When I was a kid I had a box of “electronics.” Basically, it was cannibalized parts from various decrepit gadgets, like RC cars, walkie talkies, and cassette players. I always dreamed of mashing together a few circuit boards and making something new, but obviously had no knowledge of that process. But I kept the box. There was something intrinsic to that tangle of wires and transistors that felt like technology to me.
I still have collections of useless electronics. I don’t take them apart anymore, but I keep them around “just in case.” My old GameBoy Advance that I don’t have any games for. Adapter dongles for anything to anything. A Sanyo Xacti, that little Nike step sensor thing, an armband to hold the iPod nano I gave away to an ex-girlfriend.
Sometimes, CES feels like the box of electronics to me.