The rainbow chairs, miniature hot air balloons and child care at yesterday's Reading Rainbow press event were a welcome change from the standard mood lighting and Adele songs that set the scene for most tech launches these days. Of course, this wasn't just any press event -- this was Reading Rainbow, the eagerly anticipated return of the beloved children's program cancelled by PBS back in 2009 after a 26 year run. Host LeVar Burton was clearly emotional when he hit the stage, dabbing tears before discussing the two-year journey that culminates today with the release of the Reading Rainbow iPad App.
Burton gave a quick demo of the app on stage (including a little technical hiccup, resulting in the sly TNG nod, "I'm not an engineer, I just play one on television"), and after a brief, misty-eyed rendition of the Reading Rainbow theme song by its original singer, Tina Fabrique, the walls behind us opened up to reveal a group of kids sitting on beanbag chairs around a table, putting the app through its paces. We also managed to get some hands-on time with it, without having to elbow any small children in the process (not that we weren't willing to do what it took to get the story). Check out some impressions and video after the break.