Episode 401 ControlTalk Now: Reinvention, Education, and AHR

Welcome to Episode 401 of ControlTalk Now The HVAC and Smart Building Controls Podcast.

It has been a minute, and in this episode, I will give you an update on what is going on with Ken and me, and plans for ControlTrends.

My guest this week is Automated Buildings, Ken Sinclair. Ken has been the force behind the informative educational sessions at AHR for the past 25 years. Thanks to Ken for the breakdown of this year’s sessions. To take a peek at what was covered in this year’s sessions, click on the links below. These links will also get you to the videos of each session when they are available.

Show Notes:

Hi, this Eric Stromquist. Welcome to control talk now your smart buildings videocast and podcast for the week ending? February 12 2023. This is episode 401. Or maybe it’s just episode one, as we are sort of in the process of reinventing ourselves here. So a couple questions I want to answer right off the bat. A lot of people asking what happened to you and Ken, why did you guys stop recording control talk now? And why did you stop posting. So control channels was always created as a source of a great value or control news that you could use. And when COVID hit.

Let’s break it down, man. That’s what I want my audience to hear today is all about those educational sessions and some of the highlights of them.

Ken Sinclair 7:28
Okay, well, for the frustration for me, of course, because I was unable to make it to Atlanta, which it’s been it’s been a while it was our 23rd year of putting on the show. And it’s the first time I was not able to go, of course. But yeah, so I had a few few health issues that prevented me from traveling, so I was really bummed not to be there. And I wanted to ask you about that, because you did watch the whole session virtually. And you know, you were missed, for sure. Suffice it to say, Man, congratulations for getting this captured and understand these sessions will be on automated So people that missed it will be able to check these sessions out. Is that accurate? That is correct. Yep. Now that and as it’ll actually just build off of the same menu as we used for HR. So as you go to the,to the event, and we have all of our sessions listed there, as you click on the session that reminds you of who the speakers were. And then there’ll just be an actual link to the the actual production of it. Yeah, this will.

Eric Stromquist 8:40
Well, I want to get into some of the sessions, give an overview for our audience so that when these things are posted, they can go check it out. So let’s talk with anto and the very first the summit, right, which wasn’t actually one of the educational system. Sessions, I don’t believe but talk about what what that groups up to.

Ken Sinclair 9:01
Okay, well, they the summit was was was basically nothing to do with the Cochrane and automated buildings EHR sites, it was tacked on as a pre site or pre pre session, I’m sorry, is the correct word I’m looking for. And we felt there was a need to sort of educate the industry. And this came out of our Monday live group, and anto and all the folks that are over there that are running, running that they put together this session, and we put it online and lo and behold, it’s sold out. That was the amazing event. We kind of thought that we could we had a room that we could seek 200 And we exceeded that. And so then we were forced to put it online. And again They just put it online just like we do the Monday live meetings.

Eric Stromquist 10:05
The Summit really impresses me. And you’re part of that, right? I mean, you’re part of the Monday live group and for audience who might not know, what’s the mission of this? What’s the mission of that group? And, and so what are some of the key takeaways?

Ken Sinclair 10:21
Well, I think the big thing is, is we moved from smart buildings to smarter buildings, because we we came to the conclusion that smart suggests we’re done. And we’re all pretty, pretty agreed on the fact that we’re not even close to done smarter is a goal that we all need to achieve. So I think that’s, that’s one 1/5. They’ve also done a lot of work with, with government is trying to make public the public aware. So we’re actually moving out of the industry into politics and starting to motivate, and educate is probably the better word educate the industry.

Eric Stromquist 11:09
Yeah, it’s interesting, Ken, part of my studies over the last couple of years, you know, really doing a deep dive into, you know, marketing campaigns, and what companies are focusing on a key part of any company’s marketing now is their social responsibility and how they are responding to that. So I think, you know, our industry really offers those companies that want to highlight that, you know, the opportunity to do that through their systems, and also through their diagnostics and their analytics. So I can so let’s let’s talk about, you know, wanting the first session, which deals with sort of one of the biggest problems that all of us have is, how do you get good people? And how do you establish and there was a session with that, talk about that, who was there? And what were some of the key takeaways?

Ken Sinclair 11:53
But the problem is, we’re running out of old guys, maybe that’s the lot of folks are retiring like you and I, we’re trying, we’re trying to get out. And there’s, you know, almost nobody gets out of our industry. But the problem is we need to get new people in and our industry is radically changing from I joked in one of my talks about we’ve come from air to air, we’ve come from pneumatic to clouds. And now everything we do is in the clouds and the IT people are basically the feedstock of the people coming into the industry.

