Wednesday, March 12, 2008

SXSWi 2008 in review

Having opted not to blog on any individual sessions from this year's South by Southwest Interactive Festival (thanks to Dan, Roo, Jo and countless others for doing a far better job than I would have done), I thought I'd afford myself a brief summary post, picking out some personal high (and low) lights.

Getting the negative out of the way first, my overall lowlight would have to be fighting off a cold for most of the five days I've been out here, forcing me home to bed early and depriving me of the full Austin after-hours experience.

My overall highlight would have to be the people I've met, not only familiar faces (great to catch up with Tom, Matt, Paul, Matt, Ben, Yasser, Chris and Chris) but also putting faces to familiar names (Jemima, Roo, Dan, Gavin) and getting to know some brand new names and faces (Jeff from Apple, Deirdre from Chinwag, Rachel from b5media, Jeremy from Penguin, Heitor from the University of Porto and Abi from HeatEatReview, to name but six).

In terms of conference highlights, my votes would be as follows:

Best keynote: Jane McGonigal
Best interview: Henry Jenkins and Steven Johnson
Best panel session: Gaming and User's Geolocation in Web 2.0
Best party: People Powered Party

A full list of the sessions and parties I attended can be viewed on the awesome

And finally, if I had to sum up the whole festival in just nine words they would be: Wi-Fi, Queue, MacBook, Shiner Bock, Twitter, Walking, Ribs, Lacygate.

See you next year!

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