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The VR Takeover of the SXSW PanelPicker

The Forrest Four-Cast: August 19, 2016

The deadline for 2017 SXSW PanelPicker voting is the end of the day on Friday, September 2. This means that you have two more weeks to browse, comment and cast your ballot regarding the best speaking ideas for March 2017 in Austin.

You’ve also got two more weeks to analyze what these PanelPicker entries say about current trends in the many industries that we cover at SXSW. Actually, you should be able to browse these entries after the Friday, September 2 voting deadline — so, the urgency on this trend-finding activity is not quite as pressing.

How does this trend-finding activity work? Use the search function within the SXSW PanelPicker to discover how much traction certain phrases, concepts and key words have received via this year’s interface. As an example, the search function reveals that “virtual reality” is a very popular topic this time around — a total of 339 proposals refer to this new technology. That is a significant jump from the 2016 PanelPicker interface (when the term was used only about 100 times). Also intriguing is the spike in proposals using the word “chatbots.” For the 2017 interface, this word is used 27 times. For 2016, there were no such references. But don’t limit yourself to these two key words — play around with the search function to gain other insights on what is hot in the SXSW community (and what is not).

Speaking of community, thanks much to the 5000+ digital creatives from across the United States and around the world who contributed forward-thinking speaking proposals to this year’s SXSW PanelPicker.

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Celebrating creativity at SXSW. Also, reading reading reading, the Boston Red Sox, good food, exercise when possible and sleep sleep sleep.

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