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NSCA Expo '99: a preview

Mar 1, 1999 12:00 PM, Chuck Wilson


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Ten years ago, the NSCA Expo was held in Nashville's Opryland convention facility. As we head back to Opryland for Expo '99 (April 29 through May 1), you will be amazed at how that facility has grown. Once there, you will also find how the NSCA Expo has grown equally amazing. Hosted by the National 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 place for systems contractors, integrators, designers and installers to view the latest in creating and installing commercial systems for their customers, and it has evolved beyond a product show.

View integrated solutions This year, many companies are exhibiting a family of products designed to be fully integrated for specific end-user applications. In addition, several companies will feature integrated solutions with other manufacturers. Like many others, our industry is teetering on the verge of interoperability standards. This industry event will certainly raise the level of awareness on that subject.

Many new exhibitors are scheduled for Expo '99, and the event has caught the attention of manufacturers of video projection and presentation equipment, just to name a few. These companies are now paying close attention to the electronic systems industry as more of their products are specified as parts of complete systems. The same is true for the fire alarm and emergency evacuation product manufacturers. The NSCA has taken an active role in the efforts to incorporate standards for speech intelligibility into the fire alarm code, and consequently, attendance at the Expo has become more important.

Also new for the Expo '99 show-floor is the NSCA University: A Virtual Campus. A demonstration of the convergence trend occurring in our industry, this information technology area will illustrate fully integrated electronic system applications as they would be installed at a campus-like facility. A wide variety of technical application will be shown and explained by a team of experts who design these systems every day. In essence, the Virtual Campus has been implemented to provide visitors with a snapshot of what will be commonplace in the years to come.

Education After recent strategic planning sessions, the NSCA education department adopted new initiatives for its educational offerings. Starting at Expo '99 and continuing throughout the year, business education will be expanded to offer attendees a wider variety of choices in management and sales programs. For those looking to expand their business, an exploring track will provide participants an overview of market conditions, the cost of entry into areas of new opportunity and more.

As a strong focus on business education incurs, however, the NSCA's technical education will not be compromised. The NSCA has again employed many industry experts to lead technology topics that include audio, video, telephony, data communications, fire alarm, security and building automation. These courses are planned to let you look before you leap. To simplify the selection process for courses, many of the technical, sales and business courses have been bundled into Value Packs, each discounted approximately 10% to encourage participation.

Special events To encourage networking, numerous special events are again on tap for this year's Expo. Every night, there will be an industry-wide event at Opryland. The Annual Contractor Caper will again be held the night before opening day, and the Expo Jamimmediately follows, this year with Eddie Money in concert. All attendees are welcome to join in the fun and get to know one another. Off-site events, such as the dart tournament and the closing night party in downtown Nashville, will have shuttles running all evening long.

Because your time is valuable and limited, the NSCA Expo has been designed to maximize the duration of your stay. Activities and events have been scheduled day and night for your benefit. As more and more trade shows creep onto your calendars, we want the NSCA Expo to be at the top of your list. For more information on the NSCA Expo, call headquarters at 800-446-6722 or visit www.nscaexpo.org.



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