January 17, 2011
by Mark Ollig
The closing of the 2011 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) ended four days of bliss for the many tech geeks in attendance, and for those of us watching online.
Live streaming video feeds were broadcast from numerous webcasters direct from the CES.
With nearly 2 million square feet of space being used, an estimated 140,000 people participated at this year’s CES.
Of this total, 30,000 came from outside the US.
To nobody’s surprise, tablet computing devices were found in abundance at this years show along with many other high-tech goodies.
Once again, 3D TV’s made news at CES.
These were not the “revolutionary” 3D televisions seen at last year’s CES; they were more “evolutionary.”
New “passive polarized” 3D technology TVs were shown by three companies: Visio, LG, and Toshiba.
Passive 3D TVs possess the ability to present high-quality theater 3D viewing using lightweight and less expensive passive polarized 3D glasses which do not require a power source.
Sony CEO Howard Stringer said, “. . . many people find passive polarized to be more comfortable. The weight of the glasses is better; it works better over (eye) glasses. It seems to provide a really comfortable long viewing experience.”
The other surprise in 3D demonstrated by Sony was their “glasses-free” autostereoscopic organic light emitting diode (OLED) 3D TV.
To see the 3D effect, you must stand in a specific location in front of the TV to correctly receive the light images being directed to your eyes.
In fact, black foot prints were painted on the floor in front of the Sony OLED 3D TV where you needed to stand.
The people who viewed it said they did see the full 3D effect, without having to wear 3D glasses.
The autostereoscopic 3D display screen works by sending two images to the right and the left eye by way of rays of light at different angles. Our brain connects this and creates the illusion of the 3D images we see without wearing 3D glasses.
There is not much 3D video content out there yet, but movie makers and game developers are beginning to create more.
Any one of us will be able to create our own 3D content using the new 3D camcorders Sony, JVC, and Panasonic are coming out with.
JVC’s 3D camcorder shown at the CES is called the Everio GS-TD1.
This camcorder has two sensors which capture 1080i 3D video. It contains an internal flash storage of 64GB and a 5X optical zoom.
The camcorder uses 4 to 8GB per hour while filming.
This is a full high definition (HD) camcorder and includes a 3D flat panel view finder.
The JVC Everio GS-TD1 camcorder includes 3D editing software and will be available for us in March at an estimated cost of $2,000.
Consumer 3D technology is still in its infancy, but I look for this medium to become more commonly used in the future.
Outdoors at the CES parking lot, General Motors demonstrated their futuristic autonomous vehicles.
These two-seat, self-enclosed electric urban transportation concept vehicles can travel about 25 miles in-between charges at a top speed of 30 mph.
This concept vehicle is called the EN-V, which stands for Electric Networked Vehicle.
These vehicles are built to communicate with other EN-Vs while traveling, in order to better manage the flow of traffic between them.
Folks were given rides in working red and blue EN-Vs while representatives of GM answered questions.
To see the GM EN-V in action at the 2011 CES, go to tinyurl.com/4chhame.
Ford Motor Company took the wraps off their new 2012 all-electric Ford Focus automobile during the 2011 CES.
The 2012 Focus uses a 23 kilowatt-hour liquid-cooled lithium-ion battery pack and has a top speed of 84 mph.
Recharging time from a 240-volt source is three to four hours.
Best Buy stores have been authorized by Ford to install the 240-volt charging stations for owners of the Ford Focus electric car.
The vehicles traveling distance has not yet been officially made known, however, one Ford spokesperson at the CES said it was about 100 miles.
To see the details of the 2012 Ford Focus Electric automobile, go to the Ford web page, http://tinyurl.com/49z7o3v.
The CES not only showcases larger company’s new product concepts, but also smaller independent inventor’s creations, as well.
Being this columnist is pretty much of an independent sort, I would like to devote some liquid (and virtual) ink to an inventor who came to CES with a unique product.
Her name is Nancy Tedeschi, and she came up with a practical new method for permanently attaching small screws to optical eyeglass frames and brought it to CES looking for dealers and distributors.
Her company is called “Snapit.”
To see how the product is used, watch the video at tinyurl.com/4eh3oq8.
Their website is www.snapitscrew.com.
The 2011 CES “Best in Show” award went to Motorola, for their new Xoom 10.1-inch personal computing tablet, which will be released to the public later this year.
Even as the 2011 CES was ending, a few live video streams were still broadcasting.
In one stream, I watched a small group of people aimlessly walking around the showroom floors.
Venders were tearing down their booths and talking amongst themselves.
A few people stood in one place – gazing at the emptying booths – appearing not wanting to leave.