ATLANTA, GA — The software manufacturers and Web portals were out in force at the recent AHR Expo, and here is a sampling of what they were showing attendees.

AirQual (Canton, MA) introduced its Web portal,, an online marketplace that brings hvacr manufacturers and customers together who are interested in IAQ. Users can communicate with companies they do business with, learn to improve indoor air for their customers, research and purchase IAQ products, and learn about IAQ regulations. The effort is supported by Leading-Side, a worldwide e-business solution provider.

BuildNet (Atlanta, GA) announced the release of “Build-Net Advantage,” a PC-based office software solution for the construction community. According to the company, it addresses the needs of small-to-midsize build-ers, as well as light commercial contractors, subcontractors, and remodelers. The software offers a wide range of integrated business features like job costing, estimating, project management, accounting, and budgeting.

BuildNet also announced the debut of its new product “Build-Net Express,” a Web-based project management, collaboration, procurement, and bid management tool designed to provide wireless connectivity through RIM pagers and WAP phones.

Estimation, Inc. (Linthicum Heights, MD) featured the Bidmaster NET™ Series, a high-performance estimating system. According to the company, this hvac estimating program “combines the power of the latest technology with the input of thousands of contractors.” The “heads-down” approach to blueprint takeoff lets contractors focus on their plans and not on the computer monitor during takeoff, the company said. The system is equipped with a customizable database designed for finding materials needed during takeoff, as well as offering the flexibility to estimate complex labor conditions. The bid summary report breaks down project costs in order to generate bid information as needed.

HVAC Solution (American Fork, UT) touts its software as “the first engineering solution software of its kind.” The Windows-based hvac engineering software is de-signed to perform engineering calculations associated with air and water schematics. Airflow and hydronic components (fans, boilers, chillers, pumps, etc.) are connected schematically. Components share information with each other. Inputs and schematics may be updated and saved for quick retrieval or for new projects.

Mestek Technology, Inc. (Westfield, MA) rolled out a software program and Web-based “solution.” The program, Profit-Works, is a multi-functional, easy-to-navigate program that includes sales tools, order entry, purchasing, accounting, and complete reporting features. The order entry module allows users to assign different “ship to” and “bill to” information and commissions by line item or by the entire order.

Mestek also introduced the SalesAssistant™, a Web-based order status solution for manufacturers. Users access the Sales-Assistant website and can review details and find the status of their current open orders, as well as details of all of their orders that have been shipped during the current year, the company said.

ServMan Software (Charlotte, NC) showcased ServMan™, a product of Westar Technologies. According to the company, it is advanced software for managing service businesses, handling scheduling, dispatching, invoicing, contracts, inventory, price books, etc. ServMan has a proprietary three-tier design, whose primary components are: data, Core Function-ality, and LC™ programming language. This language allows users to add new fields, functions, and complex procedures and tasks, as opposed to other applications, which, according to the company, involves purchasing of “source code” to change program functionality — an “expensive proposition and usually out of reach to most companies.”

Siemens (Buffalo Grove, IL) showcased its OPC interface, which is now available with its APOGEE Insight 3.2 and the newest version, 3.3. The Insight with OPC is designed to deliver “real-time building data to multiple systems across the enterprise.” Insight 3.3 enhancements include an offline dialog box for database management, expanded hvac application-specific graphics library, and descriptive TEC and UC subpoint locators.

Tridium (Richmond, VA) introduced the Vykon™ product suite. The company said it offers facility managers a comprehensive and economical way to manage and control all of their hvac, lighting, and other energy or industrial systems via the Internet — which means that building management can be controlled from anywhere in the world. Vykon Building Control Suite includes Web Supervisor™, a graphical user interface which performs scheduling, trending, alarming, historical data collection, and advanced energy management applications. WorkPlace Pro™ is a single, user-friendly toolkit that allows users to integrate and manage multi-vendor devices and subsystems via the Web.

Publication date: 03/19/2001