Comdex Keynote Addresses
by Rick Smith and Irwin Romanek
(April 19, 1999)
Windows World Keynote
The "quieter and gentler" Bill Gates, seemed to enjoy himself as he spoke about the past year's events, including the infamous USB scanner "crash" on Windows 98 at Spring Comdex last year. Most importantly, Bill feels that by 2003, every device with a screen will connect ot the Internet.
Last year's incident (from videotape monitor)
Notice that suits were worn at last year's keynote.
Chris Capossela (person who was demonstrating during last year's crash) and Bill getting ready for the same demo with Windows 2000. This time, it worked!
Bill looks on while Chris explains new features of the Microsoft Intellipoint Explorer [mouse] using a huge model. There are two programmable buttons on the left side of the mouse and should be available in September.
Bottom of Microsoft Intellipoint Explorer
The ball, ball cover and the two optical encoders, wheels and light sources of a conventional mouse are replaced with an integrated circuit, an infrared detector and light source.
Doug Groncki demonstrates the Vadem to Bill Gates, a portable Pen computer running Windows CE and the new Terminal Server Client, which allows users to have the same Windows 2000 experience that they have on the desktop, through the portable device's wireless network connection.
After the keynote address, Bill Gates congratulated the Windows Open Winners.
John "maddog" Hall, Executive Director, Linux International introduced the Linux Global Summit keynote speaker, Linus Torvalds, founder of the Linux OS, to a crowded room (Standing Room Only), which spilled out into the hallway.
Linus Torvalds was greeted by a standing ovation. His keynote presentation's topic was "History of a Small OS", which he often digressed from, to field questions from the audience. Many of these questions centered around the recently released Linux kernel update to version 2.2. Amid familiar jokes about Microsoft, he outlined Linux's history and development and his hopes for its future, and in particular, porting it to Intel's awaited 64-bit Merced CPU. His popularity with Linux users was highlighted by the crowd that gathered around him, after the keynote, seeking his autograph.
Rick Belluzzo, SGI Chairman and CEO, demonstrated how SGI's line of computers could help people solve complex problems visually. Specific examples were making automobiles safer by crash test simulations, teaching how Nero's palace appeared in 67 A.D and telephone customer profile studies. It is their intent to have their hardware perform high performance visual computing and to grow the business (higher revenues) and gain a wider footprint (higher marketshare). In the press conference following, he said that they are not abandoning the IRIS operating system. It is intended for very high end multiprocessor systems. SGI also does not have any plans for notebook computers. Too bad. I think a SGI notebook would be just great for video editing on the road.
© 1999 Rick Smith and Irwin Romanek All rights reserved.