For over a decade computer and PC enthusiasts all over the globe flocked to the PC Expo in Jacob Javits Center. The expo featured booths and presentations from computer hardware and software companies, computer/IT journals and magazines as well as computer clubs and associations. Ask anyone who attended these expos and they will tell you it was an experience to remember and cherish. Not only educational and enlightening, the PC expo became a mecca for the computer generation to meet, exchange ideas, and showcase new and innovative technologies. This was not to mention that the PC Expo was also a lot of fun. There were prizes and raffles for free software and computer equipment, free T-shirts if you were lucky enough to catch one as the presenters tossed them out to the crowds,and enough presentations, keynote addresses, and classes to exhaust even the most jaded computer person.

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Changes in the IT industry were reflected in the PC Expo of the previous two years. Once one large show, now the expo was fractured into two separate shows: TechXNY and the CeBIT show which featured international companies and pavilions. Although both of these shows still preserved the excitement of PC Expo, neither one seemed to capture the sheer scope of the earlier PC Expo’s. Both TecXNY and CeBIT were recombined into a solitary show this year with the C3 Corporate & Channel Computing Expo.

Although not quite up to the scope of the PC Expo, the C3 Corporate & Channel Computing Expo was a step in the right direction with promises from organizers of larger, more elaborate shows to come. Online universities, long considered not as accredited as brick and mortar universities, made a strong presence at this year’s show. Villanova University, the University of Denver, and University Alliance all had booths at this year’s expo. University Alliance combines the education power of eleven different online universities under one umbrella. Tulane University now offers online MBA’s in Management fundamentals. The University of Denver now offers a Masters Degree in Computer Information Systems, a Masters of Applied Science in a number of majors including technology management, computer information systems, environmental policy and management, telecommunications, and knowledge and information technologies. Although the online universities may not have the clout of traditional college campuses, many of the online schools are getting renewed attention because they offer tremendous flexibility to individuals who may not be able to devote time to attending traditional classroom lessons.

Also making a strong showing at C3 was the burgeoning field of computer forensics. According to government statistics, white collar crime will soon eclipse violent crime focusing far more attention on computer forensics in law enforcement as well as private industry. A new company called Logicube with corporate headquarters in California now offers computer forensic investigators a cutting edge piece of technology to conduct their investigations with – a portable system named the Forensic MD5. The MD5 is one of a number of handheld forensic investigation tools that is being developed and sold by a company called Logicube who are billed themselves at the C3 Expo as ” the leader in complete computer forensic solutions.” With corporate headquarters located in California, Logicube products are now the standard portable computing forensic tool with government authorities, law enforcement, and military establishments worldwide.

The Logicube MD5 hard drive acquisition system is specifically designed for the requirements of law enforcement, military, MIS/IT, corporate security, investigators, and auditors. This fast data acquisition system runs at speeds up to 3 GB/min, simultaneously capturing and verifying data. The MD5 is one of only several forensic computing systems offered by Logicube. The Portable Forensic Lab is advertised by Logicube as being powerful versatile, lightweight, and complete. The Portable Forensic Labe (PFL) is a complete, compact, portable forensic lab built into a special, rugged carrying case. The portable system includes everything a computer forensic examiner needs to: 1. Capture evidence from multiple sources of digital media 2. Browse data on multiple types of digital media and 3. Analyze the captured data using forensic analysis software such as UTK (the Ultimate Tool Kit) from AccessData. The portable forensic lab provides space for any laptop to fit inside of its padded compartment. Either the Logicube MD5 or the stand-alone Talon can be attached to the unit.

Huge, overstuffed floor exhibits and shows put on by the big computer companies have given way to smaller companies providing more specialized tools and services. Fly by night internet companies have been replaced by more reputable online companies offering valuable web services. Hopefully, the Corporate & Channel Computing Expo will represent a new generation of computer shows to come and with a little luck and patience the C3 Expo will once again be the “mother” of all computer shows.