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SXSW has transformed. Interactive has ended and everything has moved into purely Music and Film. Walking 6th street at night, which was somewhat crowded on previous nights, turned into a sea of humanity, all with their own tastes and agendas. As I was making my way through the crowd to find my own escape I noticed that the ground was littered with little cards, fliers and, most surprisingly, CDs.
Now, all week I've seen hirelings handing things out to passsers by. Much of it was some little QR-code encrusted slip of paper that pointed... [More]
I'll have some more live video later today, but I got the chance to do some old-fashioned typing on my laptop. The phone with Bluetooth is pretty good, but because it doesn't work so well with the developerWorks Community tools it's a little tedious. It's nice to be able to just free-flow my thoughts without having to mess with HTML tags. (As I write that I notice that I don't have a style tool on the editor tool bar and end up switching to HTML mode anyway. *sigh*)
If we're all social is every day a party?
I finally got to hit the... [More]
Random tidbits of wisdom, offered in no particular order, overheard during a lively and raw discussion (#SXAdvisors) about how an entrepreneur might find and select Advisors to help run a startup: 1. Advisors are more useful when adding fuel to an already burning fire. In other words, they can help build a small, fairly well-run business into a large, well-run business much better than they can fix a broken business model. 2. Know exactly what she wants
out of the Advisor. Be clear on what you expect from the Advisor; it is
not always... [More]
For my final SXSW 2012 panel, I attended the solo presentation by Dr. George Friedman of Stratfor. Recently, Stratfor has been in the national news because their web site and emails were hacked by a somewhat notorius hacking group, Anonymous. As if that weren't painful enough for Stratfor, Wikileaks then posted 800 of Stratfor's emails on the WikiLeaks web site. To my knowledge, this SXSW panel was Dr. Friedman's first public discussion on what happened to his company last December. It was a very powerful and politically charged event at... [More]
OK so, during SXSW, I've gotten to know one of the presenters at this SXSW panel discussion: Susann Keohane. Now, you have to understand, I've heard of her before; she's a Master Inventor for IBM. What that means is she has like at least 17 patents under her belt at IBM. Not too shabby! And just in talking with her, I could tell she's really highly intelligent. She and Brian Cragun (also an IBMer) talked about the importance of making large quantity of data accessible to all. Like in previous panels on accessibility, they both stressed that... [More]
This is a panel. As the rise of iOS, Android, and the Mac App Store brings more web developers into the world of native applications can our existing processes and best practices survive the transition? How can we release early and often in an environment where each update must pass through a review process? How do we aggressively refactor code when outdated clients must be supported? Can we iterate efficiently on features when design changes require more than a stylesheet update? What is essential to iterate quickly on mobile apps - Tools that... [More]
A panel discussion. Mobile devices are changing how we communicate today just as fundamentally as the web has for the past decade, and businesses of all types are rushing to embrace their potential. Thanks to the success of the iOS and Android app stores, "mobile" has become nearly synonymous with "native" in most peoples' minds, while the mobile web is usually dismissed as a poor cousin of the app. As mobile browsers improve, however, the user experience gap between native apps and mobile web apps will continue narrowing,... [More]
As designers take on new problems of convergence and ubiquity, we find ourselves facing new challenges. The products we create are accessed through multiple devices, different channels and a wide audience. How do we accommodate the context of use? Whether you design mobile apps, services or web experiences, you know that people have different needs and desires. Those issues are complicated further by a landscape of technology. This discussion highlights new challenges and offers solutions based on years of design experience. Context is the... [More]
This was a fantastic panel discussion. Do you believe the geek shall inherit the earth? Technology is changing our world and geeks are reaping the benefits. This innovation is built on a foundation of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). This session addressed how can we get kids excited about math, make science cool and inspire kids to pursue careers in STEM. We need to cultivate innovation among youth to inspire them to develop STEM skills to be the problem solvers of the future. We must focus on the long term to work on... [More]
There are a few sessions that I've attended where I haven't had a chance to share or write an entry. (A lot of these sessions are close together in time, but far apart geographically.) So, I'm going to try to catch up with a few thoughts here.
