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ASIS day 2, in pictures

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Wednesday, September 23, 2009
I apologize in advance for the quality of the photos, but I think being able to show you some stuff via iPhone pics is better than not having anything at all, and there's just no way I'm carrying around a real digital camera with a decent lens all day, so this is what you get. First up, evidence that the show was better today, following on the dead aisle pic I posted yesterday. Of course, I could have just cherry-picked something from the front, but this is from the back in a similar kind of spot at a similar time of day: day2traffic Also, check out the attendance for OnSSI's demonstration. It never fails to put butts in seats, despite the fact they've basically had the same presentation for 2 years. Yes, the technology is different, but not so much so the casual observer would notice, and most of the guys that sit in these seats are casual types. The touch screen stuff is just cool. onssi The show was busy enough for me, that's for sure, but I managed to resist stopping at the massage area. I'm kind of creeped out by massages anyway, and I can't say the folks in this pic are in particularly flattering positions. (I'm a little vain. I admit it.) ge-massage Anyway, the way I relax on the show floor is to visit VideoNEXT. Their Macs immediately put me at ease. An interesting note is that Apple gives them all of this display stuff and the servers for free use whenever they ask for them to go to a trade show. They've got to give them back, but it's sure nice to have a pallet of free stuff waiting for you at the show when you get there. Look for VideoNEXT to have a big announcement of a government win that's all Mac based. Apple has a big government sales force that's under the radar, but likely pretty effective if it's anything like the rest of the company. Too bad no one at Apple is allowed to talk to the press. Ever. videonext One of the hottest new things in software is the "dashboard," an interface for end users that gives them real-time stats that are easily digested. Here's Pacom's version of it, which is very slick, but Ionit have a similar thing happening geared toward business intelligence for retailers. Look for this to be everywhere in 2010. End users need stats to justify their jobs now more than ever. It's not good enough to just say you're protecting people and the enterprise, you have to prove it. pacom And, yeah, there were a ton of parties last night. I was going to go to the Stanley party, which I'm sure was awesome, but I discovered it was in Laguna Beach and that's 45 minutes from here and I just felt like I was going to be trapped. In terms of seeing the most people in the least amount of time, I felt like I needed to be on foot and mobile, so I was able to hit Arecont, Bosch, Open Options, Verint, get denied by ADT (there's a long and funny story behind that, but it's probably not safe for the blog), and then hit the tail end of Tyco. I feel like that's more productive than smoking cigars on the beach in Laguna, but I can't say it was more fun. Kind of exhausting, really. Anyway, here's the Arecont crowd, which was very strong. It's amazing to think how far Arecont has come in just three years. They've gone from being the industry outsider to the company everybody loves for their imaging and cost. arecont And here's the Bosch tent that had quite a few vendors a little grumbly (maybe because they wish they thought of it?): boschtent And here's the inside of the tent. Bosch had all kinds of carnival games set up as head-to-head competitions with other vendors' products. In this pic, an end user inexplicably makes himself look silly (again, the vanity, right?) for the opportunity to win a Bosch drill. The deal is that Bosch's motion detector consistently picks up the guys trying to get through and the competition - GE Security and some others - doesn't. It convinced me, and I love the bravado of the tent as a whole. In side-by-sides, they sort of kicked Pelco's ass all over the place, and they weren't shy about it. I think these kinds of "skills competitions" are healthy for the industry. Bosch acknowledged though that it isn't just technology that's gotten Pelco where it is, it's customer service and the whole package, and Bosch knows its customer service can't hang. It's a balance, and Bosch feels technology is on their side and getting better on the other side. boschtent2 The PSIA plugfest was also awesome, and I've got some pics from that, but I'm going to put that in a separate post later today.

