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Issue: December 2012
By: Frank Bisbee

Datacom/Telecom Glossary
In This Issue

Bits N' Pieces

Bisbee’s Buzz

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

The ELECTRICAL CONTRACTOR magazine is reader-rated as the best publication for automated buildings and electrical services in 2012.

Today we got the December 2012 issue of the ELECTRICAL CONTRACTOR magazine. It's filled with goodies.

I quickly scanned the issue with my handy pack of post-it notes. When I was through, the magazine looked like it had flappy wings.

From the fabulous and creative cover to the last page, I found numerous juicy ideas to help our business and improve our services.

To name a few of the goodies between the covers:

Jeff Griffin’s dependable and informative update on portable testers and cordless cutting tools is helpful. Jim Hayes, as always, gives us quite a bit to consider when installing fiber optic cabling. Love his quiz too. Wayne Moore has got the straight scoop on the codes and safety requirements. SAFETY FIRST and ECMAG is always on target in that area.

The Integrated Systems Contractor section is a strong signal on the new directions that electrical contractors may be heading in their quest for expanding revenues. ECMAG has some excellent article contributors working with the tireless editors and publisher. Their efforts are reflected in the superior editorial content. Unlike some other publications, this magazine is not a slick “advertorial” sham.

Overall, the December 2012 issue of the ELECTRICAL CONTRACTOR magazine wraps up a record-setting great year of powerful pages. No wonder many readers rate this industry magazine as the best publication for automated buildings and electrical services. The staff at NECA’s ELECTRICAL CONTRACTOR magazine are going to be challenged to top such an outstanding record.

But that’s just my opinion,

Frank Bisbee - Editor

"HOTS - Heard On The Street" Monthly Column


Megladon Announces Pre Qualification Test Results for US Military HLC® Termini

INCREDIBLE: A fiber termination that can handle the shock and awe of the harshest conditions in the US military.

Austin, Texas, December 11, 2012 – Megladon Manufacturing Group announced today a completed project for the US Military to pre qualification test fiber optic termini processed with HLC (Hardened Lens Contact) technology. The HLC process uses a laser to harden the entire mating surface and maximizes coupling efficiency in fiber optic connections.

The termini, placed in a 38999 backshell, were tested for shock and vibration, temperature cycling and multiple matings based on military specifications. The results were extremely good and warrant additional testing.

Vibration testing was done in accordance with MIL-STD-810F, method 514.6. This test simulates some of the harshest conditions in the US military. The mated pairs were tested in both the X axis and the Z axis. Each mated pair included a termini processed with HLC technology and an industry standard termini. This method validated the durability gained by the HLC process and also the interoperability of HLC termini with termini that currently exist in applications.

Temperature testing consisted of a high temperature soak at 165 deg C and a low temperature soak at -55 deg C. The duration of each test was 24 hours. Each mated pair included a termini processed with HLC technology and an industry standard termini. This method validated the durability gained by the HLC process and also the interoperability of HLC termini with termini that currently exist in applications.

Mating testing was designed to test the durability of the HLC termination and to investigate its effects on industry standard terminations when the pair is repeatedly mated and demated. The mated pair included a termini processed with HLC technology and an industry standard termini both placed in a 38999 backshell. Endface pictures and insertion loss data was collected after each 100 mates.

“Megladon’s HLC technology was tested side by side with the industry standard process and performed very well. We did not see any evidence that would suggest the process would not complete full qualification testing. The conditions were extreme and we were very pleased with the results,” stated Daniel Hogberg RCDD, Megladon’s engineering manager.

Megladon® Manufacturing Group Ltd., a subsidiary of TyRex Group Ltd.®, is recognized as a leader in the fiber optic marketplace. Founded in 1997, Megladon made it their mission to provide customers with fiber optic products that far exceed industry standards. As technology innovators, Megladon created the HLC® (Hardened Lens Contact) termination, which has changed the market and taken it to the next level. For additional information on Megladon and their patented processes please visit the company’s website at

For additional information regarding Megladon’s variety of fiber optic products please contact John Culbert at 512.615.4687 or by email at


Internet Moved to 100 Gigabit Technologies at Record Rate in the Third Quarter, According to Dell'Oro Group

Cisco and Juniper Lead in 100 Gigabit Ethernet Port Shipments in 3Q12

REDWOOD CITY, Calif., Dec. 4, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- According to a newly published report by Dell'Oro Group, the trusted source for market information about the networking and telecommunications industries, the Internet is undergoing a major jump in transmission speeds as network operators expand deployments of 100 Gigabit Ethernet technologies in their backbone networks. The migration to 100 Gigabit Ethernet represents a significant jump over the 10 and 40 Gigabit technologies widely deployed in Internet routers today. The new high-speed technology enables operators to add network capacity in larger increments and at lower costs, and is expected to see steady adoption for at least the next five years. During the third quarter of the year, a record number of 100 Gigabit Ethernet router ports were shipped.

"Shipments of 100 Gigabit Ethernet for Internet-class routers have nearly tripled over the first nine months of the year and are on track to generate about $500 million in router sales for 2012," said Shin Umeda, Vice President at Dell'Oro Group. "We expect demand to almost double again next year, making for a very significant opportunity for router manufacturers," added Umeda.

The top five vendors of the Service Provider Router market that have shipped 100 Gigabit technologies, ranked by total revenue for 3Q12, are Cisco Systems, Juniper Networks, Alcatel-Lucent, Huawei Technologies and Brocade.

About the ReportThe Dell'Oro Group Routers Quarterly Report offers complete, in-depth coverage of the Service Provider Core and Edge and Enterprise Router markets for current and historical time periods. The report includes qualitative analysis and detailed statistics for vendor market shares, revenue, average selling prices, and unit and port shipments. To purchase this report, please call Julie Learmond-Criqui at +1.650.622.9400 x244 or email

About Dell'Oro GroupAs the trusted source for market information about the networking and telecommunications industries, Dell'Oro Group provides in-depth, objective research and analysis that enables component manufacturers, equipment vendors, and investment firms to make fact-based, strategic decisions.


General Cable Corporation Completes the Acquisition of Alcan Cable China

General Cable Corporation (BGC) Highland Heights, KY. announced that it has completed the acquisition of Alcan Cable China. Alcan Cable China represents approximately 10% to 15% of overall revenues of Alcan Cable.

“Alcan Cable China has a 430,000 square foot, vertically integrated manufacturing plant in Tianjin, China and ten regional sales offices. Since its start-up in 2007, the business has matured in a relatively short amount of time building a sales infrastructure and a premium brand with a strong reputation in the Chinese market, which represents nearly one-third of global wire and cable demand. We believe the synergies of this acquisition coupled with an established platform from which to introduce and grow other General Cable product lines further enhances the value proposition to our customers. We are honored and proud to become part of General Cable,” said Alex Tham, Managing Director, Alcan Cable China.

“We are pleased to have completed the second and final step of the acquisition of Alcan Cable. We have brought together two companies with more than 200 years of combined experience in the wire and cable industry serving important markets in North America and now China. Alcan Cable China is highly complementary to our two long-standing partnerships in China and continues to generate positive momentum in the market. We are off to a fast start executing on our integration plans in North America and expect to do the same with the business in China,” said Gregory B. Kenny, President and Chief Executive Officer of General Cable.

The Company estimates that the overall Alcan Cable business will contribute approximately $650-$700 million in annual revenues at current aluminum prices, and over a cycle, the operating margin profile is expected to be consistent with the Company’s existing businesses as manufacturing, logistics, and purchasing synergies are realized. The Company expects Alcan Cable North America to contribute meaningfully in the fourth quarter of 2012 while Alcan Cable China’s contribution is expected to be de minimis to fourth quarter results as step-up purchase accounting adjustments offset the base earnings in the business in China.

General Cable (BGC), a Fortune 500 Company, is a global leader in the development, design, manufacture, marketing and distribution of copper, aluminum and fiber optic wire and cable products for the energy, industrial, specialty, construction and communications markets. For more information about General Cable products, please contact your local sales representative or visit our Web site at

Alcan Cable, the wire and cable business of Rio Tinto plc (RIO.L), a 100-year-old leader in the production of aluminum cable for the utility and building industries, offers a wide range of bare and insulated conductors to both the utility and distribution markets, supporting them with highly capable resources to ensure the highest value application of our products. For more information about Alcan Cable, please visit the Company’s Web site at


Klein Tools® Introduces Innovative Adjustable Wrench

Extra-wide jaw 8” wrench provides same capacity as a standard 12” wrench

December 12, 2012 (Lincolnshire, IL) – Klein Tools ( for professionals since 1857, introduces a new Extra-Wide Jaw 8” Adjustable Wrench.  It features a full 1-1/2” jaw capacity, the same capacity as a standard 12” adjustable wrench.  The shorter handle makes it easier to reach nuts and bolts in confined spaces.

The Klein Tools Extra-Wide Jaw 8” Adjustable Wrench (Cat. No. D509-8) is designed with a minimally protruding jaw shank that also provides greater capacity in tight spaces.  A unique 4-threaded knurl worm gear helps balance this wrench for smoother operation and it allows the user to apply up to 30% more force.  It comes with standard and metric measurement scales for faster adjustment and a wider handle for added comfort.

“Customers have told us they are looking for compact and functional tools,” said Senior Product Manager Gary Lalla.  “This wrench provides a short 8” tool length and enough jaw capacity to handle most electrical, HVAC, plumbing, and maintenance applications.”

For more information visit our website or contact your local distributor.

Klein Tools is a registered trademark of Klein Tools, Inc.

Since 1857 Klein Tools, a family-owned and operated company, has been designing, developing and manufacturing premium-quality, professional-grade hand tools. Klein Tools are manufactured in nine plants throughout the United States and are the number one choice among professional electricians and other tradespeople. For more information, visit 


AFL’s LAZERMaster™ Laser Splicer and Glass Processor Finalist for Prism Award


Spartanburg SC - AFL’s LZM-100 LAZERMaster glass processing and splicing system has been selected as one of three finalists for the SPIE and Photonics Media Prism Award, an international competition that recognizes companies that develop products to solve problems and improve life through photonics. AFL’s application was entered under the category of manufacturing.

Developed and manufactured by AFL in conjunction with Fujikura Japan, AFL’s LZM-100 LAZERMaster is the first commercially available glass processing and splicing system that uses a CO2 laser heat source to perform splicing, adiabatic tapering and other glass-shaping operations. The LZM possesses large diameter capabilities up to 2.3 mm and long tapering capabilities up to 150 mm.

The LZM-100 patent-pending Laser Power Stability feature allows for cleaner splicing. Typical CO2lasers have an output power fluctuation of +/- 5 percent which produces inconsistent splicing results and may cause irregularity and ripple in a taper profile. The LZM-100 utilizes closed-loop power stabilization techniques, resulting in an order of magnitude improvement in power stability and enabling highly repeatable processes and smooth taper profiles.

Another unique feature is the Warm Tapering Imaging (WTI) monitoring for precise control of heating power. The WTI brightness level is captured in real time during the tapering process. The WTI value is used to adjust the CO2 laser output power in real time to a level appropriate for the decreasing mass of a fiber as it is tapered to a smaller diameter.
AFL is the first to market a commercially available laser splicer, the LAZERMaster, with unique features such as the CO2 laser heat source and advanced feedback control and stabilization techniques. The LAZERMaster is a unique customized solution that helps decrease costs by improving performance and productivity. To learn more about AFL, its products and services, visit

About AFL
AFL provides industry-leading products and services to the electric utility, broadband, communications, OEM, enterprise, wireless and transit rail markets as well as the emerging markets of oil and gas, mining, nuclear, avionics, medical, renewable and intelligent grid. The company’s diverse product portfolio includes fiber optic cable, transmission and substation accessories, outside plant equipment, connectors, fusion splicers, test equipment and training. AFL’s service portfolio includes market-leading positions with the foremost communications companies supporting inside plant central office, EF&I, outside plant, enterprise and wireless areas.

Founded in 1984, AFL is proud to offer engineering expertise, exceptional products and reliable service that help our customers improve their critical and electrical infrastructure. AFL has operations in the U.S., Mexico, Europe and Asia. The company is headquartered in Spartanburg, SC, and is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Fujikura Ltd. of Japan. For more information, visit



Dec. 3, 2012,  CDC officials announced that the 2012-13 flu season has started nearly a month earlier than expected, with influenza A(H3N2) being this year's dominant strain, and they said this could be a bad year for flu. However, the influenza vaccine this year is a 90% match for the samples examined by the agency, officials said. "My advice is: Get the vaccine now," said infectious diseases specialist Dr. James Steinberg of Emory University.

Treatment - Antiviral Drugs

General Information

Information for Health Care Professionals

Other Important Information For People Sick With Flu


Eaton Corporation Plc Completes Acquisition of Cooper Industries

Published 11/30/2012 2:39:01 PM Loading...

Eaton Corporation plc (NYSE: ETN) and Cooper Industries plc (NYSE:CBE) today announced that Eaton has completed its acquisition of Cooper. The acquisition was announced on May 21, 2012 and combines Eaton and Cooper into a new, premier global power management company named Eaton Corporation plc.

“The $13 billion acquisition of Cooper, the largest in Eaton’s 101-year history, is a transformational milestone that expands our market segment reach, broadens our portfolio of products, services, and solutions, and strengthens our global geographic footprint,” said Alexander M. Cutler, Eaton chairman and chief executive officer.

“Cooper adds proven capabilities in utility power distribution, smart grid, lighting, lighting controls, wiring devices, and safety solutions to Eaton’s strengths in power quality, power distribution and energy services,” Cutler said. “These complementary technologies further accelerate Eaton’s growth as a global integrated power management company focused on one of the most challenging megatrends of our time: the rising costs and increasing environmental impact of the world’s growing energy use.”

“The acquisition of Cooper Industries represents a great opportunity for Eaton to expand our product offering to better serve our end users,” added Tom Gross, vice chairman and chief operating officer, Eaton’s Electrical Sector. “In addition to growing our power distribution offering, we’ll now be able to offer distributors a host of lighting and control products, mass notification and safety solutions, and a broad range of wiring devices making Eaton an even more valuable business partner.”

Combining the results of Eaton and Cooper for the four quarters ending September 30, 2012, Eaton Corporation plc had pro forma revenues of $21.8 billion and EBITDA of $3.3 billion.

Cooper shareholders will receive the consideration to which they are entitled under the scheme of arrangement within 14 days.

Trading of Eaton and Cooper will continue on the New York Stock Exchange until the end of trading today and the ordinary shares of Eaton Corporation plc will begin trading on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol ETN on Monday, December 3, 2012.

“We will soon be announcing the organizational structure for the combined operations,” Cutler said. “That leadership, working with a joint integration team of leaders from Eaton and Cooper, will be responsible for achieving the operational synergies we have identified. We anticipate the entire integration process will take 24 to 36 months, depending on business conditions.”

The new company, Eaton Corporation plc, has approximately 100,000 employees and sells products to customers in more than 150 countries.


Indoor air Quality IAQ & LEED Credits - Cut Energy Costs, Increase Indoor Comfort With Touchscreen IAQPoint2 by Honeywell Analytics

Honeywell Analytics introduces IAQPoint2, a customizable touch screen monitor with ability to control three IAQ parameters (Carbon Dioxide or Volatile Organic Compounds, temperature and humidity).  The unit boosts energy efficiency, fresh air comfort and building performance through on-demand ventilation activation with relays triggering fans locally or via a building automation system. Easy to use, easy to install, easy to maintain, the unit contributes to LEED accreditation (up to three points) and green building practices, and complies with ASHRAE 62.1, CSA-B52 and the International Building Code. Call Honeywell Analytics, 800/ 563-2967, or visit


Suddath names new executive vice president and chief operating officer. Michael J. Brannigan - Suddath's new EVP & COO

Wednesday, December 05, 2012 - The Suddath Companies announces a key addition to its executive leadership team with the appointment of Michael J. Brannigan to the new role of executive vice president and chief operating officer.

With deep experience in the transportation and supply chain industries, Brannigan will complement the existing executive team as the company continues to focus on improving the overall operational effectiveness of customer service, operations, technology and integrated services.

“Suddath has a rich history and impressive record as an industry leader in global transportation and relocation, and I am really looking forward to joining the organization at such a transformative time,” Brannigan said.

Suddath welcomes Mike and wishes him every success in leading the organization to achieve operational excellence. Suddath employs Unified Communications with ShoreTel to maximize their service and efficiency.


Why Business Will Remain Punk: Ponzi Schemes Galore – Article by Joe Salimando

Special to Heard On The Street

By Joe Salimando     

If you listened recently to executives – in the electrical/datacom industry, and many others – you may hear (or read) that things just might be getting better. Heck, the residential market is recovering already! And if those lunkheads in Washington can just get us over that fiscal cliff . . .

            As a reality-based person, however, what you should see/hear (albeit, using your imagination) all over such statements are Asterisks. Footnotes. Every one of these begins with “Yes, but . . . “

            Let’s examine the reality-based exceptions we should take to any positive assessment of the U.S. economy at this point.