Gamify and Socialize
Bing Gordon , an icon in the video gaming industry, talked about the current concept of gamification and socialization that is going on in the technical world. A lot of changes are going on in the video gaming world as people are moving to the Internet for... [More]
This was a great session. How can you encourage and facilitate innovation across your teams to come up with the best product? They suggest a great innovation principle called “Visiontyping,” which promotes powerful collaboration across the board and propels creativity that can deliver big ideas and breakthroughs. This panel discusses how applying a process of creative exploration - much like the "concept car" style of prototyping - can inspire and hone the vision of your product, allowing you to unleash the best of the best. Vision... [More]
I attended a panel discussion consisting of Raju Narisetti, managing editor from The Wall Street Journal and Andrei Scheinkman, Interactive News Editor from the Huffington Post. They are concerned with the similarities between personality traits of coders and content creators, which is obviously relevant to developerWorks. We're all about creative coders (who can communicate well, of course). They cited statistics of "Over 27 Million links to content are shared via Social Media every day." Companies are looking for employees who can... [More]
I tired to attend this 9:30 AM session, but by 9:25 AM, the room was full and there was a 50 person waiting list to get in. Below is part of the description. If you got to attend, leave some highlights in the comment fields. I would love to know highlights on what was said. I greatly appreciate it Session overview snippet Brad McCarty, the North American editor of The Next Web, will give a 10 minute
long, rapid-fire presentation on what he believes are the most important 3
changes in social marketing. Understanding what's said in these... [More]
This is a panel discussion that includes platform representatives from Facebook, Twitter, and Google. Single sign-on was a great promise: let the big identity providers handle authentication/identity, and your website gets all the benefits of a streamlined registration process for free! Anyone who has ever tried to implement it however, knows it never really works that way. In the real world, it’s a lot more messy: especially when you add in mobile, multiple providers and mixing it up with an existing account system. They discussed best... [More]
Really interesting keynote from Amber Case on the history and future of the human-machine interface. The metaphor she used was the interface has gone from solid (actually physical buttons) to liquid (buttons in software) to air (no buttons but location based). She gave an example of an application that is triggered by my location (eg. the building on your right was built in 1895; a belt gps that vibrates when you face North - no need to look at a screen; a phone that wakes you up when you approach your bus stop or turns on your lights when... [More]
Elizabeth Woodward of IBM presented a compelling discussion on the challenges and strategies of cloud computing and accessibility. As examples of what can be done with cloud and accessibility, she pointed to a little known (but not for long!) Italian community effort called LUCY. There's an excellent YouTube video that tells the LUCY digital inclusion story . She also spoke about the GPII (Global Public Inclusion Infrastructure). As Elizabeth points out, the GPII is dedicated to removing obstacles for access to the Internet. You can find out... [More]
This was panel session. They talked about the state of CSS, where we are at, what is pending, what we can look forward to. Also discussed: the support for CSS4 specifications, what we can expect in the future and how it will be useful for web developers and designers. Features to look forward to: Flexbox Grid CSS layout capabilities Snapshots – summarizes the modules stabilized Tools to Separate content and style – want to be able to change content or style sheet without worrying about the other How can you use these features for legacy... [More]
In the early days of CSS the web industry cut its teeth on blogs and small personal sites. Much of the methodology still considered best-practice today originated from the experiences of developers working alone, often on a single small style sheet, with few of the constraints that come from working with large distributed teams on large continually changing web projects. The mechanics of CSS are relatively simple. But creating large maintainable systems with it is still an unsolved problem. For larger sites, CSS is a difficult and complex... [More]
Excellent session on distant learning that included such educational institutions as MIT and Harvard. Henry Leitner, CTO of Harvard, talked about the many ways that Harvard has embraced online learning, or e-learning. Buy in from the professors was key to make it successful, and they started by offering their e-learning as a part of the their continuing education services. Today, many degree-oriented courses are available online at Harvard. Plus, they've even experimented with e-learning podcasts. Wow! So all this got me thinking... Harvard... [More]
