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Wireville.com

Issue: May 2004
By: Frank Bisbee


In This Issue

Bits N' Pieces


Bisbee's Buzz'

We continue to hear positive reports about an improving economy. However, Heard On The Street is getting slightly more conservative reports. Overall, things are getting better and the wheels of information technology are starting to turn (churn) again.

The BICSI Spring Conference was held in Baltimore at the beginning of May. The turnout was outstanding and every attendee we spoke with gave this conference and expo a big "thumbs up". BICSI announced a new executive director and numerous positive changes to improve service to the membership. Although we don't have the final numbers, we estimate that there were more than 1,600 attendees and more than 150 companies exhibiting. The media was out in full force, gathering the latest news and product announcements.

Best of the show award goes to FLUKE Networks. The FLUKE Networks team unveiled the latest and by far greatest handheld testing equipment for communications cabling (copper or fiber). Fluke Networks New DTX CableAnalyzer™ reduces total time to certify by 33% DTX improves every aspect of certification testing for Cat 5e, Cat 6, Class F and fiber optic cabling, with record-fast autotest times and the confidence of Level IV Accuracy. This amazing piece of technology opens a wide array of applications for the cabling industry. Several major players in the world of commercial real estate are currently evaluating the DTX CableAnalyzer™ as a tool to address abandoned cable. One building owner commented that this tool and the right software to document the asset would "turn trash into treasure". Building owners are starting to see the cabling infrastructure as a potential asset to make their space more competitive in the local market. We predict that smart building owners will all use this technology to enhance their "intelligent building approach".

On another front, the pioneer on the environmentally safe UTP cables is KRONE. They have a long history of VERY HIGH PERFORMANCE CABLES that are LEAD-FREE. Check out their new Copper10™ CAT6 Augmented cable. This new package of value has made all of the other CAT6 copper UTP cables obsolete by comparison. We started with 10 BaseT and started adding zeros. KRONE has just added another zero. Apparently this product has successfully demonstrated performance that is so advanced that we don't even have a standard for it yet. The KRONE new Copper10™ CAT6 Augmented cable may give us 10,000 BaseT in a UTP solution…and it's lead free. Contact KRONE for more information.

Eventually we expect all of the major cable manufacturers to lose the lead.

Once again, hats off to the BICSI Codes Committee and the BICSI Standards Committee. Both of these committees are richly populated with industry experts who are focused on improving the "rules of the road" for safety and performance in cabling. We will publish the highlights from those meetings as soon as they are released. Special recognition was made to Donna Ballast and Bob Jensen for their untiring efforts to cover the "waterfront" on both Codes and Standards. We hope that there will be an opening for Donna Ballast (representing BICSI) on the NFPA 90A Committee. This committee has been charged with a major responsibility to define the safety issues for wire and cable in the workplace. Today that committee is heavily populated with consultants and lobbyist for the Fluoropolymer Chemical Industry and associated support players. At this time, the committee may not represent a consensus. Let NFPA know that you support a "BICSI Voice" in this important code development process.

Abandoned Cable Removal continues to gain momentum as increasingly growing numbers of local authorities having jurisdiction (AHJ's) begin to address this portion of the National Electrical Code NEC 2002. The NEC 2005 will probably improve the definitions relating to this provision of the code for easier implementation and enforcement. With building inspectors looking around in the plenum spaces they will find miles of abandoned cable and other code violations. As the building inspectors become more savvy, we predict they will uncover two major violation areas regarding cable. First, illegally installed non-plenum cable in return air plenum spaces, and improper fire stops where cables penetrate firewalls. One professional in the fire stop business told us that many buildings have firewalls that look more like Swiss cheese than a fire barrier. Abandoned cable must be addressed and there are many ways to get real benefits from a smart approach to a serious hazard.

But that’s just my opinion,

Frank Bisbee

Fluke Networks New DTX CableAnalyzer™

Fluke Networks New DTX CableAnalyzer™ reduces total time to certify by 33% DTX improves every aspect of certification testing for Cat 5e, Cat 6, Class F and fiber optic cabling, with record-fast autotest times and the confidence of Level IV Accuracy.

EVERETT, Washington, May 4, 2004 - Fluke Networks announces the new DTX CableAnalyzer Series, a family of products which significantly reduce total time to certify by improving the speed, accuracy and diagnostic capability of the testing process. DTX CableAnalyzers feature record-fast 12-second Cat 6 Autotest time, 900MHz of testing bandwidth, 12-hour battery life and unmatched troubleshooting diagnostics. All this testing power is in full compliance with today's standards for Cat 5e and Cat 6, as well emerging new cabling technologies such as Class F/Cat 7 or 10 Gigabit Ethernet. Superior Level IV Accuracy assures that the faster testing gives results users can trust.

The 12-second Autotest time is three times faster than any other tester on the market and the powerful on-board diagnostics lets users troubleshoot faults twice as fast. When a link fails, DTX pinpoints the location of the failure and suggests corrective action so the technician can solve the problem quickly without needing to consult a project manager. This high-speed diagnostic process comes with the added security of Level IV Accuracy, making the DTX CableAnalyzer Series the fastest, most reliable cable testers on the market. "DTX CableAnalyzers will increase the user's productivity from day one, with time savings of 33% per year and greater" said Hugo Draye, Fluke Networks Copper Products Marketing Manager. All aspects of the tester are designed to get the job done faster: from setup, to record-fast testing and troubleshooting to reporting to the customer. "In typical installations, DTX will save the user as much as four hours per shift. All you have to do is multiply that kind of hourly savings times your labor rate to see that the payback on a new DTX tester is measured in months. After that, everything else goes to the bottom line," said Draye. Optional multimode and singlemode fiber test modules are available for the DTX Series. These fiber test modules can be left on the unit during copper tests, which allows immediate testing of fiber or copper cabling without swapping adapters, saving setup time during certification of jobs containing both copper and fiber. The fiber Autotest is another example of DTX efficiency; it provides standards-compliant certification by testing two fibers, each at two wavelengths, measuring length and determining pass-fail status, all in about 12 seconds. This is five times faster than alternative methods. DTX fiber modules also feature an integrated visual fault locator (VFL) for troubleshooting simple link problems.

DTX CableAnalyzers are the only cable test products available that are designed, built and tested to Level IV Accuracy. Until now, testers have been designed to meet only accuracy Level III. The more demanding accuracy Level IV specification has been proposed in ISO/IEC (international standards) to test Class F links to 600 MHz. DTX testers exceed this new specification, assuring higher confidence in results over the full frequency range.

The top-of-the-line DTX-1800 CableAnalyzer operates at 900MHz, making it a test instrument suitable for today's cable installations, and for developing network technologies.

Models
The primary DTX CableAnalyzer models are the DTX-1800 and the DTX-1200.

Both offer large color displays, 12-hour battery life, Level IV Accuracy and advanced diagnostic functions. The DTX-1800 has 900MHz maximum bandwidth and 12 second Autotest. The DTX-1200 supports test capabilities up to 350 MHz with 12-second Cat 6 Autotest. Optional multimode and singlemode fiber modules are available or you can purchase all-in-one DTX Copper/Fiber Certification Kits complete with multimode and singlemode fiber modules.

Price and availability
DTX CableAnalyzers have a suggested U.S. list price starting at $6,995. They are available for immediate delivery through Fluke Networks distributors and representatives around the world.

About Fluke Networks
Fluke Networks provides innovative solutions for the testing, monitoring and analysis of enterprise and telecommunications networks and the installation and certification of the fiber and copper forming the foundation for those networks. The company's comprehensive line of Network SuperVision solutions(tm) provide network installers, owners, and maintainers with superior vision, combining speed, accuracy and ease of use to optimize network performance. Headquartered in Everett, Washington, the company has approximately 500 employees worldwide and distributes its products in more than 50 countries. More information can be found by visiting Fluke Networks' Web site at www.flukenetworks.com or by calling (800) 283-5853.

ACUTA ANNOUNCES VoIP SEMINAR IN NEW YORK

The Association for Communications Technology Professionals in Higher Education (ACUTA) announces a one-day Regional Workshop to be held on Thursday, June 17, at the Hudson Valley Resort and Spa in Kerhonkson, NY, just west of Poughkeepsie.

The topic will be "The Challenges of VoIP," and the primary instructor will be Gary Audin, President of Delphi, Inc., a consulting firm located in New Jersey. Audin's presentation covers the issues of implementing a trial installation, producing a secure IP PBX, delivering VoIP QoS, and planning the physical closets and plant in anticipation of implementing VoIP. Attendees will hear what those who have installed VoIP think are the real challenges.

Audin, who has more than 40 years of computer and communications experience, has planned, designed, specified, implemented, and operated data and telephone networks. He has published extensively and has taught more than 2,000 seminars. He has been a frequent speaker at ACUTA educational events for many years, and his presentations are always highly rated by participants.

In addition to Audin's presentation, a panel of local college and university representatives will discuss VoIP applications on their campuses. A number of companies will be present for an exhibit hall as well.

www.acuta.org

Addressing voice, data and video communications needs for higher education, ACUTA serves approximately 850 institutions of higher education and more than 2,000 communications technology professionals from across the United States and Canada as well as Australia and New Zealand. ACUTA holds three national seminars, one conference, and numerous audio and Web-based seminars annually to provide educational sessions and promote networking among campus communications technology professionals.

