The Great ISC West Roundup 2013

Talk of mobility, the cloud and optimism
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Wednesday, April 17, 2013

LAS VEGAS—ISC West 2013, held here April 10-12, drew 180 new exhibitors, bringing the total number of companies and brands to more than 1,000, organizers said. That was a record and a positive harbinger of the state of the industry as exhibitors expressed confidence about business this year.

What was the theme of ISC West 2013? There was continued talk about mobility and the cloud. More manufacturers are figuring out how to offer the two, and integrators are starting to see possibilities for making money by offering the same. The overriding theme, however, was optimism. The editors of Security Systems News and Security Director News heard it from vendors and attendees alike.

Following is a recap of three days on the show floor by Martha Entwistle and Tess Nacelewicz of Security Systems News and Amy Canfield of Security Director News.

MARTHA’S ROUNDUP:

Wednesday started for me with the Axis Press Breakfast, where the network camera company introduced three new cameras and an upgraded Axis Camera Companion. In 2012, there were 60,000 downloads of the software, according to Axis General Manager Fredrik Nilsson.

The cameras of the future will be customized for customers with apps, the same way we currently customize our smartphones, Nilsson said. With that in mind, Axis also announced a partnership with the Wentworth Institute of Technology, a college in Boston, where students will design apps for cameras. One professor, Charles Hotchkiss, and two students, Joshua Ramirez and Nicholas Gelfman, attended the breakfast and the two students talked about the apps they’ve already developed.

Gelfman is working on a 3D multi-tracking app that is intended to alert operators if someone is trying tamper with a camera. The app determines where an approaching object is distance-wise from the camera and sends an alert if it gets too close. Gelfman put it in simple terms for me: “Cameras see in 2D. This app basically allows them to see in 3D.”

Ramirez is a sophomore computer information systems major from Hanover, N.H., who is the manager of Wentworth’s radio station WIRE.

“I had a selfish reason for developing the app,” he said. Students are supposed to sign in and out when they come to work at the radio station, but they often don't do that, he explained. So Ramirez developed an app that automatically records the time that a student comes into or leaves the station, and it sends Ramirez an email alert under certain conditions.

He named the app Alibi. It "tracks students and if they log in, [the app] is their alibi to say that they were [at the station]," he said.

“It’s still a work in progress. I’ve spent six weeks on it but it was during exams and finals,” Ramirez said. 

Nilsson said that Axis didn’t give the students any ideas about what kinds of apps to develop. They approached the project with no preconceived notions and Axis has been amazed with the results, he said.

After the Axis breakfast, I did a video interview with Renae Leary and Matthias Ernst of Tyco Global Accounts, where I got an update on how Tyco's global enterprise customers are standardizing their security systems across in offices across the world.

At a news conference, Bosch launched 110—count ‘em—110 new video products and previewed its 4K Ultra HD camera. It also announced its integration partner program and was showing integration with five VMS providers in its booth.

Next, I interviewed Mark Vandover of Tyco IS for ssnTVnews. He talked about the progress the integration giant has made as a stand-alone entity over the past year and a half.

More mobile news: Jay Hauhn, Tyco IS chief technology officer, also did an interview for ssnTVnews. We talked about Tyco’s launch of MSM, Mobile Security Managment solution.

Next up was an interview with Tony Byerly, Felix Gonzales and Jeremy Brecher of Diebold, where I got to see a demo of their very cool SecureStat enterprise security platform. I heard about it at ASIS and saw it for the first time at the show. Here’s a YouTube video about the platform.

At a NICE news conference, Tony Ruiz of the city of San Diego talked about implementing NICE's Situator to manage protection for its critical infrastructure. The implementation is new, but Ruiz said it's already saving training time and money for the city and taxpayers.

Back on the show floor, I met with Bryan Schmode, EVP of global sales at Avigilon. We talked about Avigilon’s Adaptive IR in its new bullet camera, and the company's new Dallas headquarters.

