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Editorial: What Do You Know?

The old saying, March comes in like a lion, goes out like a lamb, refers to the spring weather pattern. But for trade events in March, the opposite is

Editorial: What Do You Know?

Mar 1, 2004 12:00 PM,
By Mark Johnson

The old saying, “March comes in like a lion, goes out like a lamb,” refers to the spring weather pattern. But for trade events in March, the opposite is probably the case. The latter part of the month really gets busy, what with NSCA Systems Integration Expo, the Messe in Frankfurt, and preparations for NAB in April.

The NSCA Expo is a key show for Sound & Video Contractor. The concerns of the magazine mirror those of NSCA. Both organizations act as a forum to address the issues that affect the industry globally and recognize achievement in product design (be sure to check out the Innovations in Technology pavilion at the show) and application. Both believe that knowledge — learning and teaching — is a key factor to staying competitive in today’s marketplace. Sound & Video Contractor and the NSCA cover a lot of ground in addressing the needs of the many aspects of the systems integration industry: audio, video, IT, security/life safety, presentation, and telecommunication. The partnership of NSCA and PSA is an example of the natural evolution of systems integration and offers integrators opportunity to increase marketability by providing a vehicle to gain expertise in both fields.

The March issue of Sound & Video Contractor has added significance in that the focus is on education. The importance of education to NSCA attendees is twofold. First, the education market is slowly but surely embracing technology by employing tools such as distance learning, streaming media, and presentation and display technology at all levels from kindergarten through college. Second, integrators must be educated about current technology and the most effective ways to employ it (in other words, here’s the latest tool and how, when, and why you use it).

During the past 20 years, the NSCA Expo has grown but stayed true to its roots. The NSCA has worked hard to provide integrators with an opportunity to advance their craft through course offerings at the Expo as well as regionally, online (see our special report on distance learning on p. 48), and by teleconferences throughout the year — all through NSCA University. Some courses are also available on CD to take at your convenience. Not only are technical aspects covered but how to do business is also addressed in some of the offerings.

I have been going through back issues of Sound & Video Contractor for “20 Years Ago” (see p. 11) and have been getting a condensed replay of the maturation of the industry, and it’s been an interesting journey. NSCA (20 years ago, it was the National Sound and Communications Association) and Sound & Video Contractor have grown up together as a part of an industry that has gone through ebbs and flows. Through those times, both organizations have remained focused on providing the contractor (now systems integrator) with solid technical information, education to stay current, and insight into the business aspects of the industry.

I hope to see you all at the show.

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