Today marked the first day the exhibit hall was open for Summer Internet World in Chicago, IL. Following, I'll talk about some cool, interesting, and lame things I've seen after a half day at the big show.

First, the number of people is incredible. It seems like even more than Comdex back in March. Obviously the planners didn't count on that and the termperature is much too hot for a group of people that spend 99% of their day indoors.

The second thing that grabs my attention is the amount of very cool technology that is available here. As a good example, I'm writing this from an IBM workstation which is the first real Network Computer I've ever used. It's super cool looking, about an inch thick and twelve inches long with two blinking lights, one for network traffic and one for power.

Also on the cool technology front, VA Research is here and showing off their high-end servers, workstations, and laptops all of which run the Linux OS. Their staff was extremely cool, and a gentleman I talked to for some time has the coolest job I can think of, "Linux Advocacy." I've got some pictures of their cooler looking machines, and I'll post those in the wrap up.

On the Web front, the local Webgrrls chapter is here passing out literature and having fun, and there are lots of web-based applications here which I'll round up in a different article. e-commerce is obviously the big thing here at the show and it shows because it seems like half the show exhibitors are hawking some sort of e-commerce software that make it point-and-click-easy to integrate e-commerce into your current site.

The loudest, but coolest, exhibit goes to a company called Panja, whose exhibit features loud Bob Marley music while an artist paints a cover of one of his albums in an eclectic manner. No one is really sure what they sell or offer yet, but everyone seems to agree that they have the coolest exhibit so far.

Surely there is plenty more to report on, and I'll write some more on this super cool thin client computer when I've made a couple more trips around the floor.... Oh the Bob Marley guy is starting up again... Gotta run :)