Attending the Consumer Electronics Show- am I crazy or what? That is the question I have been asking myself. With over 150,000 attendees expected and (according to the organizers) over 3,000 vendors, will I survive?
Let me introduce myself. I have been a CIO for the past 25 years, took early retirement to do more board work and to help organizations I feel passionate about. Beside being the founding president of the CIO Association of Canada and the CEO and Chair of Canadian Women in Technology (CanWIT), I’m also Executive In Residence at the Beedie School of Business, Simon Fraser University, in Vancouver. I’m on various boards such as ICBC, REBGV, CGA Canada. I also write articles such as “The CIO and the Board: Friend, Foe or Missing in Action”
I heard so much about the CES, its size, innovative products that sets the framework of what the consumers will want. I always had the best of intentions to attend but never made it. This was the year it was going to happen! And when I put my mind to something, it usually gets done. As I have written a number of articles, I was able to register as press and get access to areas I wouldn’t be able to as one of the 150,000 regular attendees.
As preparation for attending the CES, I registered online which was made easy by the help function and my badge arrived well in advance of the conference. Once I registered, I was “entertained” with regular update emails from CES, which I read with interest at first, less so once it became more frequent. I also started a walking regime to prepare for all the walking I knew I had to do.
I arrived with my husband (he is another one of the 150,000 attendees) on Saturday which gave us time to locate all the venues where the CES conference is to take place. On Sunday registration for press was supposed to start at 7:00 AM at the Mandalay Bay, one of about a dozen places where registration took place, and regular attendee registration was to start on Monday. We arrived around 11:00 AM at the Mandalay Bay and found no signs to direct us to registration. Eventually we found it (20 minute walk) with one lonely person doing the registration for the press and about 30 people lining up. To be fair, when I returned around 3:00 pm, there were lots of signs and many folks there to register the press.
So I’m registered and have the press kit. Next step ….. attend the CES unveiled event. Stay tuned for my next report to hear more about it and my trials and tribulations at the CES.
Dr. Catherine Aczel Boivie is a widely respected executive with over 30 years of experience in the leadership of advancing the value of information technology as a business and education enabler. Prior executive roles includes: CEO Inventure Solutions and Senior Vice President of Information Technology/Facility Management for Vancity Credit Union; SVP of IT and Chief Information Officer at Pacific Blue Cross and Canadian Automobile Association of British Columbia. Catherine is also an experienced board member serving on several boards, including those of Commissioner for Complaints for Telecom-television Services, Canada Foundation for Innovation and MedicAlert Canada. Dr. Boivie is the founding Chair and President of the Chief Information Officers (CIO) Association of Canada that has over 400 Chief Information Officers as members across Canada. She has been publicly recognized for her contributions, including being named as one of Canada's top 100 most powerful women by the Women's Executive Network in the "Trailblazers and Trendsetters" category and the recipient of the Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee medal for being a "catalyst for technology transformation".