And just like that, we're through. It feels like just yesterday I was sitting down to write the introduction to a CES column for our first special issue of Distro from the show floor, and now, well, it's over. The show was different this year, but not necessarily in the way we expected. While the show felt smaller in a lot of ways, in many others it was even bigger.
Some big companies like Microsoft and RIM opted to have minimal or no presence on the show floor, so we thought that would shrink the overall content at CES. Oh no, dear readers, if anything it had quite the opposite effect. Those big voids that were created were filled by dozens of smaller companies, crowd-funded and fresh-thinking, lobbing plenty of innovative products our way. Some were crap, but lots and lots were awesome and mind-blowing in their simplicity and genius.
Entrepreneurs no longer need to sell their souls to those with bankrolls to get a great idea off the ground.
I leave this show feeling genuinely encouraged. We're facing a tectonic shift in the industry now as traditional concepts of product development and production are turned on their head. Entrepreneurs no longer need to sell their souls to those with bankrolls to get a great idea off the ground. And, with the array of amazing consumer 3D printers we saw this week, prototyping and developing those ideas is easier and cheaper than ever.
I also feel incredibly proud after spending a great week with the Engadget team. CES is an exhausting and trying experience, and to bring a team that is as big and diverse as ours and to basically lock them in a trailer for a week in the midst of all this hell is asking a lot. But we got through with flying colors. Everyone is smiling and I certainly am too.
I hope you enjoyed all the CES coverage that we were able to bring to you, and I hope you're as eager as I am to see what 2013 has in store for us. Now, if you'll forgive me, I'm going to go kick off a hell of a party with the entire Engadget CES crew. We certainly have some celebrating to do.
Tim Stevens is Editor-in-chief of Engadget and Editorial Director for AOL Tech. You can find him on Twitter at @tim_stevens.
This piece originally appeared in Distro #73.4