An Edtech Teacher's Take on CES 2013

#edtech Why does an edtech teacher visit the largest consumer electronics show on earth?

Each winter I look forward to attending the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas as part of my job as an elementary technology teacher and edtech consultant. More for the latter I suppose.

At CES each year I get a chance to glance into the crystal ball of technology. You see, often times when I am working with school districts on their technology plans I will get asked about my opinions of where technology is headed. A fair question when you're a district about to spend millions of dollars on technology. CES allows me to see how things are trending in technology. For example a few years ago 3D was all the rage, but at CES I got to play with 3D technology and I couldn't see it working in homes, let alone schools. So I steered districts away from it, and sure enough, 3D for homes and schools at least, is D.O.A.

Other technologies that I have discovered at CES like tablet computers as teleprompters, I used at my own school. There is something about being able to play with technology that helps me decide if it will work in schools or not. Seeing, and touching, really is believing when it comes to technology.

School technology is a moving target so it is important to get as much intelligence as you can, so you can get the biggest bang for your edtech buck. I think we've all been burned, whether at home or at school, when we've purchased a new piece of technology one day only to have is become obsolete the next. I work hard to prevent this as much as possible and attending CES helps.

But CES is massive, the show covers the equivalent of 32 football fields, so there is no way I can see it all in the few days that I am there. So I make a plan of which technologies I need to check out. This year I am focused on mobile technologies.

So here I go, off to Las Vegas with 160,000 other geeks to check out the coolest gadgets on earth, all in hopes of seeing where the edtech ball will be instead of where it is right now.