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Tridium recently welcomed the growing Niagara Community to the 2006 Niagara Summit at the Saddlebrook Resort with a theme of “Connecting Minds and Machines”. The 2006 event which took place April 30-May 2, drew a record number of attendees and exhibitors, with more than 420 attendees, 38 exhibiting companies and 28 educational sessions. The growth in attendance represents a 25% increase over the previous Summit held in 2004. In addition to drawing attendees from the United States, this year’s Niagara Summit attracted many international attendees from China, France, Italy, Germany, Switzerland, Thailand, the United Kingdom and the United Arab Emirates.
Tridium President John Petze kicked off the event with an update on the state of the Niagara Community noting that many opportunities exist for using the Niagara Framework and that they are just beginning to be tapped. Keynote speaker and Harvard Business School professor Ramon Casadesus-Masanell energetically spoke about the continuing trend of Co-opetition, a business environment in which companies can gain advantages by means of a well thought-out mixture of competition and cooperation with others in their same industry.
Attendees were enthusiastic about the sessions, exhibitors and the networking opportunities that were presented at the Niagara Summit. Many noted that the contacts made at the Niagara Summit alone made the event extremely worthwhile and productive.
The Niagara Summit offered 3 distinct tracks for attendees plus workshops for hands-on experience with NiagaraAX.
The Business Track focused on the business case of using the Niagara Framework, illustrating success stories, case studies and new product features. Attendees received a sneak peak into Niagara Central scheduled to debut Summer 2006. Tridium’s new interactive portal, Niagara Central is the on-line resource supporting the Niagara Community, fostering interactions and cross pollination of business opportunities. It will also serve as the NiagaraAX licensing tool and support AX developers licensing their own work.
The Applications Track dug deeper into the features and components of the Niagara Framework that help build the business case for use in projects. One of the highlights of this track was the preview of the upcoming NiagaraAX 3.1 release. NiagaraAX 3.1 is currently scheduled for release in July.
Developers and engineers attending the Developers Track had the opportunity to get up close look at the Niagara Framework. A presentation on the oBIX object model featured oBIX drivers in NiagaraAX and Niagara R2. Attendees at the standing room only presentation saw a demonstration that illustrated coding using the source oBIX toolkit.
The Niagara Summit exhibit floor was filled to capacity with exhibitors and sponsors. Several major announcements were promoted from the show floor.
Tendril (www.tendrilinc.com) announced the release of the Tendril Bridge for Building Automation. The Tendril Bridge for Building Automation is the first multi-vendor wireless integration software driver developed using NiagaraAX . With minimal software changes required, any building automation systems using the NiagaraAX platform can now control, supervise, alarm, schedule and manage ZigBee and other proprietary low-power wireless networks using this solution.
C2 Facility Solutions (www.c2fs.com), a building asset management and maintenance services software company signed a development agreement with Tridium. The agreement combines C2’s web-based solution with the Niagara Framework®, to further broaden the company’s products and services.
Tridium demonstrated its new Vykon Security Appliance solution, a Web-based, Internet-enabled access control system built on the NiagaraAX Framework and scheduled for release in the fall.
In addition, Tridium announced plans with several Partners:
IBM/Mainline: Tridium will offer several pre-configured Red Hat Linux server platforms that can be purchased directly from IBM's largest distributor, Mainline; the AX Supervisor Linux-based software can be purchased from Tridium.
Sun Microsystems: NiagaraAX available on the AMD based platform with Solaris 10 later in the year. It will first be supported on a low cost desk side dual-core processor box with video and keyboard and Solaris 10 installed. It will also be AX ready.
Siemens Wireless: The Siemens MC 75 EDGE Cellular module will be integrated into the JACE 2 – where it intends to certify and release this GPRS/EDGE cellular solution on US GSM Networks by the end of this year.
Marc Petock, Director of Marketing for Tridium attributed the 2006 Niagara Summit success to many factors including the wider acceptance of Niagara as the technology of choice for connecting devices and equipment systems into single unified systems, the continued growth of the Niagara Community and the substantial number of new Niagara-based products and applications recently introduced into the market.” He went on to say “The overall energy and enthusiasm from the Niagara Community was everywhere.”
Initial plans for the 2008 Niagara Summit are already underway.
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