Last year I made it to my first sxsw conference and it was so much fun that I knew I had to do it again. This year we had the luck to get the Hilton right across the street from the convention center, which means were are right in the thick of all the goings on. Last year was mostly about panels, learning and meeting a handful of people. This year was all about meeting people. The panels were decent, but didn’t seem quite as good as last year and it seems like all the good panels were spread out so far apart that by the time you got to the one you wanted to attend it was standing room only. I’m sure it doesn’t help that this even continues to grow by leaps and bounds every year.
The high point for me this year was finally meeting old friends in person: Patrick, Brandon, and Stephan. It was a lot of fun hanging out with these guys and of course Steve. I appreciate Brandon making sure I got back to the hotel after the web awards after party. Lets just say we had too much fun that night.
I also had fun hanging out with the b5 crew. Some of which I’ve known for a while, others are new friends. It was just great to see them in person: Jeremy, CJ, Darcie, Mark, Aaron, Chad, Laura, and anyone else I might have missed. I think every other person I met was from b5!
It was also very cool finally meeting Darren. The beer bus was loads of fun and a great way to get people talking. I’ve got some video that I’ll post later that Ryan from Chitika might not want me to post ;) I think Darren got some pics as well. Chitika did a great job getting this together and providing great snacks, booze and fun.
By and large this was the most fun I’ve had in a good while. I’m already looking forward to next year and thinking about hitting up at least 3-4 conferences a year. It’s a great way to connect with friends, make new contacts and get inspired.
And to all the “internet famous” people that I just randomly went up to and said hello: Rober Scoble, Leah Culver, Evan Williams and so many others, thanks for being cool. Everyone was totally cool, down to earth and very nice. That’s what rawks about sxsw.
There were a ton of people that I met and It was fun meeting everyone. I hope to see as many of you as I can again next year and at other conferences.