Rockwell Automation Automation Fair 2007

Well, another successful event - good job guys. Man, the lunch line moves fast, eh!! In a nutshell, my impressions were positive as a user. As always, the booths were well manned, questions answered, and a there was a good collection of third-party people from whom you could find out about stuff that Rockwell doesn't do - like load cell interfacing and the like. Not to bore you with details, it is obvious that the Logix platform is their focus - in hardware AND software. Be sure to get your migration path in order. Their service of migrating other vendors users (Modicon, Siemens, etc) to the Logix platform is very cool. I ran into old friend Joe Vidmar (not that you're old, Joe:)) who explained the service to me. Users might like it - vendors wont!! Factory Talk--and this is my own observation--is the enterprise platform for RA. ALL software components will conform to FT. ALL users conform as well. RSLogix 7.3 is the last Everlock run-time-protected version (diskette stuff) - version 8.0 will use FT activation, which uses the web. You MUST have a certain level of FT installed as well.. What this does for the complete software suite is to 'Microsoft' it. Many customer dollars will be spent on licensing and getting current - because you will have to. Better talk to your guys about this - the budget surprise could be huge!! I talked to an industrial electrician friend of mine who was there for the first time, and he was intimidated by the newest technology. One has to wonder why. I consider him to be one of the brightest light bulbs on the ceiling. Once FT becomes entrenched, it may look very different that what it is right now.. but I suspect not. RA changed the support structure a few years back, and now will go after the FT upgrade path. Again only my observations. What were your thoughts on the fair? Any tech sesions that were good? And make no mistake - we will pay the money to stay with Rockwell. In many eyes, it is the best solution out there. There were almost as many registred attendees to the AF than there was at the ISA show in Houston. wow eh!!
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