To be honest I am not yet on the Bus, it’s just a matter of time now. In 6 hours I will be seating on THE bus, THE StartupBus departing from San Francisco to go to Austin for SXSWi. I think I have not realized yet that I will part of this crazy adventure.
For those who have not heard of StartupBus and SXSWi before let me try to explain.
Helds in Austin Texas, SXSW is a global festival. SXSW stands for South by SouthWest and the little i is for interactive. It started in 1987 as a music festival and then they add music and more recently an interactive track for emerging new technology stuff. It happens every year in Austin and it is always bigger and bigger in terms of number of attendees and performances :)
From a tech point of view it is the place to be if you are part of this world. During 4 days, all the most important guys on earth that are building the Web/App/Mobile world will be there. Either by being speaking in one of the many panels of the official track or by throwing other events in the city.
It is the place to go for grown startups who want to promote their product and new features but for sure it is really the place to be for new startup that need traction and press.
I think that all the web entrepreneurs in the world have a “SXSW Launch plan” in their mind. There is a lot of competitions to get the attention of the early-adopters techie attendees, and only few happy ending stories. Examples ? in 2007 Twitter get a lot of early traction event if they did not launch there, Foursquare launched a SXSWi in 2009 or FoodSpotting in 2010.
This year everybody will be looking around for the next big thing. And for short period the most popular pickup line will be “I was using blabla before it was cool at SXSW”. Early adopters have a though life ;)
I planned to install at least a dozen of new apps on my ipad, and sign up to a bunch of other websites. I heard so many thing about this festival, I am really excited about it. For a wannabe entrepreneur its all the fairy that I kid could have in Disneyland.
And to add more fun and WOWness to this adventure I will be joining the Silicon Valley StartupBus.
The idea of the StartupBus started with a friend joke between Australian guys : roadtrip to SF with friend with the challenge of building a startup in the same time. The first StartupBus trip went to SF to Austin in 2010 on a bus with wifi. At Austin six projects were pitched to local investors. In 2011 Chicago, Clevevand, NYC and Miami joined the movement. For 2012 11 buses will travel across US and Mexico to get to Austin with entrepreneurs on board.
Or should I say Buspreneurs :) Buspreneurs are a mix of business guys and coders who have cool ideas about ways to make the world better.
They all have 3-4 days to make those ideas real project and viable businesses. When buses arrive in Austin it is time to meet other Buspreneurs, the next two days will be semi-finals and finals between all the buses. I just know the basic elevator pitch about the StartupBus, the rest will be the experience itself and I will find about it pretty soon :)
As a hacker and a Hackathon addict I am really excited. It’s all about building a real business and not only a hack to have fun with a cool API.
I am sure I will learn a lot of stuff from the people that I will meet during this trip.
Let’s get started ! Few hours away to a big step to the unknown ;)
PS: get ready to get spammed on your Twitter Timeline with #sxsw if you are not there tweet with #notatsxsw ;)
PSS: check http://startupbus.com as often as you can ;)