From the CT&T Editor: There’s Always Something New

David Danto argues that we, as an industry, must maintain a focus on the future, while weeding out the nostalgia blooms of the past.

David Danto Leave a Comment

Editor’s note: Commercial Integrator has teamed up with the Interactive Multimedia & Collaborative Communications Alliance (IMCCA), the New York-based non-profit industry association for unified communication and workplace collaboration, to produce a quarterly supplement, titled Collaboration Today and Tomorrow, that focuses on all things collaboration from multiple perspectives.

The fall 2023 edition of Collaboration Today and Tomorrow acknowledges that there’s really no “today.” Like the old joke states, “now” has already passed and become the past, and the next “now” has bitten the dust, as well. As an industry, we have to focus on our tomorrows because they’ll quickly become yesterdays…memories…ghosts. Our industry, like most, must be future-ready and hyper focused on actionable strategies for tomorrow because of how quickly it gets here. But we can’t forget what happened yesterday because — well you know…. It’s that thingy we learned in high school about how history repeats itself. 

Yes, lately, our industry has seen its share of yesterday’s technologies reemerging. We should consider it a test for those who weren’t paying attention the first time. Whether it’s spatial audio, curved tables facing a wall of screens, center-of-table solutions or teleprompter-screen-type videoconferencing, each one has been suggested as a new solution when, in reality, they’ve all be tried before and nearly universally rejected by enterprise users. Niche solutions will do that every once in a while: They’ll pop back up in the limited circumstances in which they truly excel, impress a lot of people who have short (or no) memories, rake up some cash and then disappear into their niches again. That is the nature of our industry. 

But, instead of focusing on these nostalgia blooms, this edition of Collaboration Today and Tomorrow forces us to look at the true future. I take the lead on this by assembling thought leaders from several IMCCA member firms: Canon, Cisco, Crestron, Cyviz, Leon Speakers, and Q-SYS. They explain what they believe next-generation offices should be like. 

The rest of the supplement is similarly informative. Kevin Kieller points out the actual problem with meetings; Amelia Vrabel explains how the remote/RTO arguments are not “one size fits all”; Joe Way, PhD, CTS, explains that we need to look at choosing room displays through a different lens; David Maldow details what to look for in conference-room cameras; Mike Sinclair teaches us how to select conference-room microphones; Lainie Mataras and Marla Suttenberg reminisce about the first year of “The Honor Roll”; and our “The Last Word” asks what you think the most important emerging technologies in our space might be. 

As for me, I’m going to avoid focusing on past technologies and other projects that have become only ghosts. Instead, I’ll keep enjoying what the future (tomorrow) brings us today. 

Download: Collaboration Today and Tomorrow: Fall 2023 Edition

For more Collaboration Today and Tomorrow content, check out our website archives.


If you enjoyed this article and want to receive more valuable industry content like this, click here to sign up for our digital newsletters!