Lots of focus in the recent election was on how much the U.S. has added to its debt. It’s now around $16 trillion. Make no mistake, Keynes was right: Borrowing from the future to spend today DOES create a better business environment. However, there are several points about adding debt that can’t be ignored:

1.       Debt needs to be paid back – or rolled over – when it comes due. This means finding a lot more money (to repay) or steadily increasing your borrowing (to roll over the debt, as increasing amounts come due).

2.       Interest and principal payments can’t be legislated out of the budget. The money has got to be repaid. This isn’t optional (like the Space program, the Census Bureau, or the production tax credit for wind turbines). It’s just NOT a political issue.

3.       The more you owe, the less worthy of a borrower you become. When does the U.S. become untenable, in the eyes of foreign countries, entities, and individuals that loan us money? And what happens next?

Essentially, the U.S. runs annual deficits. A prudent approach – instead of trying for the mooted “grand bargain” that fixes everything – would be for the people in Washington to say:

            “We’re going to balance the FY2014 budget, just to prove we can do it, and to get a start on a more fiscally intelligent future.”

            Do you hear that? You’ve not gotten even one whiff of such thinking.

            Apparently, the idea is to keep rolling the debt over . . . to find buyers for more and more debt – forever.

            Think on all this. How does differ, in any way, from what Charles Ponzi sought to accomplish?

Huge flood of new money

The world has allowed central banks of major countries to print money hand-over-fist – and that has helped them to keep a lid on interest rates. One recent assessment claimed that, starting from around $3 trillion in currency in the world in 2000, we’ve gotten – collectively – to around $16 trillion today. Yes, the number coincidentally matches total U.S. debt.

            What this $16 trillion is, really: The total of big-country currency that’s either in circulation or exists as zeroes and ones in computers. There’s been a $13 billion increase in 12 years.

            One reason to print and print and print is to buy bonds. In the U.S., for much of the 2000s – after 9/11, and over the past four years – the Fed has held interest rates way down. They’ve done it, recently, by buying government bonds!

            Another reason is to buy dollars. Some central banks – like the one in Brazil, for much of the 2000s – go into the market to sell their own currency (in this case, the real) and buy dollars. This action keeps the dollar-real exchange rate in a range that’s favorable to Brazilian exporters.

Inflation vs. your bond purchase

At this point, the U.S. Treasury 10-year bond yields 1.62%. The Consumer Price Index for the 12-month period ending with October was at 2.2%. So buyers of bonds – most of them very large organizations – are willingly accepting a decrease in the value of their money.

            Should 2.2% inflation persist for 10 years, and should you buy a T-bond ylelding 1.62% and hold it for 10 years, you will get back 10 years from now – in today’s real purchasing dollars – less than $90,500 (my back-of-the-envelope figuring).

            Why do this? If you thought about, you might figure it must be very complicated. But isn’t that what you thought during the mortgage finance bubble (“how can they offer 125% loan-to-value mortgages?”)

            Obviously, the answer to the “why” is actually quite simple, as we all have found out (from watching the financial companies create a crater – and they’re still digging!).

            What a reality-based person should know: There are people in the business of managing money. They are filthy rich. They are sophisticated and smart. They influence the government when they wish. BUT there’s no tomorrow for them.

            As the head of Citigroup said in 2007, “as long as the music is playing, you’ve got to get up and dance.”

            Buyers of bonds include insurance companies and third-party organizations that manage investments of pension funds. These organizations are figuring on returns much higher than 1.62%. In fact, they promise such returns. Read the fine print of a 10-K report from any company with a defined benefit pension plan (a shrinking lot) . . . you’ll find they “assume” annual returns (forever) of 6.5% on up.

            What we have here is a very sophisticated Ponzi-type scheme. Who’s going to pay, in the end? The taxpayer, the pensioner, cities and towns that have promised pensions (of any size) – and investors in some corporate stocks.

Could rates go up some day?

What’s potentially worse, at some point – maybe not tomorrow, but some day, and soon – interest rates will rise.

            Historically, there’s been a 2% or higher “premium” over the reported inflation rate on the “long” bond (used to be the 30-year, now it’s the 10-year). So if the CPI comes in a 2.2%, you might expect to see the 10-year Treasury bond yielding 4.2% . . . maybe even 4.7%. 

            Perhaps this doesn’t fit the “Ponzi” idea that’s in your head. Think again – answer these questions:

            What happens to a pension fund that’s invested in T-bonds at 1.6% when prevailing market interest rates rise by 300 basis points? The asset loses a great deal of value.

            What happens to a big national government that owes $16 trillion when interest rates rise by 300 basis points? It’s a fiscal disaster. And, as noted above: Paying the interest is not a discretionary item.

The Fed’s balance sheet

Lost in all of today’s optimism is a simple question: What happens to the trillions of dollars of securities – those issued by the U.S. government, and those backed by mortgages – that the Federal Reserve Board has bought, and continues to buy?

            At one point, not long ago, Ben Bernanke, the Fed head, spoke in public about how the Fed would “unwind” all of these purchases. I don’t believe he’s spoken on that subject in at least two years.

            Why not? Quite simply – like Charles Ponzi before he was in handcuffs – Bernanke does not want to give away the game. Let’s look at what’s happening as a result of the Fed’s purchases:

A.      The Fed gets interest payments on its holding of Treasury paper. At the end of the year, the Fed turns over its “profit” . . . to the U.S. Treasury. If this strikes you as someone taking $11 out of the pocket in his jacket and putting it into a pocket in his pants – well, you’ve got the picture in focus.

B.      As the amount of U.S. government debt continues to rise, our nation has to sell $50 billion to $70 billion of debt every week. That total includes NEW debt (to help fund the current year’s deficit) and REPLACEMENT debt (to pay back people whose T-bills and T-bonds expire next week). Now, add to that equation whatever the Fed would have to do to get rid of $2 trillion-and-more in securities, and put it in a situation in which interest rates are not capped. Quite simply, this can’t happen – not in reality. The fact that it can’t happen and that Bernanke isn’t asked about it, and that our leaders (civic, business, political, and otherwise) NEVER talk about it . . . should tell you all you need to know. Yet, as anyone who is older than 22 probably knows – there will be a Future. We are creating that Future now, by avoiding pain in the short term. A legit description of that kind of behavior is “worthy of Ponzi.”

C.      There has been a lot of discussion about the fact that the value of the U.S. dollar has NOT plummeted as the Fed has printed these trillions – and as it has announced plans for open-ended printing of more and more money. Yet at the same time, banks from England to Europe to Brazil and China are printing money. THAT is what is keeping the U.S. dollar afloat. Can the other banks print and print and print, to keep up with the U.S. Fed? Yes. Does this sound like a Ponzi scheme to you? 

Cliff dwellers

The bottom line is fairly obvious: “Ponzi schemes” are the answer that our nation (and, in fact, much of the developed world, including China) has adopted to every single crisis or challenge.

            Consider “the fiscal cliff:” It was an arrangement Congress put in place to force itself to DO SOMETHING. Then it did nothing. Now that the “cliff” is approaching . . . Congress is acting . . . not to do something responsible, but instead to make the “cliff” go away.

            It would be tough for the country if we “went over” this thing – but it might help motivate all of us to push on Congress to act responsibly. Maybe, even, we could stop collectively re-electing 90% of the incumbents? 

The bottom line

Whatever recovery we’re now experiencing, or will experience, is totally tainted. And: There are some people who know this, or at least sense it – and are acting on this knowledge.

            How many? I don’t know. But when you see surveys of business owners (like the NFIB monthly emission) . . . what the numbers communicate is reluctance, hesitation . . . unease. Consumer confidence communicates essentially the same thing.

            My core reality-based conclusion is that more and more of those surveyed are aware of what’s explored above (and what’s shown in those two graphics).

            If they don’t know all the specifics – and even if most could not or would not file all of it under “Ponzi schemes” – there is something, in the back of each mind, that says “Something BIG is not right here.”

Salimando’s EleBlog (, updated frequently, contains content about the electrical & datacom industries, contracting companies, green issues, how economic developments could affect business owners, and much more. The site had more than 320 posts in October & November 2012.

Starting as a copyboy on the Binghamton Sun-Bulletin in 1974, Salimando has worked as a reporter, writer, columnist, editor, and publisher for various publications (over 38 years). He served as Publisher of NECA’s Electrical Contractor magazine from July 1990 to April 1998.

A freelance writer/editor these days, he’s the managing editor of CapitalTristate Now, a publication of the mid-Atlantic unit of electrical distributor Sonepar. He posts regularly to NECA’s Energy Solutions blog.



BOMA International and RICS Collaborate to Advance International Property Measurement Standards

(WASHINGTON, D.C. – December 6, 2012) Two of the principal global real estate bodies, the Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA) International and the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to drive the creation of International Property Measurement Standards.

The two bodies have come together to support the creation of International Property Measurement Standards to address the lack of consistency in the way property is measured, and therefore valued.

Currently, measurement standards exist nationally and regionally, typically varying from market to market, hindering cross border real estate comparison.

Widespread market adoption of these new standards will provide the building blocks for well-functioning global real estate markets and will be complementary to International Financial Reporting Standards and International Valuation Standards: two layers shaping the global financial system.

Johnny Dunford, Global Commercial Property Director for RICS, said: “Real estate is a global industry, and transparent, well-regulated markets depend on a globally consistent understanding of valuation principles. Measurement is fundamental to the valuation process and helping to advance industry-owned standards is an essential part of our public interest remit.

“BOMA International is a well-respected association across numerous markets in which we operate. We are delighted to work with them, alongside a number of other partners, to deliver a principles-based standards suite which is ultimately recognized and adopted by markets around the world.”

Joseph W. Markling, Chair of BOMA International, said: “For the real property industry to be truly global, we need a global standard of measurement to provide a true basis for cross-border comparison, transparency and self-regulation. Since 1915, BOMA International has served as the secretariat of the property measurement standards used in the United States, and is pleased to join with RICS, the promulgator of the property measurement standard predominantly used in Great Britain, to develop a set of measurement standards for real property that will be recognized and adopted throughout the world.”

The emerging coalition, which is not restricted to BOMA International and RICS, will shortly begin the standard setting process and look to involve further partners around the world, governments, companies and academia to develop standards owned and adopted across world markets.

About BOMA International

The Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA) International is a federation of 93 BOMA U.S. associations, BOMA Canada and its 11 regional associations and 13 BOMA international affiliates.  Founded in 1907, BOMA represents the owners and managers of all commercial property types including nearly 10 billion square feet of U.S. office space that supports 3.7 million jobs and contributes $205 billion to the U.S. GDP. Its mission is to advance the interests of the entire commercial real estate industry through advocacy, education, research, standards and information.  Find BOMA online at

About RICS

RICS is the world’s leading qualification when it comes to professional standards in land, property and construction.

In a world where more and more people, governments, banks and commercial organizations demand greater certainty of professional standards and ethics, attaining RICS status is the recognized mark of property professionalism. 100,000 property professionals working in the major established and emerging economies of the world have already recognized the importance of securing RICS status by becoming members.

RICS is an independent professional body originally established in the UK by Royal Charter.

Since 1868, RICS has been committed to setting and upholding the highest standards of excellence and integrity - providing impartial, authoritative advice on key issues affecting businesses and society. RICS is a regulator of both its individual members and firms enabling it to maintain the highest standards and providing the basis for unparalleled client confidence in the sector.

The RICS Valuer Registration program was launched in the UK and Europe in late 2010 and 2011 as a response to the global financial crisis. RICS has been meeting with stakeholders in the Americas to discuss next steps on launching this program, as a result of market demand for additional quality assurance for banks, governments and other end users.


Brady launches updated S-32 Safety, Facility and Equipment Identification Catalog

Updated Brady catalog offers expanded product information

Milwaukee, Wis. (December 7, 2012) – Brady announced today the release of its new S-32 Safety, Facility and Equipment Identification catalog. The new 436-page catalog offers the latest information on Brady’s complete line of safety products and solutions. 

Catalog enhancements include expanded sign and printer sections

The largest update to the S-32 catalog is the addition of more than 13,000 sign part numbers, which includes new listings for a variety of sign parts and custom signs offering. The catalog makes it easy to match signs to proper applications with easy-to-understand guides and a complete sign index.

Three new printers have also been added to the catalog, including the BBP®33 industrial label printer, BMP®51 portable label printer and BMP®53 portable label printer. The labeling systems section includes expanded printer information on accessories, materials, ribbons and starter kits, in addition to a portable and benchtop printer comparison guide.

Catalog showcases variety of new product offerings

Brady’s Safety, Facility and Equipment Identification catalog offers 150 new product pages of several expanded product lines, including visual workplace solutions, such as red tag products, ToughStripe® floor marking tape and ToughJet® durable adhesive sheets. Other new products include the Butterfly Valve lockout device, procedure writing and safety consulting services, spill containment products, GHS labels and more.

The catalog is designed to provide a variety of safe and compliant solutions for key areas, such as lean manufacturing and maintenance, lockout/tagout, arc flash, hazard communications, slips, trips and falls, spill containment, voice/data communications, emergency egress and hospital facility safety.

For More Information:

The Safety, Facility and Equipment Identification catalog (#Y2761258) is available for digital download on Contact a Brady representative at 1-888-250-3082 to request a hard copy.  

About Brady Corporation:

Brady Corporation (NYSE: BRC) is a trusted & dependable international manufacturer and marketer of complete solutions that identify and protect premises, products and people.  Its products include high-performance labels and signs, safety devices, printing systems and software, and precision die-cut materials. Founded in 1914, the company has millions of customers in electronics, telecommunications, manufacturing, electrical, construction, education, medical and a variety of other industries.  Brady is headquartered in Milwaukee and employs 6,600 people at operations in the Americas, Europe and Asia/Pacific. Brady’s fiscal 2011 sales were approximately $1.3 billion.  More information about Brady Corporation is available at


Hendrix Spacer Cable Systems Ideal For Upgrading Existing Distribution Infrastructure

Milford, N.H. - Hendrix, a premier provider of high quality overhead and underground power distribution products, announces that Hendrix Spacer Cable is an excellent solution for saving money, and improving reliability when upgrading distribution infrastructure. Whatever the challenge posed by your existing infrastructure, including upgrading circuits in alleyways, road widening projects, backlot bare wire services, or reconductoring existing circuits, Spacer Cable can offer lower project and operations costs, a shortened timeline, and improved reliability. Additionally, these solutions can satisfy Public Utility Commission (PUC) requirements for distribution infrastructure improvements.

Spacer Cable’s compact configuration and versatility make it the ideal solution for reconductoring alleyways, where trenching or directional boring for underground circuits can be cost-prohibitive, and required clearances for conventional open wire systems pose significant problems. For road widening projects, Spacer Cable’s compact configuration and the ability to build the spacer cable circuit on either side of the pole can eliminate right-of-way challenges when relocating distribution circuits.

For backlot bare wire service in older neighborhoods, Spacer Cable addresses all the issues associated with potential power quality deterioration due to backyard planting interference with distribution lines, restriction of trimming for aesthetic reasons, and access concerns. Spacer Cable can withstand temporary contact with branches without flickers or outages, improving both aesthetics and access, as tree trimming can be less frequent and less extensive.

For reconductoring distribution lines, new Spacer Cable circuits can often be installed under existing energized circuits. The original circuit can be left in service or a double Spacer Cable circuit installed, saving time and money while providing continual service.

All Spacer Cable projects are supported by Hendrix complete engineering services, which provide technical assistance from design through inspection and preventative maintenance. To learn more about the power quality and versatility offered by Hendrix Spacer Cable systems, please visit

About Hendrix Aerial Cable & Systems

Hendrix Aerial Cable Systems is one of five operating divisions of Marmon Utility LLC, a provider of high-quality overhead and underground power distribution products located in Milford, NH.

Spacer cable, the division’s benchmark product, has been used by utilities for many years to improve the reliability and power quality of primary distribution systems, while making them more resistant to storm damage and providing options for areas difficult to engineer with standard bare wire systems. Hendrix Aerial Cable Systems provides complete support services, from project planning stages to system operation, making it easy to use spacer cable.


SignalTEK II Named to List of Top Thirty Technology Innovations of 2012 by Security Sales & Integration Magazine


SAN DIEGO, CA, December 10, 2012 -- IDEAL Industries Networks, the networking technology division of IDEAL INDUSTRIES, INC., announced today that its SignalTEK II Qualifier has been named one of the Top 30 Technology Innovations of 2012 by Security Sales & Integration magazine.

"IDEAL is proud to be recognized as an innovative company that is making a meaningful difference in the experience of video surveillance technicians as they fulfill their important missions," said Richard Jones, Director of Sales & Marketing-Networks US, IDEAL Industries Networks. "Everyone at IDEAL Industries Networks continuously challenges themselves to find better ways to connect people to information; our SignalTEK II being named to the Top 30 list is proof that those efforts are paying off for our customers."  

Products named to the coveted Top 30 awards are handpicked by Security Sales & Integration experts as the most noteworthy devices introduced that year, resulting in an industry-leading list of ingenious hardware designs, cutting-edge software and labor-saving installation tools. 


