SXSW on Lunch Rate and Review SXSW Panels and Parties <![CDATA[ This is a provocative and very important book.]]> Mon, 16 Aug 2010 12:00:00 +0000 <![CDATA[ Beautifully written reminder that each medium has its tradeoffs]]>
The Shallows is a thoroughly and broadly researched and beautifully written polemic which I found to represent two different things. First, it is a media analysis and culture critique. Second it is a pessimistic theory about the overall effect of web media on our thinking ability over time.

The first aspect will be a delight for those interested in the evolution of human cognition, those fascinated with media effects per se, the traditionally minded book scholars, and assorted geezers. It is a very satisfying cultural media critique very much in the spirit of Marshall Macluhan and Neil Postman even though it lacks Macluhan's showmanship or Postman's remarkable ever-present humor. It was this aspect made the book a worthwhile reminder for me, introduced me to some fascinating recent cognitive science work supporting the view that different media encourage different ways of thinking, and helped tie together a number of broad ideas for me regarding the evolution of human cognition and the influence of the tools we use.

The second aspect, for the more technically psychologically minded, and the more alarmist and pessimistic part, is a clever argument for competing and mutually destructive habits of attention allocation: (1) the nimble web browsing mind that constantly reserves attention and working memory for making navigational decisions and is exposed to massive amounts of information, and (2) the sustained attention ability that we learn with great effort over time for the purpose of reading and reflective thinking.

The second aspect is the one that most of the articles and marketing have been pushing, a thesis I'll call "Help! The Internet is Frying My Brain!"

Carr argues that the nimble web mind better exploits our more natural "bottom-up" or stimulus driven attention mechanisms, which is why we find it so powerful. He also argues that the undistracted reflective mind is far less natural but has unique advantages for human cognition. So it is worth retaining, he argues, _and_ we need to keep working deliberately at it in order to retain it. That alone would be an important point. Thus far, I think the attention argument is completely consistent with the media critique, and supports it. None of this so far says that our brain is being fried by the Internet.

Now comes the trickier part, and the part of Carr's thesis that to me is most controversial, the two ways of using attention may not only compete but may actually be mutually destructive. Carr offers his own experience and that of several other serious book readers to show that they are having increasing trouble reading for prolonged periods. Carr says that there is neuroscience data showing that this may be the result of web reading rather than just advancing age or other less ominous explanations.

This "fried brain" thesis is the part that is either revolutionary, or becomes the fatal flaw in The Shallows, depending on whether or not it is true. So is it true? Does Carr persuade us that not only are we thinking differently with different media (a very strong case I think) but that the Internet is frying our brains?

Today we remember the iconic wise curmudgeon, Socrates, only through his students. That's because old Soc didn't believe in writing. It seems he was a great proponent of contemplative thought and taught that contemplation depends heavily on memory. He thought it would seriously hurt people's memory to rely too much on writing things down. His criticism seems perverse today, even as we remember Soc fondly for his deep reflection and his provocative teaching methods. That's the historical role into which Nicholas Carr has cast himself, the media critic who invokes wisdom and reflection and plays them against seemingly unstoppable cultural trends towards greater convenience, efficiency, and information distribution.

Carr is the guy who wants to warn us about the hazards of writing on our memory. About the damage that the printing press will do to culture. About how TV will change us for the worse. And now about how the Internet will shift our values, instill bad habits, hurt our reading and thinking skills, and even destroy our powers of sustained concentration.

Socrates wasn't entirely wrong even though he bucked a trend that in retrospect was downright silly to oppose. People who don't specifically practice remembering things and instead devote everything to writing do find that they have weaker memories. That's the reason for all those memory courses, the best of which essentially just teach the same methods socrates would have used. The widespread distribution of news did have negative consequences in terms of reinforcing bias and propaganda on a massive scale.

There are some adverse consequences of all the TV watching we do. However none of these things has had the dire consequences that culture critics predicted, we have adapted in turn in some way to each of them, more or less successfully.

