Editor's Note: Lynn’s SXSW report yesterday came in on Texas time, so we’re running it today.
The interactive folks are beginning to join the long lines at the Austin airport today, while the music portion of the festival starts heating up. (And speaking of heat, sunny and in the 70s in Austin today!) The overall consensus from the show is that unlike previous years, there was no new big thing announced. What got the most buzz? 3-D printing perhaps, and Leap Motion, a technology that enables you to interact with a screen that reacts to movement, and no touch is necessary.
Also unlike some previous shows, it was said, everything was well organized and the sessions were well curated. As a first-timer, I have no basis for comparison, but I certainly found lots of thoughtful and interesting content.
I found myself drawn to some of the many sessions on creativity. I trekked all the way to the Hyatt to hear Gordon Walton and Richard Vogel talk about “Creative Clusters: Fostering Creative Environments.” Unfortunately, they got sidetracked and instead of giving their prepared presentation, wound up answering questions from the audience, so I learned more about how to keep the geeks in town and less about how to foster creativity among my colleagues and my readers. (I did hear about the “Keep Austin Weird” campaign, however, and saw the tee shirts in the airport. Didn’t buy one.) He did mention Richard Florida’s book "The Rise of the Creative Class" so I’ll check that out.
In another much more useful creativity session, Von Glitschka, who runs a multi-disciplinary design firm in the Southwest, talked about the value of drawing as part of the creative process. It’s an appealing idea, even for those of us with artistic skills that are slight or non-existent, and it’s backed up by some compelling data.