REGISTER FOR 33rd ANNUAL CONFERENCE TODAY!

Unbeatable Networking Opportunities
Top-Quality Educational Sessions
Interesting Keynote and General Session Speakers
Exciting Location

Lots of good reasons to join us for the 33rd Annual Conference!

August 1-5
Chicago, IL

Sheraton Chicago

ACUTA's Core Purpose: To support higher education institutions in achieving optimal use of communications technologies

Wiremold®
Highest Capacity Communications Poke-Thru Device

WEST HARTFORD, Conn. (April 14, 2004) - The Wiremold Company has introduced the largest capacity, all-communications poke-thru device on the market. The Walker® AMD8 Series poke-thru accepts up to eight ports of connectivity in new construction and retrofit applications, including schools, institutions, and office buildings. The eight-port capacity eliminates the need to install a second device.

The AMD8 Series poke-thru device accepts industry standard and proprietary connectivity devices from a wide range of manufacturers, including Ortronics® and Pass & Seymour modular inserts for voice, data, audio, video, and fiber optics. Modules can be installed without removing the cover assembly.

Individual slide covers with exclusive TopGuard™ protection prevent water, dirt, and debris from entering the device and degrading sensitive electronic components. The Walker AMD8 Series poke-thru device is UL Listed and UL Fire Classified to U.S. and Canadian standards for tile, terrazzo, carpet, and wood covered floors.

Headquartered in West Hartford, Conn., The Wiremold Company is part of Legrand North America. Legrand is the world specialist in products and systems for electrical installations and information networks in residential housing, commercial buildings, and industry. The Legrand group employs 27,000 people globally and has some 60 units worldwide selling in more than 160 countries.

www.wiremold.com

The Walker® AMD8 Series poke-thru device from The Wiremold Company accepts up to eight ports of connectivity, making it the largest capacity, all-communications poke-thru device on the market. It accepts industry standard and proprietary connectivity devices from a wide range of manufacturers, for voice, data, audio, video, and fiber optics.

Home/Work™ Residential Cabling Solution

Hubbell Premise Wiring announces the release of the Home/Work™ Residential Cabling Solution, specifically designed for residential, small office/home office (SOHO), and multi-dwelling environments. It includes distribution enclosures and snap-in Voice-Data-Video modules that provide flexibility for homeowners to share a single Internet connection and network peripherals. The system also offers the user the ability to telecommute while providing multiple telephone, audio/video, and home/building automation distribution for the building.

Home/Work™ Residential Cabling Solution offers the same high performance technology and fully enclosed PCB construction as Hubbell's commercial products. It meets Category 5e standards, as well as TIA/EIA-570-A residential communications standards.

Connections can be made from one easy-to-install pre-configured home network box. The design of the hole pattern allows modules to be mounted horizontally or vertically within the enclosure for maximum capacity. A hinged door can be mounted on either side of the box for application flexibility and an optional key lock is available to prevent tampering. A trim ring around the outside of the box completes the installation, providing a clean finished appearance.

Z-Tel to Launch VoIP Services

Z-Tel Communications, Inc. a provider of local, long distance and enhanced telecommunications services, has announced its plans to launch broadband voice and data services based on Cisco Systems, Inc. equipment. These planned Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) services have received the Cisco Powered Network designation.

Z-Tel will initially focus on the small-to-medium business market and multiple dwelling units (MDUs) such as condominiums, apartment buildings and hotels in Georgia and Florida. In addition to increased bandwidth and service flexibility, Z-Tel's VoIP solutions will offer businesses money-saving, productivity-enhancing features not available from any other provider, such as its award-winning Personal Voice Assistant TM (PVA), a voice-activated virtual address book. MDU building owners will be able to attract new tenants with Z-Tel's flat-rate bundle of enhanced yet affordable broadband voice and data services.

Z-Tel also benefits from its Cisco Powered Network designation through joint marketing and technology sharing with Cisco.

https://purchase.z-tel.com/portal/ztel/index.jsp.

Cooper Wiring Devices to Offer College-Level Program

Structured wiring products of Cooper Wiring Devices (CWD) will be used for instruction by Oakton Community College (Des Plaines, IL) for its Fall 2004 Home Networking Course.

Designed for a broad range of students - from electricians and electrical contractors to those involved in low-voltage cabling construction - the CWD course contribution comprises music distribution systems, video amplifiers, telephone and other distribution modules and panel enclosures. This product line enables contractors and builders to offer increasingly popular pre-cabled homes and offices, integrating all types of electronic content for voice, data, audio and video functions.

"Our comprehensive involvement in structured cabling brought us to this educational effort, and we are pleased to be a part of this new and growing field," says Product Manager Bob Pidgeon of CWD.

www.cooperwiringdevices.com

TIA FOLS Elects New Officers

Arlington, Va., Feb. 23,2004: The Fiber Optics LAN Section (FOLS) of the Telecommunications Industry Association (TIA) has elected officers. FOLS serves as an educational resource, providing information to users about the benefits of fiber in customer-owned networks.

John Struhar, director, fiber structured cabling system solutions at Ortronics, Inc. (New London, Conn.) was re-elected as Section Chair. "I am delighted to chair FOLS again in 2004," he said. "Last year we made significant progress by expanding our charter beyond fiber-to-the-desk applications to include additional customer-owned networks. This year we see great promise in the emerging zone cabling standard, which offers users another cost-effective way to deploy fiber in their networks."

In addition to Struhar, the following other leaders in the fiber optic industry have been elected:

- Vice Chair, Gary Cawley, Optek Technology, Inc.
- Communication Subcommittee Chair, Rodney Casteel, CommScope, Inc.
- Membership Subcommittee Chair, Robert Reid, Panduit Corp.
- Standards Subcommittee Chair, Herb Congdon, Tyco Electronics

Struhar predicts that 2004 will be a strong year for the deployment of fiber in customer-owned LANs. "The cost for deploying all-fiber LANs is lower than it's ever been," he said. "In many scenarios it's now very competitive, or even lower, than the cost of installing UTP copper cables." Struhar referenced the interactive cost model developed by FOLS and Pearson Technologies (http://www.fols.org/resources/costmodel_reg.cfm), which allows users to compare the installed first costs of an all-fiber network to a fiber/UTP copper network. "The cost model has generated a great deal of interest over the past six months. It's a powerful tool that allows users to model the cost for their own networks and shows them where fiber is cost effective to install today." He added that the FOLS and Pearson Technologies are already working on the next update of the model.

Now in its 11th year, FOLS was originally founded to provide information on the use of fiber in the backbone and horizontal portions of premises networks. To meet the emerging needs of end users, FOLS members decided in 2003 that it would expand its scope to cover customer-owned LANs such as data centers, storage area networks and industrial applications.

www.fols.org.

Tollgrade Extends LoopCare
Voice Test Support to Include Emerging
Fiber-to-the-Premises Network.

PITTSBURGH, PA - February 2, 2004 - Tollgrade Communications, Inc. (NASDAQ: TLGD) today announced availability of a new LoopCare™ Test Operations Support System (OSS) feature to support testing of voice services in a Fiber-To-The-Premises (FTTP) network. FTTP networks are fiber-optic systems that provide increased capacity and faster, more flexible services over local loops. This LoopCare Release 2.6 feature will provide seamless integration with existing loop testing processes for POTS and ISDN services so that telephone service providers can continue to enjoy the benefits of flow-through testing in this new type of network. The architecture for this distributed fiber access network system consists of Alcatel's H-ONT and P-OLT passive optical access elements using General Bandwidth's G6 multi-service application platform serving as a VoATM network access gateway to traditional Class 5 Switches. Tollgrade intends to undertake development efforts to extend this solution to include support for additional FTTP network manufacturers in the future.

"Tollgrade has developed its new FTTP testing solution to fit seamlessly into the existing installation and maintenance flow for today's POTS and ISDN services," said Greg Quiggle, Tollgrade's executive vice president of marketing. "A crucial element of a successful fit into this POTS-like flow is the ability to remotely diagnose network and customer premises troubles with enough resolution to provide front-end closeouts and make accurate dispatch decisions, if required, in an automated fashion. In doing so, Tollgrade provides real value by decreasing call center handling time, MTTR (Mean-Time-To-Repair) and dispatch costs while increasing customer responsiveness and satisfaction."

The LoopCare Test OSS is the world's leading consumer-based test and management system. Today, LoopCare tests more than 150 million access lines worldwide. Every Regional Bell Operating Company (RBOC) uses LoopCare for its automated consumer testing and the list of new LoopCare customers grows every quarter.

DSL Multi-layered Service Testing
In addition to a full suite of POTS tests, LoopCare also provides bulk "get-to-market-fast" DSL pre-qualification testing which utilizes precision narrowband and single-ended insertion loss measurement techniques. Upon pre-qualifying a subscriber's loop, LoopCare works in concert with Tollgrade's DigiTest® EDGE™ to verify network readiness prior to installation and remotely isolate troubles between the subscriber's equipment, local loop, serving DSLAM/ATM network, and Internet Service Provider. LoopCare and DigiTest hardware are both scalable, so they're cost-effective for the small emerging carrier or the mammoth Independent Local Exchange Carrier (ILEC).

