News joins LinkedIn
This summer, CE News tweeted its first news item on Twitter. It’s now closing in on 150+ followers. To take the discussion a step further, the magazine now has its own group on LinkedIn. Simply called CE News, civil engineering professionals and firms can join this group to learn about, and comment on, the latest industry news. Plus, group members are welcome to start their own discussions, point out useful products, and ask their peers and fellow group members questions. To join, click here. We look forward to hearing from you!

Business case study: Virtualization technology curbs server proliferation
Engineering firm CH2M HILL was an early user of virtualization software to lower server costs. However, when the global economy began to slump in 2007, the company sought a more cost-effective virtualization solution. It switched to the Windows Server 2008 R2 Datacenter operating system with Hyper-V virtualization technology, and also deployed Microsoft System Center data center solutions to simplify server management. With the switch to Hyper-V, CH2M HILL projects software savings of as much as $280,000 during the next three to five years and hardware savings of as much as $3 million by virtualizing field servers. Additionally, the company expects to reduce server management work by 30 percent, giving staff more time to focus on strategic work. To read the full article, click here

ASFE implements an action plan for professional services
The Associated Soil and Foundation Engineers (ASFE) was created in 1969 in response to overwhelming professional liability problems forcing insurers to withdraw coverage to geoprofessionals. Its mission was to learn why claims were rampant and to develop programs, services, and materials member firms could apply to improve their situations. Over the years, this mission has evolved and expanded to include business management. What ASFE learned when entering this field was that in some markets, geoprofessionals were being commoditized and marginalized. Author James W. Martin, P.E., gives his solution to these problems in a web-exclusive article posted here

Moving from green design to green construction
Environmental issues are increasingly at the forefront, and that, of course, includes in the construction industry. The question is: what can engineers do to design better facilities and deliver them in a manner less impactful on the environment? According to Oracle’s Richard Sappé, it’s a simple as Q x S x EF0= C x t x ImpEnv, where Q=quality, S=scope, EF0=environmental footprint, C=budget, t=timeframe, and ImpEnv= environmental impact. If you’re questioning whether this theory can work in practice, Sappé assures that it can. Just look at the Utah Department of Transportation. By measuring the environmental impact of a Utah bridge, engineers were able to minimize those impacts, reducing CO2 emissions by more than 100,000 tons. To read the full article, click here.

By delivering infrastructure projects rapidly, the Utah Department of Transportation reduced time spent in congestion, reduced incidents of potential road rage, and significantly reduced emissions, as well as reduced costs.

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