RALEIGH – An executive from EDJX, a Raleigh-based edge-computing company, will speak at South by Southwest (SXSW) on Friday, March 18, even as the region’s annual presence at the Austin-based tech and creative conference is smaller than in years past.
“EDJX will be highlighting the incredible innovation coming out of Raleigh and the ecosystem of IoT developers that are key to building an automated future,” said Roman in an interview with WRAL TechWire.
SXSW is known for its PanelPicker® process—the online tool that speakers have to use to pitch their sessions. The PanelPicker® then displays potential sessions to the community, and the community votes. Sessions are selected based on a combination of votes from the public, the SXSW Advisory Board, and SXSW staff.
Roman said that EDJX worked with Austin-based business partner Autonomy Institute in designing and securing a spot at this year’s conference. Jeffrey DeCoux, Chairman at Autonomy Institute, is also speaking on the panel, along with two other speakers.
RIoT connections to SXSW
In addition to being Raleigh-based, EDJX is also a member of RIoT, the economic development group focused on Internet of Things companies and technology that is headquartered in Raleigh.
Multiple organizations connected with RIoT are participating at SXSW this year.
RIoT collaborator, Digi.City, was featured in a SXSW workshop, “Putting Open Data to Work – at Scale,” on Monday. Digi.City founder Chelsea Collier hosted with three other speakers and participated in other SXSW adjacent events.
“The main theme of this year’s smart city conversation centered on trust, data-informed decision making, and community engagement,” said Collier.
Digi.City is a forum about smart city trends and connected communities based in Austin, Texas.
Good learning experience
RIoT speaker alumni, Roselle Safran, represented at this year’s SXSW Pitch Competition. Safran is the CEO & Founder of KeyCaliber, a startup that offers technology for cybersecurity, IT, and risk teams to automatically and continuously identify their critical app assets and applications. Safran is based in Washington, DC.
She delivered her pitch on Sunday, one of five pitches in the Enterprise and Smart Data category. This year, 45 different technology companies from nine categories pitched to a live audience and judge panel, with the panel leading the Q&A portion of each pitch. A winner was selected from each of the nine categories.
“On stage, with two or three-hundred people seeing… it was just a crazy experience all around,” said Safran. “We did not end up winning, but it was a good learning experience.”
SingleStore, a member of the RIoT network with a Raleigh office, is also represented at SXSW. SingleStore’s Head of Community, Wesley Faulkner, is attending.
Faulkner, who is based in Wisconsin, is working directly with the Raleigh team to help create a community-events space within their downtown space. SingleStore opened its Raleigh office in the Warehouse District last summer.
“It’s important for me to be here,” said Faulkner. “The thought leaders for thought leaders are here.” He has attended each SXSW event in the last decade and serves on the conference’s Interactive Advisory Board.
SXSW’s return to in-person
This year’s conference is the first time SXSW will be back in person. SXSW was hosted virtually in 2021, and the majority of the event was canceled in 2020.
“It’s definitely about one-third the size of 2019,” Faulkner said. “But it’s still as South By as South By has ever been.”
WCED, City of Raleigh, won’t attend this year
From 2012 to 2019, the City of Raleigh and Wake County Economic Development partnered, often with many other Triangle-area organizations and companies, to host a booth at the SXSW Expo. They were slated to attend again in 2020, until the conference was canceled by the City of Austin due to COVID-19.
This year, they are not attending. Both organizations declined to comment for this story.