ASIS, thoughts on the exhibit floor

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Wednesday, September 23, 2009
It was encouraging to me that exhibition floor traffic seemed much heavier on day 2, which jibes with many theories out there that a lot of attendees flew in on Monday or reserved Monday for educational sessions before checking out the technology on the show floor. Some people theorized that people didn't want to miss football games on Sunday (if so, they should have flown Jet Blue!). Others theorized that people didn't want to travel during the Rosh Hashanah holiday, which ran from sunset, Sept. 18 through sunset, Sept. 20. But there was another theory out there: This is the beginning of the end for the ASIS show as a major exhibition unless some things change. Many exhibitors are starting to feel like they're nothing but the economic fuel for getting all of the end users together to do everything but check out their products. Many are resentful of the fact that there is virtually always some educational programming going on during show hours, and, unlike ISC West, that educational programming is necessary in order for the attendees to keep their accreditation, so it's not like they can just skip out on it. Why, they wonder, isn't there dedicated time for exhibits only? Why isn't there more activity by ASIS on the show floor? This is something ESX tried to address at the Baltimore show this year, with a lunch held on the show floor each day and the NBFAA and CSAA booths having very prominent spaces on the show floor so that members would be right in the center of things when they were doing organization business. The ASIS booth is so out of the way that I was surprised when I stumbled upon it and there was pretty much nothing going on there. Of course, it's a pretty easy argument that vendors don't want show management to be taking up prime real estate in the front of the hall, so I'm not sure I'm convinced the ESX model is the way to go, and that's a far smaller show, anyway, so it may be a poor comparison. Regardless, it's noticeable that Siemens doesn't have a booth, that Bosch is in a big tent in the parking lot rather than inside the show (one vendor's stock answer to the question, "have you seen the Bosch tent?": "We prefer to actually support the industry"), that there are a lot of "relaxation areas" and very wide aisles. Is that because of the economy? Is it because people are dissatisfied with ASIS management? It's really hard to say. I think the economy is a very large factor, and that people still continue to underestimate just how bad the economy is, but more than one vendor gave me a variation on the line, "ASIS is just going to blame the economy." Maybe they're just bitter, but if enough of them feel the same way, ASIS could find itself with an annual show that's great for education opportunities, but doesn't have quite the economic engine it probably needs to fund it.

Kwikset gets an A (from me)

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Tuesday, September 22, 2009
Kudos to Kwikset, a door lock manufacturer and division of Black & Decker, which yesterday put out a study about homeowners' behavior and attitudes toward home security. I liked this study before I even read it because I noticed that it includes information about methodology. Here is the paragraph I love to see when someone sends me a study:
1 Telephone survey conducted among a national probability sample of 1,001 adults living in private households in the continental United States by CARAVAN®. Survey was completed during the period July 23-26, 2009. Margin of error +/- 3%.
This is good! And it's important. It gives the study instant credibility. Think about this the next time you want to put out a study, OK? And about the company and the content of the study: Black & Decker entered the security market last spring offering a new line of door locks that can be integrated into a security system. Here's a story I wrote about that. Seems like a smart and logical move. Black & Decker debuted their products at ISC West. This study appears to be new angle to get folks at ASIS to notice the product. The study says that most homeowners say security is important to them, but they're not "controlling access" to their homes. Almost half are not re-keying or changing their locks when they move into a new house. They're lending out the keys they have (and that former owners still have.) They've also got entries with different keys. (Now I know from the methodology that those surveyed do not all live on the coast of Maine, but I have substantial anecdotal evidence that the findings of this report are true, at least in small town New England. Here are the findings of my survey of the editors of SSN: Dan has keys, but doesn't lock his doors. I have a key to my house--it was given to us by the former owner. And, I know exactly where it is--on the floor of my unlocked car with the rest of my keys. Then there's Sam--he says he doesn't even have a key to his house.) But I digress... here's the release:
Kwikset® Study Reveals American Homeowners Are Living with Compromised Home Security National Survey Finds that Nearly Half of All Homeowners Did Not Change or Re-key Locks at Move-In LAKE FOREST, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Nearly half of all American homeowners fall short when it comes to maintaining the security of their home, according to the findings of an American Security Study1 (July 2009), conducted by Kwikset®, the leader in innovative residential door hardware. Released today, the study revealed that an alarming 47 percent of homeowners did not change or re-key the locks to their home when they first moved in, and nearly one-third have never changed their locks or had them re-keyed at any point since moving in. This is despite the fact that more than half of homeowners surveyed routinely loan house keys to non-residents, and previous homeowners often continue to carry old house keys. The inaugural Kwikset American Security Study also revealed that although residential security often is cited by Americans as a top priority, data suggests that people are not managing access control to their homes accordingly. Of the half of all homeowners that loan-out house keys, nearly 10 percent reportedly have loaned out their key more than 10 times. What’s more, with 60 percent of homeowners having multiple home entries with different keys for each, there already is an increased margin of error for maintaining access control. “Probably the most significant insight from our study is that American homeowners may not even be aware that their home security levels are compromised,” said Brent Flaharty, vice president of Marketing, Kwikset. “Given that the majority of respondents have never changed or re-keyed their locks, combined with the fact that they’re loaning out keys to non-residents, there is a very real possibility of keys falling into the wrong hands and even being copied unknowingly.” The Smart Solution to Improved Access Control – As Easy as 1-2-3 Kwikset developed its SmartKey® re-key technology to help combat the disturbing national trend in compromised home security. This groundbreaking new lock technology gives homeowners the ability to re-key their own locks in a matter of seconds without even having to remove the lock from the door. In three simple steps, homeowners can re-key multiple SmartKey locks to one Kwikset key, or replace a lost or loaned key with a new key, all while the lock remains in place. “SmartKey has been hugely popular with home builders and homeowners alike since its introduction in 2007, and we want even more Americans to understand how this highly secure and affordable technology is a smart and simple solution for their home security needs,” Flaharty said. “With Kwikset’s SmartKey, homeowners won’t have to worry about how many lost or loaned keys are lying around; they can simply re-key the lock to a new key for improved access control and peace of mind.” How It Works SmartKey’s patented side-locking bar technology is central to the lock’s ability to be quickly and easily re-keyed. By using the included SmartKey Learn Tool and the existing functioning key, homeowners can safely match or change out keys without special training or outside contractors. Providing superior security, SmartKey deadbolts eliminate the typical sheer line, pin and tumbler mechanisms in its design, removing the most vulnerable points in residential locks. High-quality stainless steel internal parts ensure smooth operation, increased strength and exceptional durability. SmartKey technology is currently available in all Kwikset Signature Series keyed entry products, including handlesets, levers, knobs and deadbolts, as well as the new SmartCode® touchpad electronic deadbolt. Kwikset products are available in a wide selection of the latest styles and finishes at major home improvement retailers nationwide. About Kwikset For more than 60 years, Kwikset, manufacturer of America’s most trusted name in security, has provided beauty, security and peace of mind for millions of families. For additional information on Kwikset products, visit www.kwikset.com, or call 1-800-327-LOCK. Black & Decker Hardware and Home Improvement (BDHHI) Group is a division of Black & Decker, a leading global manufacturer and marketer of power tools, power tool accessories and security hardware. Today, the BDHHI Group includes some of the most recognizable hardware and home improvement brands in the world including Kwikset®, Weiser®, Baldwin®, Price Pfister® and K2™ Commercial Hardware by Black & Decker. 1 Telephone survey conducted among a national probability sample of 1,001 adults living in private households in the continental United States by CARAVAN®. Survey was completed during the period July 23-26, 2009. Margin of error +/- 3%.

