Perhaps it's because I've spent most of the last week in a trade show in a collosal exhibition hall, and only really seen that and the hotel I'm staying in (the perfectly civilised and quiet Marriott Fairfield Inn) but I am very underwhelmed by Vegas. Today, rather than take the excellent advice of many good friends, I decided to explore 'the Strip'- not a good idea.
I grew up just down the road from Blackpool, and though in terms of scale and expense, this place is an utterly different order of magnitude, they are essentially of a piece. The best of Vegas has fabulous design, lustrous materials, impeccable service and quality- but it's all product, and built to squeeze the marks just as much as the 'kiss me quick' hats on the Golden Mile. And believe me, they squeeze them hard- drinks are typically $10, shows run to $100 per seat, and everyone wants big tips and will tell you so(including the surly and frankly rubbish taxi drivers).
I'll come back if the opportunity arrises- the NAB show really is an excellent showcase for the broadcast industry and I wish I'd been able to get away from our busy stand to see more of the conference. Our trip out this time was focussed on the AVATAR-m project, the one I posted about a few weeks ago. We had two complete stacks running, demonstrating archive management linked into edit capability (getting that running was a close run thing!) and at the show we got a great response, with interest from a wide range of potential users and development partners.
Next time though, if I have any time away from the show at all, I'll head for the hills.
P.S. Rob is doing really well- we're all hoping for the very best, and signs so far are promising. I'm really looking forward to getting back and seeing how he's getting on to be honest.