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A new name and new mission

This issue marks the start of an exciting next phase for Cabling Systems, a magazine launched in 1998 when the industry it covered and the world in general was a very different place.With the structur...

January 1, 2004  

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This issue marks the start of an exciting next phase for Cabling Systems, a magazine launched in 1998 when the industry it covered and the world in general was a very different place.

With the structured cabling, telecommunications and networking sectors all in a state of transition, it became apparent six months ago that change would be necessary.

Russ Oliver, BICSI’s new president, talked about the transformation occurring everywhere during his inaugural speech at the association’s Winter Conference in January.

An evolution is underway, he said, one that has resulted in its traditional telecommunications base evolving into a communications, life, safety and automation industry made up wireless, security, cabling, voice, data, audio visual and automation.

Liam Galin, president and CEO of RiT Technologies Ltd., believes that the structured cabling industry in particular, has matured to the point where it is open to new ideas. As an example, BICSI today, he says, is not just about cable, but the power of the Internet, convergence, VoIP and security issues.

In terms of security, which is the focus of this issue’s cover story, John Dixon, Strategic Account Manager with SecureLogix Corp. in San Antonio, Tex, put a rather large pin prick in the VoIP bubble at the conference.

“What we have argued is that organizations are probably ill-served to go rapidly forward with a deployment until they have addressed and quantified their existing voice and security requirements,” he told delegates.

According SecureLogix, a company that was formed in 1998 by data and voice security experts from the U.S. Air Force Information Warfare Centre and Ernst & Young, the emergence of IP telephony is increasing the complexity of an already complicated telecommunications environment.

It warns that as it becomes a “business critical application” it will inevitably become a favourite target for hackers who will “inflict a level of damage and disruption of VoIP services more staggering than we can imagine today.”

Not that there will be any stopping the IP juggernaut. “Everything is going down the convergence path,” says John Papadakis, senior VP of Avaya Canada Global Services in an article about the company’s current and future direction on p. 8. “IP is not something that’s coming down the pipe and may happen.”

Christian Bazinet, national manager, product and technology marketing at Cisco Systems Canada Co., writes on p. 17 that it is emerging as a mainstream technology because it delivers real and measurable benefits. Cisco believes that the “killer app” is not one single application, but the ability to provide a multitude of personalized applications over a phone system, which previously could do little more than ring.

Still, the security factor will remain paramount. Roman Dabrowski, Canadian director of BICSI, says members who design telecom systems need to extend their knowledge behind telephony and data into understanding network and physical security applications.

The industry is no longer just voice and data, he writes on p. 24, now it’s cameras, monitors, door controls, HVAC, card readers, scanners and other devices that were not previously part of the network.

As always, your comments are welcomed. A quick and easy way to do that is through our reader feedback section on the magazine’s new web site at

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