17tn March 2009
Finally finished my last post on SXSW! took a while (and I kinda tailed off on the later days), but I'm glad I followed through with making notes and writing them up to help solidify thoughts in my mind, if nothing else... Day Five...
Again, it was as if the quality of talks to attend had decreased as the days went on. However we stuck it out for the final day and visited a few talks that weren't necessarily directly related to us but could provide insight or inspiration.
This was a very media/journalism focused talk. Essentially discussing the issues surrounding the vast amount of content out there and how providers are now competing for users time across such a wide space. There was reference to how journalists often link to each other across competitor lines as well as how competitors can work together to make their own lives easier. For example by standardising technical aspects (such as embedding ads in videos on web services), allowing easier entry to client markets.
As if I didn't feel geeky enough being at an interactive conference, I decided to attend a talk about Comic Books...
It's interesting, as they face, very explicitly, the problems of people emulating print on the web. The idea of comic books on the web can be viewed as almost exactly this. It's not surprising then that a lot of the solutions include RIA based page flicking or simple single page images with click to next. However there were some interesting takes on other ways online graphic novels could be done.
My first and only taste of a 'core conversation' whereby the speakers provide an initial introduction and then open up the floor for debate and act as moderators.
There are obvious questions that need to be addressed. Should providers (such as flickr) give over account details to spouses of the recently deceased? or just delete accounts as many do now. In my view you should take care of backing up and archiving your own information. Companies don't last forever and if it is important enough for you to want to pass down through generations you should do so yourself. Especially as there may even be issues in proving ownership of online accounts (they aren't tied to bank accounts or government IDs when being created) and there are ongoing storage/maintenance cost to providers. Which, even though it is getting cheaper, can't go on into infinity.
I didn't make notes as this was an interactive discussion but it was definitely worth attending to allow exploration of ideas and thoughts within a group in a very open way (unlike the panels and talks).
A long night out ended in breakfast at the IHOP... a seemingly traditional affair 'hosted' by Dustin Diaz before a long walk back to the hotel.
Overall SxSW was a brilliant experience. The talks and panels were plentiful and thought provoking but further than that being surrounded by likeminded people and getting to meet such a variety within the trade was invaluable.
Making games over a weekend... competitively... and we chose a dead technology... why the hell not!
Hack Days are awesome. How could they not be? you get to make stuff with like minded people with no bosses, no client deadlines, no point but the love of it.
It's been a while since I posted. I'd like to say that's because a lot's been going on. In reality I got lazy and now I just happen to have something to write about that can make it sound like a lot has been going on.
My first smashing coding article is now available! It's main aim is to convince people that .NET isn't all bad.
It's not often I write opinion pieces but the whole 'learn to code' thing seems to have been building since the beginning of the year. It's time to add my voice to the squabble.