CES2017: Which Internet of Thing is Best Internet of Thing?

CES 2017 is finally over, but one question has yet to be answered: which Internet of Thing is Best Internet of Thing?

Astonishing new devices

CES is the Mecca for new, interesting, and innovative hardware. Every year, one device amazes the crowds with incredible engineering. This year it was something phenomenal: a laptop with multiple displays. The Thinkpad W701ds is a work of art. It’s a mobile workstation with two independent displays. Oh, yeah, the Razer thing.

Razer, manufacturer of computer peripherals that break far too easily, introduced a concept 3-screen laptop. Is it very, very cool? Yes. Is it practical? Those displays will suck down a lot of power and will introduce ‘nerdspreading’ to the lexicon.

Drones

Drones are now a commodity. I found dozens of Phantom clones, ready to fly FPV quads, and even some big hex- and octocopters that will lift a cinema camera. They’re all cheap, they’re all pretty much the same. What’s missing? Fixed wings.

Underwater ROVs outnumbered autonomous fixed wing aircraft at CES this year. This is conclusive evidence that the pendulum has swung too far to the multicopter side of aviation. Sooner or later, someone is going to figure out fixed wing aircraft can carry more payload a longer distance. If you’re looking for a startup idea, there you go: build fixed wing drones because physics doesn’t change when the aircraft is autonomous.

With that said, here are some pics of the aircraft I found interesting

 

The Yuneec E-430
The Yuneec E-430
Ehang 184
Ehang 184Of course, if you don’t want to deal with fussy stuff like FAA certification, safety, or sanity, CES has something for you, too. The Ehang 184 is a burning dumpster fire of aviation.

The Yuneec is not a drone. This is a two seat, single engine, LSA (easy and cheap to get a license, although the LSA market is crap) electric aircraft. It has a v-tail, which means it’s cool. This thing actually flies, and if you want to fly this plane, the FAA will let you.

The Ehang 184 is a single-seat aircraft, but there is no pilot. It’s a self-flying car, and will never be certified by the FAA. The red navigation lights are in the front, and the green navigation lights are on the back. This makes sense if it always flies sideways.

The Ehang 184 is so supremely idiotic it’s only value to the world is to people watch the gawkers at the Ehang CES booth. Even then, you become terrified by the fact that the general population thinks a pilotless, manned aircraft is a good idea.

Robots

‘Home Robots’ made a big showing at this year’s CES, and it looks like this is the future:

The future is stupid.

CES 2017 Wrapup

What were the highlights of CES? Kodak is reintroducing the Super-8 camera with real film. Yes, the camera is expensive but it ‘might’ have a single shutter button when it’s released later this year. This bit of electronics for a telescope was the most interesting and creative use of technology I’ve seen. 3D printers are always getting better, Monoprice is going to have a very good year, and I’m really wondering how much 60 or 70 gallons of resin costs. TVs got thinner, bigger, higher resolution, or some combination thereof. I have agoraphobia. All in all, a very productive CES that proves to me once again the coolest technology isn’t necessarily the one that gets the most publicity.

17 thoughts on “CES2017: Which Internet of Thing is Best Internet of Thing?

  1. The Ehang 184 falls in the same class as the bulk of the ‘concept cars’ one sees at auto shows. They are never going to be on the road either, but do show how far the envelope can be pushed.

    1. The world needs more Mr. Regulars.

      0:00 “Which Thing is Best Thing?”
      0:05 “My Thing is best Thing because Stu Pickles’ Doorbell”
      0:13 “So many phone cases!” (In the gravely “NO LOWBALLERS” voice)
      0:20 Leave this one as-is, it’s pretty good.
      [Jump back to the CES sign] “Which Thing is Best Thing?”
      0:33 “My Thing is best foosball table.”

  2. “We must not forget that the wheel is reinvented so often because it is a very good idea; I’ve learned to worry more about the soundness of ideas that were invented only once.”
    — David L. Parnas (Why Software Jewels are Rare, IEEE Computer, 2/96).

  3. Can I vote this down twice? Shouldn’t HAD identify innovation, not demean it?

    “It has a v-tail, which means it’s cool.” No, its a freaking electric airplane that you can fly. That is why it is cool.

    “The Ehang 184 is so supremely idiotic it’s only value to the world is to people watch the gawkers at the Ehang CES booth.”. Your are right, if innovation is cool, there is no place for it.

    “The Ehang 184 is a burning dumpster fire of aviation.” I guess people should just turn there brains off, stop dreaming and stop creating new thing.

    He should have called it the Idiot of things. I would have voted for Brian.

    1. You’re right that V-tail in itself doesn’t mean anything positive or negative.

      But if the Ehang can’t be bothered to get the marker lights right for aeronautics, why do you think the design has a place in the sky? It’s like someone putting tail lights on one side of the car instead of the rear, and not wondering what else is wrong with the whole project. I’m pretty sure the low rotor frame is a safety hazard. Up high might be more stable anyways as well.

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