I also had a chance to swing by Next Level Security Systems and talk to Bill Jacobs. I got to see some of the stuff I spoke to Bill and Jumbi Edulbehram about in a story about Next Level.

Next I had a chance to visit with Stan Oppenheim and Dan Oppenheim at Affiliated Monitoring. I’m looking forward to seeing their new monitoring station the next time I get to NYC.

And I wrapped up Day 1 after catching up with Will Schmidt and other CapitalSource folks.

Is Thursday Day 2 or Day 3 of the show? Officially it’s Day 2, but with so many events scheduled for Tuesday, it really was Day 3 for most of us.

Whichever day it was, it kicked off brilliantly with the fourth annual Security 5K.

We had a different course this time. Rather than starting near the Fashion Show Mall, the 2013 start line was a half-mile jog or bus ride away from the Sands in an office park of sorts. The course was a completely flat out-and-back labyrinth of switchbacks. Best course yet, in my opinion. It wasn’t exactly bucolic, but the office park was considerably greener and cleaner than courses in past years, and it was fun to watch the crowd of runners ahead of you snaking back and forth around the park. And because of the switchbacks, the finish line appeared closer than it really was.

More than 400 finished the 5K and there was a big crowd for the 2K as well.

Most important, we raised more than $90,000. Mike Perkins of Anixter raised more than $7,000 with his company match. Jesse and Nicole Foglio raised $2,350, and Bob McKee raised $1,685.

Mission 500’s George Fletcher said that 650 people registered for the race. If each person raised $100, we would raise $65,000 before any extra fundraising efforts—something to think about for 2014.

Back on the show floor on Thursday morning I did an ssnTVnews interview with John Mack, managing director and head of M&A for Imperial Capital. We were talking about the availability of financing and the flow of PE money into the industry. Here’s an interesting statistic: More than half of the top 20 alarm companies are now owned or have majority ownership by private equity firms. Five years ago “it was just a handful,” he said.

It’s a great time for alarm company owners and integrators to refi their debt or make acquisitions, Mack added.

I stopped by the Stanley booth on my way to Denis Hébert’s HID Global Strategy Briefing, which was packed, as usual. Hébert gave a great presentation. His focus this year was on the opportunities and potential pitfalls the security industry needs to be aware of as access control goes mobile. The move to mobile will “redefine credential use and management,” he said. As a result, “best practices” for end users and integrators will become more important than ever. Privacy is an increasingly crucial element for all stakeholders to consider, he added.

Next I met with George Farley at Observint Technologies. Owned by The Carlyle Group, Observint was formed in 2006 with the goal of acquiring security-focused companies. Observint acquired Supercircuits in 2006. It subsequently bought Security Cameras Direct, DIGIOP and SC Technologies. Last summer, it helped LG Electronics relaunch its security products in the United States, and in November it acquired access control provider Infinias. Farley said the past six months have been “all foundational work for us … [building] a comprehensive sale and support solution.”

That was Phase 1, he said. Observint is in Phase 2 now, he said, which is centered on its distribution partnership. DIGIOP and Infinias had distinct partners before the acquisition, and Observint is finalizing relationships with a variety of distributors, Farley said. The next phase will focus on the dealer, “building a robust and differentiated program … that will include demand-generation support and sales support.”

At Milestone, I spoke with Courtney Dillon Peterson about the company’s new Arcus product. “It’s a super-streamlined VMS that’s only for our technical partners to embed, not Milestone,” she said. Partners embedding the solution and present at the booth were Veracity, which was offering Coldstore Arcus for enterprise customers; LenovoEMC (formerly Iomega), which was offering two versions of what it’s calling LenovoEMC NVR; and Razberri, which was offering its Netswitch appliance. “They each target a different audience and each offer a different form of VMS,” Peterson said.

