Chicagoland Abuzz with Anticipation of ASIS 2013

With active sidewalks filled with people strolling about in the crisp, autumn winds and signs almost everywhere you look referring to ASIS 2013, downtown Chicago is filled with the excitement and anticipation of opening day at McCormick Place.

This enthusiasm is demonstrated in the two pre-show events that I was invited to attend in which I learned more about interoperability as well as a revolutionary cloud solution.

PSIA Showcase

Just a short stroll from the hotel that I will be calling "home" for the next three nights, I had the opportunity to set in on a panel discussion about interoperability hosted by PSIA.

"There are three ways to interoperate," explained Deon Chatterton, senior manager integrated risk technologies department, Cisco, "custom integration, third party PSIM integration and system standards."

Unless manufacturers embrace and decide to use system standards that allow security devices to work together, the security industry can become a pure nightmare, filled with proprietary devices.

"An ID is an ID is an ID. At some point interaction needs to happen to add value to an organization," said Chatterton. "It's not enough to keep the bad guys out; locking doors is a given. We must go beyond just letting people in and out of doors."

Mike Faddis, Microsoft Global Security, further supported interoperability as he spoke about the cloud and IP being the future of the security industry and the need for interoperability to support both.

"This is not about competing," assured Faddis. "We must come together as an industry and embrace a holistic approach to drive specs from the end users' perspective."

How does PSIA plan to support this notion of interoperability? With the Physical-Logical Access Interoperability (PLAI) Working Group whose main goal is to develop a specification to unify logical and physical identities that allow manufacturers, integrators and end users to develop cost effective, easy-to-deploy solutions.

According to Mohammad Soleimani with Kastle Systems, PLAI has developed three levels of integration:

  • Level 1: Multiple PACS;
  • Level 2: Functional role managed by IT; and
  • Level 3: Mobile credentials.

Faddis concluded that in the end, organizations are looking to enhance functionality, improve efficiency and lower costs; therefore, to fulfill each of these goals, interoperability is the answer.

Sony Dinner at The Palmer House

The changing face of Sony through the transformation from product-focused to solution-focused versatility concluded my pre-show festivities. After a small meet and greet, and before a lovely dinner, we were presented with Sony's IPELA Cloud solution serviced by NextConnect video from Next Level Security, representing a tight integrated relationship.

What makes the IPELA Cloud solution different from all the other cloud services out there? Sony's cameras connect directly to the cloud, so there is no need for additional hardware and video is not limited. In fact, video streams directly from the site to the user, so no host costs are incurred either.

This provides a flexible system that is easy to install and gives the best quality video - even on the free app - allowed by the device in which the user is viewing it on.

"This technology allows you to break into the cloud industry without investing in a data center," said Brian Thomas, president of A3 Communications, who is piloting the IPELA Cloud.

(I will actually be visiting the Sony booth during ASIS so I can get a closer look at the IPELA Cloud along with other security solutions that Sony offers.)

With these two pre-show events acting as teasers to what is to come at ASIS 2013, I anxiously the first day of tradeshow exploration!

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