The IDEAL SignalTEK II Qualifier is a cost-effective alternative to traditional cable certifiers. Perfect for small- to medium-sized LANs, SignalTEK II qualifies that copper or fiber cabling is capable of supporting bandwidth-heavy Voice, Data, Video (VDV) and IP-based video surveillance applications over 10/100 Megabit or Gigabit Ethernet. SignalTEK II then generates documentation verifying network connectivity and job completion to initiate customer payment.  

Being a multifunctional device for both fiber and copper, SignalTEK II offers major cost savings, as it eliminates the need to purchase separate testers for different media. Also, because it troubleshoots throughput problems in existing installations, a separate transmission tester isn't required, presenting more savings for the contractor.

For more information about IDEAL Industries Networks SignalTEK II, visit 


Light Brigade 2013 highly informative Catalog in print and online NOW

“I just received the newest Fiber Optic Training catalog from the Light Brigade and it appears to be one of the most informative catalogs they have created.  It gives me a great description of the classes they offer, but what I liked best was their chart that shows the various Certifications that are available and which classes I should attend to prepare for my next test.  Now if I could just convince my boss to take advantage of their training DVD special that was offered.” Frank Bisbee, Editor HOTS.


Master Distributors Offers E-Switch’s Latest Illuminated Tact Switches

Master Distributors, a leading distributor of electromechanical, interconnect and passive components, announces that it now carries TL3240 Series and TL3210 Series illuminated tact switches from E-Switch. Both series are surface mount (SMT) switches that offer LED illumination in a variety of colors for applications such as the audio/visual market, computer peripherals, consumer electronics, instrumentation, telecommunications, and medical equipment.

The TL3210 series measures only 5.6mm x 3.5mm, making it the tiniest illuminated tact switch in E-Switch’s product line. It is available with LED illumination in blue, red, green, yellow, white, and a bi-color red/green option. This tact switch comes in tape and reel packaging at 2,500 pieces per reel. With an operating temperature of -20°C to 70°C, the TL3210 features a contact rating of 50mA at 12V DC, a maximum contact resistance of 500mΩ, and an insulation resistance of 100 MΩ min at 100V DC. Its mechanical parameters include tactile travel of 0.2mm ± 0.1mm, an operating force of 160gf ± 50gf, and a long life expectancy of 100,000 cycles.

The TL3240 series offers LED illumination in blue, red, green and yellow. It is also available with square or rectangular cap options in black, red, blue, ivory, green, or yellow. However, the caps cannot go through the reflow soldering process and are ordered and shipped separately. The TL3240 has an insulation resistance of 100 MΩ min at 500V DC, a contact rating of 50mA at 12V DC, and a maximum contact resistance of 100mΩ. With a long life expectancy of 200,000 cycles, it provides travel of 0.2mm ± 0.1mm at an operating temperature of -25°C to 70°C, with available operating forces of 100gf ± 50gf, 160gf ± 50gf, and 260gf ± 50gf.

E-Switch has been delivering quality switches for the electronics, telecom, high tech, instrumentation, audio/visual, medical equipment, appliance, industrial controls and consumer markets for over 30 years. Master has been an authorized distributor of E-Switch since 2008, and has most of the company’s products in stock in their most popular configurations.

About Master Distributors

Master Distributors is a leading electronic component distributor, dedicated to stocking breadth of part numbers offering customers over 350,000 part numbers for immediate delivery. Master Distributors has over 40 years of industry experience and has 12 stocking branches in North America.  Master Distributors is franchised for over 230 suppliers, including ebm-papst, Honeywell, ITT Cannon, Omron Electronics, Panasonic, and TE Connectivity. For more information, visit


Mike Holt Safety NEWS - The Last Text - Texting While Driving

The Last Text

Is it worth a life? Yours or anyone else’s? The 6 seconds that your eyes are off the road to text could kill. IT CAN WAIT!

How important was the last text that you sent or received? Do you even remember what it was? Chances are the answer is “No”. People who text while driving are 23 times more likely to be involved in an accident. The consequences impact more lives than just yours.

Click here or on the image to view the YouTube video that AT&T produced as a somber reminder of the life-changing effects of TXTNG & DRIVNG.

Mike Holt Comment: If you still texting while driving I hope that this video will change your mind about that this holiday season. Now is the time to make the commitment to never again send another text message while driving. WWW.MIKEHOLT.COM

I recommend everyone watch the video….NO EXCEPTIONS.

Thanks Mike.

Frank Bisbee, editor HOTS


New Siemon Intelligent PDUs help reduce power consumption in data centers

Siemon, the global infrastructure specialist, has introduced a new line of intelligent power distribution units (PDUs). With the ability to distribute power to critical network equipment while providing real-time monitoring, the new intelligent PDUs are ideal for reducing power consumption and maximizing uptime in the data center.

Siemon intelligent PDUs are available with varying degrees of monitoring and control to meet specific customer needs and preferences, including metered, monitored, smart, switched and fully managed PDUs for everything from simple device-level monitoring to full outlet-level monitoring, control and switching.

With a robust, data-center quality construction, the new PDUs offer superior reliability and powerful built-in capabilities to support various sensors that monitor critical cabinet parameters like temperature, airflow and humidity. Siemon’s intelligent PDUs can be used as standalone units that are easily accessed through an intuitive web browser, or they can interface with third-party software through common open networking protocols. The easy-to-read LCD display on each networked PDU can be fully customized through the web browser for local cabinet-level viewing.

“With data center energy and downtime costs at an all-time high, the ability of intelligent PDUs to monitor and control power is vital for optimizing efficiency and identifying potential problems,” says Robert Carlson, vice president of global marketing at Siemon. “Data center managers can easily view the status and track ongoing performance of PDUs and their devices to fully understand usage. With this vital information, they can identify high power or erratic power consumption, insufficient cooling areas and underutilized equipment, which allow them to make informed decisions and take the proper steps to reduce power consumption and quickly resolve problems to ensure uptime.”

Siemon intelligent PDUs versions allow them to be mounted horizontally in a standard EIA 19-inch configuration or vertically in zero-U applications. They are available with NEMA or IEC plug interfaces and with single- or three-phase voltage. Various available cord lengths offer added flexibility, and reliability is assured with comprehensive test data provided with each unit.

For more information on Siemon’s intelligent PDUs, visit

Follow Siemon on Twitter:

Join Siemon on Facebook:

About Siemon- An American Icon in the network cabling world

Established in 1903, Siemon is an industry leader specializing in the manufacture and innovation of high quality, high-performance network cabling solutions. Headquartered in Connecticut, USA, with global offices, manufacturing and service partners throughout the world, Siemon offers the most comprehensive suite of copper (unshielded and shielded twisted-pair) category 5e, category 6 (Class E), category 6A (Class EA) and category 7/7A (Class F/FA), and multimode and singlemode optical fiber cabling systems available. With over 400 patents specific to structured cabling, from patch cords to patch panels, Siemon Labs invests heavily in R&D and development of industry standards, underlining the company's long-term commitment to its customers and the industry.


Pre-Order your copy of CABA's Impact of Smart Grid on Connected Homes Landmark Research Study Now...

 You will receive the Executive summary today and don't pay until February 14, 2013

The Impact of Smart Grid on Connected Homes Landmark Research investigated the current and future direction of the market and the opportunities smart grid represents for participants in the value chain. The study examined the concept of connected home desirability for consumers and the perceived benefits of controllability and energy savings that homeowners may derive. Other key objectives guiding the research were to identify future opportunities within grid-enabled energy efficiency, device and systems integration, and the development of a universal platform within the home. Further to this, the research gauged the impact of future smart technology adoption rates, the desirability of quantifying energy savings and reducing operating costs, and the types of solutions likely to be developed to serve emerging needs over the long run.


Ultimately, the research provided the foundation for potential next steps for industry participants in terms of: product/services research and development, business decision recommendations, optimal vertical market strategies and strategic alliances, education and training, and providing information on product demand into other parallel market segments and other business areas.

CABA and the following CABA members sponsored this research project:  CableLabs, ClimateTalk Alliance, Comcast Communications, Consolidated Edison of New York, Consumer Electronics Association (CEA), Energent Incorporated, Hydro One Networks Inc., Hydro-Québec

, IBM, IEEE, Intel Corporation, Landis+Gyr, Microsoft Corporation, MTS Allstream Inc., Niko Group/fifthplay, Pacific Gas & Electric Company, Pella Corporation, Philips Lighting, Qualcomm Incorporated, Samsung Telecommunications America, Sigma Designs, Southern California Edison, Sykes Assistance Services, TELUS, Tridel Corporation, TRLabs and Z-Wave Alliance.

CABA commissioned Frost & Sullivan (, an independent market research and consulting firm, to conduct this 2012 landmark research study.

For a copy of the Executive Summary or to order the full report contact:

George Grimes, CABA's Business Development Manager, at

613.686.1814 x226 or

Your Information Source for Home and Building Automation  


AFL Expands Portfolio of NOYES® Fiber Optic Connector Cleaning Products

Lowell, MA and Spartanburg, SC – December 12, 2012 – AFL enhanced its NOYES fiber optic connector cleaning product line with the addition of these new products:

·         AFL 
CleanConnect 500a refillable cassette-type cleaner
·         NTT-AT 
NEOCLEAN-E series, refillable push-type cleaners
OPTIPOP-C refillable card-type cleaners
·         Fujikura 
One-Click D-LC, a revolutionary push-type cleaner
KimWipesoptical grade cleaning wipes
CleanWipes optical grade cleaning wipes

AFL’s broad selection of cleaning products enables engineers and technicians to choose the products that match their current and future needs, and also comply with established cleaning procedures. These products are designed for ease-of-use in a wide variety of environments.

“Whether building and installing a high-performance data communications or telecom network, or experimenting with high power laboratory optics, properly cleaning fiber optic connectors prevents the most common causes of performance degradation, network and component failure and down time,” explains Kevin Haddock, product line manager for AFL’s NOYES Test and Inspection division. “By providing the widest choice of fiber optic cleaning products in the industry, we are better serving our growing customer base.”

AFL offers a full selection of AFL 
cleaning products. To learn more about AFL, its products and services,

About AFL
AFL provides industry-leading products and services to the electric utility, broadband, communications, OEM, enterprise, wireless and transit rail markets as well as the emerging markets of oil and gas, mining, nuclear, avionics, medical, renewable and intelligent grid. The company’s diverse product portfolio includes fiber optic cable, transmission and substation accessories, outside plant equipment, connectors, fusion splicers, test equipment and training. AFL’s service portfolio includes market-leading positions with the foremost communications companies supporting inside plant central office, EF&I, outside plant, enterprise and wireless areas.

Founded in 1984, AFL is proud to offer engineering expertise, exceptional products and reliable service that help our customers improve their critical and electrical infrastructure. AFL has operations in the U.S., Mexico, Europe and Asia. The company is headquartered in Spartanburg, SC, and is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Fujikura Ltd. of Japan. For more information, visit


FTTH Council Americas Elects New Board Members

(WASHINGTON, DC) - The Fiber to the Home (FTTH) Council Americas, a non-profit organization of nearly 300 companies and organizations dedicated to expanding the availability of ultra high speed broadband, has elected three industry executives to its board of directors for 2013.

In recent voting, the Council elected Walt Donovan, Vice President of Telecom Business Development for Quanta Services, and Scott Jackson, Business Development Manager-Smart Grid for Graybar Electric Company, to three-year terms on the nine member board.  Re-elected to a three-year term on the board was Kevin Morgan, Director of Marketing for ADTRAN.

Serving as chairman of the board in 2013 will be Kevin Bourg, Senior Director of Global Market Development for Aurora Networks, who has more than 17 years of industry experience in system engineering, software development and sales in the telecommunication industry.  He has been active in the FTTH Council over the years serving on the technology and planning committees as well as chairperson for the 2012 FTTH Conference & Expo in Dallas, TX.


Board member Dave Kiel, Director of Global Marketing for Corning Cable Systems, was chosen by the board to serve as chair-elect for the 2014 board and chair of the 2013 FTTH Conference & Expo.


Stepping down from the board after not running for re-election are Doug Dowling, Director for Telecom Network Products at TE Connectivity, and current chairman Kyle Hollifield, vice president of marketing and business development at BVU Authority in Bristol, VA.


The recent board elections were the first to be held under the FTTH Council's transition to a new board structure in which the terms of service were increased to three years, and the number of board seats coming up for election each year being reduced to three.   Previously, the nine board members served two year terms with five or four seats coming up for election in alternating years.  The Council also limited board service to two consecutive terms before requiring retiring board members to wait at least one year before again seeking election.


Information on the board members elected for 2013 is provided below:


Walt Donovan, Quanta Services - With 35 years in the telecommunications industry, Walt Donovan has served since 2006 as Vice President of Telecom Business Development for Quanta Services, which provides a complete turnkey solution for FTTH providers, including planning and equipment selection, engineering, construction, marketing and sales, and installation services at both the central office and the customer premise.  Previously, he was President and Founder of Spectrum Project Management Services, Inc., which performed various management and construction projects for the telecommunications industry.   From 1996 to 2002, Walt was a Vice President for Qwest Communications.  He has been active in the FTTH Council for five years, serving on the Planning and Technology committees.


Scott Jackson, Graybar - As Business Development Manager-Smart Grid for Graybar, Scott has been actively involved with the FTTH Council for several years including as chair of the technology committee for three terms. He is also a member of the Council's Smart Grid Initiative. Scott has more than 14 years of technology and business modeling experience in IT and telecommunications applications for telephone, CATV and utility entities.   In his current role at Graybar, Scott focuses on service solutions for utility smart grid deployments spanning electrical and IT/telecommunications along with the smart facility home/building area (H/BAN) network.  Before joining Graybar, he served as Midwest territory manager for Phillips Communications and Equipment Company, comptroller and sales manager for CORE Telecom Systems and as an accountant for Tele/Systems Inventory Management.


Kevin Morgan, ADTRAN - As Director of Marketing for ADTRAN, a leading global provider of networking and communications equipment, Kevin is a seasoned telecom professional with more than 25 years of experience in the industry. He joined ADTRAN in 1996 as a product manager and since that time has worked in product management, product marketing, international marketing and customer advocacy. Prior to joining ADTRAN, he worked in the Science & Technology department for several years at Bell South. He has served in leadership positions with the FTTH Council since 2009 as Marketing Committee chair, Government Affairs Committee chair, Board Member and Secretary. 

About the FTTH Council Americas

Now in its 12th year, the Fiber to the Home (FTTH) Council is a non-profit association consisting of companies and organizations that deliver video, Internet and/or voice services over high-bandwidth, next-generation, direct fiber optic connections - as well as those involved in planning and building FTTH networks. Its mission is to accelerate deployment of all-fiber access networks by demonstrating how fiber-enabled applications and solutions create value for service providers and their customers, promote economic development and enhance quality of life. More information about the Council can be found at


Thomas Starek of Diebold joins CABA Board of Directors

December 4, 2012, The Board of Directors of the Continental Automated Buildings Association is pleased to announce the appointment of Thomas Starek of Diebold, Incorporated to the Board.

The appointment was ratified at the latest CABA Board meeting, hosted by IBM, on November 9, 2012.


CABA is an international not-for-profit industry association dedicated to the advancement of intelligent home and intelligent building technologies.


"I am pleased that Tom Starek is joining our Board of Directors," stated Ronald J. Zimmer, CABA President & CEO. "His expertise in market intelligence will strongly complement and provide direction to CABA's enhanced focus on providing high-quality market research to its membership."


Starek currently serves as Director of Market Intelligence Services at Diebold, Incorporated.  He and his team provide market and competitive intelligence to various constituencies throughout the organization as well as customers.  His background includes manufacturing, product management, market research and competitive intelligence. 


Starek joined Diebold in October of 1993 where he has served in numerous strategic capacities.  He has been conducting market analysis and competitive intelligence for 12 years. Starek holds a Bachelor of Arts in Management from Cleveland State University.


"I am delighted to join the CABA Board at this exciting juncture in the organization's history," stated Starek. "On the eve of CABA's 25 anniversary, the organization continues to provide incredible value to the industry through industry forums, market research opportunities and cross-industry initiatives. I look forward to using my industry experience to help CABA realize significant opportunities ahead." 

About CABA
The Continental Automated Buildings Association (CABA) is a leading industry association that promotes advanced technologies in homes and buildings in North America. More information is available at


CERRO WIRE Unveils New Iphone® And Ipad®App For Electrical Contractor Calculations

Convenient Mobile App Calculates Conduit Fill, Voltage Drop, and Amperage

Cerro Wire LLC, a leading manufacturer of copper electrical building wire and cable, is pleased to introduce its powerful new electrical calculations app for the iPhone® and iPad®, which gives electrical contractors instant access to an easy-to-use, all-in-one tool for computing field measurements.

At the touch of a finger, electrical contractors can calculate conduit fill, voltage drop, and amperage all within a simple mobile app. Using the conduit fill calculator, users can enter the type of conductor, the size of each conductor, the type of conduit being used, and the length of the conduit run, and the calculator will return the recommended conduit fill.  For voltage drop calculation, users simply enter the length of the conduit run and the type of conductor, and the calculator will return the recommended conductor size based on NEC-recommended amperages. The amperage calculator simplifies an NEC amperage chart into a convenient calculator. Combining all three of these calculations in a single app, Cerrowire’s Voltage Drop, Conduit Fill and Amperage Calculator is a must-have for electrical professionals.

