CEDIA EXPO 2008 attracted 25,000 attendees and saw a rise in the number of non-exhibiting professionals in attendance.


Twenty years ago, a small group of custom electronic design professionals got together to create the Custom Electronic Design & Installation Association (CEDIA) and further their goals of advancing the electronics systems industry. Today, that organization has grown to be 3,500 members strong and CEDIA has no intention of letting this important milestone pass without notice.

At this year’s annual CEDIA EXPO taking place in Atlanta Sept. 9-13, attendees can expect several new events and features, as well as the same networking opportunities, valuable education sessions and hands-on product training always available. In addition, more than 400 exhibitors will be displaying the newest custom electronics products and solutions at the Georgia World Congress Center where more than 20,000 attendees are expected to congregate.

More than 500 hours of education will be available to attendees during the EXPO, and for the first time this year, CEDIA’s Technology Council will host four all-new discussion panels.

The first Technology Council-sponsored session, “How to Make Money and a Difference in the Green Building Industry,” will feature a panel including CEDIA chairman Ken Erdmann, who will discuss the opportunities and threats associated with environmentally-conscious projects. The second session, scheduled for Thursday, is entitled “3D: What You Must Know,” and will focus on the latest trends in home theater technology. On Friday, a session called “HDMI Hot Seat” will feature a panel of industry leaders and system integrators from companies such as THX, Quantum Data and Crestron Electronics, who will discuss the HDMI features, current issues, future options and possible alternatives.

Lastly, to ensure that subject matter is on the cutting edge of the industry, a session on Sunday simply is titled “Watch This Space” and has yet to be assigned a topic. This session will be reserved for whatever of-the-moment topic arises between now and mid-August, when it will be named.

At the 2009 Electronic Lifestyles Awards Banquet, CEDIA will recognize its two-decade history by naming the first CEDIA Fellows, an exclusive group of core members and volunteers who have played a significant role in the association’s efforts over the years.

The Electronic Lifestyles Banquet and 20th Anniversary Celebration will take place on Saturday night and also will be the setting for the announcement and presentation of CEDIA’s annual awards.

Three products, with release dates after Sept. 30, 2009, were chosen as finalists in the Best New Technology award -- Crestron Electronics’ V15-F, Sanus Systems’ VisionMount VLT1-B1 SuperSlim Tilting Mount and Universal Remote Control’s KP-4000 Network Keypad and MRX-a Network Base Station. One will be presented with the award based on its innovation, value to technician, value to business, impact on the client’s lifestyle and performance. Ten of the 33 Best New Product award finalists, including products released between Sept. 30, 2008, and Sept. 30, 2009, will be honored as well.

Last year’s award winners will be on display for the first time in the CEDIA Product Hall of Fame Showcase -- another new EXPO feature for 2009. The showcase includes nine products selected at last year’s banquet, and this year’s winners will be inducted into the 2009 Product Hall of Fame.

At the Annual Meeting & Membership Breakfast on Friday morning, another legacy will be honored. Astronaut Dr. Buzz Aldrin, a member of the Apollo 11 mission, who made the first manned lunar landing 40 years ago, will deliver a keynote address.

For more information or to register for the CEDIA EXPO, visit www.cedia.org/expo or call 800-669-5329.