Tom’s Hardware Guide has decided to get into the expo business.
Well, sort of. What’s really happening is that the computer expo people in New York, have clustered a number of conventions under one roof.
If you’d like a free admission pass, you can get a code to do that and start registering here
That being said, the good news is we wish them all the luck in the world. The bad news is, we think they’re going to need it.
If businesses were animals, computer expos would be on the endangered species list. To be blunt, they have been dying a slow, agonizing death in the U.S..
Why? Well, let me be really self-centered about it. I stopped going to these things simply because there was nothing significant I could find out about computer hardware that I couldn’t find or at least figure out off the Internet.
I could be wrong, but I suspect that’s at the least a big factor for those who are so not going to these expos these days.
The key question is: How do you fix it? Can you fix it?
THG can be either very, very dumb, or very, very smart about this.
If they think people will come running to the same-old, same-old just because THG is attached to the repackaged name, they are being very, very dumb.
If however, they view this as an opportunity to reinvent the computer expo, and make it a place where you can find out and do things you can’t find out or do over the Internet, that would be very, very smart.
They might get off to a good start by realizing that expos are ways for people to meet each and connect, and what works for businessmen and business cards might works for hobbyists, too.
If this expo were structured and pitched as more of an excuse for a real-time, real-life chance to interact with the hardware and, maybe even more importantly, an opportunity for the normally isolated hobbyist/enthusiast to actually meet the kind of people they now know only electronically, that just might be enough to give us a born-again computer show.
Then again, getting some of those isolated folks in the same room could spark a few riots, too. 🙂
This is not to say the new formula would work, or that there aren’t other approaches but it’s clear the old ones no longer do.