Tollgrade Communications, Inc. is a full-system provider of leading hardware and software testing solutions for the global telecommunications and cable broadband industries. Tollgrade designs, engineers, markets and supports test systems, test access and status monitoring products. The Company, which is headquartered in the Pittsburgh suburb of Cheswick, Pa., recorded 2003 revenues of $65.1 million. The Company's web address is www.tollgrade.com.

New Halogen-Free Flame Retardant (HFFR) jacketing compounds provides excellent performance at competitive prices

Proprietary polyolefin processes and catalyst technologies from Dow Wire & Cable Compounds serve as the basis for new HFFR compounds. These compounds provide significant benefits when compared to traditional FR compounds for your FTTX applications as well as for general-purpose FR jacketing or insulation requirements, including your FTTX fiber optics and telecommunications needs. New materials and formulations technologies from Dow Wire & Cable Compounds are creating a toolbox that enables successful development of cost-effective solutions for a wide range of FR wire and cable application targets. First among the new generation of advanced polyolefin-based compounds are DFDA-1643 NT EXP2 and DFDA-1643 BK EXP2, both of which possess a unique balance of properties, including high tear strength, excellent tensile properties, advantaged rheological characteristics, and unmatched value. Applications include:

  • General purpose FR jacketing & insulation
  • Rider cable
  • Industrial cable
  • Communications cable

www.dow.com/wire/bw_feature.htm

Tibs Group names new Chief Operating Officer

Former Cable Consultants' executive takes over as Tibs' COO

ATLANTA, February 27, 2004 - Tibs Group™, a single source for electrical, utility and technology services, announced today that the company had named Michael (Mike) D. Sullivan as the company's Chief Operating Officer.

Sullivan replaces Marvin Tibbetts, the company's founder, who had been serving for the past year as Interim COO. Tibbetts, who came out of retirement to fill the COO post temporarily, will assume the role as Tibs' Corporate Training Director.

"Mike has the experience of growing companies and of overseeing large corporate operations, both of which are important in this stage of Tibs' development as a company," said Mark Tibbetts, Tibs Group CEO and President. "He definitely is an asset to our company and is someone who will play a critical role in the operations at Tibs," Tibbetts added.

Sullivan, with more than 20 years of operations management experience, will oversee the day-to-day operations at Tibs. Before joining Tibs Group, he worked for 20 years at Cable Consultants, Inc., Black Box Network Services. There he was Vice President of Operations and Area Manager, directing four divisions, the Southeast regional operations, and a staff of 300 with full profit/loss responsibility and support of national accounts. Sullivan was also instrumental the company's expansion, diversification and entry in the telephone/data wiring and cabling markets.

Most recently, he was Program Manager for Netversant, Atlanta operations. There he was involved with the engineering and installation of a national technology upgrade for a Fortune 100 client.

Sullivan, who attended Southern Technical Institute, is a Registered Communication Distribution Designer (RCDD) and a member of Building Industry Consulting Service International (BICSI). In addition, he holds Low Voltage Telecommunications and Utility Foreman Licenses. Along with his extensive telecommunications experience, he also has in-depth training in SYSTIMAX structured cabling systems along with fiber optic splicing and testing.

Sullivan joined Tibs in mid 2003 as a Senior Project Manager for Tibs' technology division. In that role, he's directed several major projects and worked closely with numerous Tibs' customers.

Tibs Group

Founded in 1971, as an electrical service contractor, Tibs Group has grown to become one of the Southeast's premier providers of electrical, technology, power quality, and security solutions. Winner of numerous industry and community awards, Tibs Group is based in Suwanee, Ga., has almost 100 employees and more than 1000 customers including companies such as the Bank of America, BellSouth, Centers for Disease Control (CDC), Chick-fil-A, Emory University, Georgia Institute of Technology, Goodyear, Gwinnett County School Systems, Gwinnett Civic Center, Lucent Technologies, SAFECO Insurance, and Spelman College.

www.tibsgroup.com/press/coo.html

COOPER WIRING DEVICES NAMES D.J. HILINSKI VICE PRESIDENT, HUMAN RESOURCES

Long Island City, New York, February 04, 2004 - Cooper Wiring Devices, major producer of more than 10,000 electrical wiring devices for industrial, commercial and residential markets, has appointed Daniel J. Hilinski Vice President, Human Resources.

He replaces Mary Ann Fabian, who has retired from the company.

Hilinski joined Cooper in 1987 and has most recently served as Director, Employee Relations Corporation for Cooper Lighting. He has previously provided human relations, training and development services to the Lighting, Hand Tools and Corporate offices of the company.

www.cooperwiringdevices.com/whatsnew/2-04_hilinski.shtml

SMC Networks Appoints New Worldwide Vice President for Sales and Marketing

SMC Networks, leading provider of networking solutions for the SMB/e and the home, today announced the appointment of Patrick Lelorieux as the company's worldwide Vice President for Sales and Marketing.

IRVINE, CA (PRWEB) March 4, 2004 -- SMC Networks (www.smc.com), leading provider of networking solutions for the SMB/e and the home, today announced the appointment of Patrick Lelorieux as the company's worldwide Vice President for Sales and Marketing. Based in SMC's European headquarters in Barcelona, Spain, Lelorieux will serve as the company's key strategist, and will have direct responsibility for the company's sales and marketing teams in the Americas, Europe, Africa and Japan.

Having most recently served as president for Avaya, Inc.'s Europe/Middle East and Africa division, where he established that company's leadership in Voice over IP, Lelorieux comes to this new position at SMC with extensive background in executive management, having held leadership positions with several high-profile technology companies. Prior to serving as president of Avaya, Lelorieux held numerous executive management positions with HP, including serving as vice president of the company's Compaq division, leading its PC Server business; as well as in multiple director-level positions there, including director of HP's Marketing Centre and Sales Director.

Lelorieux's main objectives include the strengthening of business efforts in the company's focus vertical channels; VAR, ISP and retail. On the VAR side Lelorieux will lead the consolidation of SMC's worldwide VAR partner program over the course of 2004, and will tighten focus around certain vertical VARs to target specialist market segments such as education, government and healthcare.

"My vision is to position to SMC Networks as a provider of complete networking solutions that facilitate and enhance the lives of the business and home user," commented Lelorieux. "Unlike other vendors, our goal is not to merely offer a singular "product in a box", but to provide a complete solution set that satisfactorily fulfils the needs of our end-customer-all the while maintaining affordability."

Along with Lelorieux's appointment, SMC has created a product marketing group that is specifically dedicated to providing greater support and strategic focus on the ISP vertical channel. From both of the company's headquarters in Irvine, California and in Barcelona, Spain, the product marketing group will support ISP business worldwide.

In support of the retail channel, Lelorieux intends to continue to provide regional focus, investment and support to further expand SMC's presence in the consumer segment. Having established early leadership in the home entertainment networking market with the award winning EZ Stream™ Universal Wireless Multimedia Receiver, SMC holds a strong position in that emerging market area that research firm In-Stat/MDR predicts will grow to nearly 5.7 billion worldwide by 2008.

Further projects for the year also include a revamped WW website, to be unveiled in April 2004.

About SMC Networks
A leading provider of networking solutions for the SMB/e and all the way home, SMC puts its more than 30 years' experience to work for every product and solution the company produces. Leveraging strong industry relationships in combination with experienced and talented in-house design and engineering, SMC continues to bring to market a host of affordable, high-performance products. Headquartered in Irvine, California, U.S.A and Barcelona, Spain, SMC Networks supports its worldwide market through regional offices located throughout the United States and 20 other countries. For more information about SMC Networks or its products, visit www.smc.com, or call 800-SMC-4You (800-762-4968).

www.prweb.com/releases/2004/3/prweb108645.htm

HELLERMANNTYTON INTRODUCES A NEW CONCEPT IN HIGH SECURITY LABEL MARKING

Milwaukee, WI - HellermannTyton, a global manufacturer of network cabling and identification solutions, introduces a new high security label. The Durattach label and ribbon combination along with a standard thermal transfer printer achieves the most permanent mark in the industry. The Durattach labels stand up to alcohol, toluene, acetone and other chemicals without plastic over-laminate to protect the printed text. The chemical and friction durability is excellent with superior print quality. The Durattach labels may be printed with HellermannTyton's thermal transfer printing systems and are available in seven standard sizes with custom sizes available upon inquiry. The Durattach ribbons will also provide a high quality mark on HellermannTyton Shrink-Tags. In areas where the label must remain legible for security reasons, the Durattach label and ribbon combination is an ideal solution.

