Snow can’t put the chill on a hot first day at ISC East

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Thursday, October 30, 2008

NEW YORK—It was brief, but it was definitely a snow shower that greeted those walking to the Javits Center on the morning of Oct. 29, the first day of the 42nd annual ISC East. That didn’t chill former NYC mayor Rudy Giuliani, however, as he addressed several hundred attendees with his morning keynote address, which centered on the theme of leadership. Giuliani talked about the value of “relentless preparation,” something he learned as a U.S. District Attorney, and how he applied lessons learned early in his career to the challenges he faced as mayor—most notably, of course, during and immediately after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.
As a young lawyer he was taught to “prepare for everything you can think of, and that will make you better able to deal with the things you didn’t prepare for.” While the nature of the 9/11 attacks where unanticipated—a plane being used to attack a building—the city and emergency workers were, in fact, trained to deal with components of the attack, such as terrorist bombings, a building collapse and high-rise fires.
“DHS should be called the Department of Relentless Preparedness, because that’s what they should be doing,” he said.
Once the exhibit floor opened, traffic was steady and, in many aisles, crowded, throughout the day. ISC organizers said that 50 percent of the ISC East attendees do not attend other security shows, and the traffic made that believable.
The Honeywell Security and Honeywell Fire groups were situated front and center, as is their tradition here in their backyard. While the Honeywell Security booth may have been slightly smaller than usual, their staff was out in force, including First Alert president Joe Sausa, who was busy greeting booth attendees.
A couple aisles over at the Honeywell fire group booths, Fire-Lite was talking up its IPDACT-2UD, which it says is the first IP communicator that allows upload and download. “The bottom line is it saves money and time for installers,” said Beth Welch, public relations manager for Honewell Fire Systems. In this economy, “installers are running a tight ship,” she said, so the ability to upload software or diagnose a problem remotely is an important benefit.
System Sensor used its press conference to introduce its new CO detector, which meets new NFPA 720 requirements, and is poised for quick adoption, said System Sensor director of communication David George. He noted 17 states now require CO detectors, and not just in residences, but businesses as well, with two more states pending. “CO’s on fire,” George said.
A newcomer to the show floor, with a booth right near the entrance, was Smith & Wesson, introducing its new dealer program. The gun manufacturer announced this spring that it was partnering with NationWide Digital Monitoring Co., a division of New York Merchants Protective Co., to design and sell Smith & Wesson-branded security systems. NationWide president Wayne Wahrsager said he’s had “hundreds of inquiries from dealers across the country.” Smith & Wesson CEO Michael Golden noted that the brand means “safety, security, protection and sport” to people whether they “like guns or not, are Democrats or Republicans, are from the East Coast or the West Coast—people’s perception of the brand is extremely positive.”
At iControl, marketing director Greg Roberts was giving a demo of his product, including its new iPhone application. The company is “in technical trials with broadband and telco companies” and it expects to announce a partnership or two around the first of the year.
Axis Communications’ booth was packed throughout the day. Perhaps it was the footsteps leading from the front hall to the booth, or perhaps, as Fredrik Nilsson, general manager suggested, it was dealers’ interest in the sneak preview Axis was offering of its HD camera, Q1755, which he said was a nod to the increasing ubiquity of HD televisions in the home. “Consumers are driving the professional market,” he said. What’s showing at tradeshows like CES can, these days, help predict what’s on the horizon for the security market, he said.
Speco also looked to be experiencing significant traffic interested in its InPro Intelligent protocol camera, its new initiative for getting video into small businesses and residential applications.
Over at Monitronics, employees were sporting hockey jerseys with their names on the back to go along with the company’s hockey-themed booth. Meanwhile, ScanSource went with a football theme. And the winner of the “successful gimmicks to get people to look at your booth” award went to DWG Distribution, which had two faux mini airplanes (which looked a little like snowmobiles) that people could sit in to use virtual reality flight simulators.