My takeaways from SXSW 2012
I had another great year at the SXSW
2012 conference in Austin, Texas this past month. As usual, the content is hit or miss, but the networking is stellar, and I got a great sense of hot digital and social trends in the year or so to come. If you missed the conference, you can access the free SXSW videos and podcast recordings.
Below are some of the key takeaways I experienced at this year's conference:
Things that have been cool and continue to be cool or hot, whichever you prefer
- SoLoMo (Social + Local + Mobile) continues to be hot, hot, hot. There are so many new apps coming out in this space. It's overwhelming.
- Mobility itself was a dominant theme at SXSW--everything from hot new Mobile commerce apps(e.g., mobile wallets) to the BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) revolution to the awesome mobile charging stations for the various BYODs since everyone was looking for an outlet at all times.
- Visualization technologies
- Smart walls (digital and physical)--crowdsourcing, aggregation of conversations and photos onto real-time digital displays
- Storify and Instagram
- Infographics. Ogilvy crafted InfoNotes for SXSW keynotes in real-time during the talk. Loved these.
A few favorites
- My favorite fastest pitch on the importance of social media for business: Netbase.
- I really enjoyed the talk by the innovator and scientist Ray Kurzweil not only because his view of the future is fascinating, but also because he spent quite a bit of time discussing the significance of the advent of IBM Watson on the future. He highly stressed how important it is for our education system to catch up with the new digital, science, technology, engineering, mathematics age and take a new approach to teaching and learning. On that note, I have to say I was surprised to see a number of university education programs on digital and social business at the SXSW Expo this year.
- I found the UX Designer and Cyborg Antrhoplogist Amber Case's talk on Ambient Location and the Future of the Interface excellent. She discusses concepts such as "ambient influence" and how mobile software, augmented reality and data
visualization can reduce the amount of time and space it takes for
people to connect with information.
- Some of my favorite sessions were around the integration of social and
music and TV. Before this was popular, I was contemplating patent ideas
around this space. Too bad I waited so long. Social TV is well on its way into the mainstream now.
- Social is diversifying more and more internationally. A walk around the
SXSW Expo made you feel like you were at Epcot. It was great to see
social innovation coming from so many different climbs. I have a whole
new group of Russian friends on Glomper now. :)
- I was surprised to see the lack of social listening vendors such as Radian6, Nielsen Buzz metrics, or Converseon at SXSW. They were around, but I had to look really really hard to find them in a session panel here or there. At Lotusphere, social listening and analytics was one of the huge, popular trends. I know that SXSW is often seen as pop culture crowd, but more and more conference content was dedicated to social for the business or the enterprise. I would think that this would be a great place for listening and social analytics vendors to show off their stuff
IBM at SXSW!
On that note, I was thrilled to see IBM, known for its robust social business journey and social collaboration and social analytics technologies and solutions, have a bigger presence at SXSW than any year before. IBM hosted the Future of Social Lounge and an IBM developerWorks @ SXSW online experience. Big thanks to @Sandy_Carter, @KatMandelstein, and @Atech_Speaks for supporting this effort this year. A record number of IBMers attended the conference this year as well. Below are some of the blog posts and videos they posted about the conference.
Shot 9 video "Man on the street" interviews as part of the Impressions from SXSW 2012 series.
Included interviews are Klout/Lift Five, Uservoice, Radian6, Ignite
Social Media, SOBcon, The Communty Roundtable, O'Reilly Geolocation book
author, Social Media B2B book author, IBM Smarter Cities on the Cloud.
Filmed Fast Company "30 Second MBA" video - featured in FC article
See preview blog post on Eventbrite and Plancast as still most popular tools.
Social TV gets focus - with 5+ SX panels - and the apps: Miso, Get
Glue, Connect TV, IntoNow, Viggie, yap.TV, Tunerfish, Character Chatter.
Needed: Integration. He was on a panel for Ryan's local SMC in February (Slides).
Social Media Clubhouse 9 meetup (Social Media Club) - SMC also shot live interviews from IBM lounge - see Ryan's Storify summary
Posted 600+ photos from around SXSW on Flickr.