Dispatches from SxSW, Part 1: Intro and Doing Austin Like a Local

by Joey deVilla on March 6, 2012

Intro: My 3rd Trip to SxSW

Joey deVilla plays accordion at the "How to Rawk SxSW" panel as Rannie Turingan looks on

Hello, Austin! I made a splash at my first SxSW (2008) by playing accordion at the “How to Rawk SxSW” session.

Accordion Guy's Dispatches from SxSW InteractiveOnce again, I’m going to Austin, Texas to attend the South by Southwest conference, the annual get-together of techies and creatives in the music, film and interactive industries. I’ve gone twice before:

  • In 2008, as a newly-minted employee (project manager) of b5media. In fact, it may have been my best first day on the job ever, flying to Austin and meeting up with my new coworkers at the ranch that b5 had rented.
  • In 2011, as a ready-to-leave employee of Microsoft and a ready-to-start future employee of Shopify. I went to help out with the launch of Internet Explorer 9 and talk about Windows Phone. I also met up with the folks from Shopify, signed an employment contract with them and filed my resignation from the country music-themed bar at the Austin airport. I consider it to be my best “Sign me up / I quit” day ever.

This year, I return as Shopify’s Platform Evangelist and also as a speaker! I’ll be part of the BarCamp Tour Panel in the session 5 Brands Travel the US Inspiring Entrepreneurship. Along with my friends from Batchbook, Grashopper, MailChimp and Wufoo, I’ll be talking about our very active participation in and sponsorship of BarCamp events across the United States. My session will be on Sunday, March 11th at the hangover-friendly time slot of 3:30 – 4:30p.m. in the Omni Downtown Hotel’s Lone Star room.

I’ll be filing dispatches about SxSW from all over the place: on my way there, while in Austin, and even when I high-tail it out of there and head to Tampa to spend some time with the New Special Friend. Keep an eye on these blog entries – I’m sure they’ll be pretty interesting!

Doing SxSW Like a Local

Do It Like a Local is a new video of SxSW survival tips and recommendations created by locals – the founders of the creative agency Flow and Bobby Johns, the general manager of Hotel San Jose — who’ve done the conference and know the ins and outs of Austin. The suggestions within are worth the seven minutes and seven seconds to watch this video!

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