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NAB Show Photo Diary, Day 1: Cameras and Copters on the Las Vegas Strip

Posted in Knerds on April 19, 2012 by

It’s Day 1 here in Vegas at the annual NAB Show (National Association of Broadcasters), and Ian Parker and I are ready to hit the ground running. As Knewton’s Team Video Team, we’re here to check out what’s new and exciting in the world of video, online and off — cameras, lights, microphones, and all kinds of systems designed for getting it into the hands of our students.

We arrived mid-afternoon and were immediately overwhelmed by how enormous this place is. For both of us, it’s not only our first time at NAB, but our first time in Vegas at all. Luckily, as New Yorkers, we’re slightly prepared for spectacle and crowding, but I still felt like a lost tourist immediately upon entering the hall. After we got lost trying to find Registration (which ended up being in an entirely different building), we realized the size of the task that was in front of us. The program listing all the exhibitors reads like a phone book, so for our first day, we settled for wandering around and checking out some pretty cool stuff rather than trying to find anything in particular.

Check out a photo diary from our first day below, and stay tuned for our next post — tomorrow we’ll be thinking about how all these technologies can be used in education!

Here’s a fisheye shot of just one of the booths we stopped to check out – the convention center is the size of 14 football fields (!) and we haven’t managed to cover even a fraction of it. Comfortable shoes required, for sure.

They have lots of cameras set up for you to test and try, of course — and it only makes sense that you need someone or something to film. Somehow I never thought about it, though — the result is that there are people whose entire job consists of sitting in a fake set and pretending to do something all day long, so that people checking out the cameras have something to look at. It’s the strangest thing — this man was sitting in a fake kitchen. He was clearly bored…by the time we walked by he had already carved a tiny face into an apple with a paring knife. Can you imagine sitting there all day with this many cameras looking at you?

This was just cool. It’s a hovering, remote-controlled copter that has a camera mounted on it, for aerial shots. Here it is grounded – that camera attached to it is a RED that probably cost around $40,000 — and that’s before you attach it to the copter!

Here’s a picture of it in flight. This must get some amazing shots.

Here’s Ian checking out a sweet camera — as Knewton’s resident video expert, he is predictably in heaven in this convention center.

Hey! That’s my old high-school friend and YouTube viral star, Freddie Wong (@fwong)! He made a name for himself creating viral content online, and is one of the best-known “YouTube celebrities.” I was checking the conference Twitter feed and saw a mention that he was speaking right then at a booth not far from where we were sitting — we ran over and caught the end of his fantastic talk about how to make content that people truly want to share online. After the talk, he was mobbed by fans who wanted a picture with him, but once he saw me we sat down for a few minutes to talk — I haven’t seen him in years! What a great surprise to run into him.

Well, our first day was exhausting and we’ve been up for nearly 24 hours already, so it’s time to head back to the hotel for some sleep so we can attack more of the show tomorrow. From the Las Vegas Strip, signing off for now.