For four days, all three conferences converge at the SXSW Trade Show. This is the center of commerce at SXSW. Attendees can network and discover the technology and new developments that will propel their business.
For the schedule of daily panels, interviews, comedy and performances on Next Stage check out sxsw.com/trade_shows/next_stage
The SXSW Trade Show Meet Up Pavilion plays host to daily networking events, which can be viewed at sxsw.com/trade_shows/meetup_pavilion
by Dean Kamen
Dean Kamen is a prolific inventor who has been compared to Edison for his contributions to humanity. Perhaps best known for inventing the Segway, Dean has also invented ground breaking medical technologies that benefit lives around the world; from drug pumps to revolutionary wheelchairs, to the “Luke” robotic arm and pioneering inventions in energy and water. In this session, Dean will provide an inside view into the innovations that have driven his success. You'll also learn about FIRST – Dean’s global program designed to experientially engage and inspire the next generation of young technology innovators. Finally, Dean will discuss the responsibilities and opportunities that exist for innovators in all fields (developers, designers, engineers, technologists, inventors and business leaders) to use their gifts to benefit mankind. Sponsored by IEEE.
by Jaron Lanier and Nicholas Thompson
A conversation between Nicholas Thompson, a senior editor covering technology for the New Yorker, and computing pioneer Jaron Lanier. They'll discuss the virtues of technology, but also the ways it has made us less imaginative, more distracted, and less connected to other people. Lanier is one of the founders of "virtual reality," but he has since become the most prominent critic of what technology has wrought. Last year, he published “You Are Not a Gadget: A Manifesto,” a provocative critique of digital technologies, including Wikipedia (which he called a triumph of “intellectual mob rule”) and social-networking sites like Facebook and Twitter, which Lanier has described as dehumanizing and designed to encourage shallow interactions.
by Cory Levy
How many times have you seen someone you wanted to talk to, but did not quite know how? This is the question that led to the creation of One, a mobile application that notifies you when there is someone right next to you with similar interests. People meet their best friends and their spouses by coincidence. Why is that? I found that people are aware of very little around them. At the University of Illinois, I used to walk down the Engineering Quad every single day. Hundreds of people pass me, and I do not know any of them. This is so silly. Technology is replacing face-to-face interaction. Technology is making people unsocial. One is the opposite. I am trying to turn coincidence into a science. One helps you create face-to-face interactions. One connects you to the 99% of the world you haven’t met yet. The implications of the product are boundless, being utilized by students wanting to connect with classmates, people seeking new friends, businesses seeking customers (or vice-versa), or helping potential lovebirds meet. One helps remove the barrier that often exists between people and reveals meaningful opportunities you would have otherwise been unaware of. For example, if you list a major interest as smoothies, you may be alerted that another smoothie-lover is in the room. Or, that a local Smoothie King is giving away discounted smoothies. If you receive no notifications, you can simply click on “smoothies” and learn about a new blend receiving awards, or read recent reviews on popular mixes. Right now, people around you are strangers. This is not by choice, but by technical limitations. We think one day very soon, our kids will say "there was a time when we you didn't know everything about the people right next to you?" One allows you to fill in the blanks. One helps you form meaningful connections with people who would otherwise be strangers.
This panel seeks to change the conversation from “What can technology conferences do about diversity?” to “What can attendees do about diversity at technology conferences?” The panel is composed of speakers who have each presented at multiple technology conferences on topics that did not focus on race or diversity but instead spoke on topics of sci-fi, electronic ownership of email and digital wills, the influence of mobile development via comic books, social media for youth and business automation lessons from Amazon. While the diversity of some major tech conferences has steadily improved over the years, geek culture - which remains overwhelmingly white and male - is still the norm. This can be daunting for people who, despite being experts in technology and new media, don’t see themselves reflected in the marketing materials or content. Panelists will share how individuals can contribute to making technology conferences more inclusive.
9th–13th March 2012