Schneider’s Synerge event showcases automation’s future

Schneider Electric's Synerge 2000 conference on Oct. 16-18 was attended by approximately 600 visitors from 50 countries, who viewed technologies shaping the future of automation. The three-day conference also included 30 technical presentations and a trade show.Alain Marbach, president of Schneider's Automation Business, noted that 1999-2000 was a successful sales...

By Staff November 1, 2000

Schneider Electric’s Synerge 2000 conference on Oct. 16-18 was attended by approximately 600 visitors from 50 countries, who viewed technologies shaping the future of automation. The three-day conference also included 30 technical presentations and a trade show.

Alain Marbach, president of Schneider’s Automation Business, noted that 1999-2000 was a successful sales year for the company. He also pointed to the large number of companies now offering Modbus over TCP/IP as a sign of growing market acceptance of the technology underlying Schneider’s Transparent Factory initiative.

Speakers included Richard Morley, called the “Father of the PLC” and one of the founders of Modicon (now part of Schneider); Don Richardson, group manager for product industries at Microsoft, who shared the Microsoft .NET strategy; Eric Marks, director of Brightroad, an e-business consulting firm, who shared insights on how to develop the IT infrastructure to avoid being “Darwinized” (deselected from the evolutionary process); and IBM’s Bill Bodin, senior technical staff member of its Pervasive Computing Division.

These and other speakers pointed out the increasingly important role of developing software models of manufacturing processes, as well as the still-growing importance of managing information flow from manufacturing process level to the company’s partners.