April 2007
Interview
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Anto BudiardjoEMAIL INTERVIEW  Anto Budiardjo & Ken Sinclair

Anto Budiardjo is President & CEO of Clasma Events Inc., the organizer of BuilConn held annually in North America, Europe and Asia as part of Clasmaís ConnectivityWeek (www.ConnectivityWeek.com). ConnectivityWeek is a collection of conferences and tradeshows related to smart connected devices, regularly made up BuilConn (www.builconn.com), M2M Expo (www.m2mexpo.com), GridWise Expo (www.gridwiseexpo.com) and Wi-tivity (www.wi-tivity.com).

Please send comments and questions to antob@clasma.com.


Formation of a perfect storm

For those who are willing to seize the opportunity, it will be truly rewarding, but for those who are unprepared, well letís just say that storms can be a bad thing. BuilConn is clearly the only place where industry leaders can get a sense of what is going to happen with ďBuildings 2.0Ē

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Sinclair:  It seems like a lot is happening with you right now.

Budiardjo:  Yes Ken, a great deal is happening in the world of convergence in 2007.

Sinclair:  How was BuilConn in the Middle East?

Budiardjo:  We concluded a very successful first event in the Middle East, both the Dubai and Riyadh events attracted a great deal of interest locally from owners, developers, the buildings industry and Iím glad to say the general and business media. There was a great deal of coverage on TV, business papers and radio as well.

Sinclair:  How significant is the Middle East market?

Budiardjo:  The potential for construction there, and thus for building systems is huge; itís not every day that you come across people having $60b development projects, or integrators responsible for 300-400 buildings (each over 40 stories tall) and groups of developers planning to build multiple mega-cities.

Sinclair:  How was the Tour in Dubai?

Budiardjo:  The tour provided people with a perspective of the size of construction projects currently underway in Dubai, as well as the vision driving them. I think most also saw the enormous opportunities in the region for technology. We visited among other things, the first Platinum LEED rated building in the Middle East. Energy got to be one of the key subjects discussed at BuilConn in Dubai and Riyadh.

Sinclair:  Tell me about the Cisco Roundtable in Dubai?

Budiardjo:  The Roundtable at the end of BuilConn was a milestone, the single most important outcome is the birth of the ďBuildings 2.0Ē concept that you can read about elsewhere in this monthís issue. Conversations with many people on Buildings 2.0 since Dubai have been very positive; it seems to be a great way to frame the future of buildings.

Sinclair:  So, now onto GridWeek, how is that coming along?

Budiardjo:  Very well, we have Secretary Bodman as a confirmed speaker, which is very significant. We have an incredible list of speakers, see www.gridweek.com/2007/agenda/speaker_list.asp. One of the highlights is a Congressional Reception on Tuesday, this promises to be good not only for the Smart Grid subject but also for the Building Automation subject.

Sinclair:  How is the link between the Grid and Buildings?

Budiardjo:  Itís much stronger than I originally anticipated, and on many dimensions. From a technology point of view there is a lot in common in the use of the Internet, the need for Interoperability, the increased adoption of wireless, the use of gateways as well as the need for smart middleware and service oriented applications. From a disruption perspective, there are also many similarities.  There are subjects such as Demand Response that really get into buildings in a big way.

Sinclair:  How does that impact building integrators and contractors?

Budiardjo:  Utility companies cannot generate enough energy in the coming years, so they are looking to the demand side (commercial, industrial buildings as well as residential) to reduce peak load. And the utility companies are willing to pay handsomely for this; itís a good alternative for them to trying to build generating plants.

Sinclair:  How will this be presented in Chicago at BuilConn this May?

Budiardjo:  On two fronts, firstly there will be a Demand Response Roundtable as part of ConnectivityWeek this May. We will have utility companies seeking to work with building automation folks to facilitate Demand Response; they are basically giving away money, no kidding!

Secondly, in Chicago we will have for the second year running, the GridWise Expo. This will include a day-long conference on Smart Grid, as a follow up and continuation of GridWeek.

Your readers should not underestimate the opportunities that energy and the Smart Grid can bring to them today.

CatNet Systems Sinclair:  What else will be focused on at BuilConn in Chicago?

Budiardjo:  Following on from Dubai, the Connected Roundtable on Tuesday will discuss how to make Buildings 2.0 a reality, and the track on Wednesday will be focused on creating a Roadmap for Buildings 2.0.

We anticipate having building owners talking about their desires to build based on Buildings 2.0!

As normal, the Keynotes will be very strong, with the key themes of energy as a key application driving convergence and wireless as a fundamental disruptive technology that is starting to become a widespread reality.

And of course, we should not forget the IBB, the only place this industry gets together and jams. Without a doubt the highlight of getting people from different perspectives of buildings to get on the same chord!

Sinclair:  Are you also doing the ZigBee Expo in Chicago?

Budiardjo:  Yes, this is a first time for this event; we are working with the ZigBee Alliance. The focus is to highlight the products that are that now starting to become available using ZigBee. Many of these products are designed for commercial buildings and the energy application; this links nicely to GridWise Expo and BuilConn.

Sinclair:  And of course you will be handing out Buildy Awards.

Budiardjo:  Yes, this will be the fourth year of Buildy; we look forward to receiving interesting nominations (nominations can be submitted to frank@clasma.com up to April 15). See Frank interview on Buildy.

Sinclair:  How would you describe all of this, it seems to be coming together in a real big way?

Budiardjo:  The best description is the formation of a perfect storm. For those who are willing to seize the opportunity, it will be truly rewarding, but for those who are unprepared, well letís just say that storms can be a bad thing. BuilConn is clearly the only place where industry leaders can get a sense of what is going to happen with Buildings 2.0.

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