As clichéd as it sounds, the one constant in CE is change. That’s why resistance to it always comes as a surprise.
Recently a story of mine went online that dealt with sustainable architecture principles, with a special focus on Daylight Harvesting: programming a lighting control system to respond to daylight levels so as to maintain a constant light level, and hence use less energy.
One reader comment pointed out that “after more than 15 years in CI with lighting control, no client has ever talked of conservation or energy management. Nice idea, but who cares?”
Fair enough, but it misses the point that what was once is not what’s going to be. Fifteen years ago we all thought that Super VHS andHi8 were great ideas. Who’s still running S-video cables today? Going further, it wasn’t that long ago that there was still margin in video displays. I could go on, but you get the point.
In the past I’ve been just as dismissive of the idea of Green Design as being all sturm und drang, with no real evidence that it’s a decision driver amongst potential clients. Yet that’s clearly changing. Programming a control system to respond to input from a photo sensor is a piece of cake, but integrators need to speak up and let the major parties in construction, the client and their architects and builders know that you can do these things for them.
My advice to integrators remains the same: what you’re making money doing today is not guaranteed to be your bread and butter tomorrow. In fact, it’s quite the opposite. Keep an eye on technology trends, and educate yourself so that you can be there for client who are going to want things that they didn’t want before.