150 Twitter users were selected, from over 2,500 entries, to attend NASA's STS-133 Discovery shuttle launch, with special access at the press site, and two days of programmed events -- meeting crew, talking to astronauts, exploring NASA -- and to top it all off, to view the launch from the countdown clock.
We formed an instant community (within hours of being selected) via Twitter, created a Google group, FB group, email lists, and 15 of us who had never met before rented a house, and started sharing space knowledge, social media knowledge, etc. 4 other shared houses came together. Our house, the Big House, was the hub of all activities. Never having met meant nothing to us. Our first night there we gathered (over 70 of the 150) and formed our space tweeps family.
Astronomers, scientists, NASA workers, digital storytellers, educators (k-12 and higher ed), videographers, all passionate about space.
The shuttle never launched. The communities which were formed out of this experience are still going strong. The entire week was broadcast on JustinTV by one of our colleagues -- sharing the entire NASA learning experience with thousands of folks. We're invited back to watch the launch when she's scheduled to go in February.
This was an amazing use of Social Media, and a perfect example of the power of these tools, and how they can be used to market, share, teach, grow, explore, inspire.
Like the web, startups are transforming the world of conferences, and the action is in local and niche events. We'll explore how you can produce a world-class event that attracts a national audience by tapping into engaged niche audiences and regional passions. New technology in ticketing, marketing, and communicating makes it possible to produce an world-class event on a minor-league budget. By tapping into the lessons learned from producing open source 'camps', conference startups are more engaging, more authentic, and more community focused.
With a focus on audience engagement, inspiring passions and building bonds between attendees, these startup conferences are creating a holistic conference approach onstage and offstage before and after the event.
These panelists are launching the next generation SXSW's right now and you can too. BoCo, Big Omaha, Mom 2.0 Summit, TribeCon and the TEDx conferences are some of the new conferences on the new must-attend circuit. Learn how SXSW is actually incubating and inspiring this new generation of events and how you can produce the next startup conference hit.
Textbooks published on trees are on the way out in Texas, California and the rest of the country and world.
The Textbook industry is hoping they will be replaced with on-line versions spruced up with animated graphics. However, it is likely that on-line textbooks will be no more successful than magazine advertising that morphed into banner ads. Linear content with multiple choice answers at the end of each chapter, won't work. And as with banner ads, on the Internet you can measure that they don't work.
What does work? Socially networked GAMES. The question for this panel is whether games will replace traditional educational media, and what those games look like.
What will the teachers manual look like? How will learning be assessed? What happens to the classroom, or the school itself, when on-line learning is available 24/7? What does the PTA look like if parents can play along with their kids?
What happens to the distinction between vocational and instructional if playing games is equivalent to performing a virtual job or service? And what happens to the college admission process, if instead of taking a standardized aptitude test, students have been playing a complex game for years. In fact, what happens to colleges and universities where lecture halls still reign supreme?
There is a revolution underway, driven by kids and the games they play. Will the educational system adapt or die? We will see (and discuss).
Is SXSWi in danger of being ruined by the influx of marketers to the conference?
Coming off of SXSWi 2010, Jolie O'Dell struck a cord with her post WHY SXSW SUCKS
"Too many people, not enough tech... dodging and evading these shallow douchebags... only to find swarms of douchebags showing up an hour or so after the location is made known..."
We're bringing some smart, caring minds together to move the chatter in the halls into the light of a focused panel. The elephant in the room is being put on center stage. Can SXSWi adapt, or will it be overrun? Has the conference jumped the shark? Voices for both the techie/creator side and the marketer side will make up the panel.
We're aiming to land on solutions - this is not a bitch session. How can we address the challenges of a changing audience and optimize for the conference for valuable interactions? Are some social ground rules called for?What will the audience for SXSWi 2015 look like? Can we envision how that it could kick ass?
This challenge is not unique to SXSWi. We see communities struggling similarly to adapt and build value. We can learn from their mistakes and solutions.
This conference is as resilient as it's participants. If you show up, it will to.
Back by popular demand! Whether you're a first-time SXSW Interactive attendee or a veteran, this humorous and informative conversation will help you make the most of SXSW. You'll learn what actions and behaviors to avoid so you don't get tagged as "doing it wrong". We'll also share advice on how to meet new people, navigate the parties, and have fun the without being "that guy/girl".
