- I was a total super-fan at the Sony Reader eBook Back Stage presentation in Sony's huge trade show booth. As you know, I used to own a Sony Librie and I loaded my own English firmware to read Warren Buffet's Berkshire Hathaway shareholder letters. On the Sony CES Back Stage panel was the Sony Reader product manager, as well as author Tim Sanders. I had read Mr. Sanders' book Love is the Killer App in college. I asked the BEST questions during the panel and chatted with Tim Sanders after it was over. I didn't even know the event was taking place beforehand - I just happened to stop by Sony's booth at the time.
- Toshiba and Canon's Surface-conduction Electron-emitter Displays (SEDs) are awesome. Brilliantly clear and amazing contrast. Did not see any OLEDs so maybe these are our hope for the future of display technology.
- Despite seeing the world's largest LCD TV, the Sharp Aquos 65" LCD was the nicest readily available consumer LCD we found at the show. I forget how much they are, but we know someone who wants one of these in their private Boeing jet.
- SkyScout from Celestron is a very simple, smart product. Integrated GPS and a huge LCD on the side provide relevant information for over 6,000 stars.
- And finally... the Google Keynote with Larry Page and Robin Williams. My dad, through the help of a business friend, secured us clutch tickets at the last minute on Friday afternoon. Our hand-delivered keynote tickets had us seated right in the middle of the Google employee section. We think that Larry Page's girlfriend sat in front of us, cute sharp blonde, but we are not totally sure. I have seen many keynotes from Bill Gates in previous years at CES. This was totally different. Open, honest and absolutely hilarious. Gates would never take audience questions like Page did, and Robin Williams is still sharp as a knife with improv. He was a perfect compliment to Larry Page. Gush gush gush! We all loved the presentation and laughed our faces off while also getting inspired. I especially liked Page's lecture to the consumer electronics industry for their complete lack of functional standards.
Overall, this was the best CES that I have attended (and one of the worst write-ups, sorry- January has been a crazy month for me). I had planned out a route the night before for each of the three days we were at CES with lists of specific vendors to visit. I also had a firm grasp, for the first time, of the entire show layout. My actual purpose at CES was to source some cable and wire harnesses. We met a few small Taiwanese companies who can accomodate our low quantity needs in the future. Next year I will coordinate my booth visits better and register in advance for the keynote speeches. Thanks to my mom for the killer hotel booking!