The bottom-line differentiation for this product? That it’s multi-platform, Peterson said. “It runs on Linux, Mac OS and Windows. Others are Windows-based.” The product is “versatile … [and will enable partners to sell a] preconfigured, pre-installed, simplified VMS,” she said.

Samsung is amid a “massive hiring campaign,” Frank DeFina told me during our meeting. Samsung was talking about its new 6000 Series of cameras driven off its “core WiseNet II chip.” The full line is “available in every skin. … [and they] are 2.4 megapixel, with full 1080p. The clarity is second-to-none,” Samsung marketing director Janet Fenner said. Among the analytics available in this line is “defogging” to get rid of smoke or fog.

Back at our booth, I interviewed Don Erickson, CEO of SIA, and SSN’s own group publisher Tim Purpura. We spoke about two collaborative efforts SIA and SSN are working on: the distribution of SIA’s Fiscal Year Informer, a quarterly insert available through SSN with information about government grants; and a webcast series on security technologies, moderated by me and featuring a variety of speakers. The next webcast is scheduled for April 24. Here’s a link to that. 

I did two other video interviews. One was with Matthew Ladd, president and CEO of The Protection Bureau. We talked about how The Protection Bureau is saving money by sharing certain operational metrics with employees.

The other interview was with Bill Savage, CEO of Security Control Systems in Houston and one of Security-Net's founders. Security-Net, a group of independent integrators that functions as a national integrator, is celebrating its 20th anniversary. We talked about how the group has grown from five to 20 integrators and the efforts it makes to ensure its employees are up to date on technology.

Next I spoke to Pierre Racz, CEO of Genetec, about the company’s new cloud-based video surveillance as a service solution for small and medium-sized businesses. This offering takes Genetec “out of its comfort zone … into the realm of small camera-count jobs, the six-to-14 camera jobs [that represent a huge growth opportunity] for integrators and installers,” Racz said.

Thursday ended with the Security 5K reception. Mike Keegan of Magnasphere, who was honored for his community service efforts, gave a simple and compelling argument for getting involved in causes like Mission 500, the beneficiary of the Security 5K. “The ripple effect [of these efforts] is incredible,” Keegan said.

On Friday, April 12, Day 3 of ISC West, many were already heading to McCarran International Airport, but I was heading back to the show floor. And this year, though the crowd had thinned considerably, a lot of other folks were heading back too.

It was a very decent crowd for Friday of ISC West.

While I had early rallies on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, I didn’t have any official appointments until 10 a.m. on Friday. My first was with IMS/IHS’s Niall Jenkins. We caught up on a few things including plans for TechSec 2014. Yes, plans are under way, and Amy and I have some great ideas—you’ll hear all about them in September.

Next was a meeting with Matt Barnette of AMAG. I was supposed to go to the AMAG A&E and integrators’ event in March. Unfortunately, lengthy flight delays derailed that plan, so I spent some time catching up on some news announced at that event. AMAG is all excited about its new Symmetry SR series retrofit controllers, which can be used to convert competitors’ legacy systems to AMAG’s Symmetry solution. “Our engineers used our existing hardware platform and changed the form factor so it’s a direct pin-for-pin [upgrade] solution for the traditional Casi-Rusco solution,” Barnette said.

A couple of years ago, UTC (parent company of Casi-Rusco) announced that it would end-of-life its Secure Perfect and Picture Perfect solutions and would transition those customers to a product called Facility Commander. AMAG considers this change in UTC’s road map as an opportunity to get those UTC (Casi-Rusco) customers to instead transition to AMAG.

Back at the video studio, I did two more ssnTVnews interviews, one with Rob Hile, CEO of IFSS, an independent integrator in Florida, and one with Levy Acs of American Integrated Security Group.

Hile and I talked about IFSS’ successful migration to a services-based model, and Acs and I did a follow-up interview on a story I wrote last month about his ambitious growth plans.

The rest of Friday was spent walking the show floor and hanging around the ssnTVnews studio chatting with folks who stopped by.