The Complexity Curve: How to Design for Simplicity In this session, the presenter introduces the “Complexity Curve”. He discussed why our innovative ideas seem to fade over the course of a project, and he explained why "feature complete" is not the same as "optimal experience". and offered some methods for driving projects toward an interface of simplicity. The Complexity Curve describes how a project moves from boundless opportunity and wonderful ideas to requirements checklists and constraints, then finally (but only... [More]
This was a panel with representatives from Chrome, Fierfox, Opera and IE. Your browser is an important program on your computer and until recently there were no built-in, industrial-strength tools available for debugging web pages. As web apps become more sophisticated, so do the debugging environments. They discussed the similarities (and differences) between the tools and looked at how they addressing the needs of the 2012 developer: debugging Web Workers, tweaking CSS colors to perfection, remote debugging of mobile devices and other... [More]
Don Tapscott set the bar quite high with his thought-provoking opening keynote on Friday. Tapscott is Chairman of Moxie Insight and founded of the international think tank, New Paradigm. He co-authored the best-seller, Macrowikinomics , with Anthony D. Williams, a follow-on to their 2006 bestseller, Wikinomics. A few notes from his talk -- The killer app may turn out to be saving the planet. The core modus operandi of Wall Street is what almost brought down global capitalism. The collapse was not a blip. The future is not something to be... [More]
To say that start-up companies are well represented at this year's SXSW is like saying we got a little rain in Austin today. I think there may be more start-ups than rain drops... maybe. There's also quite a few panels dedicated to start-ups and entrepreneurs. And you could find most of them today at the Start-up Village. So that's where I started my day. At the Startup Marketing: Big Results with a Small Budget panel, Krista Neher and Saul Colt did an excellent job telling the attendees how to use creative ways, with small budgets, to get... [More]
So, it's the end of day one and I have walked about 5000 steps today. I guess I won't need much working out this week! This really is a sight to behold. The line get passes stretched the length of the convention center and then doubled back on itself an equal length. I'm so glad that I picked up my pass yesterday.
The IBM Lounge opened at 1:00 PM and there were already people looking to get in. I don't know if they were just anxious for electricity and the chance at a comfy chair or if they were really anxious to learn about social... [More]
Good session on trying to build persuasive design to get people to do certain behavior, use data to tell a story of what people are doing and maping journeys. Not only what influence design has on behavior, but also the impact that behavior has on design. Here is a summary: More and more products and services are designed around motivating users and incentivizing change. Products and services in finance, health and the environment, among other areas, are increasingly designed around influencing behavior. There are useful academic models... [More]
This was a panel session of design veterans, with experience that ranges from client services to product development. The internet is a never-ending data source. Through it, we are able to monitor visitor activity, study traffic patterns, and use these analytics to help guide users in the directions we want. Usability testing gives us behavioral information which can either affirm design decisions or inform necessary changes. Research and analytics go a long way in selling a creative direction to clients who are focused on engaging with their... [More]
Is Cloud the digital savior? This was a good session. It addresses the integrity of free cloud services. The speaker asks, is it a beautiful white fluffy cloud on a blue-sky day or is it a storm cloud? We live in a world today of constant connection. We’re blessed with unlimited access to pervasive communications. We store tons of personal data on free cloud systems. Will our cloud providers become information overloads? Will they stay secure? Can we depend on them? These issues can be debated. For free cloud services, he suggests that... [More]
Let's crank up a little Stevie Ray Vaughn.
Well, today is the day. SXSW has begun and I'm waiting for everythingto open up. It's cold (for Texas), grey and rainy... which always makes me think of Steview Ray.
IBM is going to host a lounge and you should stop by and say hello. I and other members of the developerWorks crew will be there through out the Interactive event. ( Read more details .)
I am also getting ready to do my first live broadcast. Be sure to follow me on Twitter so you can keep up with... [More]
Chris Walden here.
If you could hear from me about just one thing at SXSW what would it be? I know that's a terrible question. It's like asking a 6-year-old what was her favorite thing about Disney World (a question that my daughter actually received when she was 6). There is some method to my madness, though. I know the kinds of things that I think are shiny and they are all over the map. However, if I know that there is an area of particular interest to you... and you tell me what it is... then I can make some effort to coordinate... [More]