In addition to the Durattach labels, HellermannTyton manufactures other identification, network cabling, and cable management products. TagPrint Pro labeling software, the Spirit® 2100 portable printing system, thermal transfer printers and labels, preprinted and hand writable wire markers are a few industrial identification solutions available.

www.hellermann.tyton.com

Magnepull Spider

Magnepull Spider cable retrieval system reduces cable installations time as much as 70% as compared to a standard fish tape. This new tool magnetically couples the cable-pulling device through drywall and allows the technicians to have complete control. The system was developed to work with metal studs and in insulated walls.

www.magnepull.com/magnepull_001.htm

BICSI TRAINING

TE300: Technician Level Training
Join the elite group who has completed this high level of skills training.

Expand your knowledge and get ahead in the telecommunications industry. This five-day, 40 hour course is the most advanced phase of BICSI's Telecommunications Cabling Installation Training Program.

I. Industry Orientation
II. Structured Premises Cabling Systems
Entrance facilities, backbone, horizontal, work areas
Equipment rooms, telecommunications rooms
Cross-connects-main, intermediate, horizontal
III. Standards, Codes, and Methodologies
ANSI/TIA/EIA-568-B, 569-B, 570-A, 606-A, 607-A
ANSI/NECA/BICSI-568
ANSI/TIA/EIA-526-7 and 14-A
National Electrical Code®
National Fire Protection Code
BICSI TDMM and NDRM overview
IV. Plans and Specifications
Blueprints
Construction specifications
V. Media Characteristics
Emerging technologies
Twisted-pair-UTP, ScTP, STP-A (overview)*
Color code (overview)*
Categories of cables-3-6 (overview)*
Coaxial (overview)*
Optical fiber cables-singlemode and multimode (overview)*
VI. Connectors
Emerging technologies
UTP, STP-A, ScTP, coaxial, optical fiber (overview)*
Connector pin configurations (overview)*
Color codes (overview)*
VII. Transmission Characteristics
AC/DC review
Analog/digital signals
Cable bandwidth-Megahertz vs. Megabits per second
Digital signaling
VIII. Grounding, Bonding, and Electrical Protection
Installation
Design
Testing on earth ground
IX. Defining LANs
LAN characteristics
Physical and logical topologies
Ethernet and token-ring
X. Components of a LAN
OSI model
LAN hardware and software
XI. Safety
Hazardous environments
Personal protective equipment
Common safety practices
XII. Professionalism
Customer relations
Communications skills
Professional appearance
XIII. Preparation for Installation
Space and pathway design
Developing a job plan
Performing a site survey (overview)*
Building closets (overview)*
Installing grounding infrastructure (overview)*
Installing support system infrastructure (overview)*
Preparing work area outlet locations (overview)*
XIV. Pulling Cable (Overview)*
Pulling backbone and horizontal twisted-pair cable
Pulling optical fiber cable
XV. Firestopping
Responsibilities
New and existing penetrations
XVI. Cable Termination
Terminate ScTP, STP-A
Pretermination functions-forming, dressing, fanning, and labeling cables (overview)*
Copper cable termination UTP (Krone, BIX, 110, 66) (overview)*
Copper crimp, coaxial, and optical fiber cable termination (overview)*
XVII. Splicing Cable
Copper
Optical fiber
XVIII. Cable Testing
Copper cable testing and certification
Optical fiber cable testing using a light source, power meter, and OTDR
XIX. Cable Troubleshooting
Copper cables
Optical fiber cables
XX. Retrofits and System Upgrades
Identifying active circuits
Performing cutovers
Removal of abandoned cable
XXI. Miscellaneous Duties
Administrative tasks
Documenting test results
Documenting as-builts
Coping with changing technologies

www.bicsi.org/Content/Index.aspx?File=techdes.htm

MuxLab's Pass-Thru Balun Streamlines CCTV Cabling

Combines Power, Video and PTZ over one Cat 5 Cable

MONTREAL - MuxLab Inc, designer and manufacturer of CCTV and audio-video connectivity solutions, announces its latest product for the CCTV security and surveillance industry...VideoEase CCTV Pass-Thru Balun (500022).

The Pass-Thru Balun allows remote power, PTZ control and video to be connected to the CCTV camera via one Cat5 cable instead of three (3) dedicated cables.

Designed for PTZ cameras, the Pass-Thru Balun features three (3) cable leads that break out the 24VAC, PTZ and video signals at the camera. On the other end an RJ45 combines the three signals over one Cat5 cable via modular RJ45.

Remote 24VAC power is supported via two (2) twisted pairs up to 350 feet (107m) depending on camera power and voltage drop. Longer distances may be achieved at 28VAC. Remote 2-wire PTZ control (i.e.; RS422) is supported via one (1) twisted pair and video is supported via one (1) twisted pair.

Fully compatible with other MuxLab CCTV baluns, the Pass-Thru Balun follows TIA-568 pinout standards and features a pin configuration label directly on the product for ease of installation.

The CCTV Pass-Thru Balun (500022) is epoxy-sealed to protect against from moisture and dust and is available for a suggested list price of US$40.00 (CDN$60.00). For more information, please contact MuxLab at videoease@muxlab.com.

www.muxlab.com/assets/files/press_releases/PR_VideoEase_CCTV_Pass-Thru_Balun.pdf

Great Lakes Chemical Corporation

Fire Protection

Safety, effective risk management, and limiting downtime are top priorities for all types of businesses. Most of these businesses rely on sprinklers for protection against fire, but what they may not realize is that while sprinkler systems provide a base of protection, the collateral damage caused by water and the associated clean up are often as damaging and expensive as the fire itself. In fact, 43 percent of businesses that suffer a significant fire never reopen.

FM-200® waterless fire protection systems can actually detect and eliminate fire within seconds, long before smoke damage occurs. Unlike water, FM-200 is non-conductive and non-corrosive, so it's safe to use around electrical equipment. FM-200 is also safe for people that may be working in the area. There is no residue to clean up and no need to employ expensive disaster recovery processes. After all, you shouldn't need to protect your valuables from your fire protection system.

Originally developed to replace ozone-depleting fire suppressants such as halon 1301, FM-200 systems are used to protect computer rooms, communications equipment, automotive assembly plants, medical facilities, defense equipment, and numerous other mission critical operations. FM-200 has been used in over 100,000 applications worldwide to reduce risk and maximize fire protection. As a matter of fact, priceless works of art and historical artifacts such as the Eiffel Tower and the original draft of the Declaration of Independence are entrusted to FM-200 waterless fire protection systems.

www.e1.greatlakes.com/corp/prodserv/jsp/fire_suppression.jsp

The World's Most Trusted Choice in Clean Agent Fire Suppression

FM-200® systems protect everything from computer rooms and communications installations to military vehicles and pleasure boats to priceless works of art and historic landmarks around the world.

www.e1.greatlakes.com/fm200/jsp/index.jsp

Intertek ETL SEMKO

Testing Everywhere for Markets Anywhere

In today's global marketplace, the products you manufacture, distribute or retail are subject to numerous product safety standards and industry requirements.

Choose the ETL SEMKO division of Intertek as your product testing and certification partner, and our international network of testing experts and state-of-the-art laboratories will provide you with the guidance and services you need to sell your products worldwide.
So regardless of where you are located, you can:

  • Rely on industry specialists who provide fast, efficient, accurate product testing that can decrease your costs. Reduce your time-to-market. And help you break through geographic, cultural and regulatory barriers.
  • Take advantage of a full range of testing services - including electrical safety testing of products, benchmark testing, and EMC testing - from one convenient source.
  • Have your products tested to the entry requirements of every major market, from ANSI, ASTM and UL standards to European Union directives, the CB Scheme and a long list of other nation- and industry-specific regulations and guidelines.
  • Acquire the product certifications and internationally recognized marks that open doors to global commerce, like the ETL Listed Mark, the Warnock Hersey Mark, the S Mark, the GS Mark and CE Marking.

Most important, when you work with Intertek, you work with a testing partner who understands your concerns and the pressures you face. A partner who offers personal attention, flexibility and the customer focused service that smoothes your way to the world's markets.

www.etlsemko.com

PRIME FABRICATION INC.
P.O. Box 131
Elkhorn, NE 68022

Dust/Debris Containment Carts!*

These carts are ideal for use in Hospitals, Schools and other facilities where controlling potentially dangerous pollutants is paramount. The new easy to use design allows for a single operator to raise and lower the unit with ease.

Innovative frame design makes this unit very stable and durable. Constructed of lightweight material, the unit is easily assembled or disassembled in minutes, and comes standard with double-locking, non-marring, hospital grade swivel casters. Carts can be shipped with or without a zippered vinyl enclosure.

Call for pricing and availability at 1-888-289-4899, ext. 210 or 1-402-289-4126, ext. 210.

*patent pending

INDUSTRY LEADERS TO BE HONORED WITH ACHIEVEMENT AWARDS - NAED 2004 annual mtg

(ST. LOUIS, MO)...The National Association of Electrical Distributors (NAED) will honor seven industry leaders at the Opening General Session of NAED's Annual Meeting on May 17, 2004 from 8:00 to 11:30 a.m. at the San Francisco Marriott Hotel in San Francisco, CA.