TESS’S ROUNDUP

I spent my first morning at ISC West on Tuesday at a rather “unique” forum made up of DMP dealers. The talk there included discussion of the Springfield, Mo.-based manufacturer’s new XR150/350/550 Series access, burglary and fire panel that the company was showcasing in Las Vegas.

“We’ve tried to pack as much stuff as we could in this panel,” Rick Britton, DMP CEO and president, told the dealers. He said it’s extremely fast and it’s affordable. “More for less,” he said.

The one-day DMP forum was an owners’ forum, the second year DMP has held such an event. “We think the idea is unique,” having DMP executives sit down and discuss ideas with the owners of top DMP dealer companies, said David Peebles, DMP VP of training and quality.

Included in the forum was a presentation by Stanley Oppenheim of New York-based DGA Security Systems, who spoke about how his company weathered Hurricane Sandy. Alan Kruglak of Maryland-based Genesis Security, a security/life safety provider, gave a talk on service contracts and how they can be even more lucrative than monitoring contracts.

In the afternoon, I talked with System Sensor’s director of communications, David George, about the company’s new i4 Series Combination CO/Smoke Detector and Integration Module that it launched at the show.

“The i4 Series is the first low-voltage, system-connected, combination smoke and carbon-monoxide detection solution on the market,” according to a company news release. The i4 can be integrated into conventional security and fire panels.

I wrote last spring about a new intelligent combined fire/CO detector from Gamewell-FCI by Honeywell. That addressable detector is ideal for large facilities such as hotels, dormitories, apartment buildings, hospitals and nursing homes.

The System Sensor conventional combination CO/smoke solution is the answer for smaller spaces, such as businesses and residences, George told me.

On Tuesday evening, I headed to an event put on by FLIR Systems, an Oregon-based manufacturer of thermal imaging infrared cameras. It makes products that are used in commercial and military applications, but also ones used by consumers, such as hand-held thermal imaging cameras that can be used by recreational boaters or hunters.

Thermal cameras detect images through the heat they emit, so they can operate in total darkness. The FLIR event was held at the Bali Hai Golf Course, and with the aid of such an infrared device, we could clearly see FLIR employees chasing golf balls on the course, even though it was pitch-dark out. And now, with FLIR’s acquisition last year of Lorex Technology, a Toronto-based video surveillance provider, it aims to provide thermal imaging cameras to the home market.

Lorex sells enterprise-grade video products through the security channel under the brand name Digimerge. Lorex itself sells video products through retail outlets for small businesses and homeowners. The company has hundreds of thousands of customers.

FLIR President Andy Teich said the company’s aim is to offer a low-resolution thermal imaging camera that is affordable for the average homeowner. The cost eventually could be as low as $200, said Bill Klink, FLIR VP of business development.

Teich said FLIR’s goal is have infrared technology be “ultimately ubiquitous” in the way that GPS technology is. GPS, he said, answers the question, “Where am I?” and “thermal imaging will tell you what’s out there.”

My second day at ISC West—Wednesday—was the first day the show floor opened.

Wednesday started out with SSN’s annual meet the editors session. Among those who stopped by our meet and greet were Rob Harris, CEO of Utah-based Vision Security, and Dan Noble, who just recently was promoted from being CFO of Vision to company president. Harris told me more about Vision’s new $35 million financing package will provide a growth opportunity for the door-knocking company.

Then I headed to Cooper Notifcation's booth, where Ted Milburn, VP of marketing, told me how Cooper, a supplier of life safety notification and mass notification solutions, has combined LED technology with high fidelity sound to produce speakers that are both energy efficient and so intelligible they can be used not only for emergency messaging, but for general paging and background music. Cooper was touting that newest solution from its Wheelock’s Exceder LED Series at the show and Josh Claunch of Las Vegas-based Communication Electronic Systems, a Cooper Notification dealer, said he expects the new solution will give the company an edge because "there's a big incentive here in town" to do "green" buildings, where a product that uses less power and needs less wiring.