The app can calculate voltage drop for 120V, 208V, 240V, 277V, and 480V voltages, as well as 277/480V and 120/280V 4-wire voltages. Calculations work for THHN/THWN, XHHW, or USE copper or aluminum conductors. The conduit fill calculator applies to 14 AWG through 750 MCM conductor sizes, and works for  EMT, ENT, FMC, IMC, PVC, Type EB PVC, LFNC-A, LFNC-B, LFMC, and RMC conduit types. The amperage calculator can handle 14 AWG through 1000 MCM conductor sizes.

The app has been successfully launched and is now available on iTunes. It is available for dual download for the iPhone® and iPad®. Cerro Wire hopes to expand the app to Android at a later date.

Cerro Wire LLC, a leading manufacturer of copper electrical building wire and cable, supplies its products to wholesale electrical distributors and retail home improvement centers across North America. Cerrowire’s Electrical Distribution Division offers building wire for residential, commercial and industrial use. Our operating philosophy focuses on customer service, low cost operations, simplification and innovation. Our employees operate manufacturing and distribution facilities around the United States.

Cerro Wire is a Marmon Wire &Cable/Berkshire Hathaway company.


BREAKING NEWS:  - The popular website for NECAs ELECTRICAL CONTRACTOR plans to unveil a major upgrade to the website in December 2012

Insiders at the NECA (National Electrical Contractors Association - told us that we may see the new site upgrades by Christmas or at least by New Year’s Day.

Over the past 4 years, the web traffic (Pageveiws) to ECMAG.COM has soared from about 75,000 per month to more than 2,200,000. We also learned that the average time on the site per visit is an AMAZING 16 to 20 minutes. On the Internet, that is incredible.

The content on the site is perhaps the best available synopsis of the current events in the electrical industry and the developing trends. The expanding coverage on building automation, security, communications, energy management, and safety include all the latest and greatest offerings, designs, and applications. The BEST is getting BETTER. Check it out after the upgrade and give us your feedback.

Personally, I think this site has more value and information than I have ever seen in one place online for our industry.

But that’s just my opinion,

Frank Bisbee – Editor “HOTS – Heard On The Street” monthly column on


Siemon adds Interconnect capability to its MapIT G2 intelligent infrastructure range

Siemon, the global infrastructure specialist, has launched the MapIT G2 Copper Interconnect System. This network management innovation is an extension and enhancement to the MapIT G2 Intelligent Infrastructure Management (IIM) solution and offers a more cost-effective option, which simplifies installation. This system gives complete visibility and control of the entire physical layer network, enabling the tracking and monitoring of ports in real time and management of network documentation.

With the MapIT G2 Copper Interconnect, both material costs and installation time are reduced by 17 per cent, when compared with a cross-connect configuration. In this interconnect topology, switch ports are connected from the switch directly to the smart copper patch panel, eliminating the cost of a second copper patch panel and the related patch cords used in a traditional cross-connect configuration.

The Interconnect Control Module (ICM) is an important part of the Interconnect solution: This hand-held Ethernet device creates a software-based link between the switch port and the smart patch panel port. The ICM discovers the switch side of the patch connection and, through a few simple steps, recognises the successful connection to the smart panel, verifying the data on the LCD display. This device is used by technicians during initial installation and when making subsequent moves, adds and changes (MACs).

Commenting on the launch, Robert Carlson, vice president of global marketing at Siemon, explained, "The MapIT G2 system is designed to help network and data center professionals to manage, monitor and secure their physical IT infrastructures. It provides a host of capabilities to help optimize the network, to safeguard it and maintain it at peak performance. With the new Copper Interconnect system, we provide the option of a more cost-effective topology that simplifies installation. We expect it to be equally welcomed by those designing systems and those responsible for the management of the network."

In addition to dramatically improving network management, MapIT G2 radically reduces power consumption, using 75 per cent less power than other IIM systems for a clear 'green' advantage. This lower power consumption also significantly cuts heat generation, improving the energy efficiency of data center thermal management systems.

To learn more about the MapIT G2 Interconnect system, visit

Established in 1903, Siemon is an industry leader specializing in the manufacture and innovation of high quality, high-performance network cabling and data center infrastructure solutions. Headquartered in Connecticut, USA, with global offices, manufacturing and service partners throughout the world, Siemon offers the most comprehensive suite of copper (unshielded and shielded twisted-pair) category 5e, category 6 (Class E), category 6A(Class EA) and category 7/7A (Class F/FA), and multimode and singlemode fiber cabling systems available. With over 400 patents specific to structured cabling, from patch cords to patch panels, Siemon Labs invests heavily in R&D and development of industry standards, underlining the company's long-term commitment to its customers and the industry.


Tool Trends 2012 - Article by Jeff Griffin from Electrical Contractor magazine (November 2012

Technological advances push innovations

by Jeff Griffin
Published: November 2012

Serious concerns may remain about the U.S. economy and how economies and events in Europe, the Middle East and Asia affect Wall Street and American business. However, electrical and data communications toolmakers seem positively bullish.

The lithium-ion revolution continues to add more cordless tools to a growing list of categories; manufacturers are introducing new manual hand tool designs and improvements; thermal imagers continue to infiltrate the electrical market; and power and datacom testers are doing more while becoming more user-friendly.

Rexel’s take on trends
Major electrical distributor Rexel reported a very good year and, boosted by the acquisition of Platt Electric in July, is on a record growth pace, said Jeff Baker, vice president.

Rexel offered a major electrical distributor’s perspective on this year’s trends in tools. Several Rexel representatives contributed information, which Baker consolidated. Rexel’s observations did not mention brand names or specific models.
According to Baker, the year has brought higher demand for compact, lighter weight cordless power tools and multifunction hand tools, and there has been an expansion in the types of cordless tools with lithium-ion batteries.

Fifty percent of all power tool users report that they would like a smaller, lighter tool that can get the job done, even if the tool may complete the job at a slower pace. In one year, sales of manufacturer cordless power tools under 18 volts (V) jumped more than 1,000 percent.

The new “brushless” tool motor design reverses the windings and magnetic field, increasing motor life by 10 times over conventional motors with brushes and providing more power and longer run times.

Regarding multifunction hand tools, buyers understand that reducing the number of tools they have to carry at any one time lessens the load in tool bags. Multifunction tool examples include 10- and 11-in-1 multifunction screwdrivers, built-in conduit reamers, and wire strippers.

A significant change: manufacturers introduced corded power tools with 15-ampere (A) motors, which capacitor banks made possible. Using a 15A motor plugged into a 15A outlet without a capacitor bank to store power would trip the circuit breaker every time. Previously, 13A motors were the acceptable tradeoff between power and good user experience. Other changes in corded tools are ergonomic.

The market for electrical testers recently has become very crowded with many companies entering and few making significant strides. Demand for laser measuring and layout tools is stable without major recent changes, a status quo category from Rexel’s perspective.

Meanwhile, thermal imaging cameras have become an attractive market for manufacturers. There are few competitors, and municipalities will eventually require thermal imaging on electrical services. The thermal imaging camera fills a dual role. It can be sold as a new item to increase business and customer satisfaction, and it can be presented as a safety item.

Tools used for copper and coaxial voice/data/video (VDV) cabling have made few breakthroughs. Many buyers’ biggest concern has been the cost of tools and needing specific accessories for terminations. Multifunction tools that can be used on a multitude of connectors or terminations are winners here.

Tools for fiber optic installations fall in a heavily preference-guided market.

Installers who get good results with a particular tool tend to stay with that tool. For instance, testers for VDV networks follow changes in equipment—coaxial versus Category 5 or 6, fiber versus Internet protocol.

Customers must comply with industry safety-related standards and, thus, must purchase safety products; therefore, manufacturers are entering or broadening tool lines to include such products. Protective equipment—such as safety vests, hard hats, flame-resistant clothing and gloves, including vibration-resistant and cut-resistant gloves—is in high demand.

There have been suggestions in recent years that the needs of an aging electrical work force are influencing tool designs. As a result, manufacturers continue to promote ergonomic features as a marketing strategy.

Older workers represent a declining market. Aging workers who have been in the industry for 30-plus years have spent that time collecting tools. The bigger market is the 25- to 45-year-old group. They have the money to spend, they want the latest and greatest, and they do not have a lifetime’s worth of collecting tools under their belts. The aging work force does appreciate some of the same features—ergonomic, lightweight, multifunction—just on a smaller scale.

The trend continues for toolmakers to expand tool offerings into areas outside their traditional product lines as manufacturers are attempting to diversify revenue streams, mitigate dips in the economy and gain market share. Through its subsidiaries, Rexel Inc. and Gexpro, Rexel is a large U.S. electrical distributor. Operating from nearly 300 branches across the country, Rexel provides products and services to commercial, industrial and residential markets.

Tools of interest
Rexel’s overview of the 2012 tool market focused on trends, not specific products. Some representative trendy tools are listed here.

Hand tools
Klein Tools introduced a nonconductive fiberglass fish tape with permanent laser-etched markings in 1-foot increments, allowing installers to instantly and accurately measure lengths of cable runs by reading the amount of remaining tape. Added to Klein’s VDV tool line is a combination radial stripper that works with both utility and standard cable sizes and removes the outer jacket and dielectric in one step.

Knipex installation pliers strip, cut, deburr and widen grip and crimp-end sleeves. The design reduces the effort needed to cut through cables, and a locking mechanism protects the cutting edge.

The Extech MG300 two-in-one insulation tester and multimeter with wireless data logging combo meter includes a digital insulation resistance tester and full--function, true rms digital multimeter, which features useful extras, such as duty-cycle measurements and milliamp readings for analog 4–20-milliamp current loops in industrial analog process controls. The CAT-IV-rated meter’s wireless data streaming enables safer troubleshooting and maintenance on dangerous moving equipment and one-person operation of remote safety switches.



The Fluke Networks OptiFiber Pro optical time-domain reflectometer for enterprise fiber testing has a smartphone interface that supports gesture-based commands and technology enhancements that simplify testing in data center environments. A simplified data center mode and project-management tools record test results and quickly archive and access data.

The Ideal Industries SignalTEK II multifunctional handheld cable and network qualifier is marketed as an alternative to certifiers and is ideal for small to medium-sized local area networks. SignalTEK II will validate that copper or fiber cabling is capable of supporting bandwidth-heavy VDV and IP-based video surveillance applications over 10/100 megabit or gigabit Ethernet. SignalTEK II generates documentation verifying network connectivity and job completion to initiate customer payment.

Thermal imagers
Thermal imagers are a valuable diagnostic tool for electricians to inspect electrical and electromechanical equipment and components.

Flir offers three categories of thermal imagers for the varying requirements of electrical contractors: point-and-shoot entry-level infrared cameras, midlevel professional grade, and high-performance grade.

The Fluke Corp. Ti series contains three thermal imager models that differ by degree of infrared resolution, focal plane, refresh rate and IR fusion capability.

Other models are available for different applications.

GRIFFIN, a construction and tools writer from Oklahoma City, can be reached at

Reprinted with permission from the ELECTRICAL CONTRACTOR magazine - Published by the National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA), Electrical Contractor magazine reaches 85,300+ electrical contractors and more than 68,000 electrical contracting locations, more than any other industry publication. Contact: (301) 657-3110 /


CABA NewsBrief December 6, 2012 - Continental Automated Building Association

Large Building Automation

§                     Strong green building outlook for all sectors in the U.S.
The U.S. green building market continues to accelerate, according to McGraw-Hill Construction's 2013 Dodge Construction Green Outlook report. The value of green building has seen growth from US$10 billion in 2005 to US$78 billion in 2011. In 2012, the total market "non-residential and residential" is expected to be worth US$85 billion, and by 2013, overall new green building is projected to rise to between US$98 billion and US$106 billion. By 2016, this number is expected to reach US$204 billion to US$248 billion. (11/19)

§                     California gets $2.75B to green its schools, public buildings
California will have $550 million a year until 2018 -- a total of $2.75 billion -- to fund green-improvement projects at its schools and public buildings thanks to voters who passed Proposition 39. Upgrades are aimed at energy efficiency and include weatherization, replacement of leaking windows and adding insulation. San Jose Mercury News (12/1)

§                     GE sets tech sights on energy management
General Electric says the path to greater energy efficiency for enterprises lies in "the Industrial Internet" and technologies such as the smart grid. "We estimate that the technical innovations of the Industrial Internet could find direct application in sectors accounting for more than $32.3 trillion in economic activity," a GE report says. The Register (11/27)

§                     EPRI reports industry has little understanding of electric utility customers
Despite over 10 years of pilots and experiments, surprisingly little of what we need to know about customers and alternative program offerings has been affirmatively and credibly established, according to a new report from the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI). (11/30)

§                     Video: How to partner with vendors for energy savings
Here is an educational video from this year's NFMT show that look at energy use in existing buildings. This short video , less than five minutes long, delivers advice and ideas on how to partner with vendors in order to reduce your energy costs. NFMT is managed by ROC Exhibitions, a CABA member. Building Operating Management (11/30)

§                     Lynxspring announces availability of JENEsys® Harmony
Lynxspring, a leading manufacturer and distributor of building automation technology and device-to-enterprise integration solutions announced a revolutionary software enhancement to their JENEsys® product line called JENEsys® Harmony, the only embedded software tool that automates the integration of any discoverable BACnet® or LonWorks® building control device. (11/17)

§                     Staying ahead of the U.S. green building curve
While interest in formal LEED certification may be down in the US, interest in green building is higher than ever, which more and more businesses showing confidence in the sector. In catering to this new wave of green building enthusiasts, the US Green Building Council has released the Green Building Information Gateway (GBIG), a tool that encourages transparency in the sector. US Green Building Council is a CABA member. DesignBuild Source (11/13)

§                     IBM targets Big Data talent shortage with research center
IBM is teaming up with Ohio State University to launch a research center to address the lack of analysts for the Big Data sector. Big Blue plans to hire 500 consultants and researchers during the next three years to staff the center, and work with the university to develop curriculum in business analytics and mathematics and to bring Big Data professionals into the classroom. IBM is a CABA Board member. New York Times (11/29)

§                     ASHRAE and NASEO held congressional briefing on net-zero schools
NASEO and ASHRAE hosted a High Performance Building Congressional Caucus Coalition (HPBCCC) briefing on "The Promise and Proof of Net-Zero Energy Schools" in Washington, D.C. The event highlighted the benefits that local communities and school districts gain from high-performance and zero-net energy capable schools, including reduced and stable energy and facility operating costs, improved stewardship of public resources, and enhanced facility resiliency. ASHRAE is a CABA member. Commercial Buildings Consortium (11/14)

§                     Oracle releases smart grid gateway for utilities
As the Smart Grid evolves, utilities will gather an ever-increasing volume of data from an ever-expanding list of devices. Oracle Utilities Smart Grid Gateway (SGG) provides a single point of connection that links all devices to all the applications that use their data. SGG dramatically reduces the cost and complexity of enhancing Smart Grids with new devices, data streams, and business processes. ESNA Newsletter (12/1)

§                     Mannequins fitted with cameras to track shoppers
Taking consumer tracking creepy-ness to a whole new level fashion brands are deploying mannequins equipped with camera technology from Almax, an Italian manufacturer of mannequins. The EyeSee mannequin looks normal enough, but includes a camera embedded in one eye which is feeding data into facial recognition software. InAVate (11/27)

§                     NRC-IRAP and Wavefront partner to support Ontario-based SMEs
The Wavefront Acceleration Program with support from the National Research Council of Canada's Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC-IRAP) offers SMEs access to a variety of fundamental services, including business advisory support from experienced wireless industry professionals, state of the art wireless product development and testing infrastructure, international market linkages, and wireless training programs and events. The National Research Council of Canada is a CABA Board member. Wavefront (11/5)

§                     Tellabs appoints Dan Kelly as new CEO, president
Tellabs' board of directors named Dan Kelly as its new CEO and president. Kelly, a 25-year Tellabs veteran, has served as Tellabs acting CEO and president since June 27, 2012. He was serving in that interim role for Rob Pullen, a 27-year veteran of Tellabs, who was being treated for cancer. Pullen passed away on July 2 this year. FierceTelecom (11/22)

§                     Fall edition of ASHRAE High Performing Buildings magazine released
ASHRAE recently published the fall edition of High Performing Buildings. The articles include several case studies on high-performance and zero-net energy buildings, including Adobe Systems' headquarters in San Jose, California; the NREL Research Support facility in Golden, Colorado; Richardsville Elementary School in Richardsville, Kentucky; and the Tanimura and Antle Family Memorial Library in Monterey Bay, California. Free digital copies of the publication are available on the High Performing Buildings website. ASHRAE is a CABA member. ASHRAE (11/9)

How do you think the world will look like in 2050?
Do you want to create your own vision of how the world will look like in 2050? Would you like to read other people's visions and vote on how desirable and likely they are to happen. Would you want to link scientific evidence to your visions and policy ideas and announce events? Then join Futurium to animate debates on fascinating futures. Futurium is the European Commission's online laboratory where you can develop visions and ideas for future European policies. (11/30)