Ted C. Treadway, president and CEO of Treadway Electric Co., Little Rock, Ark., will receive NAED's highest honor, the 2004 NAED Arthur W. Hooper Award, which is presented to an individual who has led an exceptional career in electrical distribution spanning many years. Since joining Treadway Electric in 1950, Treadway has been a loyal supporter of countless NAED and electric industry initiatives. He served as a member of NAED's Board of Directors for the past four decades and held the positions of NAED Southern Region Vice President and NAED Arkansas Area Chairman. A believer in pioneering and innovative projects, Treadway organized the Electrical League of Arkansas in 1970's, becoming the group's first chairman; served and was a founding contributor in both IDEA and EDIC; and worked with many NAED national committees to help the industry facilitate the computerization process of its distribution centers. Treadway is also active in several local community and charity efforts.

Terry Burkholder, retired president of Dauphin Electric Supply Co., Harrisburg, Pa., will receive the 2004 NAED Distinguished Service Award, which recognizes outstanding and dedicated service to the association and the electrical distribution industry. During his 43 years in the electrical industry, Burkholder has been active in NAED, serving as a member of the Board of Directors and the Education Foundation Board of Directors, Eastern Region Vice President, and as co-founder and first chairman of NAED's Your Emerging Talent (YET). He was also involved with Affiliated Distributors (AD), chairing and serving on many committees, and has participated in many manufacturers' advisory boards.

Robert Smith, executive vice president sales, Pass & Seymour/Legrand, Syracuse, N.Y., will be presented with the 2004 NAED Award of Merit, which recognizes an associate company or individual that has been exceptionally active in promoting and supporting the tenets and goals of NAED. Over the past 19 years, Smith has actively encouraged communication and cooperation between manufacturers and distributors. He has participated in NAED's Manufacturers Committee (chairman 2002-2004), Associate Advisory Council, the Advocacy Internship for Manufacturers (AIM), various NAED Zone meetings and a panel for NAED's YET/ LEAD Conference. He has been very involved with manufacturer's representatives, serving as chairman of the NEMRA Manufacturers Group (NMG) and a NEMRA Board member. Smith was awarded the NEMRA Manufacturer of the Year in 2003.

James J. Strenk, recently retired executive vice president of Allied Tube & Conduit, Harvey, Ill., will be presented with the 2004 NAED Associate Award. The award honors an individual in the electrical manufacturing business who has been exceptionally active in promoting wholesale distribution as the best channel of electrical products and services. During his 38 years with Allied, Strenk has been a strong supporter of electrical distribution, putting to use the wisdom gained from his hands-on experience with all sectors of the electrical industry.

Strenk has been involved with many NAED activities, projects, and meetings. In addition, he has been active with AD, IMARK, NEMA, NECA and IBEW. He was inducted into the Electric Association of Chicago's Hall of Fame in 1999.

Three members will receive NAED's Honorary Life Award which recognizes retiring distributors who have made exceptional contributions to the channel during their careers.

* R. Jack Justilian, retired COO of Maurice Electrical Supply Co., Inc., Washington, D.C., has been an extremely active supporter of NAED. During his 42 years in the electrical industry, he served NAED in various leadership roles, including Eastern Region Vice President, a member of the Board of Directors, Government Affairs Committee Chairman, International Committee Chairman and Area Chairman. He was also involved with the Houston Electrical League and IMARK.

* Richard Gross, retired chairman of Gross Electric, Toledo, Ohio, has been in the industry for 54 years. He was active in NAED throughout the years, ranging from chairman of the Residential Lighting Committee in 1950's and 1960's to serving as a member Commercial Lighting Task Force, the NAED Board of Directors, and as Vice President of the Eastern Region in 1979-1981.

* Marc Lessans, retired president & CEO of Commerce Electric Supply, Inc., Linthicum, Md., has been an active part of electrical distribution for 30 years. He has participated in a variety of NAED activities, including NAED Board of Directors, Warehouse Committee Chairman, Eastern Region Council, TED Advisory Committee, Area Chairman and Instructor for the University of Electrical Distribution. Lessans has also served on the AD Board of Directors and on several manufacturers advisory councils.

NAED is the trade association for the electrical distribution industry. Through networking, education, research, and advocacy, NAED helps electrical distributors prosper and improve the channel. NAED's membership includes distributors of all sizes, representing approximately 4,150 locations throughout the United States.

Rexel Shifts Execs To Fill New VP Sales Position

With the creation of a new position - vice president, sales and new business development - Rexel has made the following changes:
     Jim O'Hargan, president of the company's South Central Division since 1998, will fill the new position. As vp sales, he will report to Dick Waterman, Rexel's executive vp/CEO. O'Hargan's background includes positions as vp sales for Hubbell Lighting and regional vp for Genlyte Thomas Group. He also worked previously for GE Supply and elsewhere within General Electric.
     "Jim's job will be to identify market trends and opportunities," said Waterman. "He'll coordinate our national account sales with Vantage Group and provide expertise to me and to marketing and sales personnel in our divisions."
     Tim Copeland, who had been vice president of logistics and operations for Rexel's U.S. operations since January 2002, will fill the South Central Division post. The division is based in Houston.
     Copeland's recent efforts included serving as champion of Rexel's "Operation Excellence" or "OpX" program. Previously, he was vp operations/regional manager for Rexel's Southern Division (1996-2000) and vp of Rexel Datacom (2001).
     Additionally, Rexel recently hired Renee Junell as Director of Credit, replacing Ken Hoover. Junell previously led the Customer Financial Services team at Frito-Lay; earlier, she worked in similar positions for Daisytek International and Overhead Door Corp.
     Hoover, who retired in May 2003 after more than 20 years with Rexel and its predecessors, had stayed on for the past year in a consulting role.

About Rexel SA: With more than 1,700 branches on five continents, Rexel is the world's largest electrical and datacom distributor. The company's 2003 worldwide sales were 6.6 billion euros (roughly $8 billion at recent exchange rates).
     In the U.S., Dallas-based Rexel has more branches selling electrical and datacom products than any electrical or datacom distributor.

www.rexelusa.com

A Network Cabling Installation of Olympic Proportions

Global structured cabling systems manufacturer, Molex Premise Networks has secured approval as an approved vendor to Greece Telecom (OTE) and is installing cabling systems into key venues for the Athens 2004 Olympics.

In total, 40 individual venues make up the Athens Olympics infrastructure. Molex has secured more than 40% of the cabling work to date and has successfully completed work on three venues: canoe/kayak, sailing and beach volleyball. The 40 Olympic venues include more than 9000 Category 5e UTP points along with fiber patching and cabling.

Building construction work on many of the Olympic venues is still underway. All systems at each of the 40 Olympic venues must be fully tested during real international practice events prior to the start of the Athens Olympics in August 2004. This makes the project timeline highly challenging.

The planning and selection process for this project are quite complex - with many regulatory bodies involved. OTE is a Grand Sponsor of the Olympics and will provide all the critical voice, data, GSM and satellite communications for this event.

Molex Premise Networks has an established relationship with OTE, having successfully completed a number of Greek projects including the Greek Prime Minister's Office, the Agricultural Bank of Greece and the nationwide network for the Civil Protection Authority. The company was selected on the basis of this previous track record and the quality and reliability of its systems.

Giovanni Constantinou - Regional Sales Director for Molex Premise Networks said: "The demands on the infrastructure for the Olympics are extremely rigorous as there will need to be 24/7 broadcast availability on a global basis - we are confident that our systems will support these requirements."

www.molexpn.com

The National Joint Apprenticeship & Training Committee of the organized electrical construction industry.

Training Event's Tech Sessions Designed For Union Electrical Contractors & Employees

Electrical contractors who are members of NECA or who have signed and work under IBEW-NECA contracts are more than welcome to attend the National Training Institute, to be held July 31-Aug. 7 in Knoxville.
     Electrical contractors who qualify are able to send their key executives as well as supervisors, project managers, estimators, and others. All IBEW members are invited to NTI as well.
     Sessions are scheduled on topics ranging from electrical construction to datacom/VDV, integrated building systems and LonWorks, power line work, power quality, special fire alarm system knowledge, residential electrical work, and much more.
     Open to IBEW members, NECA-member and other contractors who work under NECA-IBEW contracts, local training directors, and instructors, the NTI features a virtual smorgasbord of training. Topics that will interest contractors and their employees include:
New and growing technologies, such as LonWorks, and older, not-to-be-lost skills, such as cable splicing.
Safety training - eight safety and health events are set, including the highly valued OSHA 500 and 502 sessions.
Personal and professional development opportunities, including "Introduction to Programmable Logic Controllers,' "Supervising and Instructing on the Job," and "Jobsite AutoCAD."
"Standard" electrical topics, on which electrical professionals can never get enough information - such as a special presentation of the NJATC's "Significant Changes" instruction on the 2002 National Electrical Code.
Many other topics are covering, including "Power Quality Analysis" and "Installing Grid-Connected Photovoltaics"
     Event sponsor is the National Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee (NJATC), the NECA-IBEW national organization that oversees electrical and datacom apprentice training and journeymen skill improvement courses.
     In 2003, more than 300 local electrical JATCs were involved in the training of nearly 50,000 apprentices. Additionally, 70,000 journey-level electrical, datacom, and line workers attended skill improvement courses.
     For more information, see: www.njatc.org/nti.htm. Contractors, professional electrical workers, and others can obtain more information from their local NECA chapter, IBEW Local Union, or JATC.
IBEW = International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers
IBS = integrated building systems
JATC = Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee
AJATC = area JATCs (most of these regional committees are involved in regional powerline or "outside" training).
NECA = National Electrical Contractors Association
VDV = voice-data-video

The National Joint Apprenticeship & Training Committee of the organized electrical construction industry.

