I slept in a twin bed at an Airbnb, and no one noticed.
Have I got your attention?
With all due respect to the ongoing sharing economy battle (for beds) in this boomtown of the state of Texas, the folks at South by Southwest (SXSW) haven’t been sleeping on the job here in Austin. For the past 27 years, the worlds of innovation, creativity and inspiration have been shared with all of us thanks to the annual festival here in March. Born from the question, "Why don’t we get people from all of the country and the world to listen and distribute our music?" the event’s big question now is, "How can we stream our virtual reality short film into a driverless car where you can get a cocktail made by a robot?"
As I wandered Austin talking, watching and seeking unicorns, a few ideas hit me quicker than a hung-over hipster downing a bag of breakfast tacos. And I’d like to share three of them. For all of you who have realized that you can ask some crazy questions of the Google, my suggestion is to search "SXSW 2016" with the keywords listed below each topic. I’ve also included a "Why Not?" category if you’re looking for a little more color. That way, you can get some other first-hand accounts, as well as some inappropriate images automatically downloaded to your supercomputer.
What’s old is news
Traditional media has changed. The trigger for that isn’t just the fact that people have changed their habits; they’ve changed their behaviors. They want stuff that’s for them when they want it. Companies working to reinvent radio, TV and even newsstands are deciding what and when the science for selling and science for telling need to be applied. All so that old-school habits such as needing to find a way home from the pub can now be matched with new behaviors such as sexting to a Bob Marley jam and a "brought to you by" sponsor.
Keywords: "traditional media," "future of media companies"
Why not? "Mr. Robot Ferris Wheel"
Art & science
Speaking of science, creative people are mad scientists. The idea that to sell stuff you need to trigger the most complex mechanism in the world, the brain, does take a scientist. More companies are seeing it as a system. While the past few years have seen companies dissecting big data to make it small, the goal now is to talk less about the bigness of the data and more about it as a utility, just like you’d use at home. I know some of you want to turn the analysis off like a light switch so it doesn’t destroy the creative process, but data is starting to turn itself off so that it’s easier
Keywords: "art & science," "emotional science"
Why not? "McDonalds Loft," "Gatorade Fuel Lab," "VR"
Good vs. evil
Using technology to force companies to be more human — smart folks have been talking about the idea of the "empathetic company" for the past few years now. Moving beyond where a company may put their trash and into the realm of solving social problems is front and center. And you don’t need to be disruptive; charities have been doing it for decades.
Keywords: "social good," "SxGood Hub"
Why not? "Donald Trump piñatas," "Obama"
And lastly, the twin bed was weird, but to quote Willie Nelson’s new book since he was a performer this year at the Festival, "It’s a Long Story."
Darrell Jursa is Resolution Media's SVP of integration.