MCP Insights

This Weekend's GPS Rollover Event Requires Public Safety Communication's Attention

Posted on April 5, 2019 by Dennis Matzen

Global Positioning System (GPS)-based time sources are used throughout the public safety sector to synchronize a wide array of systems and equipment, including radio consoles, voice recorders, and computer-aided dispatch, fire alarm and video surveillance systems. Such time sources, known as master clocks, also ensure that every system used by a public safety agency generates an accurate, consistent timestamp for every emergency event that requires a law enforcement, fire/rescue and/or emergency medical services (EMS) response.

An event that will occur in two days—Saturday, April 6—threatens to throw things out of sync, at least to some degree. GPS marks time by transmitting signals that indicate the current week and the number of seconds into that week. That data is then converted by the various systems and equipment into the more recognizable format of year, month, day and time of day.

Because the field that represents the current week is a 10-bit binary number, a total of 1,024 weeks can transpire—roughly 19.7 years—before GPS resets the week value to zero. In the world of GPS, this time period is known as an epoch. The first epoch began on January 6, 1980 and rolled over on August 21, 1999; the second epoch will roll over in two days.

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An Important Milestone: 10 Years of Mission Critical Partners

Posted on February 14, 2019 by Morgan Sava

This month is very special for Mission Critical Partners: it’s the month we celebrate 10 years of being in business.

A decade ago, our co-founders—Kevin Murray, Brian Bark, and Len Kowalski—started the firm in makeshift offices above their garages and in their basements. They were joined shortly thereafter by David F. Jones and Dave Boyce. Together, the team of five worked countless hours and weekends to build a company consisting of innovators, engineers, subject-matter experts, former emergency responders and 911 center managers, and project managers, who share a common passion—improving life-safety outcomes. Since their humble beginning in 2009, the founders had a vision of growing the firm to 75 employees, the size they believed would give it influence in shaping the future of public safety communications.

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10 Years of MCP: An Interview with Brian Bark, Co-Founder

Posted on February 14, 2019 by Glenn Bischoff

"MCP’s success ‘is all about good people doing good work every day"

A previous post offered the memories and perspectives of MCP chief executive officer and co-founder Kevin Murray in marking the firm’s 10th anniversary, which is being celebrated in 2019. In this post, MCP Insights visits with another co-founder, Brian Bark, who today is the firm’s senior vice president/national sales director.

Insights: What were the biggest challenges faced in the beginning and how were they overcome?

Brian: The biggest challenge was setting up the company—we were starting flat-footed. We always knew what we wanted to be, and collectively the vision always was consistent. But we had to set up the banking and insurance, and get the accounting and legal support, all the things it takes to start a company. We knew that we didn’t want to be a three-person company, and growing MCP to the point where it was influential in the industry also was extremely challenging. We had many client contacts when we opened for business, but they all were under contract.

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10 Years of MCP: An Interview with Kevin Murray, CEO and Co-Founder

Posted on February 14, 2019 by Glenn Bischoff

"There is nothing better than watching staff deliver great results to clients."

Mission Critical Partners (MCP) is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year and to mark the milestone, MCP Insights visited with the three founders to capture their memories and perspectives. This installment features Kevin Murray, the firm’s chief executive officer.

Insights: What were the biggest challenges faced in the beginning and how were they overcome?

Kevin: The biggest challenge was starting from scratch. It was a tremendous amount of time and work. We worked every day, from sunup to sundown, for a year. You have to choose a name and logo, you have to set up bank accounts and get business insurance, you’re writing proposals and making sales calls. On the weekends you’re putting desk furniture together. We were scrounging and scraping with everything we did. Luckily, we had each other—the ultimate triangle team—and some pretty understanding spouses.

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A Call to Action: 911 Data Sharing

Posted on January 23, 2019 by Gordon Vanauken

In a previous article on MCP Insights, we discussed in length how data will be king in public safety’s incredibly exciting new era. The torrent of rich data that is beginning to enter into 911 centers promises to have a profound impact on emergency response—but only if its harnessed effectively.

For the 911 community to realize the full value of data, several critical elements must be in place. One of those is a data management and sharing environment that provides useful and sustainable standards, requirements, and guidance. Not only must this environment support day-to-day 911 service delivery today, it must be flexible enough to support the industry’s future, next-generation data needs as well.

With today’s legacy 911 environment—which consists of localized, siloed systems—overcoming this significant hurdle will be difficult, but one that MCP believes not only is attainable, but also imperative.

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