I love being a staff writer for 3BL Media/Justmeans on topics - Social Innovation, Social Enterprise and Social Entrepreneurs. When I am not writing for 3BL Media/Justmeans, I wear my other hat as owner of Serendipity PR. Over the years I have worked with high-profile, big, powerful brands and organisations within the public, not-for-profit and corporate sectors; and won awards from my industry....
CES and Technology Vegas Style
Roll up, roll up for the greatest technology show on earth...well that was the Consumer Electronic Show International (CES) show in Vegas from 6 to 9 January 2011. It is the biggest convention in the Vegas event diary and this year was no exception with over 140,000 visitors. It was like a huge, amazing, inspiring circus giving a chance for some of the largest, most technologically advanced companies in the world to strut their stuff and an opportunity for small companies to spread the word about their potentially big ideas. On my first day I was over-whelmed, I had to take a breath. It was huge so I thought I better get a map; a map, who was I kidding. To get round the next few days I needed six maps...1.6 million square feet of show space. Luckily serendipity rolled in into Vegas and helped me make connections.
My first serendipitous bump in was with Kareem Smith, at PR Newswire who gave me the best piece of advice. "Don't expect to see everything. Make a list of what you really want to see and just go with the flow." There is no other way to do CES. So, I managed to glimpse Lady Gaga and see her launch of Polaroid's latest advent garde products, from sunglasses that double up as a camera, to a pocket size printer and to Polaroid's latest camera. What struck me here were not the products, but how clever digital brands have become in making sure they look cool and aspirational by teaming up with well known personalities to ensure that their technology hits the headlines.
One of my highlights was briefly meeting the rap star 50 Cent who was launching his own headphones, Sleek by 50 Cent. 50 Cents said, "I know music, and I've tried everything on the market as far as headphones go, but I wanted something different, something better, that really pushed the envelope." Interestingly, 50 Cent's headphones are influences in design from the automotive industry as the ear cups have carbon-fibre detailing - a strong and lightweight material commonly used in high-end sports cars.
My other serendipity highlight was speaking and hearing Chris Brogan who has been called very appropriately for Vegas, 'the Elvis of social media and the king of common sense'. Love it! Chris was at the American Express booth, speaking about the ways that social media changes how small businesses do business and about 'breaking the fourth wall' - which is thinking out of the box for on-line engagement.
We have all heard about the major technology trends that emerged from CES...the launch of more than 80 tablets, 3DTVs, Ford's first electric car, wireless 4G LTE...it is the stories that you haven't read about that I will be writing about here over the next few days; stories that I want to share with you. Before I go let me leave you with this statistic - CES created a phenomenal buzz in the social media world with more than 158,000 related tweets!
Photo Credit: Technolog on msnbc.com