TMCnet - World's Largest Communications and Technology Community



tmc logo
September 2007 | Volume 10 / Nuber 9
The Zippy Files

ITEXPO Basks in Sunny Los Angeles

Since this issue of our splendid magazine will be distributed at the world’s ultimate IP Communications Conference, otherwise known as the INTERNET TELEPHONY Conference & EXPO, I can’t help but think about expos, past, present and future.

I’m glad we’re holding ITEXPO West at the Los Angeles Convention Center. I’ve been visiting there on and off since 1996. It’s the place where Harry Newton scored a huge success with his Computer Telephony Expo in the 1990s, and its vast structure, a zillion metal-and-glass tetrahedrons welded together into something that was apparently inspired by a Buckminster Fuller geodesic dome, keeps appearing as a location used in commercials, TV productions (Star Trek: Voyager), fashion-model shoots, video games and big-screen movies such as Starship Troopers, Demolition Man, Showgirls, and Face/Off. (I used to be in “the business” so I tend to notice these things.)

One of my more amusing visits to the LA Convention Center occurred in 2002, when CT Expo shared the building with a boat show. The separation between the two shows apparently wasn’t quite as distinct as you’d might expect, so yacht owners were wandering over and asking, “Is this is the place to buy a phone system for my boat?” Hmm, waterproof key systems - why not? (Venture capitalists, take note: I’m available to develop this idea.)

In 1999, the Convention Center got a new neighbor, the $375 million, 900,000 square foot Staples Center, which can seat 20,000 spectators for basketball and 19,000 for hockey. One of my best LA Expo visits involved Ziatech (now part of Performance Technologies) inviting editors to view an LA Lakers game from a suite at the Staples Center. The suites are strategically arranged in three levels in the center of the bowl. It was Shaquille O’Neal’s birthday - who single-handedly scored about 70 points that evening - and a gaggle of cheerleaders visited the suite and were photographed with Yours Truly and my somewhat inebriated editorial brethren. The food was great too.

Speaking of food, I think I may be the only person in the history of world who actually gets a kick out of eating expo food: The assortment of chile dogs, rubber chicken, burgers and Caesar salads represents the true international cuisine of corporate travelers and exhibitors. Most of the time, of course, you’re too busy to actually eat anything there. ITEXPO, in particular, will keep you in motion from booth-to-booth, and from conference session-to-conference session. After all, it’s the premier event for helping the world’s enterprises select and deploy IP-based voice, video, fax, and unified communications. It’s also where network operators and service providers figure out how to profitably roll out distinctive, churn-busting services to their subscribers. The enormous Exhibit Hall will be chock-full of solutions for enterprises, SMBs, government and service providers. Every industry has its “gathering place” and in recent years ITEXPO has become a nexus where buyers, sellers, resellers, and manufacturers meet to forge relationships and close deals.

So if you see somebody in a Brooks Brothers suit clutching a laptop bag and a digital camera and (dare I say it) zipping about the LA Convention Center during September 10-12, 2007, yell out a hello. I can use the encouragement in my old age. IT

Richard Grigonis is Executive Editor of TMC’s IP Communications Group.

» Internet Telephony Magazine Table of Contents

Today @ TMC
Upcoming Events
ITEXPO West 2012
October 2- 5, 2012
The Austin Convention Center
Austin, Texas
The World's Premier Managed Services and Cloud Computing Event
Click for Dates and Locations
Mobility Tech Conference & Expo
October 3- 5, 2012
The Austin Convention Center
Austin, Texas
Cloud Communications Summit
October 3- 5, 2012
The Austin Convention Center
Austin, Texas