No, I have not been on vacation this week. Hannover Messe—from the comfort of my office in Illinois. No walking 10 miles a day. No padding the frequent flyer miles. No German food (my wife could have but chose not). In one interview today I was told that the digital format with ease in connections and conversations has worked out well for him. Those of us in America just had to somewhat adjust our clocks to Central European Time zone.

Here’s a short news piece out today. It’s been coming for a time. Today is the big day.

A3, which represents more than 1,100 member companies active in the automation industry, combines nearly 50 years of leadership and strong relationships within the robotics, machine vision, motion control & motors, and artificial intelligence communities to create the leading automation trade association. Under the new A3 brand, anyone interested in automation can take full advantage of the new home on AUTOMATE.ORG—from education and safety, connecting with new customers and suppliers, training, getting started, and more. Additionally, with just one membership, companies looking to maximize their involvement will have access to even more benefits.

A3 President Jeff Burnstein explains why the change, and how will combining the existing associations—the Robotic Industries Association (RIA), AIA – Advancing Vision + Imaging, Motion Control and Motors Association (MCMA) and A3 Mexico—into one A3 help organizations looking to benefit from automation.

As we grew through the years, it became increasingly difficult to explain how the individual associations differed from each other, why companies had to join multiple associations, and why they remained separate at all in a world where companies are looking for automation solutions that often involve all of these technologies and more.

Look at all the technology advances that did not exist when we first started out as the Robotic Industries Association (RIA) in 1974: mobile and collaborative robots, smart cameras, embedded vision systems, deep learning, simulation, remote operation, AR/VR technologies, sophisticated grippers, 3D printers, and more.

So, four years ago, board members of the individual associations met in Atlanta and decided that the challenges faced by each group were the same. They recommended that we explore merging into one front-facing brand that would attract companies not just in our current technology spaces but also in areas like artificial intelligence, 3D printing, and other automation technologies underrepresented in our association. The technology world is changing, and we had to change along with it.

The culmination of that effort is our united Association for Advancing Automation. Anyone interested in how to successfully apply automation technologies, from small companies just starting their journey, to experienced users expanding their applications, has a new home.  This new home features a robust offering of valuable benefits for automation suppliers, integrators, users, consulting firms, technical schools, universities, start-ups and more.  

Come join us as we learn to use automation to make the world a better place.

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