So Carr isn't entirely wrong about the tradeoffs involved in using modern technologies. He is not a "Luddite" and he does make a number of valid points.

Carr is not telling us to dismantle the Internet. He fully recognizes the value of technology. He is rather playing Socrates to the modern students. Most people, desperately trying to keep up with the amazing new technologies and learn new ways of getting better information with them will ignore Carr's message pretty much out of hand. "Carr is the only one affected negatively by the Internet, the rest of us are thriving."

Those folks who ignore culture critics out of hand are taking for granted the skills and expertise that many people have cultivated through sheer effort using sustained concentration. They are buying into the attractive fashionable modern viewpoint that just being exposed to a lot of information via technology will make you smart. The majority of people, the ones who go along with that implicit confusion of information and personal knowledge, will indeed lose some of the things we take for granted today. I think Carr is right about that, and that is the most profound message in this book. LISTEN TO IT. Even if you think, with good reason, that it is silly to imagine that using search engines and hyperlinks will hurt your concentration.

Still, the message that the Internet will make us stupid isn't quite right. Writing didn't entirely destroy our memory, it just shifted the habits we need to cultivate to preserve it. It seems like the wisest among us will recognize the value that culture critics like Carr have always had, they will appreciate the detail and care that good media critics like Carr put into their warnings, and they will remember the real tradeoffs between different kinds of media and take responsibility for the cultivation of their own minds.

Just as wise modern students still practice the methods used by Socrates, they will still learn to read and think deeply using books or the electronic equivalent, the wisest will still turn off the TV and other distractions when sustained concentration is called for, and they will understand the difference between various conditions and different kinds of media in general and will use each to its best advantage.

So long as we aren't stupid enough to stop cultivating our individual minds regardless of technology changes, media itself will not make us stupid. Listen to Carr's message, learn it, and then apply it to your use of technology. It's easy to dismiss the claim that the Internet will somehow fry your brain. It's another matter entirely to dismiss the value of cultivating your mind through personal reflection.

Related background reading:

On the evolution of cognition and symbolic thought (and secondarily, the role of reading):
A Mind So Rare: The Evolution of Human Consciousness
The Symbolic Species: The Co-Evolution of Language and the Brain

On reading and the brain:
Reading in the Brain: The Science and Evolution of a Human Invention
Proust and the Squid: The Story and Science of the Reading Brain

On the role of tools in cognition:
Adaptive Thinking: Rationality in the Real World (Evolution and Cognition Series)

On the role of media technology in culture:
Understanding Media: The Extensions of Man
Technopoly: The Surrender of Culture to Technology

On the trend to rising IQ scores in modern times:
What Is Intelligence?: Beyond the Flynn Effect

On the practical limitations of human working memory:
Your Brain at Work: Strategies for Overcoming Distraction, Regaining Focus, and Working Smarter All Day Long
The Overflowing Brain: Information Overload and the Limits of Working Memory]]> Mon, 21 Jun 2010 12:00:00 +0000
<![CDATA[foursquare Quick Tip by redsoda]]> Mon, 31 May 2010 06:13:58 +0000 <![CDATA[World Cup 2010: Engaging U.S. Soccer Fans Online Quick Tip by RyanWeiss]]> Fri, 23 Apr 2010 23:05:54 +0000 <![CDATA[Gary Vaynerchuk Presentation Quick Tip by BJSebastian]]> Fri, 16 Apr 2010 02:33:28 +0000 <![CDATA[foursquare Quick Tip by charlierobinson]]> Sat, 10 Apr 2010 08:40:17 +0000 <![CDATA[foursquare Quick Tip by travismurdock]]> Mon, 5 Apr 2010 04:47:47 +0000 <![CDATA[Annie's Quick Tip by RyanWeiss]]> Tue, 30 Mar 2010 04:07:26 +0000 <![CDATA[Annie's Quick Tip by lyssachttr]]> Tue, 30 Mar 2010 03:08:28 +0000 <![CDATA[25 Awesome People I Met at SXSW]]> I loved all of the new ideas I encountered at this year's SXSW. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and talking about your current projects. I'd love to keep in touch on all the things you're doing, and hopefully connect again at future events! Here is a look at who I enjoyed meeting at SXSW. (Listed in chronological order of meeting.)]]> Tue, 23 Mar 2010 17:33:31 +0000 <![CDATA[Evan Williams Keynote Interview Quick Tip by Chaviva]]> Tue, 23 Mar 2010 04:54:46 +0000 <![CDATA[ Can I review myself?]]> Probably not the best idea...

