There's something to be said for the movement that eschews smartphones and 24/7 Web access and longs for the simpler life at home. And then there's the security of knowing that the burgers on your grill aren't burning while you're inside getting the rest of dinner ready.
No matter what side of the fiber-optic cable you stand on, there was plenty to get excited about at the recent International Home and Housewares Assocation show at McCormick Place in Chicago.
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Every March, housewares manufacturers large and small -- more than 2,100 companies from 45 countries -- convene to show off their latest and greatest products.
Some lure buyers and media types into their booths with celebrity chefs like "Cake Boss" Buddy Valastro and Guy Fieri of "Diners, Drive-ins and Dives," or samples of fresh-pressed apple carrot juice and white chocolate cake pops. In some booths, company presidents or product inventors tout their own products.
After logging 10-plus miles on the show floor and viewing hundreds, probably thousands, of new products, I've pulled together a list of the plugged-in and unplugged ones that sparked my interest.