A light-hearted and informative introduction to optimizing your SXSW
experience (juggling parties, panels, getting around and staying
chargedup) from seasoned conference veterans.
The current events in the Middle East and North Africa have shone a spotlight on how activists and ordinary citizens are using social media and connection technologies both to organize for social change and as to broadcast information from the streets in near real time. Our panelists will address questions such as, "What have been the most innovative and interesting uses of 21st century technologies in the recent campaigns?", "What are the ways activists are effectively leveraging 21st century technologies for their benefit?", "How could they use these tools more effectively and what lessons can protesters in other regions of the world learn?" and "How do we think these tools can be leveraged in these societies to improve democracy and open government?"
Wisdom has it that the smart money is going social. To add impact to their communications programs, brands are moving dollars into socially-focused campaigns. But is it working? Have we reached a saturation point? Panelists will assess the impact inside and outside their organizations by this shift in priorities – and budget.
This panel is presented by the Council of Public Relations Firms.
This panel looks at mobile learning technologies and programs that get students outside, envisioning a classroom framed by the sky, earth, and everything in between. The No Child Left Inside Act (NCLIA) now in Congress seeks to enhance the environmental literacy of K-12 students “to foster understanding, analysis, and solutions to the major environmental challenges” facing the nation. There is a tremendous opportunity to engage young people in science that connects their local environment to global problems, and technology is crucial to effectuate its promise.
Five hundred million eyes looked on as Neil Armstrong stepped onto the Moon; under NCLIA, with eyes trained on the environment around them, learners could now help address a problem as complex as climate change. By implementing a citizen science-based model that leverages mobile technology, NCLIA could help form a scientifically literate citizenry while researchers explore questions previously unanswerable.
Richard Louv’s "No Child Left in the Woods" explores how going outside improves the well-being of young people, and fosters what E. O. Wilson has termed “biophilia.” Programs that combine appropriate technologies with outdoor experience can give learners a new point of entry to scientific understanding beyond textbooks, and introduce new modes of assessment beyond standardized tests.
In the US, social media innovators are changing the way people work and play. In Iceland, these innovators may offer the best hope of rescuing an entire nation.
Iceland emerged in the 1990s as a financial powerhouse after a thousand years on the sidelines of global history. Icelanders became one of the world’s wealthiest and happiest nations. In 2008, three of its banks collapsed, sending the national economy into a tailspin and shattering the people’s trust in government and industry. The government was quickly replaced by one promising transparency and reforms, while a protest party headed by a comedian took control of the Reykjavik city council.
This new cast of politicians is not alone in their efforts to move Iceland out from under the economic cloud. Members of the country's tech and entrepreneurial sector, which saw explosive growth in the lead-up to the collapse, have emerged as leaders in grassroots efforts to set Iceland on a sustainable path. Last year a loosely-organized group calling themselves the Anthill convened a “national assembly” of 1,500 citizens. The day-long event, based on Agile methods and crowdsourcing theory, resulted in a coherent set of values, vision and ideas.
Now the government is planning a similar meeting in preparation for rewriting the constitution. Inspired by open-source processes and leaning heavily on social media technologies, these citizens are rapidly prototyping new forms of democracy utilizing the web and open innovation.
Battledecks is a laugh-riot rollercoaster of fun and nerves as several contestants try to put together coherent presentations from nonsensical Keynote decks. Previous contestants have laughed, cried, wet their pants and gotten impregnated during the show. The audience has a great time. Everyone goes home happy. Last year's show was a huge success, and we didn't even hand out free vuvuzelas to the audience.
Society stands to gain a lot from our next generation of kids, who are not only consuming vast amounts of media, but highly engaged with creating media themselves. Research shows the top type of media kids aim to engage in online are games. If we empower them with the tools to make their own games, we give them the opportunity to build valuable technical, artistic, storytelling, media literacy, and complex systems thinking skills. This panel will explore actual classroom case studies and perspectives on the effects of teaching game design to young children.
Growing internet access and a hyper-evolved societal awareness built in to the humor of our age have led to an explosion of Neo-Swiftian cultural critique in every area imaginable: art, literature, film, gaming, social networking, food, politics, business and even parody itself.
