Thought Leadership

How was EE Live! for you?

By Colin Walls

As I mentioned last week, I have just been to EE Live! in San Jose, California. Having arrived home a little while ago – 22 hours door to door, with baggage taking a little longer – I am pondering my impressions of this year’s event …

Starting off with the positives. What I saw of the conference was buzzing. There were lots of classes available, covering all aspects of embedded development. My 2 sessions were well attended and seemed to be well received with plenty of questions and comments. I also spent some time on our booth in the trade show. The vast majority of visitors, with whom I spoke, were very relevant to our business area – not the kind of event where I have to continually explain what an embedded system is all about!

Notwithstanding the vibrancy of the conference, the trade show had contracted again. A while back, the event out-grew the venue and took place in San Francisco for a few years. When it moved back to San Jose, the show completely filled the main hall and leaked out onto the concourse. Now, the main hall is far from full and the concourse feels rather empty. This is surprising as the show is quite focused and similar events – notably Embedded World and ARM TechCon – seem to be on the up.

The organizers of the event – UBM – are endeavoring to ring the changes. Next year will see a change of venue – they are moving to the Santa Clara Convention Center, which is home of the ARM TechCon. The date will also change to June. Personally, I wish them well with this plan, but worry that they will change the name yet again. Unless, of course, they revert back to headlining it as the Embedded Systems Conference.

It was with a heavy heart that I left the show on Thursday, facing the possibility that I might never visit that venue again – a fixed point in my annual calendar gone for ever. But I tell myself, change is good …

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This article first appeared on the Siemens Digital Industries Software blog at