Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Macworld 2009

Macworld is happening this week, and I went because (a) Vista sucks and since I no longer need it for pimping my mad SharePoint/TeamFoundation/etc. skills, I am totally switching to Apple now; (b) As a microbusiness technology consultant it is my job to go to expos and see if there might be any useful information (which there was); and (c) I never pass up a chance to geek out with my brother, especially if there might be drinking involved.

Here is a picture of my brother standing in front of the car from Back To The Future. For some of you, this will be reason enough to attend MacWorld, so I’m putting it first.

One of the best things about this expo was the profusion of comfortable places to sit down. Here is a picture of the W hotel lounge area. You can’t see it from here, but in addition to the couches they have cool-looking board games and puzzles to entertain yourself with.

Here is a picture of me with my amazingly tasty FREE blueberry cocktail from Viximo. Seriously, even though it was warm and served in plastic, this was one of the best cocktails I’ve had in the past three months. They had an ostentatious booth with a trestle full of iPhones showing off their new flirting application and the drinks were there to loosen inhibitions. Unfortunately, somebody at Viximo didn't allocate enough resources to QA and UE, so the application is too difficult to navigate and I doubt they're going to get the response they are hoping for.

I came away with a plastic Nikon-emblazoned swag bag with a bunch of software and flyers in it. (I deliberately skip the tshirts and keychains, as I have way too much of that stuff already). When I got home, I sorted through it, looking for information that you, dear readers (all ten of you) might find helpful. Here are the highlights:
  • MyVu personal media viewer – The eyeball equivalent of headphones, plus headphones. Plug it into your video ipod and watch a movie.

    This is probably the most seriously cool gadget I saw all day. They work. They look good. They’re relatively inexpensive (about $130). Unfortunately donning the device required that I remove my glasses and since I'm ridiculously nearsighted, it wasn’t as nearly as much fun as it should have been. But if you wear contact lenses (or have normal vision) this should be totally awesome.

  • Host a meeting from your iPhone - during the past five years or so, I’ve worked for startups and/or with distributed teams and we had a lot of virtual meetings. Mostly, we use one of those conference services where you call in. But it is really helpful to have some sort of visual console, and carting around a laptop can be kind of inconvenient. Fuze makes a little application/service that lets you do this from your iPhone.

  • “Mac Mingle” Free afterparty tomorrow 7-midnight at Jillians – For those who do their best networking while under the influence of alcohol. Free nibbles and a no-host bar. I’m posting this for those of you who want to mix with this crowd but can’t get a badge, because it seems like the sort of thing you’d probably be able to talk your way into. Or (if you are not socially fluent) just show up before they start carding. Jillians is a public space located in the Metreon near the Moscone Center complex.

  • Free and Discount Passes to MacWorld – I don’t know if any of these actually work because I have my badge already. But there are links here , here, and here if you need one. You’re welcome.

  • Where to Find Everything From Cable Shows to an Oxford Education Free in the iTunes Store and Beyond – I might go back to Macworld on Thursday just to attend this class. O’Reilly has an impressive list of free lectures that had their booth packed to overflowing every time I strolled by it.
That's it! I also went to Bill Ayers' event and met the 30-Day Challenge guy. But that's a topic for another post.

I might return to Macworld on Thursday or Friday daytime. If you want to meet up, ping me on Twitter.


Merri said...

cool maybe one day i will go to macworld. i really like those video glasses!!

Sean said...

My Macworld blog is more off-topic than yours! Nyah nyah nyah nyah nyahhhhh . . . .