While you're reading this magazine, I'll be working at the International Broadcasting Convention, IBC. I'll be touring the exhibit halls at the RAI, visiting with exhibitors. Or perhaps, I'll be coasting lazily down one of the many Amsterdam waterways in a canal boat, drinking a good brew. Okay, the first will happen. I'm not so sure about the second.
The IBC is in some ways the show NAB ought to be. First, IBC is slower-paced. There's less frenzy. Everyone seems so busy at NAB. I tell readers that the noise level, figuratively speaking, is so high at NAB that you can't hear anything. At NAB, we don't see all we want to see, we don't visit all those we would like to visit. Worst of all, by the time the show is over, attendees and exhibitors alike are so overwhelmed with information they can't remember half of what took place.
On the other hand, the IBC looks like a traditional trade show. It focuses on the same technology as NAB, but with the added flair of being a truly international exposition. Three key differences I notice. First, the IBC show is longer. The exhibits run for five days instead of four. Second, the IBC is admittedly a smaller show in terms of headcount, but that's really a significant plus for both attendee and exhibitor. Third, IBC has become a far more congenial show than NAB, with more time to meet and visit in a less pressured setting. Friends often meet over a beer in an exhibitor's stand to discuss new products and technology.
I also find that IBC is a better place to develop friendships that span the distance between the United States and other countries. Exhibitors seem genuinely happy that you've stopped by to see them. At NAB, you're expected to stop by. Miss an appointment and the NAB exhibitors are angry. If the same thing happens at IBC, the exhibitor is disappointed you weren't able to see them. The difference is civility.
If you're not going, keep checking the Broadcast Engineering Web site. We have lots of new products for the show already posted there. By the way, if you are looking for information on new products, don't miss the new Product Shop section of the Web site. If a new product was released in the past nine months, it's probably listed in the Product Shop. You can search the site for specific technology, a product name or just browse.
If you're fortunate to be among the expected 40,000 attendees at IBC, look me up.
The Product Shop
To view all Broadcast Engineering products for 2003, look for The Product Shop logo at www.broadcastengineering.com