§                     First ASHRAE standard enters smart grid Catalog of Standards
The first standard from the building technology society ASHRAE, ASHRAE 135 BACnet, has been voted into the smart grid Catalog of Standards. BACnet, the ASHRAE building automation and control networking protocol, has been designed specifically to meet the communication needs of building automation and control systems for applications such as heating, ventilating and control, lighting control, access control, and fire detection systems. Both ASHRAE and BACnet International are CABA members. (12/3)

§                     Prefabricated net-zero hotel built in Chinese desert
China's existing cities are bursting at the seams, so developers are building new cities as far afield as the vast and formidable Xiangshawan desert. PLaT Architects' Lotus Hotel is a prefabricated desert development that can be built without the use of water or concrete. The building is designed to be made from locally-sourced materials, and it generates its own electricity and water. inhabitat (11/23)

Click here for CABA's Industry Events Update

Home Systems


§                     Verizon seeks to take ad targeting to new level
Verizon is seeking a patent for technology that would be able to serve ads based on TV viewers' moods, conversational topics and whether there are animals near the set. The technology would use infrared cameras and microphones to determine ads appropriate to a couple having an argument (a spot for marriage counseling) or a couple embracing (spots for a romantic getaway, contraceptives, flowers or romantic movies), according to examples listed in the filing. Verizon is a CABA Board member. FierceCable (11/30)

§                     Apple unveils upgraded iTunes service
Apple has debuted the newest version of its iTunes Media Service, a rollout originally planned for last month. The service is now more closely aligned with Apple's iCloud storage service, to make it easier for users to find and access content on a variety of devices. All Things D (11/29)

§                     Microsoft said to plan next Xbox for 2013 holiday season
Microsoft Corp. will release the next version of its Xbox video-game machine, the top-selling console, in time for the holidays next year, according to people familiar with the company’s plans. Microsoft is a CABA Board member. Bloomberg (11/30)

§                     Ultra HD TV tech is still in development, firm says
While leading manufacturers are already putting Ultra HD television sets on the market, some of the critical supporting technology for the higher-resolution video format is still in development, according to Futuresource Consulting. Bandwidth is another potentially limiting issue, it notes. ipTVnews (11/30)

§                     LG Smart TVs, Blu-ray players use FiOS TV app without an STB
FiOS TV subscribers who also use Verizon's FiOS Internet service soon can access HBO, Food Network, NFL Network, TBS, VH1 and up to 70 other cable channels on their LG Electronics Smart TVs and Blu-ray players through a new application, without requiring the use of a set-top box. They will also be able to see video-on-demand titles through Verizon's Flex View service. LG Electronics is a CABA member, while Verizon is a CABA Board member. (11/28)

§                     Accenture: OTT video pushes second-screen growth
Half of U.S. consumers surveyed by Accenture report they are watching over-the-top video content streamed over the Internet on their televisions in addition to their customary cable and satellite TV programming. Some 49% of consumers in the U.K. and the U.S. are subscribing to various video delivery services, up from 8% in March of last year, according to Accenture. MediaPost Communications/Marketing Daily (11/27)

§                     Will Intel's moves bring an end to the desktop?
New chip and circuit board designs from Intel could put a virtual end to the desktop, Brooke Crothers writes, citing others' reporting. The chipmaker has not issued any statement, but a source said the reports "have taken a lot of liberties" regarding Intel's plans. Intel Corporation is a CABA Board member. CNET (11/27)

§                     What to look for in purchasing an HDTV
Budget and screen size are prime considerations in purchasing a high-definition television for the holidays this year, this article notes. It lays out the various types of HDTVs available and offers advice on features, such as 3DTV and Internet streaming. HD Guru (11/26)

§                     Analysis: Smartphone fueled the Internet of Things
Connected cars, connected homes and other aspects of the burgeoning "Internet of Things" owe their realization to technology first embodied in the smartphone, Stacey Higginbotham writes in this analysis. The Android operating system and Wi-Fi connectivity helped LG Electronics develop smart appliances for the home, she notes. LG Electronics is a CABA member. GigaOm (11/26)

§                     CEA: Holiday weekend shopping totals $43.7 billion
Consumers spent an estimated $43.7 billion on holiday gifts during the Thanksgiving/Black Friday weekend, according to the Consumer Electronics Association. Smartphones and tablet computers were leading categories in electronics purchases, CEA said. E-tailers rang up more than $1 billion in sales on Black Friday alone, a 26% rise from last year, according to comScore, which also estimated that online spending on CE products has increased by 18% so far this year, when compared with 2011 figures. The Consumer Electronics Association is a CABA member. Dealerscope (11/26)

§                     How to upsell clients from multiroom audio into home automation
Two integrators explain how inexpensive home control options allow them to upsell clients who originally just wanted multiroom audio into full whole-house automation. CEPro (11/16)

§                     Are connected toys the next big CE playground?
Toy companies believe machine-to-machine technology will move their new generation of products across generations: They have begun investing in connected toys that would link to Wi-Fi networks. For example, Meccano has developed a surveillance robot that users control via a Wi-Fi connection. "Mobile devices and smartphones are giving children more ways to play than ever before," said Scott Jochim, the founder of Digital Tech Frontier, whose POPAR Toys unit is making augmented-reality technology a major part of its product line. (11/21)

§                     Analysis: Tech giants just don't seem to get TV business
The rise of Internet-based companies over the past decade and a half has taken its toll on newspapers, magazines, publishing, music and radio, but has not been able to conquer TV, writes Dave Morgan, CEO and founder of Simulmedia. Among TV's strengths are that it still functions as a medium; its business is dominated by relationships, not technology; and automation isn't necessarily the best way to address its problems. Advertising Age (11/15)

§                     More than half of U.S. pay-TV homes have DVRs, survey says
In a survey of 1,300 U.S. households, 52% of homes with cable/satellite television services now have a digital video recorder, according to Leichtman Research Group. This represents about 45% of all households, the firm noted. Meanwhile, the big broadcast networks say their lower ratings are partly due to increased use of DVRs and video on demand. Press (11/20)

§                     Video: Cox VP speaks on leveraging cross-device viewing in the home
Mark Greatrex senior vice president and chief marketing officer at Cox Communications talks about content, platforms and device choices to understand why consumers make the decisions they do. CTAM (11/20)

§            faces competition from MoCA, HomePlug networking standards
While, the catch-all wired/wireless home networking standard, is on the verge of becoming part of the home networking reality following a number of service provider trials, the reality is that it lacks the clout of established home networking standards such as Multimedia over Coax Alliance (MoCA) and HomePlug. HomeGrid Forum (G,hn), MoCA and HomePlug Alliance are CABA members. FierceTelecom (12/3)

§                     Video: Nokia launches mobile with projection-mapping and light show
Projection mapping joined stunning visual effects and a Deadmau5 DJ set to transform a London street when Nokia launched its Lumia mobile phone in the UK on November 28, 2012. Bluman Associates provided projection requirements and oversaw technical production for a live webcast and post event video. Projectors, concealed within the upper rooms of a pub, spanned five 40m wide buildings. InAVate (12/3)

Member Press Releases

§                     QA Graphics Offers Partner Resources with BAS Graphic Services
QA Graphics, leading provider of design services for the building automation industry, is pleased to announce that they are providing partner resources for clients utilizing their BAS graphic services. QA Graphics is a CABA member.

§                     Other CABA Member Items

ON World publishes wireless sensor networking report
New Entry Level Energy Dashboard Pricing

QA Graphics Partners with NEC Display Solutions
EMerge Alliance Completes New Data/Telecom Center Standard at Greenbuild 2012
AMX Dealers Big Night at 2012 CEDIA Awards
QA Graphics Develops Custom Trane System Graphics

QA Graphics develops 3-D graphic library for Tridium’s NiagaraAX
Framework® 3.7

EMerge Alliance Releases Version 1.1 of Occupied Space Standard: Progress continues toward integrated standards for DC microgrids in buildings
Lucid and Green Schools Alliance Partner to Bring Energy Monitoring and Electricity Reduction Competitions to Thousands of K-12 Schools Across North America

Lucid and Enmetric Systems Partner to Motivate Commercial Building Occupants to Reduce Plug-Level Energy Consumption

CABA members can post their media releases by logging into the CABA Web site.

  CABA Research Spotlight

§                     Using TV Everywhere to Drive Premium TV Services
This whitepaper, developed by Parks Associates for Irdeto, reviews the current market for video services and details how service providers can shift their strategies to drive adoption of premium services and create new revenues. Topics include consumer research on cord cutters and cord shavers, refocusing TV Everywhere strategies to drive revenues, analysis of different TV Everywhere and VOD business models, and keys to success — role of content, interfaces, connected CE, and ease of use. Parks Associates is a CABA member.

  Education & Training 

§                     Webinar: Roadmap to Energy Efficient Buildings, Part III – Advanced Technologies
Part III of CoR Advisors' Roadmap webcast series, to be held on December 7 at 12:30 ET, will present advanced energy management technologies that take building operations to another level. We'll demonstrate new software applications that collect and analyze operational data from thousands of points in a building in order to detect issues, patterns, and faults in real time. Learn how to gain detailed visibility into building systems and set rules that allow your building to run automatically and intelligently, based on your own performance and energy usage criteria. Also, learn about new fuel cell power solutions and on site sources of energy that reduce costs, add reliability, and support business continuity when the grid goes down. CoR Advisors is a CABA member.

§                     Webinar: HomePlug Update
HomePlug Alliance, a CABA member, will provide a technology update on its exciting new developments on December 6 at 8:30 am PT. The webinar will examine HomePlug technology in today's market; the future of home networking; and will provide an update on the Netricity PLC (IEEE 1901.2) standard for Smart Grid to meter connectivity.

§                     Webinar: 2013 Predictions: Mobility at a Crossroad
As the mobile ecosystem--devices, networks, applications, video, mobile transactions and more--grow to match global demand, what does the future hold in store? What companies and trends will be the winners and losers of 2013? Join Yankee Group on Tuesday, Dec. 11, 2012 at 11 am ET for an interactive webinar where the firm predicts the big moves and changes in mobility for the coming year.

 CABA News

§                     Be part of CABA's 25th Anniversary at CES and AHR in January
CABA is hoping you will be a sponsor of CABA's 25th Anniversary Celebration Receptions, to be held at the 2013 International CES in Las Vegas, NV and AHR Expo in Dallas, TX. These are two great opportunities to network with CABA members and have your organization highlighted not just at the events, but also on CABA's Web site and in the CABA NewsBrief. To view the sponsorship opportunities click here. For more information or to order your sponsorship package contact George Grimes, CABA Business Development Manager at 613.686.1814 x226 or

§                     Thomas Starek of Diebold joins CABA Board of Directors
The Board of Directors of the Continental Automated Buildings Association is pleased to announce the appointment of Thomas Starek of Diebold, Incorporated to the Board. The appointment was ratified at the latest CABA Board meeting, hosted by IBM, on November 9, 2012.

§                     CABA continues to gain, maintain industry support
The Board of Directors of the Continental Automated Buildings Association would like to thank and recognize the following CABA members that renewed their CABA Research Subscription/Membership. Your continued support of CABA is greatly appreciated.

§                                 Demand Response and Smart Grid Coalition (DRSG) (Member since 2006)

§                                 Canadian Wireless Telecommunications Association (Member since 1999)

§                                 FIATCH (Member since 2003)

§                                 Healthy Indoors Partnership (Member since 2003)

§                                 The Construction Specifications Institute (Member since 2008)

§                                 1394 Trade Association (Member since 2001)

§                                 ZigBee Alliance (Member since 2002)

§                                 Sustainable Resources Management Inc. (Member since 1995)

§                                 Digital Living Network Alliance (DLNA) (Member since 2010)

§                                 The WiMedia Alliance (Member since 2010)

As CABA is an international not-for-profit industry association, this support enables CABA to provide networking opportunities, research programs and information to the industry in regards to the advancement of connected home and intelligent building technologies.

For information about CABA Research Subscription/Memberships, please contact George Grimes, CABA Business Development Manager at or 613.686.1814 x226. To view a listing of 300+ CABA members go to:

Continental Automated Building Association


Fiber-optic testing: Keeping it simple in the field – Article from CI&M magazine

Making sense of one of the most confusing and misunderstood phases of fiber-optic system installation.

By Clay Franklin and Mike Fuller, Corning Cable Systems

In the telecommunications industry today, testing is one of the most confusing and misunderstood phases of installing a fiber-optic system. While misunderstood, optical-fiber testing is one of the final and most important procedures in installing optical networks.

There are so many questions. Should I understand and comply with the new encircled flux standards? Is encircled flux compliance the responsibility of the installer or the test-equipment manufacturer? Should I be performing Tier-1 or Tier-2 testing? Should I use a two-jumper method (Method A) or a one-jumper method (Method B)? Answering these questions does require some research and education from all involved. Coming from an installer background, we prefer to use the KISS method as much as possible, which is to keep it simple. This article provides an overview of the industry standards for testing a fiber-optic system, some general recommendations and guidelines, and how the KISS Method applies.

When you begin to consider optical testing, you must know where to begin looking for information. You can start with component and equipment manufacturers that follow industry-standard recommendations for manufacture of products used in fiber-optic systems. Standards from organizations such as the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) and the Telecommunications Industry Association (TIA) are used both in factories while manufacturing components and in the field where those components are installed. The standards organizations aim to create consistency and best practices for optimum system performance. The two standards reviewed in this article are TIA-526-14-B (multimode) and TIA-568-C.0, C.0 Addendum 2 and C.3, which provide testing recommendations and guidelines for fiber-optic testing.

Encircled flux multimode testing

Let’s start by discussing one of the industry’s most-debated topics. The future of testing multimode fiber is going to change with TIA’s adoption of IEC 61280-4-1, the encircled flux testing procedure. As transmission speeds have increased on multimode fibers from 1-Gbit/sec to 10-Gbits/sec and beyond, allowable loss budgets have decreased significantly, allowing little room for error.

Launch conditions during testing varied wildly and therefore created inconsistent test results that could potentially result in poor performance or failure of optical systems. Encircled flux launch conditions were created to produce much-needed consistency during this testing phase, which would more accurately predict capabilities of networks operating at these higher transmission speeds. Industry leaders agree that encircled flux is the most accurate method to test multimode fiber, as it controls the launch conditions coming from the optical sources.

Whether achieved outside the source through a conditioned jumper or by using an out-of-port solution (managed inside the source), the responsibility falls on the test equipment manufacturers to bring a reliable solution to market. Until very recently, conditioned jumpers were the sole means of achieving this launch and they were both costly and difficult to manage in the field. Test equipment manufacturers have now made it easier for the installers to achieve standards compliance by having an out-of-port solution. It is understood that the source, as supplied, has been verified by the test equipment manufacturer to produce the specified launch without the use of external jumpers. With this type of solution, the multitude of external mandrels or conditions will be a thing of the past, which will create one less thing an installer needs to do their job correctly. Keep it simple: Because test equipment that meets the encircled flux standard will provide the most consistent and accurate test results, installers should seek to update their test equipment when feasible to EF-compliant sources.

Standards overview

TIA-568 is the primary standard for field testing, and it answers most of the questions at hand. Unfortunately, most of us do not have a copy of this standard in our briefcases, let alone our toolboxes. Let’s start with the basics by identifying the three major factors (events) that introduce loss into a fiber-optic system: cabled fiber loss, connector loss and splice loss.

Within TIA-568, you will find that fiber loss will vary by fiber type and is measured in decibels (dBs) per kilometer (km). This fiber-type-specific loss value per kilometer is provided within the standard, but can also be found on cable data sheets shipped with cable from the manufacturer. In addition, you can go to most manufacturer websites to gather that information.

In contrast, TIA-568 is more prescriptive with connector and splice loss: 0.75 dBs per mated connector pair and 0.30 dBs per splice (mechanical or fusion). The table represents an example of how a system link loss budget can be calculated. These are the components needed to build a loss budget and can be acquired through knowledge of the system route diagrams. If neither is available, an optical time domain reflectometer (OTDR) can be used to get a signature trace of the fiber link. Keep in mind that events on an OTDR can be a misrepresentation of the real events and introduce user variability. For example, a bad mechanical splice could appear to be a connector pair.

With this understanding of events and their associated loss, we can explore the types of testing used in the fiber-optic industry. TIA-568 categorizes testing into Tier 1 and Tier 2. TIA-568-C.0 mandates Tier 1 testing to ensure system performance and integrity. The Tier 1 tests consist of link attenuation testing,  link length and a polarity check. During the attenuation testing, each link is measured for attenuation with an optical loss test set (OLTS) or a light source and power meter (LSPM). This most accurately characterizes total system capability. Fiber length measurement can be achieved optically (OLTS or OTDR) or calculated by using cable sheath markings. Polarity is verified either with an OLTS/LSPM or a visible fault locator (VFL).

