Who doesn’t love a Supercar? It seems that supercars grab the attention of almost everyone. I know for me, as a young boy I dreamed of having one – much like many of you I’m sure.
The high-pitched engine sound, the acceleration, and finished with the thrilling adrenalin rush. Supercars capture our imagination and fulfill our childhood fantasies. Some may say there’s no need, nor place for supercars; yet, year after year, carmakers such as Lamborghini, Ferrari, and Porsche keep making supercars. Supercars are not created just to break records at the Nürburgring, they have another purpose in life: to push the limit and trailblaze on what is technologically improbable. The standard features in the vehicles of today came as technological breakthroughs in these supercars a decade ago. Paddle shifters on the steering wheels, anti-lock brakes, and even the all-wheel-drive systems were once showcased only in exotic cars.
The pandemic has created a global phenomenon of working from home and “You’re on mute” is now the catchphrase of the year. Organizations as large as institutions, to small and medium-sized companies, to Universities and elementary schools, were thrown into the Work-from-X (WFX) mode with little or no planning time. The last 13-months at Ferroque Systems have been busy, to say the least, as we helped our customers transition into WFX. We believe WFX is here to stay!! Using the supercar analogy, we want to push the limits and trailblaze in the realm of remote workstyle. We started to think, if one can work from home, their backyard, a coffee shop, or basically anywhere with a network connection, why not work from a supercar? To start, supercars today are already equipped with a screen and an LTE cellular connection, so why not convert it into a remote workspace?
To test our hypothesis that we can convert a supercar into the fastest moving WFX space in the world, first we need to pick a car, a real supercar. While visiting our friends at Grand Touring Uptown, we saw the perfect car -a 2020 Lamborghini Huracán EVO RWD Spyder in Blu Glauco. It has a 5.2L V10 naturally aspirated engine that produces 602 HP; accelerates from 0 to 100km/h in less than 3 seconds, and tops out at 324km/h. The most important of all, it is equipped with a 9” centre console screen and space in the front trunk for additional equipment, not to mention the colour, did I say that already!?!
In order to be considered the fastest moving WFX space in the world, this Lamborghini must be able to perform everything we can do in a ‘conventional’ office. It needs to be able to access our datacentre remotely for virtual desktop and applications; securely and reliably conduct voice and video meetings and collaborations; and perform administrative tasks such as print, copy, and sign documents, digitally or physically. These functions must be executed at ease, seamlessly, and reliably, no matter where we are in latitude or longitude. Based on these design principles, we at Ferroque Systems are going to “upgrade” our Lamborghini with the following technologies:
- Reliable connection. Citrix SD-WAN 110-LTE-WiFi appliance will be located in the front trunk. It has two SIM card slots for out-of-band connectivity and we chose a Rogers SIM as well as a GoogleFi SIM for worldwide roaming. A 3rd satellite connection will come shortly to provide connection in rural areas. Such areas include the Cabot Trail in coastal Nova Scotia. Many consider this area to be one of the best scenic routes for driving in the world – I concur!
- Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops service. The onboard computer will be outfitted to run Citrix Workspace app, which will connect through the SD-WAN back to our datacentre for apps and desktops.
- Voice/video conference and collaboration. A webcam will be added for video capturing from the virtual desktops while the speakers in the car and Bluetooth phone connection provide voice services.
- Private Cloud. In addition to our datacentre Citrix resources, the car is being equipped with a lightweight hypervisor host allowing us to run Citrix sessions locally within the car, or remotely from the car.
- Print/fax/scan. Universal virtual printing services coupled with portal devices in the glove compartment to allow the moving vehicle to print from any device.
Just like all the “over the top” features in supercars, such as high power output, carbon-ceramic brakes, and racing timers, just to name a few; all the technologies we put into this car may be considered excessive and unnecessary to some, but we believe that one day these too will be part of the ‘standard’ package.
The design concept is a start and our plan is to see this project comes to life in the next two years. We will upgrade the design concept to improve and adopt new technologies as the evolution of WFX progresses. In addition to sharing this transformation experience online, we will be touring across the country to meet and greet our customers and partners. So don’t be surprised if you see this Lamborghini WFX office zooming through the rocky trails or coastal roads near you! All we can say at this point is our workspace is faster than yours! Open roads ahead!
Todd Hsu is President and Partner at Ferroque Systems. As the former head of TH Consultants (acquired by Citrix in 2012) and former Director of Consulting Services Canada, Todd is bona fide grandfather and pioneer of Citrix solutions in North America, having built thriving businesses around Citrix’s technology portfolio since the 1990s.