But you can! After watching the video and slides of this SXSWi 2010 presentation, of course... 

ps. You can use this link to share:


]]> Mon, 22 Mar 2010 19:55:05 +0000
<![CDATA[ How @anywhere became @everywhere]]>
And so the talk begins. Ev starts out by announcing @anywhere, which is Twitter profile rollovers enabled outside of Twitter on the rest of the internet. Exciting! At least it was to most of the attendees there. Our minds started reeling - what are the implications of this? what does the implementation for businesses look like? what are the analytics? can i customize it? what else can it do? Unfortunately none of those questions were answered and neither did they delve into @anywhere any deeper than just announcing it. From there they went to talking about Twitter ad nauseum.

I like Twitter as much as the next person but let's be honest - your average person who has never heard of how Twitter was used in Haiti or other newsworthy situations will not be attending SXSW. SXSW is for tech-savvy people who want to learn about things on a deeper level. I knew early on that their conversation was not heading back to @anywhere, hence it went @everywhere. Some others knew this too as they started filing out of the main keynote room. At this point this was not the mass exodus everyone experienced. I'm not exactly sure what tipped other people off but I experienced it firsthand. I happened to sit down right opposite of the exit because my friend Lane was charging his phone by the Pepsi Podcast lounge. All of a sudden about 10 minutes later mass amounts of people started filing out of the auditorium. No, the talk wasn't over - there was still 10 minutes left. 

I'm not sure exactly what triggered the mass exodus but my guess is that it's the old adage 'nothing attracts a crowd like a crowd'. Here's the bottom line: when you have a group of savvy internet people in one large room don't tell them about your service that they've been using for a while already. Go into details about the new announcement. Doing so makes them feel special as they are witnessing history. Rehashing history live makes them feel like they're wasting their time and ultimately they did. That's why many people walked out. People vote with their feet and if your presentation isn't up to their standards they will decide very quickly.]]> Sun, 21 Mar 2010 22:35:53 +0000
<![CDATA[ Has Social Media Jumped the Shark? Starstruck at the Mashable Party!]]> First I want to say I had an awesome time at this event. Great free drinks, incredible people and awesome music. Big thanks should go to Mashable and Sony for throwing another memorable gathering.

Some of the things that were just plain weird  was the paparazzi scene around such internet well knowns as Pete Cashmore, Robert Scoble and Leo Laporte. Now I'm still a fanboy at heart and love it when a well known Internet celeb drops by a party. But what I DON"T DO is videotape said celeb having a conversation with someone else. These are still people and deserve a little respect.

Other than that, I enjoyed seeing a ton of my friends in one place. The music was awesome and the beer was flowing. I wanted to play a little pool or shuffle board but the wait was way too long!

Overall I would give this party a straight up A but it would have sucked if I didn't have my VIP wrist band.

A definite highlight of my SXSW experience two years running.

]]> Sun, 21 Mar 2010 03:18:56 +0000
<![CDATA[Diggnation Live Quick Tip by lesinski]]> Sun, 21 Mar 2010 02:09:40 +0000 <![CDATA[ Visuals are important, not the numbers]]> Biggest Takeaway
The visuals are the most important part of a dashboard. You can usually do without the numbers or hide them in drilldowns or rollovers. You can almost always remove tabular data.

People comprehend information by using comparison and finding patterns. For example, use a red diamond to draw attention to issues. Things that are good or neutral can usually be left unadorned since only the bad events are what really matters. If everything is color coded green, yellow, red, the red does not stand out. If you only color the bad things red and leave the others as grey then it is really easy to spot problems from afar.

