Sessions at SXSW Interactive 2012 about Creativity

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Friday 9th March 2012

  • Unstuck: Get (and Keep) Your Creativity Flowing

    by Noah Scalin

    Has your creative engine stalled out? Don’t worry; you’re in good company. Everyone needs a creative tune-up from time-to-time and this is where you’ll get the tools for the job. Artist/designer Noah Scalin, author of 365: A Daily Creativity Journal and Unstuck: 52 Ways To Get (and Keep) Your Creativity Flowing at Home, at Work, and in Your Studio, will share the story of his own yearlong Skull-A-Day project and the benefits he gained from this daily practice – including becoming a published author & sought after corporate speaker, and yes even making an appearance on The Martha Stewart show. He’ll also introduce you to several easy ways to immediately start generating more creative energy that will benefit your life and work.

    At 3:30pm to 3:50pm, Friday 9th March

    In Ballroom G, Austin Convention Center

    Coverage audio clip

  • The Accidental Creative

    by Todd Henry

    For creatives in today's workplace, it sometimes feels like the mandate is "make it brilliant, or start working on your resume." At the same time, creativity often seems like some mystical, elusive force that sits somewhere between prayer and the US Tax Code on the ambiguity scale - either the creative juices are flowing, or they're not. How can creatives be held responsible for something that often seems beyond their control?

    The good news is that by making small changes in a just few key areas of your life, it's possible to increase your chances of having brilliant ideas when you need them most. By addressing the dynamics of workplace creating, the assassins of creativity, and five key practices for creatives, this session will set you up to be prolific, brilliant and healthy in life and work.

    At 4:00pm to 4:20pm, Friday 9th March

    In Ballroom G, Austin Convention Center

    Coverage audio clip

  • Todd Henry Book Signing

    Todd Henry signs his book ‘The Accidental Creative’ at the SXSW bookstore

    At 4:35pm to 4:50pm, Friday 9th March

    In Ballroom G Foyer, Austin Convention Center

Saturday 10th March 2012

  • Organization Design Is for Lovers

    by Scott McDowell

    Conceived as a user’s manual for DIY organizational design, this talk explores good practices for structuring an organization for creativity and impact, and motivating smart and creative people.The importance of building an exceptional team is sometimes minimized by creative business owners. It is a “secondary task” unrelated, at least superficially, to the work we deliver to clients, often triggered under duress by an event: a huge new client project to ramp up for, a round of VC funding, the opening of a new office, the exodus of a few great employees, or market events that force a restructuring. For this reason building an organization often takes on an urgent tone and is executed with haste or fear. ‘Organization Design is for Lovers’ is about adding people with confidence and implementing the right organizational structure to push your ideas forward.

    At 1:15pm to 1:30pm, Saturday 10th March

    In Texas Ballroom 4-7, Hyatt Regency Austin

    Coverage slide deck

  • The View from Inside Rainn Wilson's Brainstem

    by Rainn Wilson

    The brainchild of actor Rainn Wilson (Dwight from NBC's The Office), SoulPancake is a movement to "Chew on Life's Big Questions" and tackle art, philosophy, creativity, and spirituality across multiple platforms. SoulPancake offers thought-provoking content and creative engagement opportunities to help people explore what it means to be human. Now, with more than 1 million page views a month, SoulPancake's website has crossed over into multiple platforms, from print to television to video and "real world" interactions. Wilson will offer the audience a thoughtful, funny look at how art and creativity can be explored in all forms of media. He'll share some of the challenges of building an online community; developing creative content; and the interactivity and social networking that fuels it all. Please note: Rainn will not be serving pancakes, but he does encourage the audience to bring and enjoy their own stacks of flapjacks.