Training Event Keeps IBEW-NECA On Technology's 'Bleeding' Edge

Topics such as "Fiber Optic Certification," "Multimode Optical LAN," and "LonWorks System Installer/Systems Integrator" are included among more than 50 training sessions set for the National Training Institute, to be held July 31-Aug. 7 in Knoxville.
     Open to IBEW members, NECA-member and other contractors who work under NECA-IBEW contracts, local training directors, and instructors, the NTI features a variety of training. Other courses included among the 50 technical training topics to be covered by expert instructors:
"Structured Cable Design and Administration;"
"Intermediate Fire Alarm Systems;"
"Introduction to Fuel Cells and Power Quality;"
"Low Voltage Splicing, Insulating, and Fire Proofing;" and
"Introduction to Instrumentation."
     Scheduled training sessions can last as long as one week - or more - and can also be as short as four hours. Attendees can opt to attend single lengthy sessions or a number of short ones.
     Event sponsor is the National Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee (NJATC), the NECA-IBEW national organization that oversees electrical and datacom apprentice training and skill improvement courses.
     In 2003, more than 300 local electrical JATCs were involved in the training of nearly 50,000 apprentices. Additionally, 70,000 journey-level electrical, datacom, and line workers attended skill improvement courses.
     For more information, see: www.njatc.org/nti.htm. Contractors, professional electrical workers, and others can obtain more information from their local NECA chapter, IBEW Local Union, or JATC.

Unicom's Home Networking System selected for the Turnberry Fontainebleau II Tower

City of Industry, CA -April 12, 2004-UNICOM's award winning UniHome™ Plus Series home networking system was selected as the solution of choice for the ultra-exclusive Turnberry Fontainebleau II™ Tower in Miami Beach, FL.

Turnberry Associates, a leading full-service real estate development and property management firm is developing the Fontainebleau II Tower, a $230 million, and 36-story, 462-unit condominium hotel complex. Each unit will be wired for Internet networking, telephone and home entertainment using Unicom's UniHome™ Plus Series.

Perfect Reception, a Florida based company who cables and networks many high-end residential condominiums and hotels, is doing the installation of the UniHome™ Plus Series home networking system. Michael Hirsch, owner of Perfect Reception, reviewed many systems, and decided that for a project of this magnitude he couldn't afford wasting time and money. "As an installer, I need my team to work as efficiently as they can. Unicom's UniHome™ Plus Series provided us with the cost saving features we need in a home networking system." The quality was also a critical factor in his decision. "The modern home buyers demand quality," Hirsch stated, "The UniHome Plus Series delivers that quality."

The UniHome Plus Series provides the most flexibility in multimedia applications. Whether sharing DSL Internet and computer peripherals or distributing DBS and music throughout the home, the UniHome Plus makes it easy!

UNICOM, an ISO 9001 registered manufacturer of comprehensive solutions for today's real world network environments. For almost two decades, UNICOM has offered superior value-added technology in copper and fiber optic solutions for high performance, high capacity networking systems. With distribution throughout the United States, Canada, South America, the Pacific Rim, the Middle East and Europe, UNICOM delivers solutions worldwide. Whether it's copper or fiber, Gigabit Ethernet, or Fast Ethernet, UNICOM offers the highest quality network equipment and complete structured cabling solutions for Commercial, Residential, and Industrial applications. UNICOM is "Technology for the Real World".

www.unihomenetworkingbox.com or www.unicomlink.com

CRESCENT ELECTRIC SUPPLY DONATES $100,000 TO NAED EDUCATION & RESEARCH FOUNDATION

(ST. LOUIS, MO.)… The National Association of Electrical Distributors (NAED) announces a $100,000 contribution by Crescent Electric Supply Company to the NAED Education & Research Foundation.

"Our commitment made on April 15, 2004, our 85th anniversary, is made in recognition of what the industry has given to our employees, our company and the entire Schmid family," said James R. Etheredge, president of Crescent Electric Supply Company.

Founded in 1919 by Titus B. Schmid, Crescent Electric Supply Company is an electrical distributor serving the industrial, contractor, datacom, utility, commercial, institutional and automation markets. Headquartered in East Dubuque, Ill., the company has 124 branches in 27 states.

"We are glad that Crescent is joining with us in this endowment effort. As a donor to the Annual Campaign for 23 years, they are already great supporters of the Foundation. Furthermore, they are currently one of the Foundation's top purchasers of training products.

We welcome their additional support and applaud their continuing emphasis on excellence," said Bill Elliott, chairman of the NAED Education & Research Foundation and president of Elliott Electric Supply in Nacogdoches, Texas.

The company's donation will become part of an endowment fund for the NAED Education & Research Foundation. The principal amount of the endowment will remain untouched, while the interest will be used to commission future projects and industry issue focused studies. As a $100,000 donor, Crescent Electric Supply will have a permanent position on the Channel Advantage Partnership Council, which will help select future educational programs and research projects.

NAED is the trade association for the electrical distribution industry. Through networking, education, research, and advocacy, NAED helps electrical distributors prosper and improve the channel. NAED's membership includes distributors of all sizes, representing approximately 4,150 locations throughout the United States.

FONS Announces the Opening of its New Corporate Headquarters in Marlboro, Massachusetts

A Center of Excellence with Expanded Engineering, Product Development and Testing Capabilities

Northboro, MA, April 29, 2004 - FONS Corporation, a leading provider of passive fiber connectivity products and solutions, is pleased to announce the grand opening of its new world corporate headquarters, effective June 1, in Marlboro, Massachusetts in the region's route 495 high-tech corridor. This state-of-the-art facility will house "best in class" research and product development, clean rooms and testing laboratories, further advancing the company's capabilities to rapidly deliver innovative solutions in support of the emerging Fiber-to-the-Premise (FTTP) markets. In addition to its U.S. based corporate headquarters, FONS has international facilities in Mexico and Ireland.

With the new U.S. facility, only minutes from several major highways, FONS will be among an elite group of prestigious companies including Verizon, Motorola, HP/Compaq, and Fidelity, to name a few, situated within this Corporate Technology Park. This high-tech facility will significantly expand FONS' capabilities for innovative and rapid design and production of high performance passive connectivity solutions. As an emerging leader within the FTTP market, FONS recognizes the need for rapid "time to market" and customer responsiveness in order to maintain its competitive advantage and further strengthen its market position within the telecommunications industry. FONS' extensive experience and technical "know-how" in passive technology, combined with this state-of-the-art facility, will allow the company to rapidly expand its industry certified, best of breed passive fiber connectivity solutions to enable all customer segments (RBOCs, Municipals, IOCs) to implement FTTP access networks.

Michael J. Noonan, President and CEO of FONS states, "With this new corporate headquarters, FONS will be optimally equipped to respond to the emerging FTTP market demands for innovative, low cost solutions for Central Office/Head End, Outside Plant and Customer Premise applications. Our investment in this new facility confirms our commitment to the rapidly growing FTTP market." Mr. Noonan continues, "The addition of advanced testing laboratories significantly broadens our capabilities to provide a comprehensive Outside Plant (OSP) product line in support of FTTP, and with over a decade of experience in the design and manufacture of fiber management hardware and pre-wired solutions, this new OSP product offering is a natural extension to our well-established Inside Plant (ISP) product offering."

Founded in 1992, Fiber Optic Network Solutions (FONS) Corporation designs and manufactures a complete line of high performance passive fiber-optic components and inter-connect solutions for single mode and multimode applications. FONS is distinguished as the first manufacturer in the industry to receive Telcordia Level 2 Certification to GR-326-CORE for a fiber optic cable assembly, representing the highest standard for optical assembly quality and reliability. FONS' total connectivity solution consists of a complete line of passive fiber optic components including Telcordia certified cable assemblies, OSP enclosures, fiber distributing frames, central office and customer premise enclosures/shelves and optical components and modules in support of the rapidly growing FTTP market.

www.fons.com.

Fluke Networks Agrees to Acquire the Access Test and Management and Portable Test Equipment and Tools groups of Harris Corporation

EVERETT, Washington, May 10, 2004 - Fluke Networks, one of the Danaher (NYSE:DHR) family of companies, announced today that it has entered into a definitive agreement to purchase Camarillo, CA-based operations of Harris Corporation for approximately $50 million in cash. The closing of the transaction is subject to certain customary conditions and is expected shortly.

The Camarillo, CA- based operations of Harris Corporation include the Access Test and Management and Portable Test Equipment and Tools groups. These groups deliver many well known and highly successful handheld test and measurement solutions for telecom technicians including butt sets, specialty tools, toners and probes.

