The Caligater a.k.a. SXSWi n00b!

I’m boarding a plane this morning for Austin, Texas. It’s my first time to Texas and my first big social web/tech/geeky conference, SXSW Interactive.

Two of my SXSWi roommates, Elaine Ellis and Ginger Pelz, each asked me the same question last week: “Do you have specific goals for the conference?”

Uhmmm…huh?

Yeah. I didn’t really have an answer. *hangs head in shame*

In the last few days, though, I’ve made some digital and literal space in my life. This space hints at an answer to the question Ginger and Elaine asked me.

  • I plowed through my email inbox (People. There are four items in my inbox right now. *pats self on back*)
  • I winnowed down my RSS feeder
  • I closed Firefox last night and chose not to “save open tabs”
  • I cleaned up Facebook personal info, photos and fan pages
  • I pruned who I’m following on Twitter and blocked a bunch of spambots
  • I moved and deleted a gaggle of files from my precious little MacBook Air
  • I deleted apps on my iPhone
  • I made a to-do list for projects for the next two months

Essentially, I’ve attempted to minimize my streams of information.

I want to create space & fertile ground for fresh ideas and new connections.

My SXSWi goal? Meet people. Begin meaningful relationships.

Who knows…I could encounter: my next bit of work, resources for writing my thesis, new friendships or innovative projects to collaborate on. Finding any one of these would be amazing. I’m already squeeeee-ing about getting to meet—in person—many of the people I’ve formed friendships with on the social web. So. Very. Excited.

So, as I’ve prepared for SXSWi, I’ve made space. I made sure all of my day-to-day stuff was taken care of; I’ve made a rough and I’m-sure-it-will-change-every-ten-minutes-anyway-list of panels and parties I want to attend; and most importantly, I’ve made space for new ideas and new people.

Coda:

My SXSWi goal, subpart 1: Hand out every single one of my swanky new Moo business cards. I don’t want ANY of these in my possession when I get home. :)

  • I did the music last year, but I caught some of the tail end of the interactive stuff. I think I’d like to try it out one of these years.

    • I’d love to stay for the music — but hopefully I’ll get a good dose of live music anyway. :) Next year, if I can swing it, I’ll be staying for the whole thing!

  • I did the music last year, but I caught some of the tail end of the interactive stuff. I think I’d like to try it out one of these years.

    • I’d love to stay for the music — but hopefully I’ll get a good dose of live music anyway. :) Next year, if I can swing it, I’ll be staying for the whole thing!

  • A gaggle? LOL you’re awesome. Have fun!

    • Bwah! I’m glad somebody caught that. Say it out loud. GAGGLE. *snicker*

  • A gaggle? LOL you’re awesome. Have fun!

    • Bwah! I’m glad somebody caught that. Say it out loud. GAGGLE. *snicker*

  • LOVE the business cards!! Have so much fun at SxSW and hug people for me :)

    • THANKS, Ashley! Now I’m cool like you because I have Moo cards. ;)

  • LOVE the business cards!! Have so much fun at SxSW and hug people for me :)

    • THANKS, Ashley! Now I’m cool like you because I have Moo cards. ;)

  • Have a blast – super jealous I’m not going but it’s going to be such a great experience. I want to hear all about it and make sure you tell everyone I said hello.

    P.S. Sweet bizz cards! Just got mine in from MOO as well!

    • I’ll do that, Matt. :) Want me to also tackle-hug and *squee* on your behalf? Errr….. Yeah. I SO wish you were here, but you have much more exciting things on your horizon.

      I wanna see your biz cards! In fact, I WANT one.

      • More exciting things than meeting you and a slew of other amazing folks…not possible. I’m with you in spirit – and upon your return we’ll jump on Skype and reminisce (preferably after you’ve had a cup of coffee :))

  • Have a blast – super jealous I’m not going but it’s going to be such a great experience. I want to hear all about it and make sure you tell everyone I said hello.

    P.S. Sweet bizz cards! Just got mine in from MOO as well!

    • I’ll do that, Matt. :) Want me to also tackle-hug and *squee* on your behalf? Errr….. Yeah. I SO wish you were here, but you have much more exciting things on your horizon.

      I wanna see your biz cards! In fact, I WANT one.

      • More exciting things than meeting you and a slew of other amazing folks…not possible. I’m with you in spirit – and upon your return we’ll jump on Skype and reminisce (preferably after you’ve had a cup of coffee :))

  • I would like one of your business cards when you get home. So, keep one. Please. Thanks.

  • I would like one of your business cards when you get home. So, keep one. Please. Thanks.

    • For you? Got it.

  • My typical goals at “important” events: I just try to be present… be open to the people who I naturally meet (rather than trying too hard to meet specific “important” people and clamor around them… because those people are too busy to care about me anyway)…

    and not let peer pressure fill me too full alcohol or junk food to be in good mental and physical form for the experience. :)

    • ALL of that is excellent advice.

      I’ve substituted the junk food with power bars. Think that’ll be good enough? ;)

      Thanks for sharing, Brett! :)

  • My typical goals at “important” events: I just try to be present… be open to the people who I naturally meet (rather than trying too hard to meet specific “important” people and clamor around them… because those people are too busy to care about me anyway)…

    and not let peer pressure fill me too full alcohol or junk food to be in good mental and physical form for the experience. :)

    • ALL of that is excellent advice.

      I’ve substituted the junk food with power bars. Think that’ll be good enough? ;)

      Thanks for sharing, Brett! :)

  • Have fun down there. Rick and I are coming in on Tuesday for music. Its a good time.

  • Have fun down there. Rick and I are coming in on Tuesday for music. Its a good time.

  • All I can say is that I want to be like Caligater when I grow up :) Let’s blow out these last few days, shall we?

  • All I can say is that I want to be like Caligater when I grow up :) Let’s blow out these last few days, shall we?

  • Love the business cards. I really hope you blog about this afterward, I will be so interested to hear how it goes. Exciting!

  • We had fun, did we not?!

  • Let's hop on a plane again and go. Somewhere.

  • Thank you very much for stopping by this space, Holly!

    I WILL be reflecting on SXSW…even if it is three weeks later (a cardinal sin in blogging, right?!). ;-)

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