by Rick Smith
While the vehicles took the center stage at this year's auto show in Chicago, here are examples of some the technology used inside manufacturer's booths that you may have missed.
PDA Technology used at Cadillac booth
While may auto manufacturers required attendees to dutifully write their names and addresses on cards (for later data entry) - Cadillac - whose new logo is the "blending of art and science" used portable PDA units. It allowed questions to be asked and depending on answers, different marketing questions could be asked. Looked like this was a great use of portable technology.
Perceptual Robotics Cameras at the Ford booth
Six robotic cameras, under the control of Web surfers, allowed people from around the world look at various cars around the Ford Booth. These were not fixed security cameras, but color cameras that allow you to control both pan, tilt and zoom from the comfort of your computer.
Flat Screen Technology
As we said in our 1999 Fall Comdex Show Report, "Flat is In" and that was certainly true at the auto show. Booths abounded with monitors - FLAT ONES - everywhere - even ones you could WALK on! These flat screens have to be great savings for companies since the save booth space and shipping costs. These were used at several booths at the show. Here are a few examples:
www.fordvehicles.com at Ford booth
Audi A6 free standing kiosk in the Audi booth
Cadillac web site displaying Night Vision information
www.saturn.com at Saturn booth
Chrysler mural in Chrysler booth
Detail from mural showing individual photographs
Specialized software was used to select photographs of past and current Chrysler vehicles to form this mural composed entirely of other photographs and the Chrysler logo.
Dated: February 1999