Tag Archives: CES

Electronics: Not Just for Men?

woman gadgetOr, still mostly just for men? This week, the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) blasts off in Las Vegas. It is the largest show of its kind in the world, where gadget producers bet their entire fortunes on grabbing the public eye and becoming the Next Big Thing.

According to Time magazine, this year’s Ones to Watch include advancements in Wearables (FitBits, smart watches, etc.), a new selection of car gadgets to make our driving even more distracted more interactive, innovations in virtual and augmented reality (which is what, exactly?) and more fun with drones. And about a million other things.

It’s no big secret that the gadget world has historically been aimed at dudes. Why is that, do you think? About a million years ago I was in a record store (remember them?) and I said to my then-girlfriend, “This place is packed, and it’s all guys!” She said, “If I have $15 to spend, I spend it on makeup.” True? Not true? Likely? Maybe in 1985 but not now?

If you read an article about “Hot Gadgets for Guys ‘n Gals!” (such as this one) you will see some really gender-neutral items like FitBits and smartphone accessories. Then, you see things such as the Electronic Baby Shusher, an even smarter Roomba, and gadgets to make cooking easier and faster.

So, gadgets and women… are we there yet? Are you a Gadget Gal? Are the gadget makers reaching you? Has this improved, or are they still just taking the dude items and painting them pink? Let us know over at the MindField Online Facebook page!

CES Show Part 2!

Hey nerd..."life" is already 3D!
Hey nerd…”life” is already 3D!

Back in the day, the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) was the 2nd biggest show in Las Vegas. But we professional video gadget freaks always assumed they got a leg up (so to speak) by holding their show at the same time as the Adult Video convention.

In the 1990s, I always attended the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) convention in Las Vegas. Back then it was Sin City’s biggest show of the year, where TV and video production people (like me) went to look at the newest cameras and special effects gear. The CES was just NAB’s annoying little brother – but times have changed!

The CES is now the biggest show of the year. This year 3,500 vendors exhibited their wares to 150,000 attendees. We talked last time about the many smartphone-related advancements on display, but there’s more to discuss!

Such as…

Wrist devices that stream content from your smartphone. They tell you when you have an important call, email or text message. Also streams weather, sports scores, stock tickers, and on and on. And the wrist devices are all digital, so you can create your own custom watch face, just like you would make a wallpaper for your PC.

Gesture controls. Sort of a remote without the remote, these allow you to control your TV, etc., with a series of hand gestures. A 3-D camera captures and interprets your hand signals. They think this is going to have a host of uses in the future. Hyndai’s even putting it in cars so you can control various functions like the radio.

Even bigger and sharper digital TVs’. Forget HD- the new buzzword is 4K. Also known as Ultra HD, it supposedly has a picture 4 times sharper than “regular” HD.

Even more intelligent bio-tracking devices. Miles walked, calories burned, all fed into your smartphone, where a fitness app tells you to pick up the pace, fatty!  Related: a Smart Fork that vibrates when you are eating too fast!

3D printers. We have a long way to go before Captain Picard can tell the wall to give him “Tea. Earl Gray. Hot” and it simply appears. But it’s pretty cool to watch a printer make an actual 3D object out of plastic. Heck, one guy built a working gun, which is pretty cool and very disturbing.

Here are some links if you want to read further! And have a great weekend!

(photo: getty-ces-image.jpg)

CES Show Underlines Smartphone Dominance


The big Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas has come and gone. What are some trends that emerged or continued?

Well, one thing they have been saying for a while is becoming truer by the day. Single-use devices are dying. A machine that just plays Blu-Ray discs? A GPS-only device? A phone that’s just a phone? Forget it. Whatever it is, it’s got to do ten things and have room for whatever fab invention comes up next.

Like a smartphone. I know plenty of people (not necessarily old, but grouchy) who take pride in that fact that they don’t own a smartphone. To which I reply: “With a 70% penetration rate, what are you waiting for – and engraved e-vite?”

What’s obvious to me after this year’s show is that your smartphone is going to become a universal remote control for your life: connecting to your house, car, HVAC, media center, SmartTV, fitness regimen and just about every aspect of your life. I’d suggest you think about getting a second battery for your smartphone if you plan on participating in this connected revolution. The Data Doctor

If you are a smartphone resister, I know where you are coming from (the PAST!  j/k) I used to feel the same way. I only got an iPhone because I worked for a company that made accessories for them (and I could get them for free.) Also, right at that time a free phone became available. But once I got on board, I got used to the features and convenience. A smartphone doesn’t have to turn you into an zombie with your face glued to your screen. That’s Facebook’s job!

Anyway, there are a bunch of other, non-smartphone developments we will tell you about next time!  Here are some links if you want to read further!