Next, I was off to Intertek’ s booth, where I met with Tom Connaughton, director, and Michael Kremer, marketing manager for the third party testing and certification company. Connaughton said that at the show, the company was looking to  gain more of an understanding of the industry and “some of new changes occurring with the new access control standard,” ANSI UL 294.

He added that video is “one of the areas that we’re aggressively moving into. … Video we feel as an industry leader is going to be a crucial next step in the reduction of false alarms.” He said Intertek is working very closely with the CSAA in developing standards.

Potter Electric Signal Co.’s booth was my next stop. There, Dave Kosciuk, EVP and general manager of fire/security products for the St. Louis-based developer and manufacturer of life safety products,  and Craig Summers, national account manager, talked to me about such things as the Potter Plus program, instituted last June, and the company’s new facility management software. Summer said the software is sort of “like a central monitoring center with out the central monitoring center.” It allows a facilities manager of multiple buildings to investigate a reported problem at one facility remotely without having to actually go to the site. The company was also touting its PFC-6006, which is a conventional fire panel/sprinkler monitoring panel, which the company says is ideally suited to monitor a small fire system.

I then did a series of interviews for ssnTVnews. One was with Scott Harkins, president of Honeywell Security Products told me about the products and services the company was showcasing at ISC West that reflect advancements in cloud and mobile technology, such as the newest versions of Lynx Touch 5100 and Tuxedo Touch. Harkins talked about how formerly new trends like the cloud and mobile services are now virtually “mainstream,” and demanded by customers.

I also did an ssnTVnews interview with Marek Robinson, Honeywell’s new president of authorized dealer programs, on how Honeywell’s new products and services will help dealers.

Jay Kenny, Alarm.com’s VP of marketing, talked to me on ssnTVnews about new products. For example, the provider of connected home services is expanding its Geo-Services, to include thermostat control as well as arming and disarming. Kenny also talked about mobile tools to help dealers and new partnerships. For example, he said, Alarm.com is partnering with  LiftMaster, a provider of  garage door openers, to integrate LiftMaster’s technology with Alarm.com’s interactive services platform.

At the Sony Electronics booth, the company was demonstrating some cameras that perform extremely well in low light and can be used for such applications as retail, education and banking. The company said it was the camers were an expansion of its IPELA ENGINE EX family with the new E series IP cameras available in both HD and full HD resolution.

Among other things I learned on Wednesday from my visits to various booths was how to view locks from a new perspective.

For example, at the Kwikset booth, Stanley Black & Decker national account manager Brian Willis told me that as dealers work to convince homeowners to add home automation features to their security systems, “a lock is that transition piece.”  Kwikset is part of the Hardware and Home Improvement Group of Stanley Black & Decker.

The door locks that the California-based manufacturer makes serve as a bridge to home automation. For example, one of the many features of the second generation SmartCode deadbolt lock with Home Connect technology that Kwikset introduced at the show on Wednesday is its ability to integrate with home security and automation systems.

That means the lock can communicate with other wireless products in the home. For instance, Willis said, the lock can be set up so that if a smoke alarm in the house goes off, the door will automatically unlock. Keith Brandon, Stanley Black & Decker director of residential access solutions, said such features “add value for consumers and dealers.”

Not surprisingly, ASSA ABLOY, a Sweden-based door-opening solutions company, also was talking locks—a lot of them.

Martin Huddart, executive VP and CEO, said the company has launched 280 new products in the past three years. He said that typically 95 percent of a building’s doors require mechanical locks because they are low-risk entry points and 5 percent of the doors are high risk, so they require more expensive access control.

But Huddart said ASSA ABLOY also has solutions for medium-risk entry points and he urged integrators to explore with their customers “matching the right level of technology with the risk.” He estimated about 15 percent of a building’s entry points might require those medium solutions.

