N+I Closes Early After Attacks

ATLANTA - The terrorist attacks on the United States brought a premature end to the Networld+Interop show here Tuesday, as authorities closed the convention center hosting the show at about 2 p.m. Eastern time.

Show executive Valerie Williamson said she interrupted the morning keynote speech by Avaya (NYSE: AV) executives to deliver news of the initial attacks. For the next few hours the show floor remained open, though the nearby CNN building was closed shortly after the attacks were reported.

Inside, there was little attention paid to networking matters, as attendees huddled around show-floor television sets that had been switched to news channels. The main business activity for show-goers was phone calls, either to check on family and friends' safety, or to scramble to find alternate means of travel, after news spread that all airports had been closed.

At approximately 12:30 p.m., the scheduled keynote speech from Network Appliance Inc.'s (Nasdaq: NTAP) CEO Dan Warmenhoven was canceled, and shortly thereafter police appeared at the front of the building, saying they were going to shut the building down. According to representatives with Key3Media, the show officially closed at 2 p.m., and is still planned to be open on Wednesday. - Paul Kapustka, Editor at Large, Light Reading

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