At Crestron Masters, a Focus on Programming

Today’s post on the Crestron Masters event is written by David Thorson, AVI-SPL’s senior manager for programming architecture. David’s a recognized expert within the AV industry, and I think you’ll enjoy his thoughts below.

This year’s Crestron Masters took place off the beaten path in Rye Brook, NY, at the Doral Arrowwood Resort. Those that remembered the fog that descended at the start of last year’s Crestron Masters appreciated the fair weather that got us off to a good start. The highlight for me was the extra event “AVI-SPL Masters” that took place when Crestron Masters concluded, more about that later.*

I was pleased to see Crestron continue with the format they instituted last year. Attendees were free to sign up for classes that interested them or delve into topics to challenge their abilities. There were also the core sessions that everyone attends, allowing Crestron to level set important technology, such as Crestron PinPoint™ and Crestron Fusion®, and focus on areas that will improve delivery, such as network streaming and deploying narrow RF (2.4 GHz) among WiFi rich environments.

The banner topic this year was Crestron Fusion, with five individual courses to choose from. Crestron is expanding this enterprise management software to the cloud and focusing more on IoT style workflows and features. We heard again and again, “no more secrets.” This message resonates on many levels, one of which is about the features and project requirements of deployments. Another level is about the best practices to ensure that end users can reap the benefits Crestron Fusion has to offer. This will be an exciting year for Crestron Fusion as we explore the integration features and benefits with customers in much deeper ways.

This year Crestron offered a programming challenge to those that wanted to participate. It turned out to be a fun exercise and let us focus on of the primary reasons we attend: programming.

With regard to programming courses, Crestron offered a new class focused on introducing object-oriented programming concepts. There was more content diving deeper into SIMPL# and SIMPL# Pro. I commend Crestron on providing the platform and tools to enable the AV programming experts to grow their skill set. Bringing true object-oriented programming to mainstream AV will have its challenges, but the benefits are immense. I think the AV programmers are quickly approaching a crossroads where each person will need to decide if they are up for challenge of developing software or deploying configurable systems in the field.

In total, an impressive 650 certified programmers turned out for the event spanning three days. The awards ceremony for Diamond master programmers was new. Crestron also recognized Platinum, Gold, and Silver master programmers.

As Crestron concluded the event they opened the floor to hear from the attendees in an open forum. This always generates feedback, collaboration, and news about features and products that may be just around the corner. It’s hard to say how Crestron will rank the requests back at HQ, a few hot button items generated fanfare from the audience, so I hope that carries back to the develop roadmap. Attendees discussed enhancements to the DMPS-3 Series firmware and changes to the touch panel development application, known as VTPro-E.

Crestron Masters 2016 is not over yet. The EMEA event held in Amsterdam begins on May 17th.

Thank you Crestron for continually improving the Masters event each year. From the registration, logistics, courses, instructors, and everything that goes on behind the scenes, we appreciate the hard work. See you again next year!

*Stay tuned to hear about the “AVI-SPL Masters” that brought together 32 Certified Crestron Programmers.

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