By Moe Lastfogel
Director of Sales and Marketing for The Retail Observer
As you can see by our cover, CES is celebrating 50 years of their history— an impressive accomplishment in the world of trade shows. As one of the largest shows in the world, this feat doesn’t go unnoticed. So many innovations and companies have launched from this event that six pages in The Retail Observer doesn’t even scratch the surface.
I am celebrating 54 years myself, and as I look back, I think of all the electronics that have been invented during that time, and all the changes that electronics have made in my lifetime. Whether it’s in the kitchen, family room, bedroom or anything in my day-to-day life, I can only guess how many of the products we use today were introduced at this show.
I remember being in the living room during the college bowl games with black and white TVs pulled from various rooms in the house so we could watch every game at the same time. The problem was there was no remote control. Guess who invented the first voice activated remote? Yep, my dad. “Get up and change the small TV to channel 2 and the big one to channel 4. USC is about to score.” That problem was fixed thanks to the work of Zenith engineer Eugene Polley.
I also remember being in the kitchen with my mom and helping her make holiday meals with manual hand mixers (I was the power unit) and manual me at grinders (again, child labor.) Hours of elbow grease and sore arms were rewarded by the occasional dessert spoon to happily lick clean. Today we have electronic appliances to do all of this, and even order the ingredients for us. Ah, the time off I would have had as a child if our family had these products!
I have been going to the show for ten years now as a member of the press and can’t begin to tell you how excited I get every year to be a part of this amazing event. I’d like to say thank you to the CTA and congratulate the CES for their 50 years of showing us what has been, what is, and what will be in the CE world.