ESX 2010 recap

The ESX 2010 show wrapped up Thursday in Pittsburgh and the event has definitely turned into a premier educational venue for systems integrators and installing contractors.

The peer-to-peer flavor of the training sessions and workshops allowed systems integrators from the region - and across the country for that matter - to tell others what they are doing to gain more RMR. Adjusting to new communications challenges and the demise of hardline telephones, as well as integration and how to do it and garner insights, were among a host of topics that seemed on target and well-received, evidenced by full classrooms and some standing-room-only sessions.

At the Electronic Security Association (ESA) General Membership meeting, John Galante of AE Ventures, show management, said attendance was in the 2,000 range and was flat or even with last year's show in Baltimore. He also said he had gotten a good number of exhibitors re-signing for next year's show, June 13 through 17 in Charlotte, N.C. The peer-to-peer flavor of the education, he added, with integrators sharing their expertise, seemed to resonate with attendees, who packed sessions and workshops to get an edge on increasing their business in this increasingly challenging contracting environment.

New officers and achievements

Mike Miller, president of ESA and vice president at Moon Security Services received special recognition for his two years of service and introduced new president, effective July 1, Charles "Dom" D'Ascoli, Smoky Mountain Systems Inc. Franklin, N.C., who was sworn in as new president as other officers were also inducted-all by Darryl Jones, chief of the Pittsburgh Fire Department and a 23-veteran of first responder service. New officers included John Knox, Life & Property Security Systems Inc., Knoxville, Tenn.; Marshall C. Marinace, Marshall Alarm Systems; Mike Horgan, H&S Protection Systems, Inc.; and William Cooper.

A special President's Leadership Award was presented to Marinace for his contributions to the organization. ESA also announced the addition of five new states to the ranks of Charter Chapter: New Mexico; Kansas; Virginia; Arizona and Nevada.

Even more from the floor...

There's so much more to report from ESX and so many insights that I'm going to give you these snippets:

- SD&I keynoter Rocky Bleier (former Pittsburgh Steeler) ignited the crowd with his talk of hope, teamwork, opportunity and leadership-and flashed four super bowl rings in the process.

- Will non-response come to the fire side of the equation? SIAC needs contributions from the entire industry to make sure it does not.

- The Central Station Alarm Association (CSAA) kicked off its 60th year under the theme: "Remembering the Past, Embracing the Future," said Ed Bonifas, president of CSAA, during the Weinstock and Jackson Awards (

- Diebold is bringing fire solutions to its fold with the announcement of a new emphasis on that service and the drive to bring more full-service to its dealers and its event monitoring center in this category, according to Michael Dowling, director, Diebold Fire Detection Solutions & Services, Cranberry Township, Pa.

- The National Training School (NTS) celebrates its silver anniversary this year.

- Comcast in Houston launched a new security product as part of its service bundle.

- POTS lines are going away at a rate of 700,000 per month. LTE GSM radio, which stands for Long-Term Evolution, will move cellular to 4G. However, according to Gordon Hope, president of the Security Industry Association, cellular providers are "nowhere near ready to deploy the technology as the industry needs it," but it is coming. Manufacturers have to get on board more, but if some feel they are not moving quickly enough, it's not "because of complacency, it's because of complexity," he said. And, there will be no "sunsetting" for all this change moving forward, like there was with AMPS.

- Ocenture taught us, again, that it's much more than security, in a manufacturer workshop "RMR Growth Strategy." Services like online data back up; identity theft protection; Internet security; crime and sexual predator monitoring; and other value-add services can also generate monthly recurring revenue.

- New OzVision president Richard Bauer talked frankly about the move to hosted video and the impending death of the DVR.

- Z-Wave technology was labeled as 'bullet-proof' for deployment in home wireless capacities.

- The smart phone and consumer cravings are driving....everything!