NextGen Home at CES 2006

I found a link with a nice write-up of the features of the Next Generation Home that was located across the street from the Central Hall at CES 2006 this year.  The home was located near the exhibitor's registration tent and the Yahoo tent where Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes apparently made an appearance on Friday the 6th.  I spent some of my time at CES on Thursday and Friday doing demonstrations in a couple of rooms of the house, and it was cool to see some of the home automation features in action that I've been hearing about from some of the folks on the Media Center team.

I worked mostly at the kitchen Media Center station, which was unfortunately not all that interesting for most of the attendees because a lot of the features of Media Center were also demonstrated in the room that folks were in immediately before coming into the kitchen.  I found a cooking show that had an on-screen recipe so I could show off pausing and rewinding live TV, which was one of the features they didn't show in the room before the kitchen.  There were a couple of ovens in the kitchen - one standard oven next to my station (that was put there just to take up space in the room) and one smart oven across the room that could be controlled via a web page.  It was funny to see folks take pictures of the oven next to my station every once in a while.

I also worked for a bit in the game room and got to show off the Xbox 360 running as a Media Center Extender.  I had heard how nice they looked from friends of mine who have them at home, but this was my first chance to see an Xbox 360 Extender in action.  I have the kit that lets you use the original Xbox as an Extender, but it is night-and-day different to see the Xbox 360.  Aside from the remote control that has the big X logo on it to bring up the Xbox dashboard and the lack of a My DVDs menu in the Media Center start menu (since you cannot view DVDs remotely through an extender), it would be nearly impossible to tell that the Media Center experiences that you're viewing are actually being remotely displayed by an Extender.

One random funny story I heard about the home from some of the other staff was related to the sign taped to the toilet in the bathroom that said the toilet was non-functional.  Apparently that was a new addition to the home based on some "issues" they ran into at last year's CES with folks who couldn't find the restrooms in the Convention Center....


Comments (1)
  1. I interview Zon audio at the home and was impressed, the problem was I got taken in through the back to do the interview then missed the tour

    The multi-room audio idea is great

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