Best Quote
"Dashboards are for monitoring! Let me know if there are any problems, otherwise I'm going to go back to work."

]]> Sun, 21 Mar 2010 00:39:21 +0000
<![CDATA[Gary Vaynerchuk Presentation Quick Tip by doverbey]]> Sat, 20 Mar 2010 19:27:30 +0000 <![CDATA[My top 5 list post SXSW]]> Sat, 20 Mar 2010 03:46:36 +0000 <![CDATA[ "No Thank You, those things will kill you"]]>

That’s what I was saying as I walked passed every person who tried to hand me a Zone bar at SXSW.

Now I normally don’t care what other people eat, but when you a handing out a product, telling people it’s a healthy choice, lets give them the facts here.

Here are the ingredients in a Zone Perfect bar (Double Dark Chocolate):

Soy Protein Nuggets (Isolated Soy Protein, Cocoa [Processed With Alkali], Tapioca Starch, Salt), Chocolate Layer (Corn Syrup, Sugar, Palm Kernel Oil, Unsweetened Chocolate, Invert Sugar, Cocoa [Processed With Alkali], Milk Protein, Soy Lecithin, Salt, Xanthan Gum, Carob Seed Gum, Gum Arabic, Vanilla Extract With Other Natural Flavors), Chocolate Flavored Coating (Sugar, Fractionated Palm Kernel Oil, Cocoa Powder [Processed With Alkali], Soy Lecithin, Vanilla), Corn Syrup, Soy Protein Isolate, Chocolate Drops (Sugar, Chocolate Liquor, Cocoa Butter, Soy Lecithin, Vanilla), Fructose Syrup, Chocolate Liquor, Cocoa (Processed With Alkali). Less Than 2% Of The Following: Glycerine, High Oleic Safflower And/or High Oleic Sunflower Oil, Chocolate Powder (Natural Cocoa Powder, Sugar, Chocolate Liquor, Cocoa Butter, Soy Lecithin, Vanilla), Natural Flavors, Caramel Color, Cocoa Fructose (Fructose, Water, Corn Maltodextrin, Cocoa [Processed With Alkali], Natural Cocoa, Salt, Carrageenan, Natural Flavors, Tocopherol, Ascorbic Acid), Salt.

Wow, my head hurts from reading that.

Now of course my statement of “No Thank You, those things will kill you” might have been a little harsh, but people don’t know what they are eating!

The product is pitched like this “Excellent source of protein (12g). 19 vitamins and minerals. Rich in antioxidants. [Vitamins C & E and Selenium.] ” But there are 14g of sugar and 210mg of sodium!

This is why next year I really want to get Whole Foods as a sponsor (their HQ is in Austin) and get people handing out Apples on the corners of SXSW.

Think about it, and apple is just as portable, it won’t spoil very quickly, it’s great for you, and best of all…there is only 1 ingredient, APPLE!

Please do not be confused by someone saying all natural to you. Corn syrup is natural, but it’s also REALLY BAD FOR YOU! Soy is all natural, but when it’s super processed the way most Americans find it in foods, it’s really unhealthy.

If you take away one thing from this post, please try and eat food as close to it’s natural state as possible. You will feel better, spend less money on food, and reduce your risk of getting sick. Just by doing that one thing!

I really hope that this post will be seen as less of a rant, and more of a conversation opener. Do you like zone bars? Why? Did you know what you were eating? Please feel free to leave your own opinions in the comments.


]]> Fri, 19 Mar 2010 23:22:40 +0000
<![CDATA[ My favorite panel at SXSW]]> Biggest Takeaway

There is still a crazy divide between generation X and Y workers. While it seems that everybody is willing to understand each side, nobody can find the direct way to get both sides to see eye to eye. I loved how interactive this panel was at SXSW. Rather than listening to the panelists speak for the entire hour, folks from the audience from both generations got up and asked questions, expressed viewpoints and challenged opinions from everybody in the room. At first, this was a bit awkward, but as the session got more into it, it seemed as if the town-hall like setting of casual interjections and passive aggressive statements were being accepted in a respectful manner.

