• Greg Baker

Keeping Up

(reprinted form the Metro Spirit 01-05-16)

For some reason, I was happy for the holidays to finally be over.  I’m not sure why.  It certainly wasn’t due to a lack of holiday spirit.  This Christmas was one of the best ever!  We completed our shopping early, and all the pre-Christmas holiday festivities occurred with minimal drama.  Our family spent many hours enjoying each other’s company – in a completely relaxed and calm manner, I might add.  No one could ask for a better couple of weeks.

Yet, I was exceedingly happy that it was over.

Mostly, I think I was ready to get back to work.  A new year always inspires thoughts of a new beginning.  It’s a chance to reconnect with a life vision and to update a personal mission statement.  What lessons were learned from the failures, and what preparations are needed to promote future success?  The beginning of the year is the time to set down with a pen and a notebook (old school) and plan the triumphs for the year!

Most people don’t realize that technology-oriented individuals face an extra “What If” when planning for the future. 

It goes like this – what if a new technology makes my skill set outdated or unnecessary by the end of the year?  Or more succinctly, what if I become irrelevant?  Don’t laugh.  It’s happens all the time – just ask your friends that used to manage Blackberry servers or provision Motorola mobile phones.

Fortunately, the technology-minded folk are not left completely adrift during this all-important planning time.  Whether it’s by design or happenstance, the annual Consumer Electronics Show (CES) charts that path for new product development.  CES is one of the largest and most renowned technology trade shows.  Products announced at CES are on the leading edge of technology development.  It’s the perfect event at the perfect time for those attempting to keep up.

So what’s the best way to keep track of all the new developments at CES?  Honestly, that’s the easy part.  Every major tech media source reports on CES product announcements, performs product review and generally keeps tabs on everything worth reporting.  While I’m not a big fan of video embedded into websites, viewing product demonstrations are a great way to get the feel for new stuff.  For those without a favorite tech media source, www.cnet.com is a great place to start.  CNET provides great overviews without going too deep into the techno-babble.  (Everyone at CNET thinks that being a nerd is cool, so any Augusta Tek reader should feel right at home.)

By this point, I expect that most readers have pulled out their phone to check in on CES.  Those readers are likely now looking at one of the more anticipated products to be announced at CES: HDR televisions.  (Yes, another acronym to describe televisions.)  In this case, HDR stands for “high dynamic range.”  HDR televisions significantly expand the range of contrast and color.  The pictures look more natural, tend to pop more and seem more real.  Another way to think about it, instead of trying to increase the number of pixels, the HDR televisions provide better pixels.  Everyone living on the technology leading edge is really geeking out about HDR televisions.  Aren’t you glad you know?

Of course, some will choose to remain oblivious to the new tech announced at CES.  From a professional point of view, that might be fine.  No one is likely to lose their job if the conference room doesn’t have the latest HDR television.  However, I have it on good authority that The Martian is a great date flick.  Imagine the setting – dim lights, Chinese take-out and your date going goo-goo eyes while watching a very vulnerable Matt Damon battle the planet Mars on your brand new HDR television.

Unfortunately, this is an opportunity that you will surely miss.  All because you didn’t want to keep up with the latest tech.  Bummer.


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