The Daily Show now provides our Modest Proposal every evening, Cervantes acolytes all over the world ruthlessly skewer our holy cows from their blogs, forcing us to laugh at ourselves and the institutions we create and support. While parody and satire are inarguably essential to humankind’s dialectic with itself, the same tools that have raise our collective voice are being utilized by powerful forces to squelch us.
Facebook is dragging offending sites into court with a vengeance. Celebrities sue bloggers with a regularity one can set their watch to. Even Blizzard Entertainment–of World of Warcraft fame–forced the pulping of tens of thousands of copies before the release of a satirical book.
So what do the jesters do when the giant doesn’t have a sense of humor? A balance must be struck between the rights of individuals and institutions and the rights of others to mock them.
The purpose of this panel is to assess the present health of parody in New Media (however broadly defined), discuss its evolving role in our discourse, and to develop a prognosis for its future that will enable to prescribe the right strategy to protect those who hold the mirror to a world of naked emperors.
Now that digital and mobile is a component of any innovative ad campaign, the question arises: How much do marketers need to know about technology? The truth is, advertisers and brand marketers are entering a brave new world -- one where code is on par with content. The 21st-century ad isn't something to be looked at, it's something to be used. Our reliance on mobile tools, such as apps, position them as the perfect vehicles for brands. "Consumers" are now "users." So are "marketers" now "developers"?
Enter the hybrid marketer. More and more agencies are finding they need to educate and cultivate a new breed of people who understand tech from a marketing and brand perspective, and who have a consumer mindset. These creative technologists also lend a software company vibe around an agency.
But should agencies really try this stuff at home? Should they be worrying about, say, the video capability of the latest iPhone? Or just stick to their core competencies and work with real software companies and development shops to realize their ideas? This panel will look at this new staffing paradigm and debate what the agency of the future should look like.
Television series' such as True Blood start with a great idea, a great script, and great actors. But what happens between concept and phenomenon? HBO has capitalized on the momentum the show has gained throughout the first three seasons with some of the most creative marketing campaigns ever, including a Tru Blood drink campaign for a beverage that had yet to exist, creative that “hacked reality” and spoke to the vampires living among us, a Jessica Hamby character video blog, opposing web sites for the American Vampire League and Fellowship of the Sun, and merchandise ranging from Lafayette's "L" necklace to Sookie's Merlotte's apron. Attendees will follow the story of True Blood from the inception of the series through the creation of the "immersion" fan experience through the mediums of Print, Television and the Internet. They will learn the selling points, the marketing tools and the magic that "turn" fans into fanatics.
With the rise of the virtual has come a renewed interest in the material. Evidence of this renewed interest is everywhere in pop culture, from steampunk to Maker Faire, from Readymade to Make to Etsy, from yarn bombing to LED throwies. We see it in craft: the handmade mandolin, the carefully stitched quilt, the custom cabinet. We see it in the vinyl resurgence and the newfound nostalgia for the mix tape. We see it in the Bamboo Bike Studio. We see it in the resurrection of Polaroid film by the IMPOSSIBLE project. Even as we go further into digital culture, we’re getting up from the computer to hold stuff, to make stuff, to shake stuff. And yet, there’s a sense that renewed interest in the material is facilitated by digital networks. That is, we go online to learn about craft, to meet-up with makers, to feed our fetishes. We send pictures of our creations from our digital devices to our social networks. All over the Web non-technical people are using new media to create, arrange, redesign, archive, and distribute their crafts. As they do, new techno-folkways are being passed down not only via new tools and networks, but also--as William Graham Sumner writes in his seminal book, Folkways--by "tradition, imitation, authority.” Folkways--the paths worn by mild social pressure--are being trod online. This panel will explore the various crossroads where craftwork meets network, with special attention paid to bridging the digital divide in rural America.
We all know photo sharing is nothing new - it's been around as long as photos have been around and that's a long long time! So what's all the buzz around mobile photo sharing now? Are people all jumping on the bandwagon to share their mobile photos? Instagram just passed 1M users within 3 months of their launch. Path introduced somewhat controversial private group sharing with 50 friends limit. And LiveShare by Cooliris just launched the first flexible private group sharing service for photos. Which brings us to question, are users more likely to resort to private streams? Is that where we are headed - small, intimate groups? What does it mean for the overall social graph(s) we have been building for the past years?