Biggest takeaway for me was probably the realization that Generation Y may in fact have the biggest internal gap of talent than any other generation. There is a lot of people out there who suck in every way possible when it comes to professional development. Some make me embarrassed to be part of the generation Y category. But acknowledging what great talent is out there within my generation makes we wonder just how wide the gap is...

Best / Worst Quotes

"Rather than a work-life balance, generation Y is seeking more a work-life blend."

"Lack of loyalty happens when uncertainty of why we belong in the bigger picture starts forming." -Response to a question asked on gen Y's issue of loyalty. 

"Generation Y doesn't feel 'entitled' but more so 'empowered' today." -Comment made about breaking the resentment carried by Generation X towards Generation Y. 

]]> Fri, 19 Mar 2010 21:40:53 +0000
<![CDATA[Annie's Quick Tip by RyanWeiss]]> Fri, 19 Mar 2010 18:30:56 +0000 <![CDATA[Annie's Quick Tip by ariajuliet]]> Fri, 19 Mar 2010 17:22:59 +0000 <![CDATA[Four Seasons Austin, TX Quick Tip by MelissaAq]]> Fri, 19 Mar 2010 17:22:49 +0000 <![CDATA[Annie's Quick Tip by MelissaAq]]> Fri, 19 Mar 2010 17:15:52 +0000 <![CDATA[ Information overload in tweet sized chunks from SXSW Interactive 2010]]> At first, it seems ironic to see the leaders of the “140-character culture” get together for a 5-day conference filled with hour-long presentations and panel discussions.   But this same culture has created information overload, so perhaps the SXSW “fire-hose” experience was more fitting than one would think.

In an effort to minimize your SXSW information overload, I thought it may be more fitting to simply share  some of my favorite take-aways and sound-bites in 140-char Twitter style.  Enjoy!  And, please add your own too.

Your online presence:
“Live your life online as though your mother is watching you.” @equalman

Danah Boyd Keynote:
“Just because something is publicly accessible, it doesn’t mean people want it to be publicized.” @zephoria

Branding with applications:
The best apps are those that give customers a new and better way to interact with your brand.

“There’s no point in innovating if you think you already know the answer.”  @jeremygutsche

For crowd sourcing success, people must be comfortable, motivated and serious about sharing.

Content sharing:
The most commonly shared content is that which is novel, timely, unique and useful.

Math and Marketing:
“It takes imagination, not math, to take a leap into the future”  @miketeasdale

Social Responsibility:
Social media enables all of us to make a difference in the world.  Don’t just join a movement online – take action.

Dashboard Design:
Computers think in numbers, humans think visually.

Humor on the Web:
“Learn from comments, but don’t obsess over them. Trying to please everyone will result in not-so -funny material.”

Healthcare Online:
“Health has a branding problem.”  There’s an opportunity to rebrand health and think of it as a gift versus a problem.”

“SXSW is an amazing opportunity to stay informed, relevant and connected” @smallarmyjeff

Please feel free to share this with others and more importantly, add your own favorite sound-bites and take-aways here.

I hope to see you in Austin next year.

]]> Fri, 19 Mar 2010 01:42:35 +0000
<![CDATA[TechKaraoke Quick Tip by Corvida]]> Thu, 18 Mar 2010 23:02:08 +0000 <![CDATA[Happy Cog'aoke 2 Quick Tip by Corvida]]> Thu, 18 Mar 2010 23:00:27 +0000 <![CDATA[Common Symptoms of SXSW SARS]]> Thu, 18 Mar 2010 21:57:47 +0000 <![CDATA[ is it like being kinda pregnant?]]>

(Reposted from my blog, Casa DeFrias, at the request of @ariajuliet)

I spent the last six days in Austin, Texas, attending South by Southwest. There are three tracks (Interactive, Film and Music), and I attended the interactive one for work.

The most impactful panel was a little publicized, intimate panel on the final day called "Twittering Thru Chemo - Survivors Unite" and was moderated by Drew Olanoff and Brian Simpson (the former famous of the #BlameDrewsCancer meme on Twitter).

