Updates from the GSX 2021 Show Floor: Day 2

As I mentioned yesterday, GSX 2021 is my first foray into the world of security conferences and trade shows. And if Day 1 was the day I succeeded in not drowning, Day 2 was the day I managed to tread water and even swim a little bit. The farther I walked and the more people I talked to, the more secure—no pun intended—I felt. And it gave me a sense of the irreplaceability of in-person events and real, live, face-to-face interaction with total strangers.

I’m sure that veterans of these events have collected small mountains of branded giveaways and knick-knacks: pens, notebooks, flashlights, koozies, coffee mugs, water tumblers, keychains, T-shirts, and so on. With each of these token prizes comes a conversation: approaching an unfamiliar booth, getting an overview of a company and its products, trading business cards, and adding another name to my growing network of professional contacts. A tangible reminder of that conversation—and the potential for professional collaboration—lives on in the form of, say, a bright orange stress ball, which will likely roll around in my desk drawer for the next several years.

It’s great to see old colleagues. To solidify and extend existing partnerships. To touch base with familiar people and companies, strengthen old relationships. But the unique benefit of something like a trade show is that it puts you in the same room with companies that you haven’t worked with before—people and companies and solutions that you’ve never heard of. It’s an opportunity to have a new conversation with a new face, to expand as well as deepen your network. It’s the chance to learn things you never knew you never knew.

It’s not a new observation that the digital world gives us tunnel vision. We curate our social media feeds to show us only what we want to see (things we’re familiar with, things we agree with)—and nothing else. It’s only in person that we’re forced to engage at length with the unfamiliar. And this is why, in my—again, hilariously inexperienced—opinion, trade shows will never go away entirely, even after the pandemic subsides. The Internet can never replace face-to-face interaction for the sole reason that you can’t Google a company whose name you’ve never encountered. But once the connection has been sparked, the possibility for collaboration is endless.

About the Author

Matt Jones is senior editor of Spaces4Learning and Campus Security and Life Safety. He can be reached at MJones@1105media.com


  • Live From ISC West 2023: Day 1

    ISC West 2023 in Las Vegas, Nevada, has officially begun! Make sure to keep an eye on Security Today’s ISCW Live 2023 page, as well as our associated Twitter accounts—@SecurToday and @CampusSecur—for the latest updates from the show floor at the Venetian Expo. Read Now

    • Industry Events
    • ISC West
  • It Happened Again

    Just yesterday (as of this writing), it happened again. A 28-year-old woman shot her way into a Christian elementary school in Nashville, Tenn., on Monday and killed three children and three adults, according to national news. AP News reports that the victims were three 9-year-old children, a top school administrator, a substitute teacher, and a school custodian Read Now

  • Let's Get to Work

    You are standing at the conference center doors just waiting to get into the exhibit hall. I know you are because I’m standing next to you. This week at ISC West has been three years in the making. Last year was encouraging, and here we are waiting for the Big Show. Read Now

    • Industry Events
    • ISC West
  • Using Modern Technology

    Using Modern Technology

    Workplace violence is a serious and growing challenge for many organizations — including those in the healthcare industry. Read Now

Featured Cybersecurity

New Products

  • PACE® Long Range Ethernet Solutions

    PACE® Long Range Ethernet Solutions

    Altronix introduces the newest addition to its portfolio of PACE® Long Range Ethernet Solutions. 3

  • ComNet CNGE6FX2TX4PoE

    The ComNet cost-efficient CNGE6FX2TX4PoE is a six-port switch that offers four Gbps TX ports that support the IEEE802.3at standard and provide up to 30 watts of PoE to PDs. It also has a dedicated FX/TX combination port as well as a single FX SFP to act as an additional port or an uplink port, giving the user additional options in managing network traffic. The CNGE6FX2TX4PoE is designed for use in unconditioned environments and typically used in perimeter surveillance. 3

  • Paxton10 CORE Cameras

    Paxton10 CORE Cameras

    The new CORE Series cameras feature edge processing for ultimate scalability, built-in edge storage, and plug-and-play installation. The addition of the CORE Series gives installers new hardware, better choice, and more value than ever before. 3