ASIS day 1 impressions

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Tuesday, September 22, 2009
The show is slow. There's really no two ways around that. But I was chatting with Siemens' Carey Boethel and he says, "So, the show's not as bad as I thought it was going to be." I guess everything comes down to expectations. When you go so far as to not even grab a booth and you're Siemens, I guess you think the show is basically going to implode. When the building remains standing, you're happy with the turnout. Personally, I thought scenes like the below were pretty commonplace. show-floor Notice how there's nobody in the aisles? That was pretty par for the course unless you were right in front of the doors. I think the Stanleys and Pelcos, situated with numbers that end in 01 were probably fairly happy with the turn-out, actually, but if you were in the back of hall you weren't talking to anybody but your neighbors. Perhaps that's just about always the case. My theory on the turnout is that the big corporations, those that can actually afford to have an internal security department and a professional heading it, were spooked in the first and second quarter and slashed all the budgets, especially the travel budgets. And I don't think I'm telling you anything you don't know when I say you don't get your travel budget back in the middle of the year. For ISC West, the integrators and installers maybe brought fewer people, but they had to show up. It's their business. For the end users, it's not their business. I'm sure shows focused on HR professionals or, God forbid, editorial talent where absolute ghost towns this year. But, as noted by a few people who are rocking Twitter at the show (follow me at www.twitter.com/sam_pfeifle, hint, hint), the amount of product releases and the activity by the manufacturers has been pretty strong. Sanyo's new HD camera line is pretty impressive. Ionit has a cool new partnership that brings very in-depth business intelligence to mass video surveillance. Genetec's new network appliance is easy and inexpensive. Pelco's Sarix stuff looks great. American Dynamics and Software House are streamlining operations. AMAG has new video offerings. Avigilon is playing nicely with others. Arecont has all kinds of new cameras, including a 10 megapixel number. Seriously, things are pretty busy and I don't think the lack of end user attendees is as bad as it will seem on Wednesday afternoon, when everybody's already gone home and the exhibitors are itching to pack up early. I'm slightly concerned my 2 p.m. panel discussion on Wednesday is going to be deserted. Hoping not. I'll have lots more press releases and such posted tonight, assuming the Stanley party isn't too intoxicating.