Another highlight of my day was learning about a new form of residential security: radar. That’s the latest development from SpotterRF, which makes compact radar systems for military and commercial markets—and now for the residential market. SpotterRF, a company established in 2009 that has offices in Herndon, Va., and Orem, Utah, announced at ISC West that it has installed radar security at a luxury estate.

CEO Logan Harris told me that he can’t reveal much about the client for privacy reasons, but he said he believes the job was the first of more to come in the high-end luxury market. Installed was a 100-acre, 360-degree perimeter security system in just one day that cost about $12,000, he said.

Harris said that radar “gives you the capability of sticking a GPS tracker on someone without their actually knowing anything about it.”

On Wednesday evening, I was off to the COPS Monitoring dealer appreciation event at Gilley’s restaurant, where I chatted with COPS VP of special projects Maria Malice and David Smith, the company’s director of marketing and communications.

Thursday at ISC West started out for me with running in the Security 5K. Never mind my exact time—I run because the race is an opportunity to help people in need and a fun chance to get outside in the fresh air and exercise with other like-minded people from the industry.

Among highlights of Thursday was learning that 2GIG Technologies recently shipped its 1 millionth panel and that the lucky Utah security dealer who ordered it was awarded $10,000 at ISC West as a result.

And remember SAFE Security’s ISC West promotion in which it was offering a $10,000 bonus to dealers who signed up for its dealer program by the last day of the show?

SAFE President and CEO Paul Sargenti told me on Thursday that it looked like 11 dealers had qualified so far.

That was just one shy of the dozen dealers he was anticipating, he said. And although everything had not been finalized, Sargenti said it appeared that “it’s one of our best results for a promotion.”

Sargenti said that for the dealers, the bonus was only part of the draw. “The money offer was nice but they were looking for a program that had stability and longevity,” he said.

SAFE, based in San Ramon, Calif., is one of the nation’s largest full-service security companies. It does business in every state but Hawaii and also in Canada, Sargenti said. The company is growing rapidly and completed a $130 million senior debt refinancing in late February.

At the 2GIG booth on Thursday afternoon, Ben Edstrom, CEO of Jordan, Utah-based Elite Home Security, was delighted to learn a panel he ordered from 2GIG contained a “golden ticket” worth $10,000.

“We’ve been placing some large orders,” he told me. “I guess we placed it at the right time.” The panel was shipped last week, the company said.

Edstrom plans to use the money to take a trip to Hawaii.

Lance Dean, co-founder of Carlsbad, Calif.-based 2GIG, a manufacturer of security and home automation equipment that was established in 2009 and is known for its Go!Control system, surprised Edstrom with the award at a small ceremony Thursday. Dean sounded as thrilled as the $10,000 winner.

“This is a huge milestone for us,” Dean said of the fact that now 2GIG has shipped 1 million panels. He said he dreamed of such success when the company began but is happy it has happened so quickly.

Nortek, the parent company of Linear, which helped develop the 2GIG Go!Control product, recently announced the acquisition of 2GIG for $135 million.

Also on Thursday, I met with Beth Welch, public relations manager for Honeywell Fire Systems, Americas. She told me about Silent Knight by Honeywell’s new IntelliKnight 5820XL-EVS, which the company describes as a “standalone system combining addressable fire alarm and emergency voice systems in one package.” It eliminates a “side-car” system. “It’s all in one box,” Welch said. End users get a single non-proprietary solution and installation is simplified, she said.

Welch also told me about Fire-Lite Alarms by Honeywell’s new Emergency Command Center or ECC. The company says the non-proprietary mass notification system is “capable of integrating with virtually every brand of fire alarm to serve as a fully-supervised system for delivering critical messages.”

Welch said it would be particularly useful in schools. “For this product, the retrofit capabilities are endless,” she said. “There’s lots of flexibility in the product.”

