Around March of 2011, I was asked by one of my previous business partners to design an integration solution for a new and innovative application. The idea was to make chiller plants running in large facilities to be more efficient, saving energy and eventually costs. The concept of the solution was fairly simple, take the statistics from an inefficiently run chiller plant then calculate what it would take to make it as efficient as possible.
The challenge was in deciding how to capture the data, determine what it would take to run the chiller plant as efficiently as possible, then explain to the management system how to change the devices accordingly. Of course, then the solution would have to be repeatable and able to be easily managed by a relatively small staff.
After a second implementation, the evolving user requirements made us realize we needed to redesign the system to be more scalable. From my perspective, moving and manipulating the data was an easy task, using Mule ESB (Enterprise Service Bus). Mule ESB allowed us to be as flexible as possible, while maintaining a robust production environment. Even with the redesign, I was able to re-implement the integration with a much more efficient design and very little effort.
For those of you who are not familiar with the term Enterprise Service Bus (ESB), it is the foundation of an SOA implementation. Mule ESB (developed by MuleSoft) is not your average ESB though. It is a very flexible integration tool that allows you to focus more on the business implementation and less on the technical implementation.
After being in the IT industry for nearly 21 years, it is still fascinating to see a relatively small piece of software controlling a very real tangible set of systems, in order to save energy which saves money and may even help the environment.
I wish to thank my friends at enTIC, LLC, especially Carlos Diaz, for allowing me to be involved with this exciting and worthwhile project. I am certain that their business will be successful and push the industry to become even more efficient.