07
January
2010
|
05:20 PM
America/Los_Angeles

CES Diary: Intel's Spectacular Mystery Event Fizzles... Spamuri... Chas Edwards... Technology And Porn...

I got up very early so I could get to the airport in time to deal with long security lines for my trip to Las Vegas but there weren't any. That meant I had a couple of hours to kill.

At the gate I ran into Cathy Brooks, a fellow member of the "Intel Insiders," the small group of media specialists that advises Intel. She had also arrived early and was complaining she could have slept for an extra hour or two. It was good to have her company on the flight.

Th Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas is the last of the huge trade shows such as Comdex/Fall. I've been to more than 20 Comdexes and CES, especially with its ever larger contingent of computer makers, has a very Comdex-like feel to it.

CES also has the same problems that covering a large show such as Comdex had -- getting from place to place is a nightmare. Fortunately, Intel has booked myself and fellow 'Insiders' at The Venetian, an excellent central location.

Fortunately, I don't have to do as much work as I used to do when covering Comdex. I don't have an agenda. I'm very lucky in that respect because I'm here to get a feel for what's happening, make new contacts, and spend quality time with some extraordinary people.

Intel mystery event...

My first event is Intel's media party. Bryan Rhoads, Intel's Senior Digital Strategist, he tells me about a mystery event Intel has planned for Thursday evening. It sounded fantastic, a dazzling event featuring 24 projectors and using the facade of the one of the Strip's Casinos as a screen. [UPDATE: Intel cancelled the event just hours from its scheduled time -- no reason given.]

- I ran into Sarah Austin, another Intel Insider, she said she'd been mentioned in Vanity Fair.

- It was great to meet up with Intel's Ken Kaplan and Christine Ngo from Ogilvy.

- Also: bloggers Paul Mooney and Steve "Chippy" Paine, who runs the excellent UMPC Portal focused on MIDS and netbooks.

- I walk over to the Pepcom event with Paul Mooney and Ken Kaplan. I help Ken with one of his two bags. The one I choose seems to be loaded with Nazi gold because it is incredibly heavy for its size.

The line for Pepcom is long and soon an alternative opportunity arises when I see Chris Tolles, the head of Topix, or as Chris always points out "one of the best known web sites in the US -- except in San Francisco."

Pepper peppers AllTop...

Chris tells me that Jeremy Pepper is hosting a party in a suite at the same hotel. I haven't seen Jeremy for a while, probably since he moved to southern California a couple of years ago. Jeremy was one of the first bloggers that I met when I first started SVW.

It was good to catch up with Jeremy. But he hasn't changed much, he still rarely has anything good to say about anybody. However, I do sometimes agree with him.

- We all had a good go at slagging off AllTop, the Guy Kawasaki venture that aggregates hundreds of web sites. It's a bunch of RSS feeds in a box -- it is a cynical venture that is making money off of other people's content. Another thing that irks me about Guy Kawasaki is that he has hired two writers to Twitter for him and he thinks that this is OK. Few of his followers are aware that much of the time on Twitter, Guy Kawasaki isn't, while two others are.

Paul Mooney has good nickname for Guy Kawasaki: 'Spamuri' because of his incessant marketing spiel to an army of marketing followers. He says Guy Kawasaki loves the name.

[BTW, Jeremy wrote an excellent post recently that puts social media into perspective. It's worth reading: Meh or Shmay, 2010 is Just Another Year]


Blogger nights...

- I headed back to my room to work on some stories then ventured out around 10.30 p.m. to "Lenovo's Blogger Nights." Chris Heuer and Kristie Wells from Social Media Club helped organize the event and it was surprisingly lots of fun.

- John Furrier from SiliconAngle was there, also Renee Blodgett (one of the first women bloggers - long before Mommy bloggers and Blogher) and Ponzi Pirillo, who is moving to San Francisco from Seattle. And it was great to spend time with Kristi Kilpatrick.

- Elaine Fiolet, publisher of the excellent Ubergizmo gadget site was looking tired but happy. I thanked her for all her work in helping to organize the recent trip I had with the Traveling Geeks to Paris. [Traveling Geeks Paris coverage is here.]

- It was good to see Mitch Ratcliffe, a serial entrepreneur and until recently, one of my fellow ZDNet bloggers. Mitch has a new job, he is at Microsoft as Content Strategist for the Server & Tools Online Group. He is webcasting a show all week at CES on Lenovo Live.

- The highlight of the evening was meeting Chas Edwards, Chief Revenue Officer at Digg. I've been following his career for a while, first at Federated Media and now at Digg. He is one of the savviest media professionals in the industry and has excellent insights into how to monetize online media. He promised me an interview when we get back from CES.

[BTW: Take a look at Chas Edwards' recent blog post in which he points to a chart showing newspapers are still getting more than their share of ad dollars - "Which means they have the furthest to fall as ad dollars follow audiences to the Internet."]

- The Lenovo party finished at 1am, then we went dancing at a very fun club in the Venetian. I noticed that people dress a lot better here... and they dress with less. Some of the club goers looked like they were associated with the Adult Entertainment Expo, which always coincides with CES just as it used to coincide with Comdex. It's not surprising -- technology and porn are traditional bed mates.