It’s been official since a tweet last week, but the i-stage website was updated today to reveal this year’s judges/mentors, and I’m extremely excited to have my name in the list. Other judges this year are Richard MacManus (founder of ReadWriteWeb) and Frank Gruber (founder of TECH Cocktail), and previous judges have included Blake Krikorian (my boss and mentor at Sling Media, currently living mostly off the grid), Ryan Block (founder of GDGT, former editor-in-chief at Engadget), Natali Del Conte (CNET), Ross Levinsohn (Fuse Capital), Jeff Pulver (involved in pretty much everything), and more! Needless to say, I’m honored to have my name in this list of esteemed technologists!
This is neither my first foray with i-stage nor first judging with CES. Last year I was a judge for the prestigious Innovations awards. Two years ago I was working with team Boxee when they went to, and subsequently won, the inaugural i-stage event! This plus the three “best of CES” awards I’ve been involved in, and I’d say I’m quite excited about being on the other side of things this year!
We haven’t seen this year’s list of contestants (still two days to enter), but I’m excited to see what’s up-and-coming in gadget land (especially since I like to think I’m already involved with most of the new stuff – so this makes it even more intriguing). I’ll put together some thoughts and recommendations on what contestants should (and should not) do to increase their odds at winning (and while cash is nice (kidding!!!!), I’m more interested in impressive technology and great product experiences).