    At 5:00pm to 6:00pm, Saturday 10th March

    In Exhibit Hall 5, Austin Convention Center

Sunday 11th March 2012

  • Preserving the Creative Culture of the Web

    by Nick Hasty, Kari Kraus and Jason Scott

    For over 20 years the web has provided continuous deluge of cultural production. Digital artifacts such as websites, images, and videos have much to communicate about our social and cultural evolution, and yet their messages or moments can be fleeting or quickly lost. Both the accessibility and longevity of digital content are subject to a wide range of risks, from technological obsolescence to outright deletion by their creator or host. So what is being done to preserve these cultural objects for the long term? Approaching web content from a cultural and artistic perspective, this panel will convene leading writers, archivists, thinkers and technologists to discuss to the questions, challenges, and imperatives involving preserving the creative culture of the web. We'll cover topics like "what is the long-term significance of a website, and why would it be worth preserving?", "should web sites and artifacts be treated like works of art or architecture?", and "how do we go about archiving digital content to ensure its accessibility and longevity?". Example initiatives to be discussed will be the Archive Team's various projects (such as the Geocities torrent), the Internet Archive's Wayback Machine, Internet Archeology, and the Rhizome ArtBase. This panel will be presented by Rhizome, an organization dedicated to the creation, presentation, preservation, and critique of emerging artistic practices that engage technology.

    At 3:30pm to 4:30pm, Sunday 11th March

    In Room 9ABC, Austin Convention Center

    Coverage audio clip

  • Creative Leadership: Reimagine the Design Process

    by Sarah B Nelson

    Design groups the world over are littered with the remains of design process initiatives gone horribly useless. But, unless you are a one man band — and, let’s face it, few of us are — getting a group of designers, developers, and business owners to get a fantastic design out the door can feel like herding cats. What’s a design leader to do? Change our framework. Design process is not a technical problem to be solved (like designing a clock) but a living emergent system (like a cloud) to be exposed, evaluated and iterated.

    At 4:00pm to 4:15pm, Sunday 11th March

    In Texas Ballroom 4-7, Hyatt Regency Austin

Monday 12th March 2012

  • Creativity and Innovation in the UK's Tech City

    by Julian Ehrhardt, Pru Ashby, Tony Hughes, Johan Brand and Marie-Alicia Chang

    If the early years of internet businesses was a triumph of technology, the next ones will be one defined by design and user experience. Users will demand more from their online experience, one which is as much designed around personal preference as technical expediency. Well designed applications and services that can meet the needs of users expecting seamless interactions across technology platforms will be the winners. In London's Tech City, small tech, design, creative and product companies are working together to meet the challenges of the connected consumer. This session is sponsored by UKTI.

    At 9:30am to 10:30am, Monday 12th March

    In Salon K, Hilton Austin Downtown

  • Crowdsourced Creative: Friend to Advertising?

    by Neil Perry

    Perhaps no segment of interactive marketing is as provocative as crowdsourcing, a rapidly emerging approach to media creation that can cut traditional production costs by as much as 90% and is having profound effects on in-house and agency marketers alike. Hear pros and cons and see real-life examples, case studies, and lessons from the perspectives of leading global brands, agencies and crowdsourcing production companies on how the crowd is going mainstream and what it could all mean to you. Joining Neil will be Robb Miller, Director of Marketing for Site Content, Dell.com.

    At 12:30pm to 1:30pm, Monday 12th March

    In Assembly Room, InterContinental Stephen F. Austin

Tuesday 13th March 2012

  • Epic Battle: Creativity vs. Discipline in Social

    by Sarahjane Sacchetti, Jason Harris, Kristin Maverick and John Manoogian III

    As social media marketing moves from experimental to institutional, brands no longer question social media marketing as a line item. That said, the strategies and deployment of social campaigns continues to introduce big questions about ROI versus spending and effective measurement has been a trendy topic without clear answers for years. The tension introduced by the the creativity made familiar by traditional brand campaigns and the measurement that performance/Internet marketing allows has created increasingly urgent questions for CMOs, agencies and social networks alike. This panel brings together divergent voices in the evolving social media marketing realm and will address the questions brands, agencies and social networks need to answer in 2012.

    With a mix of measurement and analytics experts 140Proof, standout creative agencies Mekanism and BBDO and social network Formspring will review specific intereactions with brand case studies and discuss the following questions:

    At 9:30am to 10:30am, Tuesday 13th March

    In Capital Ballroom A, InterContinental Stephen F. Austin

  • Next Stage: BUILT - Talks By People Who Create

    This year, Built goes to 11 with this exceptional lineup:

