A crowd of nearly 100,000 people converge on a town in the middle of the desert...
That's not the setup for a joke or a novel, it's what many broadcasters will do next month. The 2013 NAB Show will draw us together just as it has in previous years to discuss everything broadcasting and electronic media. We'll skip the feeling of deja vu and the comments of "Didn't we just wrap up the 2012 convention?"
So what's on the agenda this time? Lots of new products, more sessions than ever, several high-profile speakers, and an expanded convention scope. The convention itself extends beyond broadcasting, and I hear comments every year that ponder if the convention is forgetting its broadcast roots. I think broadcasting is still firmly at the center of the event. The allied industries represented in the sessions and on the exhibit floor add to the experience and in many ways can enhance the educational aspect.
As in the new normal, the radio and pro audio areas are in the front of the Central Hall. We who focus on radio find this convenient for the easy access to the South Hall session rooms where the Broadcast Engineering Conference sessions are held, but it's also easy to get to the North Hall meeting rooms. And it's obviously between the other two halls, which reduces some of the distance I have cover to see the exhibits that apply to radio but aren't in the Radio Hall.
What is there to see this year? This issue is full of information to help you find your way at the 2013 NAB Show. We have assembled a collection of new products that will be unveiled this year in our new products coverage. From the mic to the antenna or streaming server, you'll find plenty of new things to see on the exhibit floor.
You can plan your stops ahead of the convention with our annual pull-out Radio Hall map, which is included in this issue. This includes an exhibitor index to find who you need to see.
The exhibits are big, but they're not the only focus of the convention. The Broadcast Engineering Conference begins on Saturday with the Society of Broadcast Engineers Ennes Workshop. The theme this year is Alternative Delivery: How to Make it Work. If you usually arrive on Sunday, see if you can get to Las Vegas earlier so you can attend all the Broadcast Engineering Conference sessions.
The remainder of the BEC covers new and emerging technology, HD Radio, regulatory issues, emergency operations, datacasting and and several other topics. The wide range of information is sure to appeal to you in some way. We've created a condensed session timetable for you in our convention preview as well.
But there are some sessions outside the Broadcast Engineering track that may interest engineers. On Monday at 1 p.m. I will moderate a session in the Broadcast Management Conference called Top Radio Technologies You'll See on the Floor. Tom Atkins, Jim Paluzzi and Norm Philips are part of the discussion to highlight new technologies being shown at the exhibit floor.
Ongoing reports show that radio revenues are up, and the economy has positive indicators. It's likely the convention attendance figures will rise again this year. Perhaps I'll see you at the convention.