Where else can you get FREE info on increasing RMR and net profit?

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Monday, September 21, 2009
Just got my most recent issue of CSAA's Signals. Looks like they're offering a free webinar on on sales. I don't have a link, but here' the pitch:
Do you want to increase, not only your RMR, but also your net profit? We want to invite you to attend the first-ever CSAA Webinar. Participate with your whole sales team in this free webinar offered by CSAA on Thursday, October 8 at 1:30 p.m. ET - 3:00 p.m. ET.
Hey, free is good, right, especially in this floundering economy of ours. And the topic is certainly appealing. Bob Harris has been around the biz helping others battle attrition for nearly 30 years. You could do worse than sitting in on a free session led by this guy. Here's a little more of the pitch from CSAA:
The webinar, conducted by Bob Harris, president of Attrition Busters, will provide you with ways in which your company can stand out from the rest. It is very easy to participate. All that is needed is a computer and a phone or audio-enabled computer. There is no limit on how many people can participate from you company.
Education is important in maintaining a competition-beating edge, and free education can't be beat. Call in details from CSAA will follow shortly.

Are you an alarm company in VT or PA?

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Monday, September 21, 2009
ESA, which until recently was the NBFAA, is holding legislative meetings in your state next month. It's your chance to weigh in on statewide licensing and other legislative initiatives in your states. Details are below:
Electronic security and life safety professionals are invited to attend these free events, sponsored by GE Security and Honeywell, respectively. The first event will be held on October 6 in conjunction with the Pennsylvania Burglar & Fire Alarm Association’s (PBFAA) quarterly board meeting. Attendees will hear State Representative Brendan Boyle talk about the PBFAA-sponsored statewide licensing bill (HB 1544) and other important topics. The event will take place at the Holiday Inn Harrisburg East, located at 4757 Lindle Road in Harrisburg, Pa., in the Harrisburg Suite from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. A free lunch will be served courtesy of GE Security. The second event will be held on the morning of October 13 and is being coordinated with the Vermont Alarm & Signal Association. Industry professionals are invited to enjoy a free breakfast courtesy of Honeywell and hear a focused discussion on the introduction of industry licensing legislation in Vermont. This event will be held at the Capitol Plaza Hotel, located at 100 State St. in Montpelier, Vt., in the Ethan Allen Room from 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. Those wishing to attend the events should RSVP to NBFAA Events Manager Michelle Whitaker at (888) 447-1689 or [email protected]. RSVPs are needed by October 1 to attend the legislative lunch in Pennsylvania and by October 7 to attend the breakfast in Vermont.

ASIS, early update

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Monday, September 21, 2009
Some interesting things in the materials they're distributing to the press: • The exhibitor addendum, published after the major show program to include people who came in late, is pretty large. I don't have a past year to compare it to, but there are 109 exhibitors in the addendum. That jibes with my feeling that the show is bigger than many expected. It seems like a lot of companies decided late that, yes, things are pretty good, and they better not just not show up to the big show in California. • ASIS is on the Young Professionals bandwagon, too. They've got a room dedicated, 201A, for people aged 21-40 to stop in and provide feedback. "Conversations are informal, exploratory in nature, and take place on Monday and Wednesday from 9 to 11 a.m." I say 50/50 there's never more than 5 people in there at any one time. But that wouldn't be ASIS' fault. I just never see security directors under 40 on the show floor. Would love to be wrong. • To go along with John Honovich's criticism of the ASIS Accolades, it's kind of shady that they've published a whole book, the "competition guide," which has as its sub head: "Security's Best." Or, you know, security's best buyers of advertising pages with the ASIS Accolades program. (I mean, come on: There's a back pack highlighted in the "coolest stuff" category; there's a flashlight in the "transformational product, service, or technology" category.) But, you know, ASIS are definitely NOT endorsing products. Also, if you're curious as to why people entered the competition, it's because they were guaranteed to at least get a full page ad in this little book about their product. That's worth the entry fee alone. For my part, I think people who can sell ads for money are pretty great (they pay my salary), but you've got to admit Honovich has a bit of a point. ASIS is not really a media organization first and foremost.

