Ok, we are now heading into the busy part of SXSW, that is if there is a slow part at all from the time you get there until you leave days later.
Sunday – (2008/03/09)
Managed to get up and make to see Rob Weychert and Jason Santa Maria do their talk on “Everyone is a Design Critic“. They had a few main point to be made. the first is that a critique should be broken up into three parts. The parts are before, during, and after the presentation of your ideas.
The other main point was the “Top 5 Client Requests”:
- My unqualified friend has a different idea.
- Purple is my favorite color, why don’t you use it?
- We need more stuff above the fold. (People do scroll now.)
- There’s so much empty space, can’t you fit it in?
- Cant’ you make the logo bigger?
One of the most interesting points was when Rob realized that they were being displayed on the two big screens. So while Stan was talking he just started dancing around behind him.
One of the best presentations that I saw was the next one by Derek Featherstone. His talk was titled “Everything I learned about Accessibility I learned from Star Wars“.
Before Derek started his presentation he came on stage wearing all black with a brown hooded cape. While setting up he turned “Mac Saber” on his laptop, which now made it sound like a Star Wars light saber. By using the MacBooks built in gyroscope yo can pick it up and make it sound as if you had a really light saber in your hands. Ok, now on to his talk.
A few keep points are:
- “You think you know everything and others know more”.
- “Storm Troopers are all the same”. Real life things are different.
- “No, matter what you can see on the surface does not matter to what is underneath”. I think what pretty stuff your page has does not matter as long as your code under the pretty is accessible.
- “Living people is what matters not validators or screen readers”.
- “Pass on what we learn to others to channel the FORCE”.
- “You have to believe it can be done”.
- “Do or Do Not there is No try”. – Yoda
- “I don’t believe it, that is why you fail”. – Yoda
The other amazing part of his presentation were the digital Star Wars drawings by Aton Peck.
Went to an internationalization talk by Stephanie Troeth and Stephanie Booth. This was one of those core talks that they added this year. It was interesting and I learned a few things about how to internationalize websites. It was more a discussion between them and the audience of about 25 around one table.
The final big event of Sunday was the “Geeks Love Bowling” event put on by the nclud guys and real hard work of Cindy Li. Cindy and the nclud crew were able to in a few short weeks get enough sponsors to be able to rent out all 52 lanes at the bowling alley and get buses to transport all the people and a bunch of peole that just wanted to watch. On top of all that they had prizes for all the top bowlers for each team and the top three winning teams. The prizes were free copies of the new 2008 Mac Office suite.
The Refresh DC team I was on did not do to badly. I believe we finished in like 14th place we needed only 4 more pins to come in 12th place. Maybe next year we will do better, not that it matters, since we out to have lot of fun and meet new people. We shared a lane with an all woman team from England. I believe most of them had never bowled before. Fun was had by all.
After bowling a lot of people went out and I decided with a few other the Brits and others to go back to the Hapmton Inn and sit in the second floor lounge and talk. it was great time to be able to relax with Cindy, the Matt Harris, John Hicks, Richard Rutter, Anton Peck, and others.
Monday – (2008/03/10)
I attended a few different panels that I normally might not go to see. The first was “Scalability Boot Camp“, were they talked about make sure to monitor your system early and often. That is everything from Disk I/O, memory, and bandwidth.
Another one was the”Design Eye by South By” where they went over how they would re-design the SXSW website to make it better and more usable. What they talked about and showed was really nice, but the build up was to much for what they showed.
Attended the Annual public WASP meeting. Very interesting to see what they are up to and planning on doing in the future.
It was out for the “Great British Booze Off” and the “NXSW” party. I like the Brits party a great deal and had a wonderful time meeting a lot of new people and meeting up with others I had met last year or earlier this year.
Tuesday – (2008/03/11)
I went to a bunch of panels I normally would not have. I first went to the “How to RAWK SXSW and Stay Inspired“. A few key points from this panel was to:
- Go through businees cards on plan.
- No, idea is to silly.
- Read “Cluetrain Manifesto” – cluetrain.com
- Look for other ideas, etc. at aftersxsw.pbwiki.com – Password – POPRAWKS
- John Resig – jQuery – (ejohn.org)
- Sam Stephenson – Prototype – (conio.net)
- Alex Russell – Dojo – (alex.dojotoolkit.org)
- Thomas Fuchs – script.aculo.us – (script.aculo.us/thomas/
- Andrew Dupont – Prototype – (andrewdupont.net)
At another panel a cool thing I saw on the person in the row in front of me was a photo application. After the panel I asked him what it was and he said it was PicLens (Firefox plug-in). The following is the description of PicLens from the plug-in page – instantly transforms your browser into a full-screen 3D experience for viewing images across the web.
There was a bunch more stuff that happened during these six great days in Austin, TX. I hope to get to the full set of notes I took in the next few weeks.
Any further explanations or questions please leave a comment.