South by Southwest

25 Aug 2009

I was in Austin for SXSW earlier this year to discuss Fontdeck with some of the Clearlefties and to socialize with friends. Because I was staying in a hotel room with Jon and Elliot (SXSW typography panelists), I was also hoping to gain some design talent through osmosis. I don't think my cunning plan worked, but I did walk away inspired, and I really enjoyed the positive, creative vibe of the conference.

Next year, I'm hoping to return as a panelist. As SXSW veterans know, part of the selection process involves voting via the PanelPicker, where you can vote for the panels you'd like to see. (Voting is open now and closes Fri, 04 Sep 2009.) I know getting a panel accepted is a long shot, but I want to try. I'd really appreciate you taking a moment to register (if you haven't already), and kindly voting for my panels if they sound interesting. Anyone can vote; you don't have to have been to SXSW before or even be planning to attend this year.

The first panel is entitled Travelog With Maps: When 1000 Photos Aren't Enough:

They say photos are worth a thousand words. Is that enough to describe a trip? We don't think so. Learn how a GPS device, a dash of code, and a bit of creativity combine to tell the story of your travels. We did it in the land of fire and ice, and so can you.

This panel includes my good friend Andrei and is inspired by our trip to Iceland with Helgi, where we spent a few hours every evening importing and interpreting GPS logs, geotagging and uploading photos, writing code, and aggregating various other assets, like videos and tweets. We wanted to create a travelog that our friends and family could use to follow along with our trip, and to tell our story to those who may be considering a similar trip of their own. In this panel, we want to share what we learned along the way and inspire others to share their own travel stories without having to overcome as many obstacles.

The other panel is entitled Social Web Security: From Psychology to Programming:

The user-generated, interconnected Social Web is ripe for the plucking by criminals and other malicious users. We'll demonstrate how psychology and user experience have as much to do with security as coding and sysadmin skills, and how to apply all of them to protect your users.

This panel includes Ed, Simon, and Alex, and explores the security implications of emerging trends in social apps as well as some innovative, nontraditional techniques you can use to help keep people and their data safe. This panel is one part web application security, one part design, and one part psychology. If you like my talk on security-centered design, I think you'll like this panel. I've been talking to Ed about this for quite some time, and we're really excited about it.

I appreciate you taking the time to vote. If you also want to be kind enough to share this on Twitter or elsewhere, I've created some short links you can use:

Here's hoping I see you in Austin. :-)