Tuesday, March 16, 2010

SxSW 2010 - Day 5

Panels

This was the last day my brother was in town, he headed for the airport after the Ek talk. I'm certain that he enjoyed himself, and I believe he plans on returning next year.

Prototyping Web Apps - Nobody Loves a Wireframe

This panel was basically an argument for using a RAD (Rapid Application Development) approach for standard website design. As far as I could tell, some of the Software Engineering practices from the late 90's are now bleeding out into other disciplines. Nothing surprising here, really.

Music Licensing for Emerging Media: Apps, Widgets, Viral Videos

Honestly, I'm not sure whether I attended this panel or not. If I did, I was diddling with my iPhone the entire time.

Music 2010: Playlists, Networks, Radio & Numbers You Need

This panel, unlike the previous one, featured music PR and marketing guru, Ariel Hyatt. The information was very valuable, and the panel was timely and good prep for the AMF party later in the evening.

The basic message was that if you want to survive in today's Music Biz, you better know how to leverage Web 2.0.

Daniel Ek Keynote Interview

Although my brother and I went to lunch, we were able to catch the last 20-30 minutes of this talk. Ek is the founder of Spotify, an amazing online music service in the UK. The best description I can give for Spotify is that it's what the original Napster should have become.

This was all a bit of a cocktease, however. Anyone from the US who sees a demo of Spotify would most likely want to sign up for the service. They would then discover that they can't, because of licensing and royalty issues peculiar to the US. Ugh!

Devo, the Internet and You

The spud-boys from Akron, Mark Mothersbaugh and Gerry Casale gave a talk as part of SxSWi, rather than SxSWm. As far as I could tell, they did not play this year, even though I heard that Josh Freese was in town playing.

For Devo fans this panel was an extension of the type of humor or gags, typical for the band. I found it mildly funny, but I'm not sure everyone present agreed with me. I won't ruin it other than to say the you should go over to their website and watch the focus group video, if you would like to see what they were up to.

My only disappointment is that I would have loved to have applied for the job of COO of Devo, Inc. Damn you Greg Scholl!

Mark Mothersbaugh
Gerry Casale
Mark Mothersbaugh and Gerry Casale

Parties

AMF Tour Smart Party with Martin Atkins, Charlie Cheney, and Ariel Hyatt

Being a proud Austin Music Foundation (AMF) member, I attended their party at Momo's on Tuesday night. In addition to free food, and music by the Chinese band, AV Akubo, AMF hosted several guest speakers.

Charlie Cheney was first and he discussed his website, which is a set of web based tools for managing touring bands. Ariel Hyatt was next and discussed PR and had copies of her book for sale. Both of these talks were well done.

The star of the night however, was the always entertaining, Mr DIY himself, Martin Atkins. He gave an abbreviated and compressed version of his normal talk. This guy is the bomb, and I'm seriously thinking about going to one of his Tour:Smart sessions one of these days.

After speaking, Martin and Austin based act, Chant, jammed on dueling drum kits to close the party.
AV Akubo
AV Akubo at Momos

Films

Les Signes Vitaux/Vital Signs

I managed to catch one film after leaving the Momo's party. Vital Signs is a French Canadian film taking place in Quebec. The film was in French with English subtitles.

The story follows a volunteer/nurse as she works with multiple patients, under hospice care. I won't give away too much of the story, but the main character has challenges of her own, and eventually is asked to leave.

I liked this movie because it fearlessly addressed the subject of death and terminal illness, coaxing the viewer into a state of poignant introspection. I was forced to revisit my own personal experience several years ago, with the loss of my last grandparent.

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