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CES 2013: Amazing spectacles and awkward moments

By Jon Phillips, PC World
January 11, 2013 08:05 AM ET

PC World - Did that just happen?

Erase all misconceptions. CES isn't just a sprawling exposition of electronic wares. It's a three-ring circus of shock and awe, of surprise and delight. Exhibitors pony up major coin for booth space, and once that ante has been tossed, they need to attract eyeballs with something, anything, that stands out among the visual noise.

The best of CES 2013 in pictures

Nikon gave us colorful ballroom dancers with swirling tassels and unseemly hips thrusts. Take a photo and observe the speed of Nikon's image sensor! This spectacle and many more show us that CES will never run out of methods to jump the show booth shark.

And, yes, some CES happenings are downright awkward...

Thank you, sir, for demonstrating first-class slumber

For some inexplicable reason, Panasonic devoted a few square feet of booth space to show off Singapore Airlines' first-class cabin pod. The technology to focus on? I was told the seat is the hardware innovation in this particular tableau. Our friend in the recliner certainly seems satisfied. But now it's time to wake up, sir. You have more CES ahead.

Ultrabook flower power

Intel wins my personal award for Best CES Light Show Spectacle. That award usually goes to Samsung, which every year finds a new, creative way to arrange a veritable art installation of flat-screen TVs.

But in 2013 I must give props to Intel for this blooming flower of Ultrabooks. Yep, each block of light is a partner machine, and all the Ultrabooks are color-synchronized for the effect you see here.

Mr. Kilmister, CES attendee

Headphones can't just be headphones in 2013. They must be directly associated with musicians of high-decibel repute. You would have thought hip-hop artists had this market cornered, but this year Motorhead rolled out its own branded audiophile products. And frontman Lemmy Kilmister himself dropped down into CES to promote the ear-splitting volume of his wares.

I tested the Motorheadphones. Yes, these are the cans you want if you give not a damn about premature hearing loss or tinnitus.

Shooting the unshootable

OK, work with me here. Walk me through this. First, Sharp makes CES headlines with an 85-inch, 8K TV that is not only too big to fit in anyone's home, but also way too high-resolution to make use of existing video content. That's bad enough.

But even worse are the throngs of attendees taking photos of this monster display. News flash: Nothing in your resulting image will showcase the visual clarity of this 8K hoodwink. Your camera sensor will not pick up the pixel density that your human eyes cannot even perceive in the first place.

But the best irony of all? I, of course, took a photo too.

The 'Let's hope she knows how to steer this thing for the sake of all humanity' robot

Meet the Mondo Spider, a 1700-pound, eight-legged, hydraulic-activated, electric-powered walking machine. It was developed on Lenovo workstations, and not once did I hear a report of it running amok, breaking through tents and trailers, and causing mass panic and mayhem at CES 2013.

Originally published on www.pcworld.com. Click here to read the original story.

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