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New meaning to the term 'smoke screen'

We interrupt your regular programming to show an eye-catching trade show gimmick: a translucent display made of a curtain of fog.

A rear projector displays a swirling image on a curtain of descending fog. Stephen Shankland/CNET News.com

MONTEREY, Calif.--Here's an entertaining gimmick that looks as if it's from a company called FogScreen.

At the 6Sight digital-imaging show here Thursday, the Portola Plaza Hotel had a machine producing a thin, downwardly flowing curtain of fog backlit with a digital projector.

It was kind of hypnotic to watch the swirling psychedelic graphics, and it was just the thing to kill time while waiting for the audience to sift into the auditorium. Alas, during the speeches later, after it had been turned off, it dripped on one of the speakers, so be careful where you mount it.

It wasn't perfect for a PowerPoint presentation, but it worked for logos, and you can walk through it, so this could be a better attention getter than spinning LED novelties for your next trade show, if you have the budget.

Another view. Stephen Shankland/CNET News.com