There was so much love and power in the room, and I felt it kind of wash over me when I got up to share my story, and ask for advice.

"I'm a melanoma survivor, and am currently dealing with the uterine cancer I was diagnosed with 4 weeks ago. We're trying to harvest my eggs via IVF before they take my uterus out on April 12. My question is more of a comment, really: every time I mention I'm a cancer survivor, I feel like a fake. A phony.

Like I only kind of have cancer, since both times we caught it really early so I never had to go through chemo or radiation. So I feel like a fake survivor. Kind of like only being a little pregnant."

Both guys were gracious and understanding, and made me feel better about my situation. Surviving's surviving, no matter how much -- or how little -- you go through, they said.

It was at that point that I began tearing up again. Why? Because I'm so caught up in taking my IVF meds and keeping the schedule for them straight, plus mentally bulking up for the hysterectomy, that I forget the reality of what's going on really means. Wanting to be a mom, and also dealing with the cancer once more.

]]> Thu, 18 Mar 2010 21:38:30 +0000
<![CDATA[20x2 Quick Tip by grether]]> Thu, 18 Mar 2010 20:44:42 +0000 <![CDATA[Mind Control: Psychology for the Web Quick Tip by grether]]> Thu, 18 Mar 2010 20:38:27 +0000 <![CDATA[AI 2010: Wall-e Or Rise Of The Machines? Quick Tip by grether]]> Thu, 18 Mar 2010 20:34:48 +0000 <![CDATA[Ze Frank Conversation: The Creative Lifestyle Quick Tip by grether]]> Thu, 18 Mar 2010 20:32:15 +0000 <![CDATA[Gowalla Presents: The Tiki Room with Diplo Quick Tip by Corvida]]> Thu, 18 Mar 2010 20:15:35 +0000 <![CDATA[ Change Starts With Just A Conversation]]> This was my panel, so my opinion my be biased ;)

As a Core Conversation, this was not a typical panel of presentation. This was aimed to be in the format of a discussion surrounding the topic. We had a fun room of folks from all walks of life including Technology, Security, and Law. We started with an introduction to the topic and services that aim to address the issue. Afterwards an intense and passionate brainstorm of ways to circumvent the legal, privacy, and technological complications of address what happens to digital assets in the cloud after death.

Solutions for managing access to your digital identity included revised terms and TOS and EULAs addressing this issue, especially if there is monetary value involved. Participants were also  in support of OpenID standards for identity verification issues specifically for the court of law.

While nothing was resolved in one hour, a lot of great ideas were discussed, challenged, and molded. The issue is something we all felt should be addressed and now was the time to do it. I was happy that SxSW accepted and highlighted this topic.

]]> Thu, 18 Mar 2010 20:08:51 +0000
<![CDATA[ How To Make Your Mobile Application Naturally Social]]> While the panelist included Tom Watson and Michael Sharon from Facebook along with Justin Shaffer from Hot Potato Media, I felt the panel did a mediocre job of presenting basic and painfully obvious ways of making your mobile application more social.

Things didn't start getting good until their presentation started. What I did enjoy about this panel is the comparisons of mobile UI revisions from Facebook to show how they made the app more social over time. They also compared the UI's of popular mobile location-based services Foursquare, Gowalla and how touch interfaces have helped make these applications integrate a naturally social UI for users.

Overall the case examples presented during the panel were excellent examples. However, some of the tips and suggestions given from the panel were very obvious and more for beginners than the advanced crowd I noticed that attended.