Stacy Deveraux, Fire-Lite Alarms’ marketing director, said that among its features is the unique capability of sending an emergency message through the system with a landline or cell phone. “You may not have the ability to get down the hallway to get to the mike,” she told me.

I also had more ssnTVnews interviews on Thursday. I talked to Alex Dunn, who recently was promoted from COO of Vivint to company president.

Dunn also is the new interim CEO of Vivint Solar and I talked to him about how that business relates to the security/home automation side of the business. There is some customer crossover, he said.

Carter Rierson, president of Best Defense Security & Fire Protection of Waunakee, Wis., also talked to me for ssnTVnews about how a layered approach is necessary for school security. He also said he’d like to see the security and fire businesses in the industry come together to offer the best products and services for school security instead of taking a separate silo approach.

I also talked on Thursday to Pamela Benke, director of marketing for Telular, which makes Telguard security products. Among products it was promoting at the show were Telguard HomeControl for 2Gig Go!Control panels and its MXD3G all-in-one cellular PERS solution.

Also on Thursday, I met with Michael Marett, division president, security solutions for Uplink, and Michael Gregory, the company’s VP of marketing for security products. Uplink describes itself as a leader in cellular services for the alarm industry. Marett said features such as Uplink’s multi-carrier technology and automatic switching between towers provides “unique continuity” in coverage.

I started Friday at an interesting panel presentation by top dealers for Guardian Protection Services. The Warrendale, Pa.-based company was holding its annual authorized dealer convention in Las Vegas in conjunction with the show.

Three of the dealers who spoke excelled in different approaches to selling security: door knocking, telemarketing and affinity marketing, and gave insight on the various strategies.

The fourth dealer has a knack for hanging on to his customers and told his secrets for keeping attrition rates low. Hank Groff, national director of Guardian’s dealer division, commented that while a focus on sales is key, it’s important to remember that “the ultimate goal is to protect customers and long-term relationships.”

A bit later in the day, I met with Sarah Semerjian, director of marketing for CheckVideo, a provider of cloud-based intelligent video surveillance and alarm verification solutions that is based in Reston, Va.

She said that CheckVideo Executive VP Chris Brown participated in a panel discussion at the show on cloud RMR opportunities for integrators, which she said is something the company is focusing on.

CheckVideo has a variety of monitoring, technology and distribution partners and CheckVideo also is working with those partners to provide education about its products in the field, Semerjian said. “We’re really focusing on working with these partners to educate their dealers,” she said.

Also on Friday, I had an interesting talk with Jon Paine, a manager with the Sensor and Surveillance Systems division of manufacturer Moog, about new products the company was touting at the show. One was the EcoKit, a remote solar and wind power generator for surveillance systems. “Although there are other options out there, the blend of a wind turbine with solar is unique,” Paine told me.

He said the green solution is designed, as are all Moog products, for extreme environments and weather solutions, and is ideal for remote surveillance locations where other sources of power are not available or would be too expensive to make accessible. “There’s been a lot of interest at the show in the product,” Paine said.

The company also just released its EXO GeminEye high-definition network thermal and HD visible imaging system. He said the blend of the two types of technology “gives 24/7 day and night coverage.”

I’ve just touched on my experiences during my four days at ISC West, but the many new products and trends I learned about will provide good background for future stories I’ll be writing.

AMY’S ROUNDUP

George Siegle from IDV Solutions discussed the company's work across the verticals with risk visualization.

Ron Risley, coordinator of security/emergency management for the city of Winnipeg, Manitoba, is using the Carver Threat Assessment model to his advantage.

Rob Simopoulos, from Advance Technology in Scarborough, Maine, said the company's fourth annual Technology Expo slated for May 16 in Ogunquit, Maine, will include many end users.

March Networks' Dan Cremins, director of product management, and Net Payne, chief marketing officer, debuted a next-gen retail platform. March Networks is growing fast in the banking, retail and transportation sectors, they said.

