Dispatch from Hong Kong: Bullock meets the Orient

Well, that's the first day I've survived unscathed, old friends re-acquainted and new friends found. The actual International Light Fair doesn't open until tomorrow so today was a bit like making your way to the boggy end of the field where the support acts do their stuff. No, I'm not knocking support acts, I've been in that situation myself enough times to know what it feels like.

Today was the first day of the International Outdoor and Tech Light Expo - or the Streetlights, Floodlights and Highbays Show, as we're more likely to call it. What have we seen: how about any number of floodlights and highbays - big and small, with absolutely NO optical control at all, as well as a few quality ('professional' was the term used by one company) stands, where optical control was in evidence, suggesting that they know what they're doing. But I do wonder whether some of the companies are just using plastic sheets with a bit of a bubble over each chip because they've realised that we like that sort of thing.

A micro Venetian blind , which was in fact a video wall, tickled John's fancy on his first day in HK.

Highlight of the day: A VERY GOOD video wall, built like a micro venetian blind, fitted with a matrix of RGB chips and really good quality images. So I don't mind giving a bit of a shout out to Lightech Technology Company, and I wouldn't mind having one of those screens back home.

Daft discovery of the day: Claiming that the best way to overcome scorch marks on an LED board is to 'upgrade' the IP testing from IP65 to IP68. It could be that the scorching stopped because the innards of the STREETLIGHT was being cooled by being submerged in water. You never know, that may have had something to do with it.

The marvellously chintzy Red Pepper will play host to the Bullock/Routledge axis later tonight.

Best rip-off of the day: Hats off to the shameless copying of the iGuzzini Laser downlights. Under advisement, let me point out that it could be, of course, that this Chinese company designed the fittings first and iGuzzini came along and knew a good idea when they saw it. To be fair . . .

What I know now that I didn't know then I set off on this epic trip: How to use the Hong Kong metro/underground system - and how good that system is!

What I still don't know and still have to find out before I go home: How to find my way around a Chinese menu. But I am guaranteed an essential lesson this evening at The Red Pepper with Gordon Routledge.

Tune in tomorrow for another neat summary of John's scrapes and japes in the Orient...when the show itself actually gets under way.