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GlenVegas Glen Ross

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This past week I went to The Consumer Electronics Show (aka CES) in Las Vegas. "Why would a TV executive go to CES" you ask? Good question.

First, there were almost as many TV executives in Vegas for CES as there were in Pasadena for the Television Critics Association (TCA) press tour. Second, even though TV executives don't necessarily work in technology, nothing at the moment affects their lives and jobs more than the connected electronics through which their content is seen.

There have been countless Top Ten lists, slide shows and recaps from CES -- some of the best of it right here, in HuffPost Tech. So, rather than try to top these, I decided to actually take YOU TO CES. No, I didn't shoot video (the HuffPost don't cover no equipment budget). Instead, to give you the true CES experience (and links to some of the best stories to come out of Vegas last week), I give you an exclusive first-look at my script for the pilot episode of...

GLENVEGAS GLEN ROSS:

INT. LOBBY OF THE COSMOPOLITAN HOTEL. LAS VEGAS.

It is the final day of CES. Three YOUNG EXECUTIVES stand together, but do not speak. Instead, brows furrowed, they stare at, and fidget with, their smart phones... intensely.

INTERNET EXEC

You getting any signal?

HARDWARE EXEC

No! What the frak? Can't get any texts or calls. Can't send any texts or calls!

INTERNET EXEC

I haven't been able to Tweet about a conversation in six hours. My followers will think I'm dead!

TV EXEC

Just think. Nearly a dozen people, worried sick.

INTERNET EXEC

The first year anyone from Apple comes to CES and suddenly no one in Vegas can get a signal on their iPhone. Coincidence?

TV EXEC

My BlackBerry is working.

INTERNET EXEC

BlackBerry!?!

HARDWARE EXEC

How quaint! Do you have a buggy-whip too?

INTERNET EXEC

Tell us, can you play pong on that thing?

Awkward pause. They all look down at their smart phones.

INTERNET EXEC

Hey, can I borrow that so I can call my wife?

HARDWARE EXEC

Can I use that so I can text someone?

A JOURNALIST enters.

JOURNO

Hey.

TV EXEC

Hey.

JOURNO

Sorry I'm late, I had to wait in a taxi line for an hour and half.

HARDWARE EXEC

I know, it's nuts.

INTERNET EXEC

Why is it so crowded this year?

HARDWARE EXEC

The Ideapad Yoga...

JOURNO

The Ballmer and Seacrest farewell Keynote...

TV EXEC

Early arrivals for the Adult Video Convention...

Beat.

JOURNO

Wait, there's a Porn Convention here?

TV EXEC

Wait, Ballmer's not coming back to CES?

INTERNET EXEC

Wait, they named a tablet after Yoda?

HARDWARE EXEC

Yes, it's a Notebook Tablet Hybrid.

JOURNO

No, they're doing their own Expo next year.

TV EXEC

Yes. Next week. Though in Vegas, it may be hard to tell the difference between a Porn convention and a typical Tuesday.


Pause. They look at each other... then at their smart phones. Three frown, the TV EXEC smiles.

JOURNO

So, what are you up to tonight?

HARDWARE EXEC

I'm going to the first half of the Hulu party and the second half of the YouTube party.

INTERNET EXEC

I'm going to the first twenty minutes of the YouTube party, the second forty minutes of the Hulu party, then the Mashable party with the Facebook people.

TV EXEC

One word: CELINE!

JOURNO

I'm confused... This is the Consumer Electronics Show. Why are all the parties sponsored by web platforms?

INTERNET EXEC

What do you think all those ELECTRONICS connect to? Plus, we have all the money.

JOURNO

Did you see any actual consumer electronics that were impressive or exciting?

INTERNET EXEC

Look, the meme this year is the Internet of Everything. You see, it's all Social -- everything has to be connected, because at the end of the day, the game is over and the consumer has won. So to say that one piece of technology provides a true (air quotes) "AH-HA" moment is oversimplifying the significance of the moment.

JOURNO

You never made it to the floor did you?

INTERNET EXEC

Uh, no.

JOURNO

How is that possible?

INTERNET EXEC

Everyone came to our suite... we had shrimp.

JOURNO

How 'bout you two?

TV EXEC

Easy: OLED TV. 55 inches. Unreal picture.

JOURNO

What's the O stand for?

HARDWARE EXEC

It stands for O-MFG is that the price?!

TV EXEC

It stands for Organic.

JOURNO

Organic? Is a TV or a chicken?

INTERNET EXEC

But is it local?

HARDWARE EXEC

Hey, you know we've got a new Web-to-TV streaming device... It's

JOURNO

A Smart TV?

HARDWARE EXEC

No, it's a Dongle. It connects to the TV.

JOURNO

A Dongle.

HARDWARE EXEC

Yes. A Killer Dongle. You want to see it?


As he reaches into his pocket, the others back up a step.

TV EXEC

Is that a Dongle in your pocket, or are you just happy to CES me?

INTERNET EXEC

Are you sure you're not here for the Porn convention?

He can't find his Dongle.

HARDWARE EXEC

Damn, I think I left it in my room. Stop by later, I'll show it to you.

TV EXEC

Very smooth... "Do you want to come to my room and see my Dongle?" Best pick up line of the show.

JOURNO

Hey, did you get to see The Spectre? For me, that was the winner.

INTERNET EXEC

Spectre? Is that a Cloud device or one of the X-Men?

HARDWARE EXEC

(Aside)

Pretty sure The Specter is in the DC Universe.

TV EXEC

This is Vegas, try not to let your Geek show.

JOURNO

No, it's a new laptop. They fit a 14 inch screen into a 13 inch frame.

HARDWARE EXEC

That's what she said.


Beat.

INTERNET EXEC

That doesn't even make sense.

HARDWARE EXEC

But. Well. (Pause. Pointing.) She made fun of my Dongle.

JOURNO

It's Ok, I'm sure your Dongle is very nice.

HARDWARE EXEC

(Pouts)

It is. My Dongle is awesome.

TV EXEC

(Reading off her Blackberry)

I gotta go. I won the Raffle! Apparently they sent out a hundred emails, but no one else claimed it.


Starts to go. The others look at their phones. Still nothing.

JOURNO

Hey! What did you win?

TV EXEC

A personal robotic cameraman, with automatic pan and swivel!


She runs off. The others look at each other. Pause.

HARDWARE EXEC

You think she won that at CES or the Porn Convention?

The other two shrug. They return to their smart phones. Frown.

FADE OUT.

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CES 2012: the key gadgets - in pictures | Technology | guardian.co.uk

Jim Harris: What's Exciting and New at CES 2012