Siemens' national business manager, Berkly Trumbo, moderated a panel titled "Critical Incidents in Higher Education: The Case for an Intelligent Response." Panelists from MIT, Santa Clara University, Arizona State University and the Clery Center for Security on Campuses had much to say about the usefulness of social media, the ROI of RFID and more.

"Train, train, train" was the mantra of David Burns, manager of emergency management at Santa Clara, formerly with UCLA. Thomas Komola discussed how MIT has changed its practices in the wake of a "fictitious report of a person with a gun wearing body armor" in February. Emergency response to that incident didn't go well, he said, forcing the highly acclaimed school to change its protocols.

Inovonics is focusing on "people protection" as a part of physical security. Dan Commare, vice president of marketing, presented the Enterprise Mobile Duress System and where Inovonics is headed with that. "People protection," especially in the case of hospital workers, is key, he said. And it's a growing market. More than 1 million individuals carry the EMDS technology with them, from government employees to senior care personnel.

Tyco's Jim Stankevich, manager of health care security and former director of security at Mount Sinai Hospital, former president of the International Association of Healthcare Security & Safety and current IAHSS board member, had high praises for the Lynx panic/duress and instant notification system for hospitals, and now, increasingly, for K-12 schools. Lynx is now in more than 300 hospitals, Stankevich said.

Panorama Towers, an ultra-luxury condominium about two miles from the Vegas strip, is using Motobix's 360-degree surveillance cameras in its common areas.

Bob Hayes, managing director of the Security Executive Council, and Shirley Decker-Lucke, publisher at Elsevier, announced their collaboration to produce texts on security topics, both for practitioners and for the 400 colleges with security curriculums. They aim to serve next-gen professionals and to gather book ideas from current thought leaders in the industry. "They'll tell us what they need and we'll write a book about it," Hayes said.

Mike Howard from Microsoft discussed the prevailing challenge security professionals face: Reaching out to the C-suite. "It's getting them out of their comfort zone," Howard said. Having the business acumen to "evangelize" for security and prove ROI is vital, he said. He's in his 11th year at Microsoft and even at that corporate giant he needed to do some evangelizing of his own, he said.

Howard also talked about his hiring practices. Gone are the days of just hiring former law enforcement personnel, he said. He looks for the right attitude, great interpersonal skills, the willingness to learn the business, dedication, selflessness and subject matter expertise. Howard also talked proudly about Microsoft's Global Security Operations Centers, and the ''showcasing" of best-practice use of Microsoft products in a real-world operational environment.

Delta Scientific's portable crash barriers were used at the 2013 presidential inauguration and are currently in use at military checkpoints in Afghanistan and Iraq, at busy ports, university sporting events, graduations and other events requiring crowd control. Simplicity is the name of the game, said Garrett Gustafson, project manager for high security systems. It only takes 15 minutes to set up one of the barriers, he said, and there's no need to dig up the ground.

Ingersoll Rand's NFC is being adopted on campuses nationwide, making smartphones even smarter, access-wise, IR representatives said.

Polaroid is getting into security video. Vice President Nathan Needel said a full line of surveillance solutions will be offered to end users starting June 1. The solutions come with a 10-year warranty and an integrator dedicated to the user.

Kostas Mellos from Interlogix detailed his company's part in the migration from analog to IP.

BRS Labs' David Gurulski and Curtis Cole promoted their behavioral recognition offerings over rules-based cameras as a vital time-saver for management.

Quantum Secure showed its new SAFE for CIV software, which closes the physical identity management gap between PIV and non-PIV badge holders for government agencies.

OnSSI's Moshe Levi, product manager, emphasized the importance of mobility in security surveillance. Among other products, its LiveVest, worn by SWAT teams and security guards, contains three cameras.

David Bunzel, executive director of PSIA, expressed his optimism that CSOs are becoming more accepting of industry standards. "They're becoming less proprietary," he said.