ASIS press releases, part 1

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Monday, September 21, 2009
Here's a place to run down some of the news being put out there today. It's a bit of a firehose because a lot of companies requested a Sept. 21 embargo on their news. Why, I'm not sure, but I'll post these from time to time during the show when I have time (which means not that often). Also, those who sent hot links get bonus points. Those that didn't, don't. • IQinVision, Pivot3, Exaq, and Firetide are going to be demonstrating a cool little four-booth interoperability experiment.
Indianapolis, IN. – September 15, 2009 – Four leading open-system vendors announced today that they will be supporting a joint live demonstration of IP technology interoperability at ASIS 2009. Exacq Technologies, Firetide, IQinVision and Pivot3, will show how standards-based solutions from open-system vendors can be easily integrated and supported in the field. End users, specifiers, and resellers will see how these open-system vendors are collaborating to speed adoption of the latest technologies to the market. THE DEMO: The live demonstration will feature wireless distribution, storage, and playback of HD/megapixel video over a wireless network across separate booths on the ASIS show floor. High-resolution video from IQeye megapixel cameras will be streamed from vendor booths over Firetide wireless infrastructure mesh network. The video will be subsequently captured and displayed remotely using the exacqVision Video Management System (VMS) running on Pivot3 iSCSI SAN storage with embedded virtual servers. Centrally captured video will then be viewable and searchable from remote computers in each of the partner booths and on smartphones.
The cynic in me wonders why this is actually demonstrating anything particularly exciting. Wouldn't it be crushingly disappointing if these guys couldn't do this? Imagine if you were an integrator who wanted to use these four products, none of which are really any good all by themselves, and you were told, "sorry, that's not going to work." You'd be pretty pissed, right? I know the industry has a proprietary heritage it's working to shed, but, seriously, when are we going to start acting like we've been somewhere? I was proud of my kids when they could first walk, but it's getting to the point where I'm not all that impressed by them just getting from point a to point b without falling down (though they do often fall down to this day...). • Plextek has made their Blighter radar system better. Isn't Blighter like a British swear word or something? You dang blighter! • Steelbox makes its triumphant return, integrated into an offering by SRI International.
SRI’s IVE product solves the problem of managing large-scale video surveillance systems and uses Steelbox’s media appliances to organize hundreds of video sources within a single, intuitive interface.
• Onity integrates with Lenel. (Can't link directly because the press link is an auto-open pdf - ugh.) They are kind of the same company, so that would make sense.
Onity, one of the world's leading providers of electronic locking solutions, today announced that they have completed a successful integration of their CT30 offline locks into the OnGuard® security software platform, developed by Lenel Systems International. This integration makes it possible to program, manage, encode and monitor CT30 offline locks from within the OnGuard environment, allowing facility managers to address both interior and exterior doors from a single application.
• Smiths has a rad new way to people screen called Eqo. Apparently, it's so rad it doesn't need to conform to accepted rules of English spelling.
Pine Brook, NJ – 10 September 2009 – Smiths Detection will unveil and demonstrate its new people imaging scanner, eqo, at the ASIS International security industry conference in California. Designed to increase throughput while quickly detecting concealed weapons and explosives in security-sensitive buildings and areas, eqo features a unique open design using a fraction of the floor space required by conventional scanners. Using patented millimeter-wave imaging technology, the eqo screener generates a three-dimensional image revealing any hidden threats as a person passes through a portal and turns in front of a square vertical panel. A remote operator then checks the image for any threatening items hidden on the body or beneath clothing. Privacy filters built into eqo such as face blurring provide anonymity for passengers.
How long until we start seeing risque 3D images on the Internet? Are they there already and I'm missing them? Help me out. • AgentVI has launched a new search and analysis tool. It should also be noted that AgentVI's web site is all sorts of pretty.
TEL AVIV, Israel--(Business Wire)--Agent Video Intelligence (Agent Vi) announces the launch of its latest product -Vi-Search - a new video search and analysis software for instantaneous searches through stored video. The new software will be formally launched and presented at Agent Vi`s booth (#4325) at ASIS International Seminar & Exhibit, in Anaheim, California, from 21st through 23rd September 2009.
I'll get you some more stuff later. There are a LOT of releases to get through.

Largest-ever HD deployment?

