Danish Police depend on Macs to manage UN Climate Change conference in Copenhagen

Hammacher Homepage 300x250“As the world descends on Copenhagen this week for the United Nations Climate Change conference, the city’s police must manage protests, secure world leaders, and handle all the other issues that come with a major global event,” Nicole Kobie reports for IT PRO. “Perhaps surprisingly, the force is doing it with Macs.”

MacDailyNews Take: What’s perhaps surprising about it? The Danes probably want their computers to work instead of wasting all of their time working on their computers.

Kobie reports, “The Danish Police Department isn’t using Apple computers on the go, or keeping in touch with iPhones. No, the entire central command is now run by Mac Pros and Mac Minis [sic], with not a single PC to be seen.”

MacDailyNews Take: Yeah, they just want their stuff to work. No biggie, unless you’re a magazine dedicated to those who value job security over doing a quality job for their companies. BTW, nice all-caps. Typical.

Kobie reports, “The Danish police force has been using Macs since 1996, running NeXTStep. But five years ago, the force needed to upgrade, as spare parts were becoming scarce… Running since mid-July, the new bespoke Mac-based system uses 25 Mac Pros and 73 Minis.”

“Because the system lets operators be more efficient, the Danish department uses a third fewer call takers than other forces in Europe. Shifts of six to eight people using 14 workstations are all the city of 1.2 million needs to take 800 to 1,200 emergency policing calls,” Kobie reports. “‘It takes a lot of human resources to… produce the same amount of call cards. We use eight people. In Kent and Surrey and Glasgow, they use 30, 40, 50,’ said Karsten Højgaard, Police Inspector. The force’s Windows-based systems didn’t allow for multiple calls to be open at the same time, and was slow to process data, so operators had to keep paper and pen at their desks ‘because the system can’t cope.'”

“‘We do not have paper and pens… that’s one of the major advances for Macs, they can handle a lot of calls at the same time,’ Højgaard said, noting over 40 can be open at once on the current systems,” Kobie reports. “‘We haven’t seen any other system that can do that,’ he said.”

“Aside from the daily operations setup, there are three other floors in the centre. One is a local datacentre, running Mac Xserve machines in a RAID 5 setup,” Kobie reports. “Another floor is for major policing operations, such as this week’s summit. It features more Apple [Mac] computers, hooked up to a series of massive displays, with 32 screens as large as 55in, so managers can keep an eye on what’s going on using maps, photos, and GPS to send resources to the right places. Data requests can be brought up, and video links patched in from anywhere.”

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: The Daily Show’s Jon Stewart on ClimateGate:

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Islandgirl45” for the heads up.]

49 Comments

  1. Cool story! Interesting how they were using Macs running NeXTStep previously – I wonder how seamless the NeXT-to-OSX transition was. And the reported inefficiency surrounding the Windows machines sounds very familiar indeed. All in all, a great showcase for the rock-solid reliability and power of today’s Macs.

    (…of course, we all know the “climate change” stuff is going to get commented on far more than the actual story here…)

  2. Nice to see the IT guys responsible for the Danish police force are substantially more clued up than their brethren around Europe.

    And to keep Gabriel happy, we all know what a total pile of bollocks the entire “climate change” debate is.

    =:~)

  3. Did they use the macs to count all the private jets, and limos, once they ran out of fingers and toes?

    Don’t worry, I am sure they were low carbon footprint private jets, and Prius Limos. After all these guys would NEVER be hypocritical.

  4. Well, even if human induced Climate Change turns out to be bunkum, the worst that could possibly happen from eliminating dirty energy sources and their toxic emissions (remember, aside from the CO2, there’s all sorts of nasty chemicals released from burning coal, oil and gas which pollute the food chain, damage reproduction, cause respiratory diseases, cancers, birth defects, etc) is that we have a cleaner planet.
    I tend to believe the 99% of the worlds scientists as opposed to the 1% crackpots, conspiracy theorists, and on-the-take industry researchers.
    Now if we can just stop the cows and sheep farting…

  5. Otherwise, excellent article. I hope many police forces from other countries will be exposed to that story. (Unfortunately, all but one of those countries are outside the US, so they won’t be exposed to the Hulu flash movie).

    @Stuart

    Sadly, the scientists in the world don’t outnumber the crackpots…

  6. Climate Change is a brand name version of “you’re making the gods angry”, wheeled in when it’s unfortunate predecessor Global Warming stopped being technically accurate.

    It is politically motivated, quasi-religious bullshit designed to be unarguable. How can anyone dispute “climate change”? Of course it is bloody changing.

    I’m all for protecting species and eliminating pollution, but this Man Is Evil / Man Is All-Powerful schizoid mind fck has got to stop.

  7. @ DX

    “Climate Change is brand name …”

    Ooh, that’s very good. I like that. Very true. Just add the Eco-Religious CC brand name to your products and all the sheep blindly buy it, in a vain attempt to assuage the feeling others might think they’re bad.

  8. But MACS can’t run OutLook so they can’t be business machines…

    When was IT Manager of a 400+ staff law firm we moved to a new 12 storey building that another law firm had left. They had had one whole floor (~10% floor space since the roof and foyer were part of the 12 floors) given over to their 50+ Windows-based IT staff. We ran the whole thing with four people and one consultant in one corner. Same industry, same environment, same level of service (or greater), just more people.

    After I left the new IT Manager moved them to Windows since he didn’t understand MACS.

  9. “In Kent and Surrey and Glasgow, they use 30, 40, 50,’ said Karsten Højgaard, Police Inspector. The force’s Windows-based systems didn’t allow for multiple calls to be open at the same time, and was slow to process data, so operators had to keep paper and pen at their desks ‘because the system can’t cope.'”

    …Computer says “No” -Carol, Little Britain

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