ISA NEWS RELEASE
Contact: Jennifer Infantino
ISA EXPO 2008 Comes to Houston Next Week
Annual Automation Event Draws Huge Crowds, Tourism for Houston Area
Research Triangle Park, NC (8 October 2008) – ISA EXPO 2008 will be held next week, 14-16 October, at the Reliant Center in Houston, Texas. As the Gulf Coast area continues to rebuild from Hurricanes Gustav and Ike, more than 12,000 ISA EXPO attendees are expected to flock to Houston for a cutting-edge technical conference and exhibition. The event will also feature some local flavor, with a well known Houstonite as a keynote speaker, a unique event to introduce Houston-area high school and middle school students to careers in automation, a networking party for area college students and young professionals, and a fund raiser to help the area rebuild from the hurricanes.
ISA will collect financial donations for the Red Cross’ Hurricane Ike Relief Fund throughout ISA EXPO 2008, and will dedicate the event’s industry reception to the relief effort with a silent auction. Individuals can donate by bringing cash or checks made out to the American Red Cross to ISA EXPO throughout the week, and can bid on several items at the silent auction, held during the industry reception at the Reliant Center on Tuesday, 14 October, 5:30 – 7 p.m. Companies can donate through matching funds, a one-time donation, or a gift for the silent auction. ISA has pledged to match funds collected up to $10,000.
Attendees will also celebrate their contributions to the profession during ISA EXPO 2008 through Automation Career Week. Automation Career Week has been recognized by Governor Rick Perry as an important week to thank automation professionals of all ages for the work that they have done and will do for the country and the world.
As part of ISA’s workforce development efforts, for the first time at ISA EXPO, middle and high school students will be able to participate in an event of their own – iAU2M8.08. iAU2M8.08 is a one-of-a-kind event designed to introduce middle and high school students to the automation profession. It will be held on Thursday, 16 October, and 400 students are planned to attend from local Houston-area schools. The students will learn more about automation careers through a tour of exhibits and the ISA EXPO show floor, and a dynamic keynote speaker, John Hanks from National Instruments, who will discuss automation careers and possibilities. Hanks is the Vice President of Industrial and Embedded Products at National Instruments, and leads NI’s future software and hardware product strategy and marketing. National Instruments’ team of more than 2000 engineers create products to help scientist and engineers around the world invent new products and processes such as mind-controlled wheelchairs to new windmill monitoring and control systems.
Young automation professionals under age 30 and area college students will enjoy the third annual YAPFEST celebration, held 14 October. The event offers young professionals and students a chance to network and interact with sponsor companies and media, hand out their resumes, and learn more about the automation profession.
ISA EXPO 2008 will feature six information-packed exchanges focused on security, safety, process automation, environmental and quality control, wireless and networking, and enterprise integration. Events open to all include three keynote speakers, dozens of technology briefings, a 70,000+ square foot exhibition, and several networking opportunities. ISA will also hold a wide variety of technical training courses and seminars during the event for current automation professionals.
Dr. John Lienhard, a nationally-acclaimed radio host and the M.D. Anderson Professor Emeritus of Mechanical Engineering and History at the University of Houston, will deliver a keynote address entitled “Feedback Control: How We Learned to Think Negatively in 300 B.C.” on Thursday, 16 October, at 9:00 a.m. Dr. Lienhard’s radio show, The Engines of Our Ingenuity, airs five days a week on NPR on more than 45 stations across the country. Dr. Lienhard uses the record of history to reveal the way art, technology, and ideas have shaped us, and to show how our culture is formed by human creativity. Dr. Lienhard has authored several books highlighting the inspiration of invention and how our culture both influences, and is influenced by, invention. Additional keynote speakers include cold fusion expert Dr. David Nagel, Research Professor at The George Washington University, and Smart Dust inventor Dr. Kristofer Pister, Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Sciences at UC Berkeley.
For more information about ISA EXPO, or to register to attend (complimentary press registration is available), visit www.isa.org/isaexpo2008 or call (919) 549-8411.
Founded in 1945, ISA (www.isa.org) is a leading, global, nonprofit organization that is setting the standard for automation by helping over 30,000 worldwide members and other professionals solve difficult technical problems, while enhancing their leadership and personal career capabilities. Based in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina, ISA develops standards; certifies industry professionals; provides education and training; publishes books and technical articles; and hosts the largest conference and exhibition for automation professionals in the Western Hemisphere. ISA is the founding sponsor of The Automation Federation (www.automationfederation.org).