back in miami…

[Miami Beach- the view from the condo.]
Arrived back in Miami last night after a very heady 3 days at SXSW in Austin, Texas. Here’s some thoughts on the event, in no particular order:
1. It’s the first time I’d been back in Austin since 1999. For those of you who don’t know, I attended Univeristy of Texas there in the 1980′s, so I know the town well. It was a lot nicer than I remember it… I think that has more to do with me changing, than it changing etc.
2. Back in college I used to draw cartoons for The Austin Chronicle. This cartoon here, which this website was named after, appeared there in 1987.
3. Two days ago I had a lovely lunch with Robert Scoble and a couple of other friends. Ariel Waldman, one of my favorite bloggers at the moment was also with us, and took some photos.
4. I have to say, the panel I was on went better than I expected. It was the first time I met the other people on it- Dave, Gabe and Kathy, in the flesh. Dave has already written a nice synopsis here.
5. Other synopsis’s of the panel here, here and here.
6. There were a lot of great things said by everybody on the panel, but the thing I took away the most was Kathy Sierra’s tip on the importance of “gratitude” towards one’s audience. It’s so easy to take one’s audience for granted etc. Never a good idea etc.
7. I was very touched that both Tara and Chris came along to the panel, and asked questions at the end. Thanks, Guys…
8. It was seriously cool to hang out and drink cocktails with John T. Unger and Tony Pierce, among two of my favorite bloggers.
9. Funny story, as told by NPR’s Andy Carvin:

So Chuck Olsen and I had just finished shooting our interview with Dan Rather and we were having a drink at the Omni Hotel in Austin, uploading the footage to his laptop. Then a scruffy guy with an odd American-Scottish accent came over to us and send he was a blogger attending the “S-X-S-W” conference. We weren’t sure what to make of him but he was nice enough. Then just as he was getting ready to leave, Chuck noticed he was wearing Stormhoek Winery shirt drawn by Hugh Macleod of Gaping Void fame.
“Are you a fan of Gaping Void?” Chuck asked.
“I am Gaping Void,” the scruffy Scotsman replied. “I’m Hugh Macleod.”

10. Andy Carvin’s video interview of me is here.
10. Tony Pierce interviewed me here for LAist.
11. The conference was HUGE. Apparently it’s the largest interactive conference of its kind anywhere. I can’t wait till next year.

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Hugh MacLeod is a genius.  Genius.

Seth Godin
Best Selling Author

His work acknowledges the absurdity of workaday life, while also encouraging employees to respond with passion, creativity, and non-conformity...   MacLeod’s work is undeniably an improvement over the office schlock of yore. At its best, it’s more honest, and more cognizant of the entrepreneurial psyche, while still retaining some idealism.

The New Republic
Lydia Depillis

Last year my State of the College address was 76 slides loaded with data. This year it was 14 cartoons that were substantially more memorable.

Len Schlesinger
Former President, Babson College

"There are only two daily newsletters that I look forward to opening and reading every time they show up to my inbox: Seth Godin's and gapingvoid."

Tony Hsieh
CEO, Zappos

In moments of indecision I glance at the wall [to Hugh's work] for guidance.

Brian Clark
  • Seth Godin
  • The New Republic
  • Len Schlesinger
  • Tony Hsieh
  • Brian Clark