CES: A primer

In exactly one week, the CrunchGear team will be descending on CES for your benefit. Why should we be going? Because it’s the biggest consumer electronics show in the world? Why are we going? Because we’re dumb suckers.

CES, if you’ll recall, is huge. It takes over Las Vegas for most of a week and the products announced there will grace shelves over the next year. However, to clear up misconceptions about the event I’ve created this primer for you, the reading public. Using the mnemonic device CES SUCKS THE BIG ONE you can easily remember everything there is to know about this great show.

C is for CES. It stands for the Consumer Electronics Show. It is very old. Your dad probably went once. It holds as much cultural relevance as the World’s Fair.

E is for entertainment. That’s what CE manufacturers are trying to really sell here. They want people to think of their products as “entertainment” rather than hard goods. It’s easier to sell someone a TV when it’s fun.

S is for suckers. That’s us. For going every year. For giving this show all the ink it gets.

S is for September. The stuff you’ll see at CES won’t come out until September, in time for next year’s holiday season.

U is unadulterated hatred. That’s what I have for this show.

C is cash. That’s what we have to outlay in order to go to CES each year.

K is knowing half the stuff we see there will never make it to stores. Many of the booths are populated by Taiwanese OEM manufacturers who are hoping a big box store will pick up their crappy iPod docks. But they won’t.

S is for Sands. That’s where we’re staying. We used to stay at the Excalibur but that got too depressing. Did I mention I hate Las Vegas?

T is for technology journalists. It’s nice to see a lot of them once a year. CES is like the pasty journo high school reunion.

H is for hatred. See U, above.

E is for excitement. The CES show seems really fun but it isn’t. That’s why punchy kids turned off a bunch of TVs last year just for fun.

B is for big TVs. That’s one thing you’ll see a lot of. Big TVs. Manufacturers figure they’re paying for the floor space so they might as well bring out the big guns. It’s essentially a big fat loss leader for them to bring out a 200-inch behemoth in order to garner the world’s attention.

I is for Internet. The Internet is destroying the big shows. Who needs to get in front of Joe Gadgetpack when he can see reviews of stuff he can pick up for the next year on the Internet? The news cycle is so quick now that a January show is forgotten by February.

G is for gambling. It’s the real reason so many CE folks like to go to Las Vegas. That and the whores.

O is for “Oh my god I don’t want to have to fly to Las Vegas this year.”

N is for netbooks. Expect to see plenty of those this year.

E is for everything will be OK. I’ll just keep repeating that to myself.