]]> Thu, 18 Mar 2010 19:49:21 +0000
<![CDATA[What We Learned Watching Kids with Homemade Flamethrowers Quick Tip by grether]]> Thu, 18 Mar 2010 19:39:21 +0000 <![CDATA[HTML5 Accessibility Quick Tip by grether]]> Thu, 18 Mar 2010 19:34:32 +0000 <![CDATA[Gary Vaynerchuk Presentation Quick Tip by grether]]> Thu, 18 Mar 2010 19:27:06 +0000 <![CDATA[SXSW Interactive Closing Party Hosted by (mt) Media Temple Quick Tip by MelissaAq]]> Thu, 18 Mar 2010 19:12:10 +0000 <![CDATA[Gary Vaynerchuk Presentation Quick Tip by rondostar]]> Thu, 18 Mar 2010 19:10:53 +0000 <![CDATA[Evan Williams Keynote Interview Quick Tip by RyanWeiss]]> Thu, 18 Mar 2010 18:52:37 +0000 <![CDATA[Evan Williams Keynote Interview Quick Tip by MelissaAq]]> Thu, 18 Mar 2010 18:50:24 +0000 <![CDATA[ How Alcatel-Lucent Gained A Free Pitching Pass As A Sponsor]]> The Eleven API Lounge was one of the best places to stop into when visiting the Hilton Hotel for panels at SxSW. The places was nicely decorated feeling just like a lounge. They provided  free Mimosa's for breakfast and free snacks and beer for lunch. It was pretty relaxing compared to all the hustle and bustle just on the other side of their doors. 

The center of attention in the lounge was the App Idol board beautiful drawn by their resident artist. Her drawings were of the many application suggestions that tons of folks presented in Alcatel's App Idol Contest. I happened to be one of the lucky few to win a Bose iPod/iPhone Dock System from the contest. They also gave away a MacBook Pro to another lucky young man.

The crowd it drew was an amazing mix of developers and designers. The Alcatel-Lucent team were amazing hosts. They encouraged everyone to participate and made sure people were enjoying themselves. They were not walking around pitching everyone that walked in the door about their company. They simply let conversations take their natural course. And, of course, I learned a lot more about them as a company and their ALU API platform when it had something to do with my passions, interests and thoughts.

This lounge is great and the App Idol contest was neat to participate in. If they do it again next year, count me in!

]]> Thu, 18 Mar 2010 18:39:25 +0000
<![CDATA[Gary Vaynerchuk Presentation Quick Tip by jrjohnson]]> Thu, 18 Mar 2010 04:57:01 +0000 <![CDATA[ Don't Make Me (er... My Thumbs) Think]]> As my headline suggests, Josh Clark brought the fundamental concepts of Steve Krug to bear on the mobile space. Not only did he show how to make intuitive interfaces for the mind, but given the mobile medium, how to make them fluid and unobtrusive for the fingers.

It was an inspiring talk. Definitely, one of my favorite from SXSW, and I feel sorry for all those suckers who went to the Twitter session.

I could outline all his points here, but see for yourself. Here's a link to his presentation:

]]> Thu, 18 Mar 2010 02:48:45 +0000
<![CDATA[Tapworthy: Designing iPhone Interfaces for Delight and Usability (presentation) Quick Tip by jhimwich]]> Headline: Don't Make Me (er... My Thumbs) Think]]> Thu, 18 Mar 2010 02:36:44 +0000 <![CDATA[Evan Williams Keynote Interview Quick Tip by lyssachttr]]> Wed, 17 Mar 2010 22:25:39 +0000 <![CDATA[SXSW Interactive Opening Party Hosted by frog design Quick Tip by lyssachttr]]> Wed, 17 Mar 2010 22:23:48 +0000 <![CDATA[ Scary at first but turned out to be one of my faves!]]> Biggest Takeaway
Collaboration is key and play is important. Keeping people happy keeps people creative and productive.

Best / Worst Quotes
I just think that it felt a little bit disorganized. Perhaps just passing the bad idea to the person in front (or back of you would have worked best). At first it seemed like "ut oh i have to talk to the person next to me." But, once we eased in, it really turned out to be a creative experience. The point was driven home.

If this were my event....
like I said, I'd just organize the passing out of ideas a little differently. I might've also just put out a couple of tables with paper and markers. The problem was that the materials were handed out when half of the room was full - then the rest showed up and late comers showed up and had to share with those around them. Some never got materials at all.


]]> Wed, 17 Mar 2010 20:42:58 +0000