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Specifically Speaking: Adam Shane on designing integrated security systems

Specifically Speaking: Adam Shane on designing integrated security systems

Specifically Speaking: Adam Shane on designing integrated security systems

YARMOUTH, Maine—Adam Shane’s goal on any project he tackles is to design and integrate security systems so that data is shared across various applications in a seamless manner.

“I assist clients on a range of projects related to data sharing across applications,” said Shane, systems integration manager at Burns Engineering, Inc. “In my role at Burns, I design various systems related to integrated security operations.”

Burns EngineeringAs part of Security Systems News’ monthly column Specifically Speaking, the following is an exclusive Q&A with Shane:

SSN: What kinds of systems do you design/specify and what services does the company provide?

SHANE: I have designed access control, video surveillance, intrusion detection, identity management and badging, police dispatch, parking access and revenue control, and parking availability systems. Generally, my involvement focuses on the integration of these systems so that they work together in an automated and consistent manner. What I do is just one part of the services that Burns can provide.

For more than 60 years, Burns has built a reputation on outstanding client service. We are fully invested in alleviating our clients' concerns and solving their toughest problems. Burns takes on big challenges. We will help airports adopt new technologies from biometrics, artificial intelligence, to automation at gates and more.

SSN: What vertical markets does the company specialize in? Any interesting projects that you can mention?

SHANE: Burns Engineering is organized in verticals for aviation, rail and transit, healthcare, fleet electrification and power resilience, and infrastructure.

I have worked on a project at a Category X airport where I facilitated the integration of data across access control, identity management, video surveillance, and police dispatch systems. This was a very complex solution with many parties involved but was also very satisfying to see the project completed successfully. At other projects I have performed sizing studies, product evaluation studies, and incorporated integration with unusual applications like highway toll transponders, reservation web sites, and autonomous robots.

SSN: How did you get started in security and designing/specifying?

SHANE: My path was not typical of our industry. I started my career as an aerospace engineer. One employer wanted to spin off a commercial biometric technology, and I followed that opportunity into the security industry.

I have worked for product manufacturers, a system integrator, and now for an engineering and design firm. I am fortunate to have seen these various sides of the industry. This also informs my approach to design – I am keenly aware that designs must be constructable and based on commercially available products. I have been in situations where the designer did not work with the integrator or product manufacturers to make sure what they designed was available.

SSN: What is your view on the industry moving forward?

SHANE: The technology that is driving our industry is changing very fast. Product manufacturers are very quick (maybe too quick) to adopt new technologies like artificial intelligence and the like. The designers and the installers may not have the experience, education, or knowledge to be able to apply these products where they are most effective. This can lead to suboptimal implementations that don’t reap the anticipated benefits.

In order to see adoption of their technology, product manufacturers introduce professional services and try to sell direct to end users. Our industry is repeating the history of other industries before us, such as the computer industry. We face the challenge of doing too many things and doing none of them well. We should all strive to be the absolute best and produce high-quality work.




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