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CES at night: alone inside a massive trade show

It's hard to describe what it feels like walking around the massive Las Vegas Convention Center. Imagine something between being lost in IKEA and a college football stadium, but packed even tighter and completely lacking in any sort of logical floor plan. As you enter from the relative calm of the parking lot, the LVCC assaults your every sense. Each booth screams out with the newest high-definition displays and thundering bass, as gaudy lights and blaring ads distract you from the bizarrely patterned carpet meant to lure you through the labyrinthine hall.

But the spectacle pauses every evening, after the executives, buyers, booth babes, reporters, and industry affiliates have all gone home. In those hours, it becomes a serene, almost therapeutic experience. The carpets have been vacuumed again, the millions of footsteps momentarily erased. It's millions of square feet of the latest in consumer technology standing in total silence.

There’s a near-palpable sense of relief emanating from the temporary, pre-fab architecture. Free of the human deluge, the quiet, cavernous space finally breathes.


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