The OCF Board of Directors (BoD) is made up of leading experts from innovative tech manufacturers including CableLabs, Cascoda, Haier, LG Electronics, and Samsung. These representatives are key decision makers and work to ensure the organization operations run smoothly and are in-line with OCF’s vision for the IoT. Last month, OCF was proud to welcome Mark Trayer to the BoD as Chairman of the Board. Mark brings a wealth of industry experience to the BoD and has been involved with OCF since its early inception in 2014.
We spoke with Mark about his professional background, his objectives as new BoD Chair, and his outlook on the future of OCF. Get to know the OCF BoD Chair below:
Please give us a brief introduction to yourself – what is your professional background, particularly within the IoT space?
I’ve been involved with “connectivity” the entirety of my professional career in Samsung, and prior to that, Nortel (originally BNR). Initially, I worked on the implementation of “old school” SS7 signaling systems in Digital Telephone, which evolved into architecting protocol stacks as part of Multi-media over IP solutions. I subsequently became more “residential” and user focused, working on in-home content distribution (personal content and provided content), and then into spaces that acted as a precursor to some of the early Smart Device/Smart Home solutions (Smart Energy, Smart Appliances, and associated Energy Star definitions).
I was part of the teams that worked on initial Smart Home enabling technologies for Samsung products. From there, in 2014 I was part of the launch of the Open Interconnect Consortium, which subsequently became what we know today as Open Connectivity Foundation (OCF). I have been heavily involved in contributing to OCF since that point.
As the newly elected OCF BoD Chair, how do you aim to use this role to advance OCF technology?
As OCF BoD Chair my role is to advance OCF technology through working with the other BoD members and the OCF Work Groups (WGs) to engender two key items: awareness and adoption.
For awareness, I work with other BoD members and OCF WG Chairs in active initiatives on stakeholder value, as well as the ongoing efforts of the Marketing Communications WG to position OCF effectively. We do this with targeted messaging advocating OCF as the Secure IP Device Framework of choice for the IoT.
For adoption, I work to ensure that OCF effectively supports member companies looking to bring products to market, as well as support ongoing initiatives taking place in different regions to deploy OCF technology.
Could you tell us about your history with OCF?
Samsung is a “day #1” member of OCF (originally OIC). I attended the kick-off Face-to-Face meeting in Manhattan Beach, CA, and was co-chair at that time of the original Smart Home group (with Wouter van der Beek, OCF Director). I have continued to chair the Smart Home Work Group since that very first meeting, and have also taken on the role of Core Technology Working Group Chair and Core Technology Steering Committee Chair.
I have been heavily involved in the development of the device and resource models that have been defined by OCF, working with people like Wouter van der Beek and Clarke Stevens on the tooling that accompanies these models that enables automated creation of spec material, and also automated creation of running code that realizes OCF devices.
I was also part of the key set of contributors that saw the realization of the OCF Universal Cloud Interface (C2C API) from a Power Point concept to a certifiable reality (with at least three certifications to date).
Why is OCF the standard of choice to propel IoT security to new heights?
OCF has endorsed security as a key element of its work and has a dedicated Security Work Group to maintain and update the OCF Secure IP Device Framework.
The OCF Secure IP Device Framework is a vertical agnostic infrastructure that enables secure IP communication through a standardized framework. It is also backed by an open-source implementation, which is compliant to the standard and meets the implementation verifications of our Certification Program. The framework includes network device discovery, resource/service discovery on the device, secure connectivity using DTLS for proximal (device-device) communication, onboarding on the secure domain and Access control lists.
This framework is compliant with most of the known IoT security baseline requirements – including those from NIST, CTAC, ENISA, UK, IASME and ETSI. The OCF Security Work Group has measured the OCF Secure IP Device Framework against these IoT security baselines so that you don’t have to – essentially allowing you to “compile your compliance” for regulatory IoT security requirements.
OCF offers a comprehensive Certification Program for its members. What are the benefits of OCF Certification and how does OCF Certification simplify a product’s time to market?
OCF provides a rich suite of tools to support members in bringing certified products to market. The Certification Test Tool (CTT) itself is available for free to all members, thus allowing in-house test and validation of an implementation before bringing it to an ATL for formal certification. In conjunction with this, Iotivity Lite provides an open-source implementation of the specifications that realizes the mandatory requirements, and against which each CTT release is regressed, thus ensuring alignment between specifications, code, and certification for every release.
To help in the development of a certifiable implementation and greatly simplify the associated effort, OCF also provides tools and toolchains to create running code for a device in an extremely time efficient manner, the OCF Developer Program provides tutorials and details to get started.
Could you give us a preview of what’s to come for OCF?
OCF is driving down three key paths:
- First, promoting the proven, open, Secure IP Device Framework that is defined by the Core and Core Security specifications as a fundamental element for an IoT solution or deployment. This is agnostic of the data models also defined by OCF, meaning that anyone who requires a secure, open standards-based, IP framework can take what OCF has developed (including much of the associated tooling) and build thereon.
- Second, OCF will continue to drive and support adoption of OCF as the IoT enabler for Smart Home and Smart Residential solutions. OCF ensures that any gaps in modeling or capability are met, and works with OCF member companies and the regional forums in supporting deployments, product development, certification programs, inter-operability events and more.
- Third, supporting efforts and work of the Smart Commercial Building Work Group in realizing products, solutions, and commercial deployments of OCF technology in this space.
All three of these initiatives provide the pillars of success for OCF moving forward.