    1. Shipping container conversions—Mark Meyer, designSTUDIOmodern
    The ubiquity of the ISO shipping container has come home to roost, literally. We transform repurposed shipping containers into food trailers (an Austin meme to itself) as well as sustainable and hip residences.
    2. Peptides and You—Joshua Allen, Microsoft
    Five years ago, peptides were a closely-guarded secret of top athletes. Today, millions of people use peptides to reshape their bodies, improve their minds, and even spice up their relationships. Recent advances in computer-aided discovery, synthesis, and delivery systems are opening up new possibilities for peptides. Come see how this revolution in peptides could impact you.
    3. Jam in the Van—Jake Cotler, Jam in the Van
    We took an ordinary old Winnebago and turned it into a state of the art recording studio complete with a mobile mural. We film HD videos and record top notch sound in our Jam Van, and in a year have created a whimsical and wild ride that has enriched our lives and spawned loads of amazing music and art along the way.
    4. Space and HD video collaboration—Scott Larson, Urthecast
    UrtheCast will provide the world’s first ever, live HD video feed of Earth from space.
    5. Land!—Eric Wicks
    My wife and I constructed a 6-foot tall, 400 pound sign, to lay claim on the often overlooked american landscape. We dragged it through cow pastures, pulled it up mountains and hauled it over sand dunes. We got some pretty good photos and happened upon friendly airport police, segway riding mall cops and ranchers without teeth along the way. The best part is that we never left Texas (the climate moves from humid subtropical in the east to semi-arid/arid in the west).

    6. Dataviz: Tunisia, the revolution and beyond—Khelil Ben Osman, Fhimt
    A unique view of Tunisia, its population, the way internet is used in Africa's most connected country and why Tunisia was the perfect place to bootstrap the Arab spring.
    7. Comfortable Nomadic Off Grid—Felicia Ballos & Ray Roy, TransitAntenna
    Felicia and Roy's travels helped them figure out simple ways to be comfortable in a home made house on wheels. With environmentally conscious systems they built themselves, they love to share with others who want to live more responsibly and simply, but no less comfortably.
    8. The (Digital) Place You Love Is Gone—Joe Sokohl
    A look at how the destruction of our childhood and adolescent physical geographies has a profoundly negative impact on us. We feel loss, we feel disconnected, we feel the true pain of home (the root of the word "nostalgia").
    9. The Semiotics of Thrift / The Substance of Thrift—Tiffani Jones Brown
    A quick and dirty case for thrift. Specifically, for the "substance" of thrift. Tiffani will argue that the values implied by thrift are not merely hipster posturing, but in fact represent a deeper, realer set of values that most of us share.
    10. Happiness is a Warm Snout—Nishant Kothary, Rainy Pixels
    What is happiness? Philosophers, beggars, rap stars, porn stars, chihuahuas, models, bankers, graphic designers, economists, monks, and every other imaginable living being has been in pursuit of the answer to this question since the dawn of time. And, the seemingly infinite number of answers that manifest in a plethora of forms — from scriptures and self-help books, to investment strategies and cosmetic surgery — continue to befuddle us. Could this perplexing question that has cost countless lifetimes be explained in five minutes with nothing more than a few whimsical pictures of a Weimaraner? Come find out.
    11. Rotting bits — What to do with 10 years of digital photos?—Matt Brown, Who Is Matt Brown.
    I bought a digital camera in late 2002. I now have almost 200GB of digital photos. Tens of thousands of idle bits stuck on hard drives, completely silent. Browsing through them on a harddrive is an existential nightmare, but something must be done with these to tell a story of who I am. On the 10 year anniversary of my first photo, I plan to figure that out.

    11 speakers in an hour with a DJs of the Sun backbeat keeping us on time, expect an a show that'll occupy your mind like Austin Grackles landing in a tree.

    At 12:00pm to 1:00pm, Tuesday 13th March

    In Exhibit Hall 3/4, Austin Convention Center

  • The Creative Collaboration Conundrum

    by Wayne Pick and Matt Baker

    We’ve all been shown nirvana-like visions of a collaborative future where we join hands in beautiful creative harmony: the art director will join with designer, with the content strategist, with the planner, with the technologist. The list goes on.The reality of collaboration, however, often falls short, leading at times to the polar opposite extremes of territorialism and outright hostility.We’ll be sharing concrete examples of outstanding collaboration in the digital creative space and asking others to share their experiences. We'll be encouraging people to share moments of collaborative triumph and also of spectacular failure, all in the spirit of unearthing some of the foundations for successful collaboration in the all-play sandbox of interactive creativity.

    At 12:30pm to 1:30pm, Tuesday 13th March

    In Assembly Room, InterContinental Stephen F. Austin