One can generally tell whether a conference is a big-time event by the quality of speakers it attracts. By that measure, the Association of Public-Safety Communications Officials' 71st Conference scheduled for this month in Denver stands up well. Scheduled to speak are former Department of Homeland Security Director Tom Ridge, who will deliver the opening keynote address and current Federal Communications Commissioner Michael Copps, who will deliver the closing keynote.

In between, educational sessions will bring attendees up to date on important public-safety communications issues and trends, including VoIP's impact on E911, the rebanding of the 800 MHz airwaves, the clearing of broadcasters from the 700 MHz band, in addition to important APCO initiatives such as Project RETAINS.

In addition to the plethora of educational opportunities, APCO's conference also offers the opportunity to discover the myriad products — many of them new introductions — that will be showcased by industry vendors. The following offers a preview of what to expect.

APCO 2005 Preview

Dates: Sun., Aug. 21 to Thurs., Aug. 25

Location: Colorado Convention Center, Denver

Keynotes: Tom Ridge, former secretary of Homeland Security and former governor of Pennsylvania, Mon., Aug. 22, 8:30 a.m. opening session; Michael Copps, FCC commissioner, Thurs., Aug. 25, 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. closing gala dinner.

Welcome reception: Sun., Aug. 21, 6:30 to 9:00 p.m. (Colorado Convention Center, Ballrooms 1-4)

Exhibit hours: Mon., Aug. 22, 2:00 to 5:30 p.m.; Tues. Aug. 23, 10:00 a.m. to 5:15 p.m.; Wed., Aug. 24, 9:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

Professional development hours: Mon., Aug. 22, 10:00 to 11:45 a.m., 3:00 to 4:30 p.m.; Tues., Aug. 23, 8:30 to 10:00 a.m., 1:00 to 2:30 p.m.; Wed., Aug. 24, 8:00 to 9:30 a.m., 9:45 to 11:15 a.m., 3:00 to 4:45 p.m.; Thurs. Aug. 25, 9:00 to 10:30 a.m., 1:00 to 2:30 p.m., 2:45 to 4:15 p.m.

Conference hours: Mon., Aug. 22, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.; Tues., Aug. 23, 7:30 a.m. to 5:15 p.m.; Wed., Aug. 24, 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.; Thurs., Aug. 25, 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.

To see an exhibitor list, visit our Web site at www.mrtmag.com/2005exhibitors

Nice Systems

NiceCall Focus III is a single-box call-recording solution that provides up to 48 channels per unit and capacity of up to 50,000 hours with G.729A compression. In addition, the unit offers hot-swappable RAID 1 hard drive and power supply, as well as dual archiving options and PCI-based voice-recording boards.
www.nice.com

STI-CO

The Window Clip Antenna offers a bendable flexi-whip mast, is field-tunable between 136 MHz and 1000 MHz and small enough to fit inside a briefcase. It also can be used as a fender or trunk lip mount antenna with a mobile radio and will handle up to 150 W.
www.sti-co.com

Motorola

The MCC 7500 IP dispatch solution offers end-to-end encryption, agency partitioning and connects directly to the IP network without backroom electronics or gateways. And the MeshTrack broadband indoor/outdoor location system tracks personnel and mobile equipment in complex facilities — even inside a burning building — without relying on GPS.
www.Motorola.com

CompuDyne (formerly Tiburon)

The Field Based Reporting application provides a customized report-writing application that automates hard copy forms and state-mandated reporting formats. Information is shared automatically between all forms. Mandatory fields and custom calculators minimize errors input by the user. A report management application handles the routing of reports for approval and auditing.
www.compudyne.com

Zetron

Release 4 of the Integrator RD PC-based radio dispatching software for the Series 4000 console system adds several new features, including: logon with profiles and permissions integrated with other Zetron Integrator products; text intercom between console positions and a call-history list with global call management to track replies to specific P2T IDs.
www.zetron.com

Bird Electronics

The SA-6000EX provides users with a diagnostic range from 25 MHz to 6 GHz, enabling a wider range of applications that can be supported by a single field unit. The EX Series also provides memory storage up to 300 traces, improved frequency resolution, a source VSWR of 1.12 to 1.00, a VSWR range of 1.00 to 99.99 and a greater low-temperature operating range from -10 degrees to 50 degrees C.
www.bird-electronic.com

Daniels Electronics

Briefcase repeaters set up rapidly and provide analog, digital or encrypted digital communications. They can be used in many repeater and base station applications, including VHF-UHF crossband and satellite telephone interface. Standard RF modules in any frequency band are interconnected to an interface module that provides external connections in the side of the case for the RF connection and an AC/DC connection.
www.danelec.com

Evans Dispatch

The new 911 Dispatch console features a modular design that allows reconfiguration and retrofits. Four partitioned wire management channels help keep power, data, RF and ground cabling separated while offering hard mounting points for optional cooling fans. In addition, the console offers two CPU equipment cavities to accommodate up to six CPUs.
www.evansonline.com

Thales Communications

The company will announce a software upgrade scheduled for later this year that will add 256-bit key AES encryption to the Thales 25 portable radio. In addition, new firmware is available to upgrade early versions of the Thales 25 radio. Version 5.11 for Model-501 radios offers improved priority scan, an enhanced keypad with side button lockouts, unit ID display and backlight enhancements.
www.thalescomminc.com

Spillman Technologies

The company's Pin Mapping solution tracks, analyzes and displays crime statistics in a jurisdiction. A customizable visual display provides users with distance measuring tools to detect and analyze related crimes and lets users identify high crime regions. Users can tailor maps to display the most critical information for their agency.
www.spillman.com

Stone Mountain

TruBand remote antenna speaker microphones are available in VHF, UHF, 800 MHz and 900 MHz versions. They offer programmable volume control and an emergency button. All units are immersion rated to 2 meters for 60 minutes.
www.stonemountaindesign.com

Pyramid Communications

The SVR-200 vehicular repeater is now available in UHF, VHF, 700 MHz, 800 MHz and 900 MHz versions. The unit operates as a simplex, analog link between portable radios and high-power mobile radios.
www.pyramidcomm.com

EFJohnson

The IP25 Trunked Infrastructure System is an encrypted end-to-end digital Project 25-compliant system that uses VoIP technology to integrate repeaters, a digital dispatch console, system management, a secure key management facility for over-the-air re-keying of radios in the field and a portable PDA-based key loader. The system supports AES and DES-OFB encryptions for secure FIPS-compliant communications and does not require a gateway or network switch to link digital consoles and repeaters.
www.efjohnson.com

Moducom

The ultraCom console is a complete software system with interoperability and VoIP built in. Its Distributed Network Architecture lets secure, full operator positions (radio and phone) be shared among several dispatch center systems.
www.moducom.com