Top 10 Must See Sessions at CES 2009
Ok we all know that no one really goes to the International Consumer Electronics Show for the sessions. With over 2,700 exhibitors eager to showcase their marquee product line for this year in hopes of creating the kind of buzz that will carry them into next year, there are plenty of distractions to waylay even the most educationally focused attendee. Plus, while it may be ahead of the curve in terms of the technology being showcased; CES tends towards the mundane with its sessions unless you happen to have never heard of Web 2.0 or donâ€™t know that mobile is the next big marketplace.
This year, with the upcoming change in the Administration and with the challenges everyone faces with todayâ€™s economy it is good to see CES offering sessions that are timely. The following sessions are my pick for those you can’t miss at CES 2009:
1)Â One-on-One with Federal Communications Commission Chairman Kevin Martin
I am a big believer in the truism that you are doomed to repeat the mistakes of the past if you donâ€™t learn from them. As part of an unpopular administration Kevin Martin has served as chairman of the FCC for over three years.Â As the subject of a congressional investigation which cited him with creating a â€œclimate of fearâ€ within the FCC, Martin has seen his share of mistakes and we can learn from those. It will be interesting indeed to see how he perceives the challenges facing the incoming Administration.
~Kevin Martin, Chairman, FCC
~Gary Shapiro, President and CEO, Consumer Electronics Association
2) Reaching the Promise of Universal Access to Technology: Creating the Global Tech Ecosystem
The economic crisis has served as a reminder of how real the global economy has become. Providing easier access to technology to people in growing economies promises to create a flood of new users whose ingenuity and participation may well create a shift in the way we interact with technology. Tackling the subject of universal access as a catalyst for growth, the Technology and Emerging Countries (TEC) Panel is sure to be interesting.
~Eric Nonacs, Managing Director for Global Affairs, Endeavour Financial Ltd.
~Michael Fairbanks, Co-Founder, The SEVEN Fund
~Kazi Islam, Chief Executive Officer, Grameen Solutions
~William Kamkwamba, Inventor
~ Kentaro Toyama, Assistant Managing Director, Microsoft Research India
3) The Internet â€“ How Do We Keep The Road Open?
Hand in hand with providing global access to technology is insuring that the Internet pipeline remains open to everyone. This creates challenges in managing the infrastructure of a network that companies and countries will desire to access and control. How to keep that access open to everyone will be a tough problem to solve and will directly impact the future of net neutrality.
~Rob Pegoraro, Personal Technology Columnist, Washington Post
~Scott Cleland, Chairman, NetCompetition.org and President, Precursor LLC
~Paul Misener, Vice President, Global Public Policy, Amazon.com
~Brent Olson, Assistant Vice President- Public Policy, AT&T
~Ben Scott, Policy Director, Free Press
~Rick Whitt, Washington Telecom and Media Counsel, Google Inc.
4) Washington Update: The Times They Are a Changinâ€™
After recovering from the spin of FFC Chairman Kevin Martin and orienting yourself to the global stakes, this session further speculates on how the incoming Administration will take on topics such as global access, intellectual property, media regulation and net neutrality.
~Andrew Noyes, Reporter,Â CongressDaily
~Markham Erickson, Executive Director, NetCoalition
~Jim Harper, Director of Information Policy Studies, The Cato Institute
~Leslie Harris, President & CEO, Center for Democracy & Technology
~David K. Rehr, President and CEO, National Association of Broadcasters (NAB)
~Gigi Sohn, President and Co-Founder, Public Knowledge
5) Emerging CE Technology – A Preview of the IEEE ICCE’s Most Interesting Technologies
I always found the OZ behind the curtain far more interesting the flashy Wizard in front of curtain. Although CES often provides a bit of flash the chance to peek at what the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers feels is the most interesting emerging technologies should be tempting to anyone attending.
~Stuart Lipoff, Partner, IP Action Partners
~Atul Batra, Senior Director, Marvell Semiconductors Inc.
~Tom Coughlin, President, Coughlin Associates
~Uwe Kraus, Professor, University of Wuppertal
~Scott Linfoot, Professor, De Montfort University
6) Finding Money in a Bad Economy
Have a startup idea or want to fund you newly launched startup? Well, 2009 will prove to be a tough year to find funding with venture capital firms actually seeking to (gasp) fund business whose fiscal strategy makes sense. This session should prove to be a good gauge for the type entrepreneurial pitch VCs are open to this year.
~Don Rainey, General Partner, Grotech Ventures
~Mark Heesen, President, National Venture Capital Association
~Brian Jacobs, General Partner, Emergence Capital Partners
~Michael Kelley, Principal, PricewaterhouseCoopers
~Jeb Miller, Principal, The Carlyle Group
7) Greener Gadgets: The Future of Consumer Technology
One field we know VCs are open to is greentech. This panel on emerging green trends and innovations should provide a peek at how new and established companies are moving towards sustainable design.
~Marc Alt, President, Marc Alt + Partners
~David Floyd, Managing Director, Freeplay Energy
~Mary Lou Jepsen, CEO, Pixel Qi
~Jeff Omelchuck, Executive Director, The Green Electronics Council
8 ) What Will They Think of Next? Consumer Technology in 2025
After the IEEE trots out the technologies it finds interesting, join in some good old fashioned speculation as tech experts attempt to predict how the consumer electronics industry will evolve over the next 25 years. Personally, I am still holding out for jetpacks.
~Kara Swisher, Co-Executive Editor, All Things D
~Stephen DiFranco, Vice President and GM, Americas Consumer Group, Lenovo
~Gregory Harper, Co-Founder, Gadgetoff and President, Cerberus Corp.
~Len J. Lauer, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, Qualcomm Inc.
~Sean Maloney, Executive Vice President, General Manager, Sales and Marketing, Intel
~Phil McKinney, Vice President, CTO, Personal Systems Group, Hewlett-Packard Company
9) Your Robot Will See You Now â€“ How Technology is Creating Your Personal Hospital
In a case of the future is now, the field of health informatics is growing as smart technology begins to augment health monitoring. From remote doctor visits via video to advanced personal diagnostics the way we think of medicine is changing quickly. Of course with the boon of such devices comes concerns over privacy and quality of care which hopefully this panel will address as well.
~Rick Merritt, Editor-at-Large,Â EE Times
~Howard Jay Chizeck, Sc.D, Professor, Department of Electrical Engineering and Adjunct Professor, Department of Bioengineering, University of Washington
~Mir Imran, Inventor & Authority on Medical Electronics, In-Cube
~Rajiv Mehta, CEO, Zume Life
~Marshall Stanton, M.D., Vice President, Remote Disease Management, Medtronic
~David Whitlinger, President and Board Chair, Continua Health Consortium
10) Tie between the two: Day One Keynotes
Keynotes often set the mood for a conference. A lot of challenges currently face the Consumer Electronics industry. Especially with Ford Motor Company being on the schedule (2nd Keynote of the day) it will be interesting to see how rose tinted or straightforward will CEA CEO Gary Shapiro’s State of the Industry address be. My bet is on rose tinted.
~Gary Shapiro, President and CEO, Consumer Electronics Association
~Sir Howard Stringer, Chairman and CEO, Sony Corporation
~Alan Mulally, President and CEO, Ford Motor Company
Thatâ€™s the rundown of my picks for what should be a very interesting CES. What sessions are you looking forward to? What technology do you most want to see unveiled?