Back from NAB Expo

Three years ago, I went to the NAB (National Association of Broadcasters) Expo with some co-workers at the school where I was teaching Flash and Web Design to Middle/High School students. They had an entire area of the Expo dedicated to Multimedia/Web and I was amazed by what I saw. I returned this year expecting to see something similar. I was a bit disappointed as the show had a much narrower focus. Last time I went, I felt a part because of the web/multimedia portion, but this time I felt more like an onlooker than a participant. The emphasis on the move to 3D was evident from the moment we walked in. Sony had an area dedicated to their 3D TV displays. It was pretty amazing to see a 3D image on a wall mounted TV. Panasonic also had an HD 3D theater for which you had to line up just to get tickets for a later showing. One of the highlights of the day was being able to sit in the Content Theater and see what Pixar was doing with 3D. Two of their leads in the 3D department discussed their approach to 3D and shared some of their early trials from Ratatouille and Cars. They also showed us extended scenes from the upcoming summer realease Up. It was cool stuff and certainly amazing to see. I enjoyed their approach to 3D as a story telling element instead of just a novelty to make things emerge from the screen. It was also evident that the economic downturn has had an effect on trade show shwag as well. There were more candy dishes and pens being dispensed than last time I attended. Even Microsoft was just handing out pens. I am glad we went, but I think I will stick to trade shows that are more to my area like Photoshop World and of course the geekfest that is Comic-Con.