"The acquisition of these successful product lines is an excellent, complementary fit for Fluke Networks as we position ourselves for leadership in the telecom/outside plant test market," said Chris Odell, Fluke Networks president. "We can now serve our telecom customers with everything from mission-critical Operation Support Systems (OSS) solutions, to tools that meet the everyday needs of the field technicians."

"We are looking forward to becoming an important part of an organization that is clearly intent on focusing on our telecom market," said Thomas J. Erdmann, vice president of the Camarillo operations for Harris. "We see tremendous opportunity for expanded sales of our tools and test set lines through Fluke Networks, especially internationally."

"Combining the strengths of Harris' Camarillo operations with Fluke Networks' successful and complementary industry leading solutions will better enable us to deliver true operational savings and process improvement to telecom customers in a time when they need these types of solutions the most," said Ed Sztuka, Director of Fluke Networks' Outside Plant Business Unit, into which the Camarillo operation will merge. "We can now provide increased benefits and capabilities to customers in three main areas: better and more cost effective maintenance of the local loop; more fully integrated reactive troubleshooting and repair of the local loop; and more efficient telecom processes focused on the access network."

About Fluke Networks

Fluke Networks (www.flukenetworks.com), a Danaher company, provides innovative solutions for the testing, monitoring and analysis of enterprise and telecommunications networks and the installation and certification of the fiber and copper foundation of those networks. Their comprehensive line of Network SuperVision Solutions(tm) provide network installers, owners, and maintainers with superior vision, combining speed, accuracy and ease of use to optimize network performance.

Headquartered in Everett, Washington, Fluke Networks has over 500 employees worldwide and distributes its products in more than 50 countries.

IEC Chapters Recognized For Their Legislative Leadership

ALEXANDRIA, Va. - IEC announced today the winners of this year's legislative awards, which were presented at the Legislative Conference Banquet Awards Dinner on April 29. Awards included Best Fundraising, Best Grass Roots Alert Program, Best State PAC, Best Single Issue Lobbying Campaign, Best State/Local Activism Award, Best State Lobbyist, and the Best Legislative Chapter of the Year Awards.

The Best Fundraising Award went to IEC Hampton Roads Chapter for raising an average of $383.33 per contractor member - with 67% of their contractors contributing. This is over $200 more than any other chapter raised per contractor member.

The Best Grass Roots Alert Program, Best State Political Action Committee and Best Single Issue Lobbying Campaign went to Texas State IEC, which has met or exceeded its legislative goals continually since the opening of the Austin office in May of 1998. The chapter created a Grass Roots call to action with its Bell Alert fax and also keeps its members informed with regular updates on legislative issues through its website. Its PAC has raised over $80,000 in funds to date with more projected this year through fundraisers totaling over $100,000 in funds raised and distributed. Texas State IEC has also been successful in pulling together funds for specific lobbying issues like the Electrical Licensing issue so important to its contractors. On that issue alone the legislative team for this chapter has raised more than $90,000 for lobbying efforts since November of 2002.

Rocky Mountain Chapter IEC has been politically involved in the federal, state and regulatory environment since 1996, when the association partnered with "The Kyle Group," a top-ten government relations firm in Denver. The chapter expanded its political activism by getting involved in the Denver City and County elections during the last election cycle, and was instrumental in the election of the first pro-business mayor in 10 years. This chapter has seen tremendous benefit in the recruitment and retention of membership through its government relations program and was awarded the Best State/Local Activism Award.

The Best State Lobbyist award was presented to Shawn Miller of Miller Public Affairs/IEC Oregon. Miller began his work with merit-shop contractors in the 1990s with work on the Oregon's prevailing wage law. These reforms brought about fairer competition. Last year Miller was appointed to the state labor commissioner's prevailing wage advisory committee where he serves with two other IEC members in protecting the rights of merit-shop contractors. He has built a reputation in his state as an individual who can build relationships with legislators and get things done for his clients.

The Category A Legislative Chapter of the Year Award, for a chapter with less than 25 members was presented to the Central Alabama Chapter IEC. This chapter's advances in all aspects of their overall government relations program have been outstanding, with the chapter moving from a strictly training agenda for its members to an overall transition of meeting the goals and objectives of a full service organization. This chapter has taken great strides in becoming involved with legislative activities at both the national and state levels.

The Category B Legislative Chapter of the Year award for a chapter with 26-75 members was awarded to IEC Inc. Florida West Coast Chapter. The chapter has led the way for other chapters in its state and other sub-contractor organizations during a challenging legislative year. This chapter focused more than a dozen groups and association s in Florida to lobby for change in Apprenticeship funding reform. Florida West Cost is active in lobbying for national issues such as AHPs, and is an active supporter of both the IEC Florida Power PAC and the IEC PRIDE PAC.

The Category C Legislative Chapter of the Year for a chapter with 75 or more members was awarded to IEC Oregon. IEC Oregon has become increasingly active in legislate matters since 2000. Their proactive approach has put this chapter in high standing in their state, with legislators and regulators regularly consulting the chapter on important policy matters.

Established in 1957, IEC is a trade association made up of more than 3,200 members with 74 chapters nationwide. Headquartered in Alexandria, Va., IEC is the nation's premier trade association representing America's independent electrical and systems contractors. IEC National aggressively works with the industry to establish a competitive environment for the merit shop - a philosophy that promotes the concept of free enterprise, open competition and economic opportunity for all.

www.ieci.org

The Distributor = May Be Your Best Friend

Global market changes are coming home to the telecommunications and datacom cabling industry. The past three decades have seen the steady growth and development of a relatively stable group of cable manufacturers in the marketplace. During the past year, stability went out the window. We have seen a major reconfiguration of the cable manufacturing industry. Several industry publications have written various articles on their perspective of this merger mania.

Recently, the marketplace has been besieged by news of acquisitions and mergers in the cable manufacturer arena. As profits shrink, the number of cable manufacturers has reduced and the connector/cable alliances have likewise diminished. What once looked like a winning marketing strategy now looks more like an expanding liability.

We recently spoke to several East Coast communications contractors about their choices in connector technology. All but one of the people we interviewed named Superior Modular Products http://www.smpdata.com/smp/ as their top rated choice for connector hardware. They told us that the product was highly dependable and delivered the performance required at a very competitive price. We asked them why they didn't go for one of the advertised cable and connector alliances, like NetClear™ or NetLan™. They said they tried those types of packages and did not see any advantage over the SMP offerings. The cable manufacturers warranties are still good with qualified connectors.

The marketing spin-doctors for these new combined manufacturers are trying to enhance their offerings by creating internal and external "one branded end-to-end solutions." I guess they figure that the distributors, contractors and consumers are unable to configure solutions.

Prior to recent events the majority of past changes had taken place in the connector technology. We have seen several major shifts and corporate changes in the companies that manufacture the jacks, patch panels, and other connector technology. Many of those "connector companies" have struck marketing deals with various cable manufacturers. During the past fifteen years, those relationships have changed partners often. The net result is a very confused marketplace. The ultimate solutions and partnerships between cable and connector manufacturers have changed frequently. One large end user said, "We no longer place any significant value on these ultimate solutions and product partnerships. Instead, we turn to the distributor".

We have watched the connector hardware competitors scurry about in their quest to promote various alliances with the cable manufacturers. This competition has spent "beaucoup bucks" in a host of different programs that have taken on more variations than a kaleidoscope. What they have managed to accomplish is to confuse the marketplace. The alliances have broken and changed so often that even the industry insiders cannot figure out "who's on first?" Adding to the confusion is the manufacturer warranty game. We have never been able to identify any significant buyer that has ever derived a single dime's worth of recovery from a warranty program coordinated between connector and cable manufacturers. The manufacturers of cabling connection and support hardware can stand on their own merits.

In the world of communications infrastructure, the distributor is a "no-brainer" for the connectivity solutions needed by the contractor. However, we still see many contractors failing to use or capture the values available from the distributor.

The technology pace in the communications network industry is moving so quickly that a purchasing agent would have to be dedicated to new products and improvements on a full time basis. Now, add to the frustration, the need for product testing and quality control and bingo - now you need another dozen or so full time employees. Also, don't forget the million- dollar test lab. The problems are more than just evaluating the product on a stand-alone basis, now you have to put it to work in a real network to calculate the actual performance with other components. To do that type of testing, you will require some real "high dollar" techs. Throw that in your budget.

By now, you should have gotten part of the message about why the distributor is a "no-brainer" for the contractor. Let's add a few other bonus points to the distributor value. The distributor is the communications cabling and connector markets largest buyer. For the manufacturers, maintaining the best working relationship possible with the distributor is an absolute must. The distributor is the focal point for the products to meet, combine, and create the network systems required in the marketplace.

The distributor has more purchasing clout than any other buyer in the marketplace. The distributor commands and delivers competitive prices far more effectively than any contractor could ever hope to achieve. If you are a contractor, you do not want to go it alone. Based on the track record of instability in the manufacturers branded connectivity solutions tying cables to connectors, the smart buyer goes for the dependable distributor.

Use the distributor and capture their values. Add all these values from the distributor to your total solutions package. This approach is the least expensive and most effective business insurance available.

