Re: 'Real' cost ?

Jeff Liebermann <jeffl@xxxxxxxxxx> wrote in

On Fri, 15 Aug 2008 03:16:18 +0000 (UTC), DanS
<t.h.i.s.n.t.h.a.t@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:

I know that the company I'm at would have been able to do the hardware
and installations for that for 1/2 that price....I'm positive most of
was on existing hardware......lamp post's, signal arms, etc. so there
wasn't the need for high-dollar construction.

Well, there's a clue in the original article which says:
"Johnson Controls, Inc. was the lowest responsible
bidder to respond to a Request for Proposals issued by
the Mayor's Office,"

Lowest -RESPONSIBLE- bidder is a sneaky way of disclosing that there
were lower bids from other companies, but that the bids contained
something that turned off the Buffalo bureaucracy. Usually it's
something like claiming that the size of the vendor is insufficient to
meet the ongoing needs of the city or something equally vague. You
might want to determine if the mayors favorite charity received a
donation. No clue about the Avrio Group. This is what they call a
corporate data sheet:
No numbers of any kind. Maybe Buffalo just tossed a coin?

I managed to determine that there were 8 original bidders, but can't
find the names.

Duh... Here are some photos of last years demo:
Crude at best. Look at the last paragraph. Reading between the
lines, it looks like Buffalo is using State and Federal money to build
up their PD/FD data network, that has nothing to do with the actual
cameras. That may explain the high markup.

Proposed camera locations:
That's quite an area to cover with 4.9GHz repeaters/mesh.

"First Arrests Made within Hours of System Installation..."
The article has more techy information on the system. Looks like
"evidence grade cameras" Axis cameras and video servers, which is
where the optics costs more than the camera. However, looking at the
demo photos, I don't think they're using anything sophisticated.

Firetide mesh radios.

OnSSI video management, which methinks is the mystery software:
There are downloadable demos if you wanna play.

Nice setup, but hardly worth $42,000 each.

Geez, Jeff, even I wasn't into doing that much research. But thanks, I'll
forward this info to the powers that be.

I missed the 'responsible' bidder thing. My gut feeling is that since it
was grant money, cost wasn't a concern. There also had to be some kind of
kickbacks doubt. Johnson controls is a huge company.

Earlier this year, we, as a small company, provided our OEM I/O radio
gear, network design, on-site prop studies, and radio
management/monitoring s/w to a project in Florida along I-75 that
monitors guardrails along 'Alligator Alley' for collision breakthrus, and
relays this info back to HQ. This was 250-ish nodes and the total of our
contract was around $260K. I guess they got a really good deal. Granted
this was the 900 SS 115Kbps gear, but about 4 times the number of nodes.
I even had to design some custom antenna standoffs for these tapered
concrete polls they are using at Master locations.

Looking at the map of the camera locations here in Buffalo, there's
enough space between them that I can easily see the criminals just moving
somewhere else. That's kind fo funny....and not. For instance, on the far
right, and centrally located top to bottom is the intersection of Bailey
and Genesee. Bailey runs N & S and Genesee is the road going SW to NE.
From that intersection, all the way SW down Genesee there is not one
other camera. The camera's I've seen are maybe mounted at street light
height, at best. Almost all of the homes up and down the sidestreets off
of Genesee are close-together, 2 story, city homes, so I don't see too
much benefit, other than maybe a couple hundred yards in each direction
the camera can 'look' up and down the street.

Thanks again for the info Jeff.