Dawn MeadeSenior AV Architect / Project Manager, Northrop Grumman
- Northrop Grumman
- Xchange Members
- United States of America
So many highlights for me!
First, a return to in-person. Hybrid and remote conferences, meetings, and events are great for getting info, but will never replace in-person meetings. I reconnected with so many friends, and met some virtual friends for the first time in addition to meeting new folks. From sharing a meal or some drinks, to actually getting hugs from dear friends (who are vaxxed and willing) at long last - nothing beats the real-life experience. (And AVIXA's all about experiences, right? :-) )
Next, it was great to return to teaching at the show and an utter pleasure to have well-attended and fully engaged classes, including one sold-out and wait-listed! Sharing industry knowledge and research to enthusiastic folks in the field is wonderful - especially because it allows me to meet so many new folks and grow my own network while helping increase their networks and knowledge!
Then, as much as it kills me during the show, the sheer amount of walking and quantity of steps earned at the live show is always staggering. Despite how bad I ache in the days following, all that movement does a body good, especially when compared with normal work when I'm stuck behind a keyboard all day long. At Infocomm 2022, I topped 130k steps and walked almost 55 miles! (My record is an Orlando show when - with the theme park days included - I walked over 70 miles!)
Finally, it's always fantastic to get to travel to the show and have a few days away. I not only do the show and the parties and networking events, I also always make time for some fun experiences I can't get at home - like theme park visits in Orlando or shows in Vegas. For Infocomm 2022, my fun experience was VIP tickets to see Martin Garrix at Omnia. Spending my last hours in Vegas, dancing the night away mere feet away from one of my favorite EDM artists was amazing and well worth the lack of sleep and extra tired legs for my travel home.
Overall, Infocomm 2022 was a great show, a great experience, and a great way to return to the in-person world after three years at home, alone on the couch! ^_^
This has been a talking point for our industry and Infocomm/AVIXA specifically since as far back as 2011. Back in that year, I attended one of the last Infocomm100 events - Infocomm100 was an invite-only gathering of 100 industry folks who'd gather for two days and debate a great, exciting topic, which varied each year. In 2011, it was Smart Buildings and integrating all of the silos (IT, AV, Environmental, etc) in those buildings to a unified whole.
Back then, the whole IoT, sensors everywhere, smart building/smart world concept was still fairly new and not as ubiquitous or understood as it is today. We had two great days of conversation where the consensus was: Smart Buildings are coming; they are an area of great opportunity for AV integrators; and the AV industry as a whole is best situated to take advantage of this coming opportunity since - of all the industry silos involved in smart buildings - we are the one that is most experienced at taking disparate products, technologies and manufacturers and integrating them into a functioning, whole system.
Since its now 2022 and we're still talking about this, I guess we as an industry have been about as proactive at jumping on this "future trend" opportunity the way we were all so eager and excited to jump on the AV/IT convergence "future trend" opportunity - which is here, has been here, and some folks are still just getting the memo.... ¯\_(ツ)_/¯