5 Easy, Tangible Things You Can Do to Survive SXSW Interactive
We’re not going to tell you to “pace yourself” and “go with the flow”. While that’s terrific advice, you’ll forget it by day 2 of the Interactive conference. So what can you bring/wear/eat/remember to do that will get you through the marathon that is SXSW Interactive?
1. Bring a bottle: Your own water will keep you nice and hydrated from the start-you can refill it throughout the conference by locating one of the many scattered water coolers throughout the Convention Center.
2. Dress strategically- Whenever I say dress strategically, I just mean wear things with pockets. I have a light cargo jacket I hate all year round except during SXSW when it becomes the best item of clothing I own. Its big, sturdy pockets house a flipcam, my iphone, a mini digital camera, my Capital Metro Bus Card, business cards that I later intend on Ever-noting, and chapstick. Seems irrelevant but pockets as storage and easy access are an amazing convenience during SXSW and taking a little extra time in the morning to plan your geek chic look is a thoughtful way to show yourself you care.
3.Evernote your Business Cards-SXSW Interactive is a festival of geeks. Geeks that want to connect. Geeks that want to share resources. Geeks that want to Tweet panel idea collaborations with you for next year’s conference. SXSW is as much a conference inside the convention center rooms as it is outside-networking is one of the conference’s major draws. But gathering up all those business cards will create too much clutter and face it-chances are you’ll probably lose a few of them by the 16th. Check out this handy how-to that will allow you to snap pics of business cards and keep them search-able via the free Evernote app!
4. Breakfast Tacos-This is more a tip for the out-of-towners, but trust us. Start your morning off with breakfast tacos. Whatever your fillings of choice, include potatoes and order one more than you normally would. This is delicious, cheap, essential FUEL and you want to start your mornings at the convention center off right. Panels don’t break for lunch (because that’s how geeks roll) and you never know when you’ll run into your favorite web celeb and eschew lunch for an inspiring chat. Keep the tummy happy with tacos and you win @ SXSW.
5. Nom + Charge multitasking: Charge every piece of gadget you own twice a day. I grab a to-go lunch around 2pm (usually a burrito-a larger version of breakfast seems like the logical thing to do) and bring it back to the convention center, find an outlet and multitask. Nomming while charging lets you take care of two essential survival necessities at once. The second time I charge up is whenever I head to bed. Usually, this is pretty sufficient and takes care of my gadgets’ power for the day but once in while, I might have to work in a 6 or 7pm charge session at one of the myriad SXSW parties. It’s not uncool-everybody’s doing it!
What are your tried-and-true tips for SXSWi survival?