Eric Stromquist 12:33
Very, very cool. Well, so yeah, obviously, that’s a very timely session there. And Melissa Bardwell was one of the really great people with that. So that was the first session. And Ken then we went on to cybersecurity and building automation controls, tell us a little bit about that session.

Ken Sinclair 12:48
Well, of course, cybersecurity is, in a lot of ways, these are programs or sessions, they kind of lead on, on importance. I think the most important thing to us was how do we get some people into our industry? The next one is how do we keep our industry secure? And some great discussions there. And of course, that was led by Brian Turner. And he had a powerful cast of folks there as well. And, yeah, it’s, it’s just something we all have to do it. It used to be, you know, like, load up virus protection for your, for your computer. But now it’s, it’s it’s much more complex. And it’s going to even get more complex now that we have the ability of having AI as part of the tools of the of the folks that are going to be attacking me or building so everything’s getting way more sophisticated.

Eric Stromquist 13:49
There’s anyway, alright, Cam Well, well, next, you had the opportunity and ESG session. What’s that all about?

Ken Sinclair 13:59
Yeah, well, the ESG, of course, is, again, I hadn’t thought of this. These are all actually rolling out very well. And the fact of the importance of what’s going on in the industry is get the people into the industry, keep the industry secure. And then basically, we have to be environmentally correct, socially correct. And we have to interface with government ESGs. So and now we’re even having to prove what that we’re doing that and of course, this puts a big focus on the building automation industry, because we need to document that we are actually saving the energy that we are socially responsible. And we’re even getting into where did where did we buy our energy? How clean is it? There’s just a whole bunch of stuff going on. So it’s an again, a great opportunity for the industry to actually use these automation systems that we’ve created to, to basically prove that we are socially responsible

Eric Stromquist 15:07
long. So listen, let me just run down to a few of the other sessions and they’ll all be on your site. We had looks like did you guys do a live Monday live?

Ken Sinclair 15:15
No, no, it was just there was just too much, too much going on. To do that.

Eric Stromquist 15:21
We had a session on Metaverse, digital twins and augmented reality, one of my favorite subjects, that must have been pretty cool, who let the camera real quick, I just want to want to hit on some of these others. You know, obviously, there was a project haystack session, most of our people for me were project haystack on Tuesday to be sbhs in the cloud, the future of the industry, which you know, is going to be really compelling. He also did the move for smart buildings to smarter buildings that transcend bas design and specifications in the future row of division 2525, which I know is near and dear to the heart of the CB, the C four sp, we also had the BACnet SC as a foundation of secure and interoperable bas security sort of tags back into this session on cybersecurity. And then last but not least, was the IP networking fundamentals for construction professionals. Dude, you got a lot covered in this. So for our audience that sort of wants to see these things, talk about how they can get these and, and when they’re going to be up on your site.

Ken Sinclair 16:30
But as I mentioned, they’re they’re on our site now. And there’s there’s bits and pieces of the information. I think we’re we’re not sure exactly when we’re going to have our video at it. So I would guess in within weeks or something, we should have that up and it will populate out of the same menu. So if you go to the menu of the original show, you can see what the events were like and eventually what will appear there is the the actual YouTube of the event

Eric Stromquist 17:02
and really, really impressed with that Ken, I’m gonna have to hop off. So listen, thank you so much for your time. Ken Sinclair, automated Be sure to check out the new site if you haven’t already. And be sure to check back because he’s got some great videos that are coming up covering hr 2023. Well done on your educational industrial sessions, my friend industry sessions. Great. Okay, cool. All right. Well, there you go, man, that is either episode 401 or episode one of the new control talk now. I realize it might be a little choppy, but we are going to get better at it. And I don’t necessarily think I’m gonna post them every week I might. But whereas before Kenny and I sort of got locked into the conventional wisdom of you post every single week at the same time, I’m not sure that that really is necessarily the case anymore. I think we’re way I’m gonna roll now is I’m gonna post when I get something unique or useful to say so I got a good guest or a new product or something that I think you is worth your time. We will do another episode of control talk now. Until then, remember, be bold. Stay in control, and be relevant. See you next time.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Stay In The Know. Join The Control Trends Newsletter.