June 2019

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Haystack Connect 2019:

A Recap
John Petze, Executive Director,
Project Haystack

Marc Petock, Executive Secretary,
Project Haystack

Haystack Connect 2019

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Over 275 engaged community members and representatives from the smart building and IoT industry, along with two dozen sponsors and exhibitors from around the world took part in the 4th Haystack Connect conference held at San Diego’s Paradise Point. The goal of Project Haystack is to bring together in an open and shared community the constituents affected by the challenge of data interoperability—to work together to address the challenge of making data easily interoperable across all the of the boundaries in the built and IoT environments.

The event featured over 50 speakers from systems integrators, technology providers, OEMs, and building owners and operators who delivered a variety of presentations ranging from those centered around Haystack in Practice – Applications in the Real World, to a number of presentations focused on the technical side of Project Haystack, as well as the contributions many of the working groups are actively engaging in and delivering.

In addition, general session addresses included presentations by Jim Fletcher, Strategy Partner, Momenta Partners on Well We Don’t Know What We Don’t Know – Bringing Organization to the Data Chaos to Derive Insight and Generate Actions; Brian Frank, Founder & CEO, SkyFoundry on Haystack 4.0: What Is IT and Why It’s Important; and a lively panel discussion on The Benefits of Haystack Tagging for OEMs, moderated by Ryan Schlotfeldt, Vice President of Sales, J2 Innovations and featuring Marc Petock, Chief Marketing & Communications Officer, Lynxspring; James Johnson, Sales Engineer, Tridium; Todd Lash, Director and Segment Head – Systems and Room Automation, Siemens Industry; and Jason Houck, CIO, IoT Warez.


Haystack 4.0

The big buzz at Haystack Connect was the introduction of Haystack 4.0, a game-changing update to the Haystack standard. This new version adds data-modelling features that support the implementation of both taxonomy and the resulting ontologies that define the relationship of things and between things. This means that if a project is specified with a common data schema that can represent all the critical aspects of the building—the people, places, and assets, and the relationships between them—then the sharing of data between domains becomes straightforward and enables data from one system to be used to enhance the functionality of others. Haystack 4.0 is the culmination of over a year's worth of work resulting in new vocabulary, taxonomy, ontology, and inference that can better describe the real world through tagging and data modeling.


This year’s conference featured something new called Pitchfest. Think Shark Tank for Project Haystack. Each presenter had 10 minutes to pitch their company’s product offering and use of tagging and data modeling.


The highlight of every Haystack Connect is the appearance of the legendary Interoperable Blues Band (IBB). Not just any band, but the integration of talented players from across our industry and featured artists who join together on one magical night. This fun event featured “Band in the Round,” where community members became part of the band and live out their dreams of being a rock and roll star.

Presentation slides are available at:

For even more resources and to stay connected to all things Haystack visit us at:

On behalf of the Project Haystack Organization, we thank all the sponsors, exhibitors, speakers, and attendees for your participation in the 2019 Haystack Connect conference!


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