One Laptop Per Child Project and Intel’s departure

One Laptop Per Child Project
Originally uploaded by JoeDuck

For a project of this scope it was very disappointing to see Intel’s departure, only a few days before CES.   I agree with CNET that this was handled poorly on both sides, and I’m especially concerned that Negroponte’s brilliant vision may ultimately get undermined by his in ability to compromise with the market forces that drive consumer electronics much more than altruism or societal need.

That said it appeared that AMD remains solidly behind the project and many countries are buying in, so hopefully this will bring to pass the grand vision of technology to those who have the least chance of getting it otherwise – poor children in developing countries.

My favorite project of CES remains the Meraki mesh networking concept.   It’s a great example of leveraging existing technologies in new and clever ways while keeping common sense, profitability, and global citizenship in mind.

CES 2008 – What?! I missed Ryan Seacrest?

Shortly I’m off to the Wagoner – CEO of General Motors Keynote.  He’ll be talking about vehicle innovations including work on “autonomous” cars that drive themselves.   Hmm – hope they have perfected that if they bring one into the ballroom! 

Sorry to have missed the Comcast but here is SFgate’s summary of Comcast’s ideas for a *fast* future.

CES Blogger Lounge at LVCC

CES Blogger Lounge at LVCC
Originally uploaded by JoeDuck

When I initially picked up my “blogger” badge here at CES I wondered if bloggers were going to be a sort of a “downgraded”press person, but they’ve been treating bloggers very well and it’s appreciated (as well as great leveraging of social media for CES and the CES sponsors).   There are spacious well equipped blogger lounges in both venues – one here at Las Vegas Convention Center LVCC, and one at the Venetian/Sands Venue.   Today’s lunch was excellent, and coffee and snacks are here all day long.  ( I’m posting this from the Press computer room right next door but there were computers in the lounge as well).

Thanks CES!

Yahoo’s David Filo on Yahoo

After Yahoo CEO Jerry Yang gave his talk today I had a chance to interview co-founder David Filo, who had just come in for the end of the talk and was hanging around afterward. Like many Silicon Valley elites David was engaging and personal and answered several questions for me.

First was simply a confirmation that David’s plans are to ease out of some of his technology management roles at Yahoo while Jerry’s intention was to stay engaged into the foreseeable future as CEO. When Semel left Yahoo some industry watchers suggested Yang would not stay long, but those rumors appear to have been unfounded.

I asked David if he’d met with Bill Gates during CES. He said “I haven’t”, which leads me to my current working hypothesis which is a little wild, but that’s what blogging is for!

The hypothesis is that the Gates Keynote last night and the Yang talk this morning were not coincidental, but were the result of meetings – probably last night – between Gates, Yang, and perhaps former Yahoo CEO Terry Semel. I’ll certainly take David at his word that “he” did not meet with Gates. Semel was *in the audience* this morning but was not introduced.

I should note that when I pressed David to talk about a potential merger he suggested he feels Yahoo has a lot to do themselves before moving in that direction, but he also noted how the industry moves in fast and furious ways. He actually asked *me* what the advantage would be to that. I’ve written about that before here at the blog but in short it’s that Yahoo+MSN would be able to fight Google in ways neither appears to be able to do alone.

So I’m not predicting a merger/buyout but I sure wouldn’t rule it out, and I’m guessing there are informal talks going on – probably here at CES.

Disclaimer: I’ve got some Yahoo Stock. Not that it’s making me any money mind you, but I’ve got some.

Bill Gates on the second “digital decade”

Tonight at CES Bill Gates delivered his final CES (and perhaps final in the industry) keynote. The key announcements included a partnership with NBC to deliver video online for *every single sport* at the Olympics – some 3600 hours in total and I think he indicated close to real time. Also impressive was Microsoft’s work with partner “Tellme” and MS mapping to bring powerful voice and map navigation capabilities to the mobile space. They noted that mobile advertising will be some (11 billion?) by 2011, and that although they feel PCs will remain very important it’s clearly the mobile phone space where a lot of key innovation will be seen.