Optional but equally important Tier 2 testing is a supplement of Tier 1 testing with the addition of an OTDR trace of each fiber link. OTDRs provide in-depth signature traces (pictures) of fiber links, which show normal cable/fiber attenuation, insertion loss and reflection at the connectors, splice points, and unanticipated loss events, such as bends and breaks, for example. Tier 2 testing has traditionally been seen on longer-length outside-plant systems greater than 100 meters, which contain multiple loss events. OTDR traces are a great documentation tool for the end user, enabling them to see the quality of the installation while also serving as a potential reference for future troubleshooting.

The next standard to understand, TIA-526, takes a more comprehensive look into attenuation testing than TIA’568’s Tier 1 testing. Again, attenuation testing is the most misunderstood and error-filled area of fiber-optic system testing. TIA-526 characterizes referencing processes into three different procedures: one-jumper reference, two-jumper reference, and three-jumper reference. These were formerly known as Method B, Method A and Method C, respectively. The naming convention was updated in 2010 to make it easier for installers to understand how many jumpers should be used in the referencing procedures when testing.

One-jumper reference (Formerly Method B)

The one-jumper reference procedure is the most commonly used and preferred method in the industry today. Due to the old nomenclature, most installers err by using the two-jumper reference (Method A) as their standard procedure. Keep it simple: Use the one-jumper reference when the system under test is electronics to a patch panel to a fiber-optic cable to a patch panel to electronics (as shown in the figure titled “One-jumper reference system layout”).

Another scenario in which the one-jumper reference should be used is when the system under test does not have any available documentation, and an OTDR is not available to shoot a signature trace. The one-jumper reference is the TIA-preferred test method, as it does not introduce additional loss into the system, therefore ensuring that the test results show tip-to-tip results.

Two-jumper reference (Formerly Method A)

Many installers today improperly use the two-jumper referencing procedure on all systems due to the former Method A nomenclature and a general lack of understanding of testing fiber-optic systems. It is easy to understand why someone might believe it is appropriate to use a two-jumper reference when using two jumpers to test a system (one in the source and one in the meter).

This unfortunately is incorrect. Consider that if two connector pairs are needed to be tested within a system, then zero connector pairs should be referenced out. By using the two-jumper reference for these most common applications, a connector pair is improperly referenced out, providing false power readings that may impact short- and long-term performance of the system. Keep it simple: Reference out a connector pair by using a two-jumper reference when the system under test is electronics to a fiber-optic cable to a patch panel to a fiber-optic cable to electronics.

Three-jumper reference (Formerly Method C)

Unlike the other two referencing procedures, the three-jumper reference rarely is mistaken for another referencing method. Keep it simple: When the system under test is electronics to a fiber-optic cable to electronics, use the three-jumper reference.

With the increased deployment of higher transmission speeds (40- and 100-Gbits/sec) MPO-style connectors are required. Therefore, this three-jumper reference procedure should be used to test MPO-to-MPO trunks. Also, when testing reference jumpers used in all three procedures, the three-jumper reference is the proper method for testing jumpers.

Multimode fiber mandrel wrapping

Now that the confusion over the three referencing procedures is cleared up, let’s discuss mandrel wrapping. Small-diameter mandrels on the launch reference jumper were and are many times used to remove higher-order modes that could negatively impact consistent test readings. This was a standards-based method prior to the newly adopted encircled flux standard. However, all mandrel wrapping requirements have been removed from TIA-526-14-B. If you choose to continue to use mandrels without the use of an encircled flux-compliant tester, ensure you know the proper size of mandrel to be used when testing the different types of multimode fiber. Keep it simple: If using mandrels today, ensure with the manufacturers of both your test equipment and reference jumper that proper-sized mandrels are used and/or required.

In addition, if using bend-insensitive 50-micron fiber in your multimode reference jumpers to test your system without the use of an encircled flux-compliant tester, contact the cable manufacturer regarding mandrel recommendations.

Troubleshooting fiber systems

While testing a fiber-optic system, what happens when a fiber link does not pass the link-loss budget? Standards do not provide any details and/or guidance on troubleshooting installation issues. Troubleshooting is most often aided by tribal knowledge and prior experience, which can save significant time and money. The leading cause of failure of fiber-optic systems today is still dirty connector endfaces. Over the last five years, the industry has benefitted from several new cleaning products and video-inspection systems enabling the installer to see images of the connectors under test or during the installation. Details on connector endface inspection can be found in TIA OFSTP-14B with pass-or-fail criteria. Keep it simple: Start with the obvious—check the cleanliness of your connector endface first.

Troubleshooting can be simplified through the use of basic information/tools, such as system route diagrams, cable sheath marks and the installation test results. Times like these are when the OTDR and VFL are the best tools an installer can have at their disposal.

Summing it all up

It is certainly ironic that testing is the most critical and most misunderstood component of installing optical-fiber systems. The introduction of the encircled flux standard is aimed at creating consistency, accuracy and simplicity of testing multimode fiber systems. Test equipment manufacturers are rapidly developing solutions to make field measurements more practical and reliable. You should look to move your testing procedures to encircled flux compliance when feasible. This will ensure the greatest longevity and reliability of your optical fiber systems.

Furthermore, proper understanding of the appropriate test methods and referencing procedures using reference jumpers meeting standard specifications will play a great role in testing accuracy for both legacy and future systems. In general, choose Tier 1 testing when possible. And when in doubt, use the one-jumper referencing method.

Also, remember that the industry standards are recommendations and guidelines. Contact your component or equipment supplier with questions. So the next time you need to test your optical-fiber system, remember these three words: Keep it simple.

Clay Franklin is program manager and Mike Fuller is marketing manager with Corning Cable Systems (

Reprinted with permission from Cabling Installation & Maintenance magazine  A PennWell publication

PennWell Corporation
1421 South Sheridan Road
Tulsa, Oklahoma 74112 USA

PennWell Corporation Market Sectors Served: Oil and natural gas, Electric power generation,  Electric power delivery, Hydropower, Renewable energy, Water and wastewater treatment, Waste management, Electronics and semiconductors, Optoelectronics and photonics, Imaging and machine vision, Fiber optics and communications, Aerospace and defense, Cabling installation and maintenance, LEDs and lighting, Firefighting and emergency services, and Dental.


NECA NEWS – National Electrical Contractors Association

NECA Predicts 2013 Estate Tax Scenarios


There are about four weeks left for Congress to broker a deal to avoid steep tax hikes and deep automatic spending cuts. One of NECA’s priorities is to ensure that the current estate tax policy with a 35 percent rate and a $5 million (per spouse) exemption are extended. If Congress fails to extend the current policy, the estate tax will increase to a 55 percent rate with only the first $1 million exempted. However, these are not the only two options on the table.


NECA-supported Members of Congress Named to Energy and Commerce and Transportation and Infrastructure Committees


The U.S. Congress committee chairmen have announced several NECA allys as new members of their committees for the 113th Congress.


NECA Supports Commercial Building Energy Efficiency Legislation (S. 3591)


On December 3, NECA and several stakeholder groups sent a letter supporting the Commercial Building Modernization Act (S. 3591) to key staff in the offices of each Senator who sits on the Finance and Energy & Natural Resources Committees on Capitol Hill.


ConsensusDocs Offers Select Contract Documents Free For NECA Members


ConsensusDocs is making available a new free package of standard contract documents to make the design and construction bidding process easier for all involved parties.


Call for Member Project Photos to Boost NECA Business Development Aims


If you have pictures of projects completed by your company, we'd like to feature them on NECA's website and future publications. Published graphics will credit your company. By submitting the photos, you are giving us permission to display them under the above terms.


OSHA Seeks Recommendations to Update Construction Standards


February 4 is the deadline to recommend which OSHA construction standards should be removed or revised.


NECA/IBEW 48 Honors Pearl Harbor and Union's Historic Work


The Oregon-Columbia Chapter, NECA, shared aspecial video tribute today marking the 71st anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor.


Wide Range of Research to be Considered by ELECTRI Council for 2013


When the ELECTRI Council meets in January, members will face a difficult task: determining which of seven finalist proposals the Council will commission for the Foundation’s 2013 research agenda.


Smith Electric Vehicles Announce Plans for EV Factory in Chicago


Smith Electric Vehicles will open its third manufacturing plant in Chicago was welcome news to the city. It’s also good news for NECA contractors who are ready to service the electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE) market.


NECA Joins S-Corp Effort to Pursue Comprehensive Tax Reform


NECA joined more than forty organizations in a powerful letter to Congressional leadership calling for action to pursue comprehensive tax reform that lowers rates on all forms of business income while still addressing entitlement spending.


Help Build the NECA Benchmarker! Final Deadline for Survey Response: December 7


Several weeks ago, you received an invitation to complete the 2012 NECA Financial Survey for Electrical Contractors. If you haven’t responded yet, we really need you to complete the confidential online survey by Friday, December 7.


Estate Tax Repeal Essential for Electrical Construction Industry


NECA has urged all Members of Congress to support tax reform legislation that includes a full and total repeal of the estate tax.


Digger Derrick Exemption Granted for Subpart V Related Work


Aiming to resolve a court challenge to portions of the construction cranes and derricks standard, OSHA issued a direct final rule that would clarify requirements for digger derrick trucks and crews used by electric utility companies to install poles and transformers.


NECA Gives Thanks


This holiday season, NECA gives thanks to our members.


Andy Berg Speaks Out in Favor of San Diego School District Maintenance


Andy Berg, executive director of the San Diego Chapter, NECA, was interviewed by NBC7 on Nov. 14 about passage of Proposition Z.


NEIS® Revised – NECA/AA-104 Receives ANSI Approval


NECA/AA 104-2012, Recommended Practice for Installing Aluminum Building Wire and Cable has been re-affirmed by ANSI and published by NECA. This newly revised standard is an amendment of the 2006 edition that describes installation procedures and design considerations for aluminum building wire and cable in residential, commercial, institutional and industrial applications not exceeding 600 volts.


Cupertino Electric Wins AGC 2012 Safety Honors


NECA-member Cupertino Electric has earned recognition for its safety innovations from AGC of California for the second year in a row. Now, the company qualifies to move on to the AGC nationals. Congratulations!


House Passes Bill to Enforce Davis-Bacon Act


On November 13, the House passed by a 361-3 vote H.R. 6371, the Streamlining Claims Processing for Federal Contractor Employees Act.


Four States Pass Initiatives for Construction Programs


Alaska, New Jersey, New Mexico, and Rhode Island passed ballot initiatives that support construction programs in their state. Millions of dollars will be invested in transportation, building, and water infrastructure projects.


NECA Urges President, Congress to Avoid Fiscal Cliff


In a recent letter to President Obama and Members of the 112th Congress, NECA urged all parties to take all necessary steps to avoid the “fiscal cliff." NECA's letter was also cited by the House Ways and Means Committee.


ESFI Honors NECA CEO with 2012 Outstanding Service Award


The Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI) honors NECA CEO John M. Grau for having gone above and beyond the call of duty in expanding the Foundation’s interests in promoting electrical safety through steadfast involvement and effective leadership.


NECA Professional Development Offerings For December 2012


Listing of December 2012 Management Education Courses


ESFI Honors John M. Grau with 2012 Outstanding Service Award


The Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI) has named NECA CEO John M. Grau as the 2012 recipient of the Foundation’s Outstanding Service Award.


2012 Chapter Executives Leadership Institute —The Best Ever!


This article recaps the highly successful 2012 NECA Chapter Executives Leadership Institute (CELI), which took place October 23-25 in Chicago and attracted 43 participants.


NECA Contractors Advance Recovery from Super Storm Sandy


NECA members E-J Electric and O'Connell Electric are among the contractors that brought in additional crews to deal with the aftermath of Super Storm Sandy and the fierce nor’easter that dumped additional misery on the already hard-hit region a few days later.


Watch for Your Economic Census Form


You will soon receive your 2012 Economic Census form from the U.S. Census Bureau. Please fill it out as accurately and thoroughly as possible and respond by the February 12, 2013, deadline via the Internet or on paper, as required by law. There's a lot riding on your response to this survey which is conducted every five years!


NECA Statement on 2012 Election Results


Congratulations to President Obama and the newly elected and re-elected Members of the 113th Congress. NECA members are counting on your leadership in solving complicated issues affecting our businesses and the economy ...


Resources for Electrical Safety During Flooding, Including Generators


Floods affect more people than almost any other natural disaster. Because flood waters can have such a devastating effect on electrical systems and devices, NECA has gathered several resources for staying safe around electricity, including portable generators, during flooding disasters.


Dan Divane to Chair ELECTRI Council


Daniel J. Divane IV has been selected by ELECTRI International to serve as 2013-2014 Chair of the ELECTRI Council.


Staying Safe During Power Restoration


In the aftermath of Superstorm Sandy, NECA's outside line contractors are among the disaster response teams helping to bring power back to communities and infrastructure. Learn what you can do to keep safe from electrical hazards following a disaster, too.


NECA Disaster Relief Fund Ready to Assist Electrical Contractors Affected by Superstorm


The NECA Disaster Relief Fund is now available for those wishing to help NECA electrical contractors affected by Hurricane Sandy. Members whose operations were hurt by the storm can also request assistance.


Electric Highway Initiative: The New York Way


New York Governor Andrew Cuomo laid out his plans for the installation of an electric highway to be built with the help of both the public and private sectors.


Johnston Addresses CSST Bonding in EC&M


NECA's own grounding and bonding expert Michael Johnston was interviewed for a recent article on the potentially dangerous gray area of responsibility for corrugated stainless steel tubing bonding.


Marco Giamberardino Interviewed About "Fiscal Cliff" on The Inner Loop


NECA's government affairs guru Marco Giamberardino spoke out the looming fiscal cliff and how NECA is responding to hardened stances from Congress to the White House during the Oct. 25 broadcast of The Inner Loop.


ELECTRI Foundation Releases 2013 Research Priorities, RFP


ELECTRI International issued its annual RFP for research projects on Oct. 23. Proposals will focus on two labor relations topics identified by the Foundation.


NECA Member Eldor Contracting Leads Massive $65M Solar Project in NY


Eldor Contracting is keeping busy as construction manager, general contractor and electrical contractor on a 17-megawatt solar project that calls for the construction of solar carports across seven sites owned by Suffolk County, New York. The rooftop solar panels will be connected to the Long Island electric grid to provide electricity to Long Island Power Authority (LIPA) customers.


NECA Releases Digital NEIS Yearbook


NECA has released the digital compliation of its National Electrical Installation Standards (NEIS) in the NEIS Yearbook CD, Vol. 8. Get over 40 NEIS for one low price, including new and revised standards published this year.


New Study Finds Nearly Three of Every Four Contractors Use BIM


The percentage of construction companies using BIM technology has increased to 71% this year, from 17% in 2007 and 49% in 2009, according to a study from McGraw-Hill Construction. The study also found that 74% of contractors are using the technology compared to 70% of architects


NECA Members Top ENR Specialty Contractor List


NECA members topped ENR'stop specialty contractors, with electrical work making up the largest share of revenue for electrical contractors. Find out who's on this year's list!


NECA 2012 Las Vegas Breaks Records for Electrical Industry Event


Over 5,000 attended at NECA's annual convention and trade show, featuring more than 300 exhibitors, innovative technology and inspiring speakers, all in one great location.


Get Ready For National Fire Prevention Week (October 7-14)


The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) highlights National Fire Prevention Week (Oct. 7-14)

Did you know? Having a working smoke alarm cuts the chances of dying in a reported fire in half. Learn more about the importance of home smoke alarms, and be sure to check your batteries in honor of next week's National Fire Prevention Week >>


National Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee Announces New Platinum Training Partner: Lutron


Long-term vision for education and support of the next-generation of electrical workers


NECA's Washington DC Chapter and IBEW Local 26 Help Local Kids Install Electrical Wire at Big Build


Area children bent conduit and decorated light switches with the Electrical Alliance


UL’s PV Installer Certification Earns Formal Endorsement from IBEW-NECA


Certification Available to Association Members Creates Upskilling Opportunity Leveraging Nationally-Recognized Credential


Proposed Hiring Quota for Disabled Garners More Criticism


America's Top HR officials express concerns about the DOL Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs' proposal that would require federal contractors to include people with disabilities as at least 7 percent of their labor force.



NECA’s Vision

NECA is a dynamic national organization serving the management interests of the entire electrical contracting industry.

More About NECA

The National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) is the voice of the $130 billion industry responsible for bringing electrical power, lighting, and communications to buildings and communities across the United States.


NECA traces its origins to the birth of modern electricity. In 1901, a group of electrical contractors met at the Pan-American Exposition in Buffalo, NY, where a major display of electric power had been installed. These contractors joined together to foster trade and reform abuses within their fledgling industry. Today, NECA continues their work, building on a legacy of protecting the public and making innovation possible.


Electrical contractors perform specialized construction work related to the design, installation, and maintenance of electrical systems. Whether high-voltage power transmission or low-voltage lighting, electrical contractors ensure these systems work in a safe, effective, and environmentally-sound manner.

NECA represents electrical contractors from firms of all sizes performing a range of services. While most NECA contractors qualify as small businesses, many large, multinational companies are also members of the association.


NECA’s national office in Bethesda, Md., four regional offices, and 119 local chapters across the country support the electrical contracting industry through advocacy, education, research, and standards development. NECA chapters are independently chartered organizations who work with national field representatives to develop effective labor agreements and market initiatives.

