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10 Key Themes from SxSW 2014


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Luminary Labs provides key themes from SxSW 2014.

Published in: Technology, Internet
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10 Key Themes from SxSW 2014

  2. SXSW: 10 KEY THEMES 1. Wearables, But Not Really About Health 2. Healthcare Heats Up 3. Developing for the Internet of Things 4. Startups are Officially Priced Out 5. From the Big Brands: The Future! 6. 3D Printed Everything 7. The Personalization of Security 8. Lines 9. Science is Cool 10. Design Affirms its Seat at the Table
  3. Wearables, But Not Really About Health 01
  4. Lots of wearables. Lots of tacos. Lots of wearable tacos. Ok, so there were no wearable tacos. As Adweek wrote, "wearables are the new social” and the 2014 SXSW was no exception. And while health applications were the most frequently touted, attendees gravitated more towards this harbinger of the singularity than they did on the potential to deliver health outcomes.
  5. Healthcare Heats Up 02
  6. r Healthcare Takes Mainstage Health, once siloed, entered the mainstream conversation. Anne Wojicki spoke about a new paradigm for healthcare, Shaq envisions a wearable that reads for insulin levels, and Marc Cuban advised young graduates to look to careers in personalized medicine.
  7. Developing for the Internet of Things 03
  8. What’s new in digital is no longer about the Web. With the rise of wearables comes a heightened awareness that digital extends far beyond the Web. What was once concept is now becoming reality, and the reality of that reality, such as issues concerning privacy and security, were widely discussed.
  9. Startups are Officially Priced Out 04
  10. Start-ups can no longer afford lodging, and agencies are taking their place. We met more ad people than ever, and not a single interesting startup. With the big brands spending more money than ever, all major events were sponsored by known companies.
  11. From the Big Brands: The Future! 05
  12. r Everyone's (trying to be) in the future. Major brands, from Oreo to Miller Light to IBM are leveraging social media science to know what is going to happen...before you do. The concepts of "the future" and "trending" are less about certainty and more about how their brands are engaging with social media science to divine what is next. Note that where social media science was applied to the brand itself (what are people saying about us), today it's about the brand having the pulse on society as a whole.
  13. 3D Printed Everything 06
  14. 3D printing is no longer for geeks. From wedding cakes to designer sugar cubes, 3D printing is going mainstream. In addition to a strong presence by Shapeways, Deloitte showed off a Maker Van, partnering with the Sugar Lab to offer 3D printed goodies. Oreo took “what’s hot” to a whole new level, delivering 3D printed cookies based on twitter trends.
  15. The Personalization of Security 07
  16. Everyone is talking about privacy and security. Snowden’s video presence highlighted a strong undercurrent around security of information, and one's personal information. Rather than encouraging people to stop using the Internet, Snowden advised that everyone should encrypt their data.
  17. Lines 08
  18. In the past, parties ruled. In 2014, it was about content, with the longest lines we’d ever seen to hear from 23 and me, Snowden, and other keynote speakers.
  19. Science is Cool 09
  20. r Scientists were the new celebs this year. Thousands packed into the convention center to Neil Degrasse Tyson talk about our place in the universe, and Adam Savage of Mythbusters makes the case that “science is for everybody”.
  21. Design Affirms its Seat at the Table 10
  22. Last year everyone was talking about the “Chief Experience Officer”. This year the focus was on the “Design Executive Officer”. In a related panel, attendees largely felt that their organizations aren’t equipped to deal with the current fast pace of change, and are looking to leadership for a new approach to business challenges.