Back at MIX06 I noted that Microsoft had not yet embraced the social media revolution that clearly was going to dominate the online experience. I think they have now done so, but they may be too late. The demos of something called “Zune Social” were neat, but I noted the key feature was the ability to integrated with a Facebook profile. I’d argue that Open Social (or some variation on that theme), that is very largely company agnostic, will ultimately prevail. I didn’t get the idea Zune Social would be a big winner over time, but …

(posted from the CES Bloghaus! Thanks Seagate and Podtech!)

Update:  Engadget will have an interview up soon 

CES 2008: bloghaus bus has landed and their feed is up

More:  Bloghaus is now open and John Furrier looks like he’ll do a great job blogging CES.  Of course it would be nice would be to get some clues about what Furrier and Scoble are up to with the new non-Podtech startup thing they’ll announce after CES, but I don’t blame them for keeping it a secret during the CES news maelstrom which started … today.

One of the contrasts I’m already noting between this conference and the pure internet conferences is that here it seems many people are only “just starting” to understand the importance and significance of online social media where at the internet conferences this is a given, and in fact many Silicon Valley businesses fail because they don’t realize how most regular folks could care less about many aspects of the social media revolution – they’ll wait for mass adoption rather than become early adopters.

In the gaming session discussing Massively Multiplayer Online games the most interesting observations were about the nexus of socializing and games, though how this would play out did not seem clear to any of the panelists.   I’ll try to write more on that session later, but key points were the potential growth of simple free games like Maplestory & Runescape and how those games were monetizing using “micropayments”, where users buy small game items with real money.    Also interesting was the discussion of the “secondary markets” where game features are bought and sold for real money.   Based on the enthusiasm of the panelists, I think this is a really interesting market to watch.

CES 2008 Las Vegas – North Hall

CES 2008 Las Vegas – North Hall
Originally uploaded by JoeDuck.Working my way from South to North Hall of the Convention Center for the discussion about MMORPG gaming that’ll be in N253. I’ve been to this convention center several times but never to an event of this size – it’s a swirling hive of activity today – mostly exhibitors setting up the big high tech displays and display rooms, and hundreds of CES staff learning the ropes. They’ve been *very* friendly and courteous so far but the onslaught of people doesn’t happen until tomorrow. Huge Kudos to them if they can keep up the smiles and helpfulness.

I’m not finding many CES blog posts yet – I think the Scoble & Microsoft Express Blogger Bus has not arrived yet from Silcon Valley…

Here’s Dean T

CES Laptop Bag. Thanks Toshiba, but sad to see you left the show?

Originally uploaded by JoeDuck.
This great backpack from Toshiba, who was going to be out in force at CES to promote the HD-DVD standard, is a poignant reminder of how fast and furiously things change in the tech industry. Warner’s decision to go Blu-Ray was just yesterday but it’s already created a potential melt-down for HD DVD (Toshiba’s preferred and supported standard). Several HD-DVD folks have reported cancelled conference activities and events – but those are just rumors so far.

CES Bloggers

Hey, who else is blogging CES?   300 of you Techno Spartans ?    Put YOUR blog URL in the comments section of this post or twitter me and I’ll put you here.   Also make sure you have RSVPd with the CES Bloggers and Bloghaus folks at Seagate and Podtech.   

A lot of premier tech bloggers are on board the PodTech / Microsoft Blogging Bus heading for Las Vegas and video-live-blogging from the bus when they can – this really is a cool idea!

SONY Online looks like they have a great blogging venue at the MGM as well and they are hosting a cool (invitation only) Poker Party Wednesday night at the Hard Rock Cafe. 

CES Bloggers  (bloggers – RSVP with them for the Atomic Testing Museum party!)

Rob from CES


Intel’s CES Blogging Team

Technorati tag “CES 2008”

CES 2008: Don’t Tase me Bro!

Hey, here’s the Taser Press release.   At CES they’ll have a new line of Tasers where “fashion with a bite” is the theme.  



TASER Debuts Company’s First Consumer Education Infomercial and
New TASER C2 Design: Fashion with a Bite
WHAT:           TASER International will discuss its new television infomercial starring John Bunnell, host of World Wildest Police Videos. In its entirety, the 30-minute infomercial will directly educate consumers about the TASER C2.
The company will also unveil its new TASER C2 design which will provide a personal protection option for women who want fashion with a bite.