The month it takes to put together every January edition of pme typically is a quiet time and this year’s edition was no different. We as an industry deserve to get a break and enjoy the quiet with friends and family over the holidays.

So, with a little extra time on my hands, I decided to go to the cinema. I, along with the rest of world, checked out “Star Wars: The Force Awakens.” As a pretty massive fan of the series, all I want to do is fill this space with my reactions and thoughts, but that would be a misappropriation of my duties as this magazine’s editor. (Real quick: It is fantastic.)

I ruminated on the film for quite some time after I stepped out of the theater and began texting friends who are fans of the series. Needless to say that before the film was released we were worried about how it might sully our love for the original trilogy from the 1970s and 1980s. (We’ve worked long and hard to forget the prequels.)

After getting consensus that the film was great, I began thinking about anticipation and execution — something that “The Force Awakens” handled in spades. These two elements can curse a major project, idea or event from the outset as hopes get raised only to see the final product underwhelm at best and anger at worst.

And 2016’s first major industry event is this month’s AHR Expo set for Jan. 25-27 at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Fla. Since joining the industry back in 2011, I have attended the two AHR events held in Chicago and have been wowed each time. Seeing two major halls of McCormick Place filled with manufacturers and attendees is a sight to behold.

Even when I do not attend an AHR Expo, such as the 2014 show in New York City, I am impressed. The stories about how the show was constantly busy during a blizzard are a testament to the event’s importance.

As of press time, more than 2,000 exhibitors were booked for the show (check out our AHR Expo Product Preview in this issue). While walking the show floor and seeing the latest technologies take up the majority of my time at the expo, this year I am going to make a point to check out some of the many educational sessions. A couple potential winners include:

  • Cooling Tower Water Treatment 101: The Cooling Technology Institute hosts an afternoon session Jan. 25, that will delve into the importance of proper water treatment for evaporative heat rejection equipment.
  • Cybersecurity and Intelligent Buildings: On Jan. 26, CABA Intelligent & Integrated Buildings will provide its research data on a $150,000 project on the how to deal with cybersecurity attacks on intelligent buildings. It will be interesting to see how this relates to our industry.

It is time to cue up John Williams’ famous Star Wars fanfare and get back to work for 2016. The AHR Expo is a perfect place to start the journey.

This article was originally titled “Living up to the hype” in the January 2016 print edition of pme.