Come and join in on the discussion around mobile photo sharing, the hottest topic in Silicon Valley.
Generally speaking, there's an assumption that casual games are a waste of time. What can playing a "meaningless" Facebook game for a few minutes really accomplish, anyways? Do I really need to "rescue" another "sheep"? Another point of view is that they're a little bit sinister, manipulating you into emptying your wallet, or giving up personal information. But perhaps both positions are missing the point. This new genre we call "Casual Social Games" represents a fascinating opportunity to better understand our own behavior, and to direct it, intentionally, for our own benefit, and for the greater good of society.
The Facebook and Google privacy controversies of Spring 2010 highlighted the gap between technical innovation and user expectations on a global scale, leading representatives of various user constituencies to draft a definitive Social Media Users Bill of Rights for the 21st Century at the Computers, Freedom and Privacy Conference in San Jose, CA.
The idea of a Social Network Users’ Bill of Rights (#billofrights) has been around for years, but no large user set has actually collated the key values and principles that should go into such a Bill of Rights and put them to a world-wide vote – until now. All privacy law is based to some degree on social norms.
The panelists and other representatives of various user constituents drafted a definitive Social Media Users Bill of Rights. This kicked off a conversation between Facebook, the ACLU and others affected by technology’s expansion into daily life. The next step is to debate and have a public vote on it. The voting is open from now until June 15, 2011 – the anniversary of the date the U.S. government asked Twitter to delay its scheduled server maintenance as a critical communication tool for use in the 2009 Iran elections.
As the preamble of the document reads, "We the Users," the “Bill of Rights” document has been released to the public for vetting and debate. This is an important step, both from a future activism and legislative perspective, in the fight to define our digital futures.
Through this discussion, we will explore the evolution of privacy in the digital age, the changing relationship between users and online service providers, and the social, political and cultural ramifications of life in a networked world – and the SXSWi community will have a say in the development of a watershed document for user rights online.
Augmented Reality (AR) is on the verge of becoming a household name. Even though the concept and technology that make AR possible have been around for quite sometime, the tech-savvy community has been abuzz lately as mobile platforms such as iOS and Android have played a large role in bringing AR to the masses. But what is AR? In a nutshell, AR is a reality or environment that is augmented by layers of computer-generated information. Recent AR technologies have allowed for mobile devices to add layers of reality atop the world we see through our cell phone cameras.
Several applications such as Layar, AroundMe and others allow users to find and interact with information and other users by simply panning their cell phones around them.
What are some current examples of AR technologies, applications and potential uses around today? How does this technology affect education? What types of knowledge, community-building activities, contextual and informal learning experiences can be created with AR? How can we use AR to augment learning outcomes and creation of communities of practice? These are just some of the questions we will discuss on this panel.
by Tim Walker
Ever think about taking shortcuts to boost your numbers? You know, the numb that show the success of all those interactive social media marketing programs. The numbers that decide your end of year bonus. The numbers that make you "important" to all those other social media influencers. I know you have. You know you have. But did you use those performance enhancing social media techniques?
Humans are naturally drawn to shortcuts. Even when they are already successful. Take Barry Bonds. Not the Barry Bonds you remember with the bulging muscles in San Francisco. The younger, leaner version. The one who was with the Pirates and on his way to the Hall of Fame. Each day he worked hard on the fundamentals of the game. Then, boom, he was on steroids, a caricature of himself and a tarnished legacy. Why? The numbers competition.
We all know the equivalent of a Barry Bonds in social media. Someone who is enhancing their performance the wrong way. Maybe it started with a simple list buy of Twitter followers. But then suddenly they were researching blackhat SEO techniques for a temporary boost in traffic. Then one day they wake up in a cold sweat after an all night Astroturfing session.
It's time to get help!
Join us for a frank discussion on how the steroid culture has infected the social media realm. We will discuss the signs of a social media steroid user, how it hurts us all and a 12-step program to rehab those that have already fallen down the hole.