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Monday, September 21, 2009
IndigoVision is out with a release today touting the largest-ever deployment of HD surveillance cameras. Before I get started on this, may I ask why you would email a press release that you've posted to your web site and not provide the link? Links are the stuff of connectivity! Also, it's a pain to go hunt down the link so I can show people what you're talking about, rather than cutting and pasting the whole thing. And that way they come to your web site and might poke around a bit. Okay, on to the story:
Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) has deployed what is believed to be the largest ever High-Definition (HD) IP Video surveillance system to monitor its customs operation on the US-Canadian border and at Vancouver Airport. ... Five-hundred IndigoVision HD cameras were installed alongside 500 of the original analog cameras, which are connected to the network using IndigoVision’s 9000 series transmitter modules. The megapixel HD cameras stream high-quality H.264 video at 15 fps. Due to its advanced H.264 compression technology and unique architecture, IndigoVision allows both standard definition and HD video to be streamed and recorded side-by-side using standard IP networks and storage. This has allowed CBSA to significantly improve its retention period for recorded video, even when taking into account the increased storage requirements of HD video.
So, 500 cameras? Is that that the largest? How many of the 5,000 IP cameras at the Macau City of Dreams casino are "HD"? Also, note that nowhere in the press release do they define HD. They also use the term megapixel. Well, how many megapixels? Just one? I don't think that would qualify as HD for a lot of people, because I don't think that's quite 1080p. Isn't HD a broadcast standard that we can all agree on somewhere? Are they talking about 1080i or 1080p or 720p? Here's what Wikipedia says on the matter. I know that surveillance is not television, but when a term is understood in the mainstream in a certain way, that's kind of how you have to use it. And this is how I understand it:
An aspect ratio of 16:9 was duly agreed at the first meeting of the WP at the BBC's R & D establishment in Kingswood Warren. The resulting ITU-R Recommendation ITU-R BT.709-2 ("Rec. 709") includes the 16:9 aspect ratio, a specified colorimetry, and the scan modes 1080i (1,080 actively-interlaced lines of resolution) and 1080p (1,080 progressively-scanned lines). The current BBC freeview trials of HD use MBAFF, which contains both progressive and interlaced content in the same encoding. It also includes the alternative 1440×1152 HDMAC scan format. (According to some reports, a mooted 750 line (720p) format (720 progressively-scanned lines) was viewed by some at the ITU as an enhanced television format rather than a true HDTV format,[8] and so was not included, although 1920×1080i and 1280×720p systems for a range of frame and field rates were defined by several US SMPTE standards.)
Anyway, I can forgive IndigoVision for using HD kind of loosely, but I think it behooves the industry as a whole to either use "megapixel" to describe multi-megapixel resolution, or "HD" to describe something that conforms to broadcast standards. If you want to talk more about this (hint, hint), check out the panel discussion I'm leading on Wed. at ASIS: solutions theatre, Booth 1861, Hall C, 2 p.m. Sorry to finish with the shameless plug there - couldn't help myself. And it's not like I get anything out of leading this panel discussion anyway. (Although tips will be accepted.)

What I learned at the Flir event

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Monday, September 21, 2009
In the past, we've covered Flir fairly loosely, with the basic idea that thermal imaging was too expensive for most of our readership base to be installing on a regular basis. That's increasingly wrong-headed of us. Their cameras still aren't cheap, but they're getting cheaper. In 2005, the company's low-end camera was $10,000. Now it's $3,000. That's a significant difference. Consider that the high-end residential market is real. We wrote about it back in January, but I heard tonight that residential sales now accounts for three percent of Flir's annual Commercial Vision Systems revenues, or roughly $12 million. That's nothing to sneeze at. Further, Flir will grow 15 percent in 2009. Not bad for a recession. So, who's doing most of the selling on the residential side? Apparently, it's more the A/V guys than anyone else. They put in a $200,000 sound and video system, what's another $3,500 for a camera? So, this isn't for residential guys who are used to making the $99 initial installation sale, that's for sure. Commercially, Flir is finding more acceptance as it uses volume to reduce price. The company recently sold its 100,000th camera since the launch of its CVS in 2006, so there's a fair amount out there, that's for sure. Of the new products they had on display at tonight's press event, undoubtedly the coolest was the H Series, which is a handheld thermal imager than can take jpegs and MPEG4 onto an SD card. Selling at $5,000, it would seem perfect for police departments, anyone scanning a large perimeter with patrolling officers, even big game hunters. It's cool as hell, really. The company also discussed for the first time its purchase of Salvador Imaging, which gives the company EMCCD technology, which is basically CCD chips with an extra layer of secret sauce that produces amazing color images in low-light conditions. Very impressive. This new EMCCD, now that's it's also dropping in price, could be an interesting way to avoid IR illumination entirely. Anyway, a nice presentation by Flir, including some cool capture of coyotes roaming the Anaheim hills and a zoom in on a multi-million-dollar home that had a sweet infinity pool. One can see how these cameras could be useful.

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