NSCA Expo '99: a preview
Mar 1, 1999 12:00 PM, Chuck Wilson
Ten years ago, the NSCA Expo was held in Nashville's Opryland conventionfacility. As we head back to Opryland for Expo '99 (April 29 through May1), you will be amazed at how that facility has grown. Once there, you willalso find how the NSCA Expo has grown equally amazing. Hosted by theNational Systems Contractors Association, the NSCA Expo is the official"Electronics Systems Integration Expo." Over the years, this trade event,now featuring more than 500 exhibiting companies, has become the best placefor systems contractors, integrators, designers and installers to view thelatest in creating and installing commercial systems for their customers,and it has evolved beyond a product show.
View integrated solutionsThis year, many companies are exhibiting a family of products designed tobe fully integrated for specific end-user applications. In addition,several companies will feature integrated solutions with othermanufacturers. Like many others, our industry is teetering on the verge ofinteroperability standards. This industry event will certainly raise thelevel of awareness on that subject.
Many new exhibitors are scheduled for Expo '99, and the event has caughtthe attention of manufacturers of video projection and presentationequipment, just to name a few. These companies are now paying closeattention to the electronic systems industry as more of their products arespecified as parts of complete systems. The same is true for the fire alarmand emergency evacuation product manufacturers. The NSCA has taken anactive role in the efforts to incorporate standards for speechintelligibility into the fire alarm code, and consequently, attendance atthe Expo has become more important.
Also new for the Expo '99 show-floor is the NSCA University: A VirtualCampus. A demonstration of the convergence trend occurring in our industry,this information technology area will illustrate fully integratedelectronic system applications as they would be installed at a campus-likefacility. A wide variety of technical application will be shown andexplained by a team of experts who design these systems every day. Inessence, the Virtual Campus has been implemented to provide visitors with asnapshot of what will be commonplace in the years to come.
EducationAfter recent strategic planning sessions, the NSCA education departmentadopted new initiatives for its educational offerings. Starting at Expo '99and continuing throughout the year, business education will be expanded tooffer attendees a wider variety of choices in management and salesprograms. For those looking to expand their business, an exploring trackwill provide participants an overview of market conditions, the cost ofentry into areas of new opportunity and more.
As a strong focus on business education incurs, however, the NSCA'stechnical education will not be compromised. The NSCA has again employedmany industry experts to lead technology topics that include audio, video,telephony, data communications, fire alarm, security and buildingautomation. These courses are planned to let you look before you leap. Tosimplify the selection process for courses, many of the technical, salesand business courses have been bundled into Value Packs, each discountedapproximately 10% to encourage participation.
Special eventsTo encourage networking, numerous special events are again on tap for thisyear's Expo. Every night, there will be an industry-wide event at Opryland.The Annual Contractor Caper will again be held the night before openingday, and the Expo Jamimmediately follows, this year with Eddie Money inconcert. All attendees are welcome to join in the fun and get to know oneanother. Off-site events, such as the dart tournament and the closing nightparty in downtown Nashville, will have shuttles running all evening long.
Because your time is valuable and limited, the NSCA Expo has been designedto maximize the duration of your stay. Activities and events have beenscheduled day and night for your benefit. As more and more trade showscreep onto your calendars, we want the NSCA Expo to be at the top of yourlist. For more information on the NSCA Expo, call headquarters at800-446-6722 or visit www.nscaexpo.org.