THE BLOG
01/14/2013 01:36 pm ET Updated Mar 16, 2013

Inspiration From CES

Facebook wasn't mentioned once. Twitter was irrelevant. Instagram, Foursquare, Pinterest were nowhere in sight. It was like being in an alternate universe...

No one even breathed the word "social."

I was surrounded by television screens, assaulted by video, bombarded by sound, flooded by connectivity, wowed by magic and wooed by beautiful design form...

Alternate universe? Sort of...

It was the annual CES -- Consumer Electronics Show -- in Las Vegas.

Last week I wrote about my going-in impressions -- and as I walked the floors dominated by Samsung and LG proudly showing "magic and beauty," I felt really good about the future -- in fact, I felt this was the best show in many years because it was real... no one was ashamed to show product or felt the need to explain that your screen could connect to Facebook....

Truth is the screens were bigger and better, the devices were more beautiful -- but the real story of the show, the inspiration to me, was that this was the year that interconnectivity became the focus -- not in some new twist on social networks, but in the very real and powerful sense of Digital Exponential -- that is, how does the stuff work together to make your real life -- the life you live and breathe in -- better, easier, more enjoyable, more productive, more fun.

Someday soon, your refrigerator will read the chips in food packaging -- it will watch freshness, monitor quantity, alert you -- even combine ingredients in the recipes it sends you; your laundry will be infinitely better done as the machine will know what fabrics it's washing and drying, adjusting the temperature and cleaning products accordingly; your car driving experience will get even better as cars begin to drive themselves and your ability to link your destination, local searches, needs along the way, music and calls through your mobile device will enable a new level of mobile Digital Exponential.

And while we all love mobile devices and mini this and that -- the viewing experience for the kind of content where you want "WOW" and "live surround social" will continue to get more and more immersive and theatre-like. And as technology changes the way we get the content, new business models will evolve so that we can, in fact, still browse, but buy what we want -- when we want it.

What amazes me though, is that some analysts asked if the trend to big and immersive was "killing mobile." NUTS!!! No!!! WRONG.

WHY -- WHY, I ask, do we always assume one thing kills another -- TV is not dead (TV is what we watch; television is one of the screens we watch it on -- David Sable Dictionary); radio is still very much alive -- in fact as I write this, I'm listening to Pandora -- Beatles Channel -- on my Samsung Smart TV...; PCs -- which are mobile by the way -- still sell and Intel has a new array of chips coming our way that are going to be the next blowout. And, if that wasn't enough to convince the naysayers -- there were more companies selling covers for mobile devices than there were devices -- it's a growing market!

Bottom line -- to those who lamented that they saw nothing new at CES: Open your eyes and minds -- it's not what was there -- it's all about where your imagination can take you. The future is here today...

Last week I quoted one Renaissance master -- this week I quote another... listen:

"I saw the angel in the marble and carved until I set him free." -- Michelangelo

The angels are there -- we just need to set them free...

What do you think?

By the way - don't forget the fork that vibrates when you eat too fast....!!!