The Consumer Electronics Show (CES) was bigger than ever this year with close to 2 million net square feet of exhibit spaces, more than 3,100 companies and 140,000 attendees. The Show is changing and its relevance debated as Microsoft scaled back its presence and Apple not attending for years. If Smart TV sets were the big news last year, 3D rendering amazed the audience this week with an energy on the floor that I have not seen at tradeshows since the Internet bubble.
It is difficult to think green though with such a deluge of new gadgets, particularly with their shortening life-time. The organizers made an honest effort though to be eco-friendly by recycling 24 thousand square feet of signs at CES 2011 to create all the badge holders at CES 2012. And the Consumer Electronic Association (CEA) is pushing for stronger eCycling programs with a commitment to recyle 1 billion pounds of electronics annually by 2016. On the contrary, I don't quite buy the argument that an event is green by saving air travel during the year with one international tradeshow. A centralized model of doing business with offshore manufacturing is at the center of the US innovation model and can be questioned.