The security week that was: 09/16/11 (ASIS as it will be)

A pre-ASIS tradeshow floor tour

My normal Friday column looks back at the news of the week. And there was news. Stanley closed on Niscayah. Tyco is buying Visonic. A gunman stormed an Arkansas courthouse. But what has really been on my mind isn't in the past; it's the week that will be. And that week is ASIS!

Going to the ASIS 2011 tradeshow? It’s big. Companies like Stanley take booths that size out at 6,000 square feet. There are a ton of companies out there, and a ton of new products. There’s everything from protection for manhole covers to some nifty flashlights, to perma-pressed guard uniforms, to body scanners to truck-stopping gates to command room technologies. If you’re a security geek, you will love this show.

Here’s how to work it. Get a show guide. Eat well and baby your feet. Don’t enjoy the cocktail offerings at the booths until late in the day. Snag an invite to one of the vendor parties. Locate the show floor bathrooms early on in case you get lost. Soak in the best seminars; ASIS does a great job with those. Prioritize who you want to meet with, but also leave at least 3 hours to just walk the show, because there is plenty of cool stuff you will bump into that you’d never hear about otherwise. And a final tip, practice graceful exits. Undoubtedly, you’re going to get suckered into a product demo that you quickly realize isn’t for you, so figure out how to say “See ya” politely so you can move on and find the technology that really matters to you. In fact, here’s a small sampling of cool stuff that we heard was coming to ASIS that you might be interested in checking out:

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