NECA Programs and Services

NECA is dedicated to enhancing the industry through innovative research, performance standards, progressive labor relations, and workforce recruiting and training. NECA offers the most comprehensive educational opportunities of any electrical association, as well as the industry’s premiere trade show and management training. NECA also publishes ELECTRICAL CONTRACTOR magazine, the industry’s top source of information on electrical construction.

Industry Expertise Benefits the Customer

NECA contractors strive to be true construction partners with building owners, developers, and general contractors. A NECA contractor is the best resource for any and all electrical needs, including power supply, fiber optics, telecommunications, security systems, wireless networks, and lighting. NECA contractors set industry standards for traditional electrical systems, as well as newer integrated systems. They develop engineered solutions to meet existing and emerging customer needs. They also lead the industry in the practical application of new technologies.

NECA’s Labor Partnership

Ensuring fair wages and benefits, as well as a unified skill set and training, for electrical workers serves the best interests of the industry and NECA customers. NECA’s national office, chapters, and member contractors have long practiced constructive and responsible labor relations in concert with the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW), the world’s oldest and largest union of electrical workers. Peaceful settlement of grievances and jurisdictional disputes are implemented at NECA’s national and local levels through cooperative forums.

Electrical Construction and the Environment

NECA members have practiced environmental stewardship and conservation throughout the electrical industry’s evolution. They see the move towards sustainable construction, alternative energies, and building “green” as an important next step in the process. “Green” projects do a great job of giving back to the communities where they are located – the same communities where NECA contractors live and work.

Buildings today are defined by their electrical and mechanical systems as much as by their design and materials. To the user, a building’s "environment" is shaped by lighting, climate control and communication networks. The heart and brain of a building are its internal systems. This is why NECA contractors have explored new ways to make these systems as sustainable as possible, and why NECA offers our contractors the tools and resources they need to integrate sustainable construction practices into their current operations.


NFPA NEWS – National Fire Protection Association


Sharpen your fire safety smarts this season


NFPA urges the public to stay warm and safe this winter


NFPA and USFA Team Up to Put a Freeze on Winter Fires


Cocoanut Grove Coalition created to mark 70th anniversary of fire and launch website


Thanksgiving is the leading day for home cooking fires


NFPA Journal features new effort to preserve history of Cocoanut Grove fire on its 70th anniversary


National Fire Protection Association’s Firewise Communities Program tops 800th community mark


Aron Anderson joins NFPA’s Fire Adapted Communities initiative


Fire Safety Design and Sustainable Buildings Symposium in Chicago November 7-8


Cooking equipment remains top cause of home structure fires


NFPA hosts Urban Fire Forum


NFPA and LEGOLAND Florida kick off Fire Prevention Week


Domino’s Pizza teams up with the National Fire Protection Association to deliver fire safety messages


Fire Protection Research Foundation receives grant to investigate safety technologies for home-cooking appliances


NFPA, The Home Depot and Kidde team up for fire safety


NFPA offers tools, tips and resources for October’s Fire Prevention Week


Residents urged to reduce homes’ risk from wildfire during major wildfire anniversary


NFPA announces Certified Fire Protection Specialist program reaccreditation


NFPA Certification Department teaming up with Schroeder Measurement Technologies to expand certification delivery


Deadly prison fire in Honduras featured in new issue of NFPA Journal


NFPA removes DRM on PDFs


FM Global provides generous support to innovative fire safety education effort


NFPA appoints Gary Honold as northwest regional director


The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) is an international nonprofit organization that was established in 1896. The company’s mission is to reduce the worldwide burden of fire and other hazards on the quality of life by providing and advocating consensus codes and standards, research, training, and education.

With a membership that includes more than 70,000 individuals from nearly 100 nations NFPA is the world's leading advocate of fire prevention and an authoritative source on public safety.

Codes and Standards
NFPA is responsible for 300 codes and standards that are designed to minimize the risk and effects of fire by establishing criteria for building, processing, design, service, and installation in the United States, as well as many other countries. Its more than 200 technical code- and standard- development committees are comprised of over 6,000 volunteer seats. Volunteers vote on proposals and revisions in a process that is accredited by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI).


Plan To Celebrate With BICSI As They Mark 40 Years of Conferences Jan. 20-24, 2013 in Tampa, FL

Registration for the 2013 Winter Conference & Exhibition is now open! Click here for pricing and to register for the conference today! Click here to register online, or click here to download a PDF registration form.


Mark January 20-24 on your calendar for the 2013 BICSI Winter Conference & Exhibition, taking place in Tampa, Florida at the Tampa Convention Center! This conference will mark 40 years of holding BICSI conferences, and we plan to celebrate in a big way!

As a leader in information technology systems (ITS) education, BICSI can offer you a conference event certain to expand your technical insight, networking base and familiarity with quality vendors essential to the future of your business. Here’s what you can expect:

  • Professional, educational presentations by industry experts
  • Groundbreaking exhibits, featuring new technologies and business solutions
  • Networking opportunities galore, in the Exhibit Hall and at every turn
  • The Annual Awards Banquet, featuring entertainment by KC and the Sunshine Band
  • The Annual Business Meeting, with inauguration of the new BICSI board members
  • Sixth Annual Cabling Skills Challenge
  • Special 40th anniversary festivities

Please join us for this very special event!


INTERTEK Provides The Latest Developments On the new Restriction of Hazardous Substances (RoHS)

Intertek’s recent series of seminars on RoHS2 Directive highlighted the changes within the new Restriction of Hazardous Substances (RoHS) Directive (2011/65/EU) which will have a significant impact on all electronic products currently covered under the existing RoHS Directive. This presentation is available for download now.

Our RoHS2 seminars addressed the following topics:

  • Overview, scope and timeline of the RoHS2 Directive
  • CE Mark and technical documentation
  • Obligations of manufacturers, importers and distributors
  • Restricted Substances Control Systems

Intertek is there is help you with strategic decisions to keep your products compliant and Clear a PathTM to market for you.

INTERTEK - For more than 127 years, companies around the world have depended on Intertek to ensure the quality and safety of their products, processes and systems.

We go beyond testing, inspecting and certifying products; we help customers improve performance, gain efficiencies in manufacturing and logistics, overcome market constraints, and reduce risk. We’ve earned a reputation for helping our customers increase the value of their products, gain competitive advantage, and develop trusted brands. Through our services we help our clients to minimise the adverse health and environmental impact of their products and processes for the benefit of society as a whole.

Intertek is the industry leader with more than 33,000 people in 1,000 locations in over 100 countries. Whether your business is local or global, we can ensure your products meet quality, health, environmental, safety, and social accountability standards for virtually any market around the world. We hold extensive global accreditations, recognitions, and agreements, and our knowledge of and expertise in overcoming regulatory, market, and supply chain hurdles is unrivaled.

Intertek can sharpen your competitive edge

·         With reliable testing and certification for faster regulatory approval

·         Through rapid, efficient entry to virtually any market in the world

·         With total quality assurance across your supply chain

·         Through innovative leadership in meeting social accountability standards

·         By reducing cost and minimizing health, safety, and security risks

·         By becoming a TRUSTED BRAND


Intelligent Infrastructure and Its Impact on Regional Sustainability by James Carlini

as presented by James Carlini at the 61st Annual International Wiring & Cabling Symposium in Providence, RI.


By James Carlini

As a certified Infrastructure Consultant, James Carlini has been involved with applying advanced business practices, planning mission critical network infrastructures and reviewing new real estate developments.  He pioneered the concept of Measuring a Building’s IQ in 1985 and has written many articles and white papers in various trade publications on infrastructure, technology, intelligent buildings, regional sustainability, and Intelligent Business Campuses.  He is also an expert witness on mission critical network infrastructures in both civil and federal courts and has served as an adjunct faculty member at Northwestern University at both the Executive Masters and undergraduate levels for two decades.  He can be reached at 773-370-1888 or


Over two decades ago, Intelligent Buildings were talked about as a new concept to add technology to a building to make it more effective and efficient in the areas of communications, information technologies and building automation.

Many in real estate have yet to understand this paradigm shift to intelligent amenities that include broadband connectivity, diverse power sources and other communications-based applications in single commercial properties, let alone newer campuses of synergistic businesses and functional operations where intelligent buildings have now been clustered instead of built in a stand-alone environment.  These next-generation industrial parks are called Intelligent Business Campuses.

Some of these concepts were ahead of their time by the virtue of price, performance and acceptance in the 1980s.  Today, these concepts are being used to develop clusters of buildings in next-generation campuses and parks.  They are also being applied to sports stadiums and other entertainment venues with wireless networks focused at providing new services through Smartphone applications.

More municipalities and regions are trying to establish centers for economic development, global trade and job growth.  They are concerned about creating and maintaining regional sustainability.  This is a phenomenon occurring globally, not just in the United States.

The old real estate adage of “location, location, location” must be updated to “location, location, connectivity” because the importance of broadband connectivity has become a baseline amenity requirement, and not an option for selecting the right corporate site.

The Platform for Commerce

A framework defining infrastructure and its 5,000 year evolution was developed as part of a whitepaper entitled, “Intelligent Infrastructure: Securing Regional Sustainability” for the US Department of Homeland Security.  It has been updated since then with more definition. (See Chart 1)

This framework depicting Infrastructure is critical because it provides a more universal look at what encompasses the infrastructure for today’s global economy rather than what many people hold as the traditional definition of infrastructure (roads, bridges, railroads, and maybe the power grid).  Economic development decisions affecting regional sustainability must include all facets of infrastructure in order for them to be viable.










JUST BEGINNING TO BE BUILT  ((Space shuttles, space station, satellite networks)  Future: mid-21st century,  22nd century? 









(beginning 21st Century, IBCs and IIPs)



EUROPE, UNITED STATES  (mid-20th Century)


5B (Nuclear)


(everything else)

UNITED STATES  (beginning/ mid 20th Century)



UNITED STATES  (beginning/mid 20th Century)



UNITED STATES (mid-1800s)







EGYPTIANS  (3000BC-1400BC)

Source: JAMES CARLINI, 2009, 2012.  All Rights Reserved

The Layer of Broadband Connectivity

One of the key ingredients of intelligent infrastructure is broadband connectivity (defined as One gigabit per second (1Gbps) speed or greater) and the ability to add this concept upfront along with power requirements as part of the overall Master Planning of a new campus environment.

Traditional real estate and property managers might ask, “Is having broadband connectivity a differentiating amenity?”  The answer is “Yes.”

Ten years ago, site selection teams did not have “Broadband Connectivity” in their Top 20 issues for choosing a location.  In the last couple of years, it has risen to being one of the top three criteria.  Areas that do not have adequate access to connectivity are starting to feel the loss of interest by companies that are locating or re-locating their facilities.

To a property manager trying to lease up the building, having broadband connectivity as part of the supporting infrastructure creates a clear market differentiation that will attract a higher caliber tenant, a lower turnover rate and hence more profitable building.

In one example that was researched, 60 Class A buildings had available space in a county just outside Chicago.  If you require broadband connectivity as a necessary amenity, the available buildings offering that capability, drops to five.  To a potential tenant, that lowers the choices dramatically.  To a property owner, it eliminates over 90% of the competition.  All of a sudden the traditional practice of cutting price per square foot does not need to come into play.

In soft markets, the availability of intelligent amenities like broadband connectivity will circumvent, or at least impact, the traditional approach of dealing with competition by lowering the price per square foot and giving away a year’s worth rent on a five-year lease.  Space is a commodity, intelligent amenities are not.

The bottom line is that broadband connectivity is becoming a major differentiating amenity for sophisticated business tenants choosing one location over the other.  More and more corporate site selection teams are looking for this as a given amenity and not a hoped for.  A higher level of network infrastructure coupled with a redundant power grid is desired by tenants.  Property management companies and commercial real estate agents cannot get away from this fact and this must become part of Master Planning for new developments.

Traditional Amenities Versus Intelligent Amenities

Traditional amenities have been defined as those amenities that people expect to see in modern office buildings.  Elevators, HVAC (Energy Management Systems) Parking, Security, and Maintenance, have long been regarded as traditional amenities that business tenants expect to have.  What are not traditional, but are becoming more and more regarded as “must-haves” are broadband connectivity, automated security and surveillance, and other capabilities like Uninterruptible Power Supplies (UPS) and redundancy built into mission critical systems like power, communications, and other intelligent amenities.

As global restrictions are lifted on trade, new business centers must emerge to handle the transition to new businesses.  Global restrictions that may include tariffs and other regulatory limitations.  Real estate developers must morph traditional land developments that have traditional amenities into architectural platforms with high-speed connectivity (1Gbps or more) and upfront redundant power capabilities that fully support this transition.

Power for organizations, as well as network connectivity, has become more of an upfront issue for Master-Planning instead of an afterthought once the tenants have moved in.  Any new construction should have serious upfront consideration and implementation for power requirements and network connectivity.  These attributes should be addressed as part of the pre-built infrastructure.

As for commercial and industrial real estate that is already built, the need to review and assess these attributes is essential especially in appraisal processes.  If they are overlooked, they can become huge detriments for the property owner and manager.  New rules-of-thumb have to be created as well as adopted by all real estate professionals: property managers, leasing agents, site selection teams and everyone else.

What is the value of having dual power grids as a building amenity versus the liability of having a single power grid creating a single point-of-failure within a property?  How do you adjust the leasing when amenities like this are lacking?  How do you adjust the total value of the property?

Those who have a single disciplinary focus, such as real estate development, architecture, technology, or engineering must adapt to get a strategic multi-disciplinary focus in order to understand the broad convergence of real estate, infrastructure, technology, and economic development which make up the platform for commerce.

This RITE© approach to real estate projects include four elements that are critical in relation to understanding every layer of the platform for commerce which supports businesses as well as government and residential structures.  Understanding all the financial interrelationships is also critical for financial reviews and comparative assessments of various layers of the infrastructure.












Source : ©James Carlini, Copyright 2012

Each element’s specific attributes will determine the shape of the project:

REAL ESTATE: What and where is the land that the project will be on?  Is it the best use of the land?  Are there any issues/obstacles to be aware of?

INFRASTRUCTURE: What is in-place/ available/ accessible to that piece of land?  Access to transportation?  Rail?  Airports?  Power and network communications?

TECHNOLOGY: What extra intelligent amenities have been added onto the infrastructure?  Redundant network carriers providing Multi-Gigabit connectivity?  Redundant power suppliers? Wireless networks to handle high capacities of Smartphones?  Other cyber/connectivity intelligent amenities?

ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT: How is this project being positioned within the region?  How is it being packaged to prospective corporate tenants?  How is it being funded in both its initial and operating phases?

Streamlined Development Process

Besides specific amenities, the concept of “one-stop shopping” and fast-track build-out capability facilitated by a streamlined development process from the municipalities and  master developer working together are also concepts that have traction with those making corporate site selection decisions in the United States.  This also includes having a Menu of Intelligent Amenities that business tenants can select from including a Common Campus Response Team which provides “one-stop supporting”.  (See Charts2A and 2B)








Broadband Connectivity

High bandwidth (1Gbps or more, today 10Gbps, tomorrow 40Gbps), multiple carriers, multiple access points 

More and more want this.  For technology campuses besides speed, diversity in carriers, and connectivity into NLR via Starlight


Pre-planned layouts and capabilities, multiple providers and power grids

This is becoming part of the upfront Master Planning process instead of an afterthought.

Alternative Energy Source

Besides power from another substation or grid, a third-party provider or an on-campus alternative.  Peaker Plant or Windmills (Wind turbines generating power)

Diversity of Power source has become a critical issue from several standpoints:  Security as well as Compliance issue.  Also from a Green Building perspective for renewable energy capabilities.





Upfront Coordination

Quick development process .that includes coordination of all municipal planning issues, adherence to building codes, etc.

New concept but effective in selling to tenants wanting a rapid development process not hindered by municipal issues.


“Network Tailor” instead of a “Network Jailor”

Custom-tailored network infrastructure. Not an “off-the-rack solution” or a “one-size-fits-all” approach.

A new concept of tailoring bandwidth and broadening choices of carrier services to the demands of tenants.


Common Campus Response Team  Services

Group of diverse service providers including power and network carriers as well as companies like AT&T, CISCO and other support services

A new concept gaining ground as well as popularity.  The concept of “one-stop shopping” being morphed into “one-stop supporting” after the tenant is in place and is part of the campus.

Source: James Carlini, certified Infrastructure Consultant.  All Rights Reserved.








Broadband Connectivity

More and more want this.  For technology campuses besides speed, diversity in carriers, and connectivity into NLR via Starlight

Acceleration of network traffic provides faster access and dissemination of huge documents, drawings and video images.  


This is becoming part of the upfront Master Planning process instead of an afterthought.

Power issues are a major concern of businesses today.  Eliminating this concern creates higher productive environment.

Alternative Energy Source

Diversity of Power source has become a critical issue from several standpoints:  Security as well as Compliance issue.  Also from a Green Building perspective for renewable energy capabilities.

Savings on power provides a  positive impact on environment and also creates more reliable infrastructure.





