By Corey Moss
Another great InfoComm show, and a lot of great people to go with it.
I arrived on Tuesday late morning to meet with my press people Alesia Hendley and Taylor Meyer as well as take in a few of the Emerging Trends sessions. After sitting in on a few of them in the afternoon, I went downstairs and saw my good friend Malissa Dillman at the Starin booth on the concourse. She called me over to show me something – which Convergent AV deemed “Best Swag of InfoComm 2017”- #AVGeekman. I took pictures with mine throughout the show and posted them on social media as others did – and did it light a fire. Here I am with Educator of the Year James Maltese holding that top swag – honored!
In fact, it looks like he’s been put to work after the show.
The #AVSelfie picture station that Starin set up at the booth was an awesome opportunity for all passers by to grab a selfie that they, and friends, wouldn’t soon forget. For that and much more, thank you Malissa, and of course Bill Mullin who I was told handpicked Geekman. Great choice Bill!
Quick mention of the event of the night, the third annual InfoComm Karaoke – thanks to my singing partner in crime Chuck Espinoza for helping to put it all together (kilt and all).
Wednesday, there were many great things that took place. The first one I’d like to address is the 10:00 sit down “coffee social” that we all had with Biamp – something that Alesia arranged with Amanda Roe more than a month before InfoComm. I asked Alesia a few times about it during that time and she told me “don’t worry, I have it covered” (which she absolutely did with anything she arranged at the show). It was very special for me as I first sat and chatted with two very good industry friends, Ron Camden and Bill Nattress. We then sat with John Urban to talk about solutions (who I got to know doing The Show Corner), and finally with Amanda who gave us a great idea of her role with the company.
This was not scripted, we basically talked for a few minutes before each recording and then just went with it. I’ll be posting the videos of the discussion soon, and the answers from Ron and Bill about how they entered the AV industry are priceless. My great thanks to Amanda for putting this together with Alesia.
Next up was Barco, and I have to say that Belgian hospitality always shows when you visit the booth. I met Inge Govaerts who took us on a tour and introduced us to key players to demonstrate UDX Laser Phosphor, Control Room, Overture and more. One of the great discussions was with Hans Dekeyser on Control Room (the control room historian I call him now). All in all, outstanding new solutions from Barco again this year, to go along with the great Belgian Beer Bar and a Crew Spot there. My great thanks to Inge for arranging it all.
And as for the end of the day, the event all of the #AVTweeps look forward to – The AV Nation #AVTweetup. It was my very first, and an absolutely great time. I’ve already thanked him, however I’ll do it again here, thank you Tim Albright.
Day two of the show for me began with the Women of InfoComm Network Breakfast, I’ve attended it for three years. It’s always a wonderful event with excellent speakers and Keynotes – this year’s event openers were from Betsy Jaffe, Tier PM’s Marika Aquino and Chairperson Penny Sitler, a moving and inspiring one from Milestone’s Laurie Englert, and then the Keynote from Drew Jacobs of The Ariel Group. A big thanks to Betsy Jaffe, Penny Sitler and others for all of their hard work with this very special event, as well as all that has to do with this important industry organization.
During the morning came a meeting with the Google Jamboard people to see a demo which was presented to Taylor and myself. Taylor recorded a video interview I conducted with the person doing the demo, and after that we all spoke for a few minutes. I had a next stop after that, however Taylor asked if she could catch up to me as she wanted to continue the conversation, which the people there were very happy to do with her. I don’t recall the name of the person who conducted the demo, however I would like to thank her, as well as my friend Veronica Esbona of InGear for putting it all together.
(No tweets captured on this unfortunately – but let’s just say I was very impressed with Jamboard, and Taylor was thoroughly jazzed).
In the afternoon came a meeting with Nureva, where catching up with CEO Nancy Knowlton is always special for me, as back in my integration sales days one of my cornerstone products was the SMART Board. Of course, as many know Nancy was the CEO of SMART Technologies. Nancy walked over as I was talking with Tyrone Chou about the HDL300 Audio Conferencing System and we did get to chat, however what was special was how Nancy took Taylor over to the Span System (as Taylor had asked me about it) and gave her a demonstration. Taylor is going into her Junior year at Iowa State University, and is very interested in all kinds of technology. For this, I want to thank Nancy for taking time to chat, as well as giving Taylor the demonstration.
Another scheduled meeting in the afternoon, this one with InFocus, and a discussion with good friend CMO Brady Bruce. Brady and I usually do two things when doing an interview, or a podcast together – make it informative, and fun. And this discussion about the new ConX Cloud and Mondopad Flex was no exception. Thank you Brady, especially for making it fun (check out the swag clouds and spinners).
Day three began with something that I just had to consider as dynamic, as well as a great surprise. An in-hotel room discussion was arranged with people from Polycom and Zoom where Alesia and I would be interviewing them, and Taylor would shoot the video. The dynamic was the discussion, and the surprise was Polycom’s Marty Sexton entering the room in full “Wink” mode, clothes and personality (those who were at the Polycom booth playing The Pano is Right game will know what I mean). He sat down with Janelle Raney of Zoom for the discussion. After we were done, two more Polycom people sat down to talk engineering and communications, one of them Andy Cuneo (in the middle below). My great thanks to Andy for putting this all together.
In the afternoon, an excellent discussion took place with Stewart Filmscreen CEO Shannon Townley, organized by my ‘The AV Life’ parter Katye McGregor Bennett. Katye sat in on the interview, which was an excellent one – test run and all. It will be out on video shortly, however if you didn’t hear the audio version with the test run, here it is. My great thanks to Katye for setting this one up, it was certainly a hit as you’ll hear.
The moment that all #AVTweeps were waiting for, the #AVSelfie video. It was so outstanding, I wanted to put it in a blog, and with authorization, as well as full credit given to the #AVSelfie man, myth and you know – I wrote it. And my thanks to that legend, HiPhi Phil Cordell, you did it again my friend.
I thanked as many as word count in a blog would allow, however I know there are many more of you. Please consider yourself thanked as well.
(Note: the video discussions will be posted soon).
With almost 20 years in audio visual integration and IT/computer sales and consulting, Corey Moss is the owner of Convergent AV. Corey writes for the publication and hosts/produces podcasts – The AV Life, The Edge of AV, EdTech Focus and The Show Corner. He has written for numerous industry publications about AV, IT, unified communications and collaboration (UCC), cloud and software, IoT, cybersecurity and more. He has also conducted interviews with AV and IT executives and global influencers.