Regarding our comments, one distributor said "Thank you for your unabashed, glowing support for the distributor. We are a little appreciated middle man in the vast supply chain. It is refreshing to have someone appreciate the fact that we do bring some value and not just provide an additional price point for contractors to "beat up" to get the lowest price."

The Distributor = May Be Your Best Friend
www.graybar.com
www.anixter.com
www.gocsc.com
www.rexel.com
http://www.accu-tech.com
http://www.naed.org
http://www.necanet.org
and a list of other distributors that would fill a thousand pages...

Cabling decisions are becoming more complicated by code, standards, safety, and environmental issues. Ignore one of these issues at your own peril.

The NFPA (National Fire Protection Association) will meet on May 23 -26th to vote on final drafts for the National Electrical Code 2005. Insiders do not see any major changes for cabling. The definitions and clarifications on the removal of abandoned cable will be reinforced. Apparently the commercial efforts to approve "limited combustible cable" as a replacement to CMP (Plenum Rated) have been shelved until the next code cycle (NEC 2008). The Standards Council recommended the delay and the Fire Test Committee has indicated that the test for "limited combustible" is not appropriate for wire and cable. In any event, the price for Plenum (CMP) or "limited combustible" cable may skyrocket as one of only two major manufacturers of FEP has ceased production due to technical difficulties. The law of supply and demand will kick in quickly.

The various standards associations are struggling with performance criteria under CAT 6 for applications in 1,000 BaseT and 10,000 Base T. We expect several cabling manufacturers to introduce new products this month that will address the higher performance issues. Several industry insiders have already commented on the possibility that CAT 6 will quickly become obsolete and replaced by the next generation technology. One expert compared the future of CAT 6 cable to CAT 2 and CAT 4. Don't blink or you might miss it.

Safety issues continue to haunt the facility managers. Currently, none of the cables tested for Plenum applications are tested for toxicity. The NFPA 262 and NFPA 255 testing methods only monitor flame spread and smoke generation. Many of the thermoplastics used in cable constructions can emit toxic gases under heat decomposition (even without burning). ASTM has a new proposed standard before it to guide in Fire Hazard Assessment, but nowhere in the proposed standard does it discuss safety from toxic fumes that incapacitate by choking and blinding occupants in egress. A recent review of the MSDS (Material Safety Data Sheet) for DuPont Teflon® FEP (available on www.wireville.com) reveals shocking information about the generation of HF (Hydrogen Fluoride) and PFIB (Perfluoroisobutylene) from heat decomposition. HF, a clear gas, becomes Hydrofluoric Acid upon contact with even minute amounts of moisture (such as humidity). The United States Army Medical Research Institute of Chemical Defense has classified PFIB, also a clear gas, as a pulmonary agent. Today's facility manager who is concerned about protecting life and property should look beyond the bold statements of "fire and smoke" safety, because that is not the whole story on safety.

The data communications department should not ignore indoor Air Quality (IAQ) and Indoor Environmental Quality (IEQ). Most of the cables installed over the past two decades contain high levels of lead in the jacketing material. As those jackets decompose, lead dust may be released. Some industry insiders compare the lead dust issue to the horrors of asbestos in the past. Abandoned cable removal and the purchase of lead-free cables are critical for the planning phase to address all communication cabling requirements. Numerous waste disposal experts are forecasting significant price increases for the removal and disposal of cables, which may soon be classified as HAZMAT. Toxic lead represents a major problem in the future. The future associated liability for the institution is frightening.

Subscriptions to get, places to go, and things to do.

· Electrical Contractor Magazine www.ecmag.com
Network Cabling Magazinewww.networkcablingmag.ca
CNS Cabling Network Systems Magazine www.cnsmagazine.com
Communication News Magazinewww.comnews.com
Cabling Installation & Maintenance Magazine www.cable-install.com
Lightwave Magazine www.lightwaveonline.com
Building Operating Management www.facilitiesnet.com/bom/
Cabling Business Magazine www.cablingbusiness.com
Buildings Magazine www.buildings.com
Cabling Standards Update Magazine*www.cablingstandards.com
Environmental Building News Magazine*www.buildinggreen.com

*Note these excellent magazines are subscriber paid publications

BOMA - Building Owners & Managers Associationswww.boma.org
NAIOP - National Assoc. of Industrial & Office Properties www.naiop.org
BICSI - A Telecommunications Association www.bicsi.org
ACUTA - Assoc. for Communications Technology Professionals in Higher Education www.acuta.org
NECA - National Electrical Contractors Association www.necanet.org
NAED - National Association of Electrical Distributors www.naed.org
NFPA - National Fire Protection Association www.nfpa.org
EWG - Environmental Working Group www.ewg.org
IEC - Independent Electrical Contractors www.ieci.org
NEMA - Natl. Electrical Manufacturers Assoc. www.nema.org
HIMSS - Healthcare Information Management Systems Society www.himss.org
ASHRAE - American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers www.ashrae.org
AIA - The American Institute of Architects www.aia.org
Amik Technology - Canada www.amiktech.ca
ABR Consulting Group - Computer/Data Center design & mgmt. www.abrconsulting.com

ENVIRONMENTAL BUILDING NEWS
Wire and Cable Article - Untangling Complex Environmental Issues.
March 2004

www.buildinggreen.com/auth/article.cfm?fileName=130301a.xml

Contact Jerelyn Wilson - tel. 802-257-7300 x 102
Environmental Building News is a monthly newsletter that brings you clear, timely, and useful information on a wide range of green building topics --- everything from land-use planning and energy efficiency to recycled-content materials and indoor air quality. EBN tells you how these elements interrelate and shows you ways to apply green building ideas and technology in your work.

Learn how to turn GREEN into GOLD

Safety tip: Teach your employees to treat every box as if it is heavy when they approach it. This encourages them to use a corner tip or the foot tap test to see if it is heavy. To test with a corner tip, you tip one corner up to see if the box is heavy. To check an object's weight before you bend down, tap the box with your foot. If it moves, chances are it is not too heavy. If it stays in place like it is glued to the floor, then the employee should get help or use a mechanical aid to lift the object safely.

CALENDAR OF EVENTS

National Cable & Telecommunications Association (NCTA)
May 2-5
New Orleans, LA
www.thenationalshow.com

BICSI 2004 Spring Conference
May 3 - 6
Baltimore, MD
www.bicsi.org

NETWORLD + INTEROP Las Vegas 2004
May 9-14
Las Vegas, NV
www.interop.com

GSA Expo 2004
May 11 - 13
Orange County Convention Center, Orlando FL
expo.gsa.gov

INTERWIRE Trade Exposition 2005
May 14 - 19
Georgia World Congress Center
Atlanta, GA
www.wirenet.org

NAED
May 15 - 19
San Francisco, CA
www.naed.org

NFPA World Safety Conference & Exposition
May 23 - 26
San Salt Palace Convention Center
Salt Lake City, Utah
www.nfpa.org/meetings

Utility Supply Management Alliance (USMA) 2004 Educational Conference
May 23 - 26
Austin TX
www.usma.com

Electric Show 2004
May 25 - 27
Indiana Convention Center
Indianapolis, IN
www.electricshow.com

Wire Expo
June 12 - 16
Cleveland, OH
www.wirenet.org

Cable Tec Expo (SCTE)
June 15 – 18
Orange County Convention Center
Orlando, FL
www.scte.org/events

SUPERCOMM 2004
June 20 - 24
McCormick Place, Chicago IL
www.supercomm2004.com

NFPA
America's Fire Expo
July 20 - 22, 2004
Miami Beach Convention Center
Miami Beach, FL
www.nfpaamericasfire.com

ACUTA 2004 Annual Conference & Exhibition
August 1 - 5
Chicago, IL
www.acuta.org

NIGP 59th Annual Forum and Products Exposition – “Set Sail For Success”
August 7 - 11
Biloxi, Mississippi
www.nigp.org ProductsExpo

Energy 2004
August 8 - 11
Rochester, NY
www.energy2004.ee.doe.gov

American Nuclear Society
2004 Utility Working Conference
August 8 - 11
Amelia Island, FL
www.ans.org

BICSI 2004 Fall Conference
August 30 - September 2
Seattle, WA
www.bicsi.org

NFOEC (National Fiber Optic Engineers Conference)
September 12 - 18th, 2004
The Anaheim Convention Center
Anaheim, CA
www.nfoec.com

CABLING SYSTEMS CONFERENCE & EXPO
Exhibits: September 22 - 24th, 2004
The Anaheim Convention Center
Anaheim, CA
cim.pennnet.com/Events/cim/cse2003/cim_cse03_general.cfm?Section=Events&Subsection=

Utility Purchasing Management Group (UPMG) 2004 Annual Conference
September 26 - 28th, 2004
The Fairmount Hotel, Chicago IL
www.upmg.com

2004 Annual IEC National Convention & Electric Expo
September 29th - October 2nd, 2004
Hyatt Regency, Minneapolis MN
www.ieci.org

NECA
October 4 - 7, 2004
Las Vegas, NV
www.necashow.org

NECA 2004
October 16 - 19th, 2004
Los Angeles, CA
www.necanet.org

REMEMBER TO RECYCLE, REDUCE AND REUSE

   
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