June 15, 2017
On June 15, Software.org hosted a panel of infrastructure and technology industry leaders on Capitol Hill to discuss the role of software in upgrading America’s infrastructure for the 21st century. Congressman Darrell Issa gave opening remarks. Software.org’s Executive Director Chris Hopfensperger moderated the panel, which included Brian T. Pallasch of the American Society of Civil Engineers, David Crane of Autodesk, Dr. Christopher Greer of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), and Harrison Wadsworth of Siemens Corporation.
Pallasch underscored the current state of America’s outdated infrastructure with the hard-hitting truth that there has been no improvement from 2013-2017. Because of problems caused by outdated infrastructure—such as cars using more gas due to traffic on bad roads and increased prices for goods due to higher shipping costs—American households lose $3,400 each year. Wadsworth, Crane, and Greer all supported this statement with examples of how their own organizations have found infrastructure solutions with software. Siemens’ Digital Rail Services use data to improve rail operations and detect train malfunctions before they happen. Crane shared how Autodesk’s Building Information Modeling (BIM) software streamlines both construction and lifestyle management of buildings. Greer highlighted NIST’s Global City Teams Challenge, a program that enables communities to benefit from the experience of others in using the Internet of Things to improve efficiency and lower costs.
The consensus was clear: America’s infrastructure needs a software upgrade.