Wednesday, January 09, 2008
Love, gadgets and the saddest booth
From GameTap's Dana Jongewaard
Within a single half-hour on the show floor, I ran across five couples walking around and holding hands, which just struck me as incredibly bizarre. Either there was some fancy match-making gadget that I haven't yet stumbled across, or else electronics are a literal aphrodisiac for this crowd.

But even if you didn't have someone to love, there was sure to be something that caught your fancy. Maybe it was the 150-inch Panasonic, which I finally got to see today (though all of my photos of it sucked due to both the massive swarm of people around it and the fact that I have very poor photography skills).

If you like really bulky bizarre not terribly useful gadgets, then you might want to check out a new gaming peripheral. It's a vest that you connect up to a game and then wear; when you get shot in the game, you feel a corresponding thud to that part of your chest or back. (For those of you to whom this sounds appealing, be warned, however: friend reports say that the response is disappointingly weak and slow.)

However, my favorite part of shows like this are always the kind of sad, not very exciting booths. I'm not quite sure what the appeal is--maybe it's part of the human nature to root for the underdog (I know I'm not the only person who weeps like a little girl when she watches the movie Rudy.) Or maybe it's just that it makes even the bad days at my job seem not so horrible. At least I'm not in charge of doing marketing for batteries, or sitting behind a counter of random networking cables that are not discernibly different from the counter of networking cables in the adjoining booth.

Perhaps the saddest was one lonely little booth on the periphery of the South Hall. In the midst of hundreds of companies touting their latest digital technologies and gadgets the size of your hand that can contain your entire personal media library, they were showing off a few dozen wooden shelving units, perfect for CD and DVD storage. Soldier on, brave people--soldier on.

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Wooden shelves: particularly ironic, given that CES is devoted to eliminating physical media and making entertainment server-based.

What might make sense is a wooden shelf to hold gadgets! But when we only have one gadget that does phone mp3 camera video ... do we need a shelf at all?
I, too, saw that booth. There was this gentleman with mustache wearing glasses. He must be pretty lonely. Nobody was in his booth when I was walking by that way.

I'm sure he'd get more admirers at some other conventions but, for sure, not CES.

However, I have to commend him for staying there the entire time.

You go, wooden shelving unit guy!

-Luck
http://gadgetaholic.com
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