The Semantics of Emergency Communications in Modern Times

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The purpose of our research paper is to discuss the semantics of emergency communications in modern times. Our research specifically focuses on communications between emergency personnel, emergency dispatchers, and first responders during crisis. The main goal is not to examine communications from a historical point of view, but to touch up on the subject of 9/11, since it was such an eye opener for all of us regarding our faults in communications. We believe that this will be an acceptable way to start our paper since it is directed towards emergency communications. On the day that America was attacked by terrorists, it was a disaster for all us, but the information we gained from it was worth at least something. According to a “A Systematic Approach to Improve Communication for Emergency Response”, helicopters flying over the area surrounding the collapse of the first tower tried to report the immediate evacuation of all people in the area around the second tower to the fire department. For reasons still unknown today, the fire department did not receive this message.

Network Congestion
There are two main reasons for communications failures, which are network congestion and hardware failure and damage. Network congestion involves the overflow of information. This could be due to the odd use of user communication methods and malware infestation. Hardware failure and damage during a crisis is usually caused by some of the same factors that they are trying to mitigate. These include natural disasters such as hurricanes, earthquakes, and electrical storms. Human error plays a big role in communication failures by entering the wrong information, or accidentally turning off a router. Based on our studies of chapters two, four and five, we believe that the chance of network latency and jitter can be reduced by setting the hot zone as a priority for communication. We are sure that this would already be done if it is deemed acceptable, but wouldn’t it be possible to greatly reduce the chance of network congestion and latency by using multiple network topologies. Network Congestion: Solutions using topologies

We have learned about multiple topologies this year. This includes the bus, ring, star and mesh topologies. But the most notable one for our purpose is the wireless mesh network. A wireless mesh network makes it to the top of the list because it is wireless. Other topologies like the bus, ring and star networks require physical connections to the Internet.

Wireless Mesh Networks
One solution for communication failure is The Wireless Mesh Network. These actually are already being used by the military today and are currently being implemented into cities as well. We have discussed Mesh Networks are one of the network topologies that we researched in our textbook. The difference between the two is that the one we are talking about is of course, wireless. They are extremely useful in the aspect that they can self-heal. When one node (any computer, server, printer etc connected to the network) ceases to operate, the other nodes will pick up the slack on the lost node and will still maintain communication between each other. Wireless mesh networks operate using multiple hop-by-hop communication. This means that there will be multiple options for routing. This is ideal for setting up any communications for disaster response because it is cost effective, has a large amount of bandwidth, and can be set over a specific area. Also only one node needs to be physically connected to the network, so that it can share it’s Internet with other nodes in the area. In addition to this, a Wireless Mesh Network does not need to be a network of immobile nodes. It can be built out of multiple mobile devices. Even better, as more Internet devices are included in the wireless mesh network, the bandwidth will become stronger enabling the connection to reach out even farther, find other devices...
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