Independents Unite

First. This is not a political blog. So, if you were hoping for the latest ranting about the Left or Right. This isn’t it. Sorry.

In the world of AV we have many jobs and positions. Engineers, techs, marketing professionals, and sales people are all treated fairly well by other AV pros. There is one section, a clan, of AV pro that does not quite fit into the neat slot of manufacturer, integrator, or tech manager. These are the independent programmers and design consultants. These are the people who specify product, make line drawings, create bid documents, and walk the end user through the entire process. The programmers are not only responsible for creating an easy to use interface and a rocking back end that the user doesn’t have to think about.

There are a number of programmers I could talk about. I’ll pick two. The first is Rich Fregosa from Fregosa Design. Rich has been in the industry for over 20 years. His programming chops are second to none. I will call or email him on a regular basis just to make sure I am thinking correctly when I start to write a program. Rich is meticulous. He has famously said that if you don’t look at your program in six months, it’s as if someone else wrote it; so make sure it makes sense.

Steve Greenblatt from Control Concepts is another independent programmer. Where Rich’s focus is primarily residential, Control Concepts mostly deals in commercial programming. In addition, they write a number of modules for various companies. He has a group of talented folks around him that covers Crestron, AMX, and other control systems.

Both of these companies, and those like them, are a vital part of the industry. A part that some of us have lost sight of. Even me. As someone whose primary job is as a programmer for an integrator, there are days that I am a design engineer, trouble shooting tech, or a real life programmer. As independent programmer houses, this is all these companies do. It is what they live and breath.

If you don’t have a full time programmer, these are the people you want in your corner. If you are a large corporation, university, or other large organization trying to keep some consistency in your interface and programming, this is who you want. Yes, there are reasons for using an integrator’s programmer. I am one. There are also use cases for using these professional independent programmers. At least give them a call and see what they can do for you. If not Rich or Steve, your local independent programmer.

Thanks for taking the time to read my blog. Have a great week.

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