More from the Convergence Zone

It used to be that there was a straightforward demarcation line between process and discrete automation, and between process automation and building automation. There is no longer any such thing. Honeywell, Emerson, Siemens, and Invensys all have substantial building automation groups, and all of them are moving very fast to consolidate their product offerings with their process automation groups. Honeywell introduced building security add-ins to the Experion system at HUG2005, Emerson and Siemens have also made strides in this direction, and now Invensys has followed suit. The growth of the PAC and more discriptively named hybrid controller market underscores the interpenetration of discrete, batch, and process automation. Pretty soon, we'll be talking about all these things in the process industries. This is going to make our tag line even more apt: "CONTROL for the process industries." Tell me what you think. Walt