America’s students are bored. According to the Gates Foundation, boredom is the number one reason they give for dropping out of school. How can creativity, innovation and technology address this growing crisis in education? If technology is a driver for shorter attention spans, can it also be the solution to bring back the wonder of education? Can we extend the reach further and engage our students more both inside and outside of the classroom, to reawaken a love of learning?
by John Gerzema
What do pickles; vinyl records, urban chickens, Farmville, flea markets and Tumblr have in common? They are all part of 'block party capitalism,' built on the idea that old-fashioned values like provenance, commitment, quality and authenticity are finding renewed commercial and social relevance through new technologies. This next evolution of our digital world is where off and online intersect to make everyday life more economical, meaningful and pleasant. A pickle merchant in Brooklyn starts on a skateboard and through bloggers and hard work grows into a sustainable business. Vinyl records in San Francisco flourish as people showcase their passion for better sound and feel on Tumblr's Vinyl Sunday's. Backyard chicken farmers in Dallas suburbs multiply through an online community to share tips on raising coops, while flea markets across the U.S. grow into modern day malls driven in large part by the viral loops of mobile media. This panel includes start up founders, large companies and local entrepreneurs who work at the intersection of this analog and digital movement. They will help us explore how it’s changing the way we buy, sell and live.
by Bill Fulton, Marina Kobayashi, Ray Kowalewski and Rich Ridlen
Learn from the experts all about Games User Research and it's ins and outs - What it is? Why to do it? When to do it? And How to do it? Use this stepping stone to return to your organization charged with energy to make better products and user experiences (not just for games!) through user research. Bonus: Learn about what can go wrong in Games User Research (and maybe laugh at the mistakes of others? Who doesn't love a good anecdote from the field :-)
Conventional wisdom says that farmers aren't "wired." The only truth in this statement is that they aren't spending much time on desktop computers - in fact, the majority of their computing is done on mobile devices. Farmers are becoming increasingly dependent on wireless technology, from tweeting about industry issues, checking markets, researching equipment, booking trips to China and connecting with their kids on Facebook - all during their time in the cab of a GPS-piloted combine. This panel will explore the various applications for mobile technology on the farm, how farmers are getting serious business done with smartphones, and what new innovations are coming around the corner.
OK. So let's say your business has a website, a Facebook page, a Twitter account, a blog (or lots of blogs), an email newsletter, some SEO stuff, and eighty bajillion landing pages you forgot about back when it was still funny to rick-roll someone. Who's doing all this content? Are they talking to each other? Should someone be in charge? Who?
Come feel the love as a marketer, a CMS wonk, a UX designer, and a typical SME are brought together (Jerry Springer-style) to discuss the joys of cross-channel content strategy.
Some people carry the internet in their pocket and can't imagine a life without network. Some people have no internet at all and can't imagine a life with email. There is a complex combination of emotional, political and logistical reasons why 35% of Americans have no broadband at home and why 22% do not use the internet at all. We can't start solving the problem until we understand it.
We'll untangle and explore those reasons from a variety of urban and rural perspectives, with an eye towards finding solutions and demythologizing the process. We'll give examples and we'll name names.
by Nick Pudar, Joe Berry, Jessica Steel and Howard Wright
Connectivity – or “telemetric” in the auto industry – is using a car to keep you connected while behind the wheel. Mostly the auto industry is focused on developing systems for infotainment and personal connectivity through Bluetooth. That’s cool stuff that makes the driving experience more fun and helps us stay connected on the road, but we’re pushing for a much broader approach.
Your vehicle can be more than a smartphone on wheels – it can be a platform for data collection and sharing. With embedded technology, like OnStar, a vehicle can pull all kinds of data. Now connect that platform via cloud computing to the social media space and share data among multiple audiences. Smart software tools would analyze the cloud based on knowledge of drive including, equipment use, services used, etc., to make accurate predictions that could figure out intent.
Having an intelligent “intent engine” that processes the cloud, you could access highly relevant and personalized information that enables the cloud to work for you. We’re on the cusp of something ginormous here and our partners too.
What’s next for wireless communication, video conference and social interaction? How can these converge in a vehicle? How does OnStar leverage Verizon, Skype and Facebook to work in ways never thought possible?
11th–15th March 2011