DEMOnstrating Some Variety

from the mixing-it-up dept

I’m in Phoenix this week for the DEMO 2006 conference, an event that I’ve been a fan of for a while (one of the only conferences I find worth attending). After watching the first day’s worth of demos and talking to a variety of companies and attendees, I’ve actually been struggling to come up with something to write. In the past, I’ve tried to tie together a common theme or two, but I haven’t really found one yet (maybe after another day). My one impression from looking over my notes, however, is that there really weren’t any stand out demos, but there weren’t very many complete duds either (though, some presenters could improve their presentation style). I actually think this is a good thing. The standout demos often aren’t the best products, and it’s tough not to get a few duds when so many companies are presenting. So, perhaps what is noteworthy is the lack of an overriding theme so far and the consistent quality. There was a lot of variety in the presentations, from the Linux-powered ice-cream vending machine to the eerily life-like toy dinosaur, which made for an interesting set of presentations. There may have been a few too many “search” related businesses, but given the booming search space (missed earnings noted), it’s really no surprise. The summary, then, is that it appears that a lot of companies are innovating in many different areas, rather than simply re-attacking old problems or clustering around certain areas. That’s a good sign for overall innovation, which hopefully will be followed up with more of the same on the second day. There’s been plenty of good blog coverage of all of the specific demos, so it’s not worth detailing them here — though I may try to focus in on some of the more interesting ones after the conference is over.

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