Upfront Coordination

New concept but effective in selling to tenants wanting a rapid development process not hindered by municipal issues.

Faster ramp-up speed from decision to build to move-in date.  Saves time to get productive.


“Network Tailor” instead of a “Network Jailor”

A new concept of tailoring bandwidth and broadening choices of carrier services to the demands of tenants.

More cost-effective solution and wider selection of services.


Common Campus Response Team  Services

A new concept gaining ground as well as popularity.  The concept of “one-stop shopping” being morphed into “one-stop supporting” after the tenant is in place and is part of the campus.

Faster response to complex problems that impede productivity.  Accelerated response equals no loss in global competitiveness due to business support issues.

Source: James Carlini, certified Infrastructure Consultant.  All Rights Reserved.

Economic Development Equals Broadband Connectivity

Real estate development and its subsequent marketing have to adapt in order to fit the dynamic demands of prospective tenants dealing with the global economy.  In some parts of the United States, there is a multi-level government concern for regional sustainability and job growth.  This has created a new unity in some places in community development between municipalities, counties and the developers of business and industrial parks.

Based on activities by some local governments in the United States, it appears that smaller cities are realizing these issues and acting upon them faster than the larger ones.

In Fort Wayne, Indiana which has a population of 252,000, they have been quietly upgrading their infrastructure since 2000 with the motto “Wired and Inspired”.  They have worked closely with their incumbent carrier, Verizon, and have gotten them to invest over $100 Million that has been used to connect 128,000 homes and businesses with fiber optic.

Fort Wayne already has remote office packages for those that work at home and the current offerings are 30Mbps and 50Mbps with a short-term goal of offering 1Gbps to the home.  This is where the average household should be, but this is the exception and far from the norm.

This upgrade to Fort Wayne's network infrastructure opens up new doors for companies like Raytheon and ITT to expand their operations in Fort Wayne, creating new jobs instead of relocating somewhere else.

The importance of being in the right location now includes being connected at a high-speed access point to communicate with global customers, clients and suppliers.  Just like locations were important for centuries based on their proximity to good transportation, seaports and roads, they now must also be adjacent to high-speed information highways and have both wired and wireless network infrastructures that tie buildings and communities together.

Restricting any layer of infrastructure is the wrong economic and political decision.  It has been proven in the past.  The best example that I have come across is the decision that the city of St. Louis made back in 1865 when influenced by riverboat owners to restrict the railroads into establishing St. Louis as a hub. 

At that time, St. Louis was a larger city than Chicago by about 30,000 people.  With the restrictive laws impeding them in St. Louis, the railroads went to Chicago and the growth that took place in a 25-year span exemplifies that infrastructure is the platform for commerce and growth.  Inhibiting or restricting infrastructure will only detract from regional growth and sustainability.

As depicted by the chart, St. Louis stagnated while Chicago more than tripled in size in the next several decades.  St. Louis never recovered from that bad decision to restrict infrastructure.  Good infrastructure provides the platform for commerce which equals good jobs.

Broadband Connectivity Equals Jobs

Today’s business tenants want to be connected to the internet and other broadband-based network services that may support their various business as well as research and development applications.  From this, the concept of “economic development equals broadband connectivity and broadband connectivity equals jobs” becomes clearly evident.  This applies to both communities as well as the traditional industrial parks.

Network infrastructure that includes broadband connectivity issues, redundancy, diverse routing and other telecom issues has to be viewed as being part of the initial Master Planning for any intelligent multi-building campus or intelligent industrial park facility.

The industrial parks of the past did not have these upfront commitments to power and connectivity.  Developers did not have to worry about this issue in the past but, if they do not adapt to current market demands today, their developments will become technologically obsolete and will only be able to attract second or third-tier tenants.  The same goes for cities and municipalities that do not have an aggressive plan to upgrade their network infrastructure to attract and maintain businesses within their community.

When there is a focus on new network services and higher speeds, this gets the attention of the businesses as well as the common residential subscribers.  More are looking at new network services and its infrastructure as critical to add to their core business.  They are looking at it as an investment, rather than an expense.


INVESTMENT   VERSUS                       EXPENSE





Incorporates payback

No payback perceived, a giveaway

Part of Infrastructure

Throwaway cost

A must to expand business

A cost of doing business

Residual value

No residual value

Source:  James Carlini © 2012

A “one-size-fits-all” approach has been used by many who do not understand that what works in one organization may not have any positive results in another. 

Throughout the years, many selling technology sold from a “if it works over there, it should work here for you” strategy that fell short on many systems that had to be customized in order to provide maximum performance.  Cross-pollenization of technology is great when you can do it, but in reality, most systems and applications need specific tweaking and customization for each customer.

International Trend for Intelligent Business Campuses

In several countries experiencing heavy growth in global trade, the current trend is to move from constructing single intelligent buildings to clusters of buildings in a campus setting that focus on providing new amenities and infrastructures including high-speed broadband connectivity (10Gbps and above).

There is a definite trend  in development of Intelligent Industrial Parks (IIPs) and Intelligent Business Campuses (IBCs) that focus on having a specific theme that provides a commonality of capabilities to the tenants as well as a creating a synergistic environment.  The branding of a facility to reflect a distinctive value proposition and amenity mix to the prospective tenant is crucial to help distinguish a facility from other comparable real estate choices.

From an Asian Pacific perspective, there are many well-funded campuses and intelligent industrial parks under various levels of development by various governmental agencies.  Some would argue that they are more advanced than their counterparts in the United States.

In Hong Kong, there is a multi-billion dollar campus funded by the government called CYBERPORT that has been developed to cater to the IT industry.  There are also parks going into various provinces of mainland China including one in the Hunan Province focused on the construction industry as well as several IIPs in Taiwan that are also focused around supporting a specific theme or common goal.

It has been pointed out by several that the need for a specific theme or park “signature” is important for success.  Developing successful Intelligent Business Campuses does not include a cookie-cutter approach to replicating one park just like the next.  Depending on tenant mix, theme focus (i.e. Bioscience, IT, construction industry equipment, etc.), and other factors, the IBC or IIP will take on a unique configuration.

Taiwan's Intelligent Industrial Parks Initiative

Taiwan’s Intelligent Industrial Parks(IIP) initiative was launched in 1999 and discussed in their The GLOBAL LOGISTICS DEVELOPMENT PLAN by the Council for Economic Planning and Development by Executive Yuan(Cabinet) of the Republic of China, that was published October 4, 2000. - FN3.  Within it, the plan discusses the establishment of 19 Intelligent Industrial Parks(IIPs):

The government has promoted the establishment of 19 intelligent industrial parks, among which applications for 12 of the parks have already been approved. Construction work has begun on the Tainan Science-based Industrial Park, stage 3 of the Hsinchu Science-based Industrial Park, the Yunlin and Tainan technology parks, and the Nankang Software Park. Applications from private investors have been approved for the development of the Acer Intelligent Industrial Park, Lungkang Intelligent Industrial Park, Hua-Ya Technology Park, and Taoyuan 21st Century Intelligent Industrial Park.

Taiwan has made great strides in refining the concept of Intelligent Industrial Parks (IIPs) and actually implementing the concepts.  The reasons that they wanted to establish the more sophisticated parks are very evident:

The Far Glory Park FTZ ( Free Trade Zone) developed in Taiwan developed by the Taiwanese government is a later realization of that original 1999 initiative of the Taiwanese government.  It combines several industries at a strategic location close to an airport as well as rail and highways for logistical support.  It plays on Taiwan’s recognized strength a “strong grasp of technology production and research”.

The Far Glory Park in Taiwan is also adjacent to an airport and high-speed rail.  It focuses on logistics and centralized location in relationship to seven other major Asian cities as well as providing connectivity rates of 10Gbps.

The DuPage National Technology Park

Even though it was planned in a very different perspective, in some ways the Far Glory Park parallels the DuPage National Technology Park (DNTP) endeavor in the United States.

We can take two examples of this new campus approach: the Far Glory Park in Taiwan and the DuPage National Technology Park in Illinois and discuss some of the new strategic approaches.  Both have been master planned to provide value-added amenities and a fiber-optic based network infrastructure in order to support businesses that are dependent on high-speed access as well as other non-traditional amenities that distinguish these intelligent business campuses (IBCs) from other traditional industrial parks.

The DuPage National Technology Park (DNTP) is an 800-acre development in Illinois that is focused on high tech industries and supporting logistics within a very sophisticated setting that is serviced by multiple carriers and power grids.

The current connectivity for the DNTP is 10-40Gbps and it is adjacent to an airport.  It is a combined endeavor of both public and private enterprise.  With no model to follow or emulate, the DuPage Airport Authority which owns the DNTP land basically created its own approach.  . [THIS  seems a bit colloquial and detracts from your point.

The goal of the public/private endeavor is to create a cluster of intelligent buildings that provide a center for economic development and the creation of jobs.

One of the key concepts that was learned in the development of the DuPage National Technology Park (DNTP), was that the upfront planning was very critical and that there was no real model to follow according to its former executive director, Jack Tenison.  The DNTP does not fit into the traditional “University Model” (which means the Park (or Campus) is wholly owned by a University) or, the standard business park approach which is owned by the private developer or land owner.  Their model is more focused on a private/ public partnership that looks like it will become another approach for Intelligent Business Campuses.

In the beginning, the DuPage planning team did not know that the model they were developing was fairly unique compared to what was built prior to this endeavor.  Looking back at the path that they took, they saw that they actually blazed a new trail.

Creating some of the infrastructure upfront provides a much better platform to build buildings on.  This includes a sophisticated power and network connectivity infrastructure as well as adding some ideas that streamline the development process.

Not all of the new approaches focused on technology and power.  Better planning upfront with ideas like a shared detention pond and total government agency/municipality coordination lets future building developers focus on just their building and saves money on the development as well as the length of time to complete the project.

These approaches are proof that the need to re-think real estate and its supporting infrastructure design is becoming more universal and not just from a unique national or regional perspective.  The old real estate adage of “Change is great – you go first” must be re-thought by replacing the attitude of “Routine is Tradition” with “Change is Tradition”. 

Developers must be flexible, adaptive, and creative as well as understand the importance of technology while working together with local government agencies to address developing Intelligent Business Campuses to attract and maintain corporate tenants which can only add to the viability of the regional economy.  

Adapting to a Changing Market

Just as real estate development and master planning of commercial and scientific campuses must adapt to a changing market, so must traditional network carriers.  They must focus on providing the fastest access as well as redundant access.  All connectivity within intelligent industrial parks and business campuses must be redesigned to the standards of providing business continuity and not disaster recovery.

The new approach of a public/private venture will probably be replicated as more municipalities and regional areas become more aware of maintaining regional sustainability.

The need to work as a cohesive consortium is very apparent as more and more areas are hit with economic instability and the solution is to re-invent the region to attract and maintain new businesses.  This is not a quick fix approach and the whole process can easily take several years to even a decade of planning, designing and implementing.  A cohesive consortium is comprised of local and state agencies as well as private developers


With more consumers getting Smartphones, you can see the impact of their use in sports stadiums and other entertainment venues where consumers are looking for an enhanced experience.  They want the ability to look up player information, statistics, download videos, and other information as well as be able to order concessions and team merchandise.

This is an explosive area for growth and the commitment to providing wireless capabilities are being supported by more and more stadiums as well as professional sports leagues.

A next-generation IREC Complex is beginning to appear.  IREC stands for Intelligent Retail/ Entertainment/ Convention center.  It is focuses on maximizing the applications used in Smartphones including the purchasing apps as well as looking at demographics for cross-marketing venues and target marketing of consumers.

It is a multi-level approach to developing these wireless networks and Smartphone applications for IRECs.  A good framework defining the work needed is described below.  (See Chart 5)






Applications for reservations, tickets, purchasing merchandise, concessions, customer services, etc.











                                          Source: James Carlini, © Copyright 2012

The MCX (Merchant Customer Exchange) is the latest strategic initiative being undertaken by the leading retailers (WalMart, Sears Holdings (K-Mart), Shell, Lowe’s Best Buy and others) to create a “mobile wallet” application to make it easier for doing purchases and comparison shopping.

With all these retailers supporting more development of Smartphone applications focused on “mobile wallet” purchases and real-time product comparisons through a common “exchange”, the need to understand these new uses of Smartphones and the necessary network infrastructure that is needed to support these devices is critical.

Those who master this next-generation approach and understand the importance of Intelligent Infrastructure will take giant leaps forward in the way they design infrastructure that provides the platform for commerce to sustain regional real estate viability and regional sustainability.

Intelligent Infrastructure and Its Impact on Regional Sustainability

by James Carlini

as presented by James Carlini at the 61st Annual International Wiring & Cabling Symposium in Providence, RI. 

Reprinted with permission from:

James Carlini, President &

Certified Infrastructure Consultant

CARLINI & ASSOCIATES  (since 1986)

Strategic Infrastructure Consultants



New Prep Tool for LMR-195 & LMR-200 Low Loss Coaxial Cables Now Available From Times Microwave Systems

Times Microwave Systems has recently introduced the new CST-195/200 All-In-One Combination Prep Tool for use with both LMR-195 and LMR-200 low loss coaxial cables.  The new tool provides the following features and advantages:

- Combination feature allows preparation of both LMR-195 and LMR-200 cables for either straight or right angle crimp connector attachment

- Suitable for use with all LMR-195 and LMR-200 connectors

- Provides consistently sharp cut of dielectric for best VSWR performance

- Rugged, lightweight construction

- Lanyard attachment included

- Requires use of separate debur tool (DBT-U)

The CST-195/200 (3192-102) All-In-One Combination Prep Tool has a list price of $110.00.

About Times Microwave Systems

Times Microwave Systems has over 60 years experience in designing innovative, high-reliability, coaxial cables and assemblies for demanding interconnection problems. An engineering oriented organization, the company specializes in the design and manufacture of high performance flexible and semi-rigid coaxial cable, connectors, and cable assemblies for RF transmission from HF through microwave frequencies as well as lightning and surge protection products.


D-Tools SIX SP1 Upgrade Now Available

Latest Service Pack of award-winning software makes it easier than ever to design, estimate, and document integration of low voltage systems

CONCORD, CA – DECEMBER 13, 2011 — D-Tools, Inc., the worldwide leader in system integration software, today announced the release of SI SIX Service Pack 1. D-Tools System Integrator is currently used by over 4,400 companies to streamline the estimation, design, and project management processes associated with the installation and integration of low voltage systems. The company recently debuted it’s latest version of award-winning software, System Integrator SIX.

SI SIX SP1 continues D-Tools commitment to deliver powerful sales, design and productivity tools to the AV, IT, and Security System Integration markets.  In addition to software enhancements, D-Tools has also developed an all new Knowledge Base and Documentation Wiki for SIX. This is continuing to be developed but already features a significant number of information, videos, and tutorials to help users get started with SIX.

“We’ve been thrilled with the success of SIX and the positive feedback it’s received from our users since the launch,” said Adam Stone, President and CEO of D-Tools, “We are committed to the forward mobility of SIX by continuous development and SP1 is the first step in this process. Our team’s whole focus is to create and deliver powerful solutions that provide companies with a solid business foundation to increase their bottom-line and these recent enhancements highlight that focus.”

SI SIX SP1 includes the following enhancements:

Offline work:  Create and edit projects and drawings when offline (no SIX server connection)

Custom Layouts :  Create custom grid layouts on catalog and project views

Excel Reports: Multi project MS-Excel reporting and built in MS-Excel reports .

Resource Calendar: Read only allows views of Work orders and install tasks

Many Productivity Enhancements: Improved project editing, product and package updates, and more.

A complete list of SP1 features, enhancements is available at

Please click here to visit the all new SIX Wiki.

Please click here to visit the Getting Started with SIX videos.

About D-Tools, Inc.

D-Tools, founded in 1998 and based in Concord, California, is a worldwide leader in accessible, highly accurate system design and documentation software. The company’s -flagship product, System Integrator™ (SI), is a total design solution that utilizes Autodesk® AutoCAD and Microsoft® Visio for comprehensive system design, documentation and project management. D-Tools SI allows residential and commercial integrators to streamline their business processes to increase overall revenues while reducing the time and costs associated with the installation and integration of low-voltage systems. Over 4,400 leading companies use D-Tools software to reduce time and costs and streamline the system integration process. D-Tools is a three time recipient of the Consumer Electronics Association’s Mark of Excellence Award, multiple recipient of Custom Retailer’s Excite Award (2007,2008,2009,2010,2011), Multi-Room Audio Video Awards – Best Installation Aid, National Systems Contractors Association, Sound and Video Contractor’s Innovations in Technology for Business Productivity Award and CE Pro’s High Impact Award for Design Software.


Incredible Time of Change

You have lived through an Incredible Time of Change:

·         1/1/1

·         2/2/2

·         3/3/3

·         4/4/4

·         5/5/5

·         6/6/6

·         7/7/7

·         8/8/8

·         9/9/9

·         10/10/10

·         11/11/11

·         12/12/12

What’s next?

What are the most remarkable changes that you have seen during this period?

Please send us your thoughts.


Frank Bisbee - Editor

"HOTS - Heard On The Street" Monthly Column

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