It ended up being faster to just walk the several mile round trip to the hotel and back. Nonetheless, we endured the orgy of large screen television, mobile technology and jimcrackery that now fills the convention centers beyond capacity, spilling over into all the nearby hotel suites.
I fondly remember a day when there were two more manageable shows, Comdex for the computer stuff, and CES for electronic widgitry and televisions. Well with the demise of Comdex, CES subsumed all, and has acquired a ponderous bulk that must eventually suffocate it. Nobody I knew at the show enjoyed it, and would have avoided the now massive inconvenience of the venue if it weren’t for the show’s unique importance to the industry.
So with all that said, my normal instinct would be to suggest that fringe products (and even some core ones) should get their own individual themed trade shows to make the whole event more manageable. So it is very unusual for me to say something like “…boy am I glad they’ve added this new ______ widget..!” But with this one, I couldn’t resist.
It turned out that the iRobot booth was about 150 feet from the MobiTV booth, and I had a great time catching up with my old MIT buddies who run the company. I was very pleased to note that they had just won an award for the release of the iRobot Create programmable robotics platform for students and hobbyists.
Here are some highlights of a few of the early projects.
Here is an excellent review of the kit from Robot Magazine, and here are links to my earlier posts on iRobot: Making Money Making Robots, and A Great Hackable Robot: Roomba from iRobot.