AUSTIN, Texas — Many people associate South by Southwest (SXSW) with the technological minds and companies that come to town for the festival. Monday, you could find all types of innovation up for discussion and on display for people to interact with.
Artificial intelligence in our minds?
A lot of panels get going at SXSW early in the day, including "How AI will design the human future" at The Fairmont in Austin. The four panelists were neuroscientist Heather Berlin, artificial intelligence company (SparkCognition) CEO Amir Husain, professor Peter Stone and the Wall Street Journal's Jennifer Strong. They talked about how children today are growing up with devices and technology that none of us did, which is creating different learning techniques for this younger generation, such as being able to multi-task better and earlier in life.
Husain also spoke about creating AI that could potentially be embedded into our brains to create a perfect, photographic memory.
"Imagine a memory that could be augmented and accessed from your brain that didn't have any of those shortcomings, where nothing faded," Husain said.
Changing the way we shop
While there was plenty of discussion Monday, there were also chances to interact with the technology of today and of the future. Micheladas on 2nd Street, Accenture -- a business services company -- decked out the restaurant with some of their most transformative technology. A lot of it revolved around how our shopping experience could soon be changing.
When you went up to the patio on the second floor, you could find most of the shopping-related technology. There was a station where you could look at your phone and virtually try on a pair of sunglasses you might like to buy while also changing the brand or color. You could do the same thing with Kendra Scott earrings as well.
One of the other virtual reality stations let you feel different objects and products that aren't actually there in front of you. If you wanted to see how a table might look in your living room, you could also feel what it would be like if it were there in real life.
Hearing through your sunglasses?
Audio equipment company Bose set up at Half Step on Rainey Street with some of its most innovative products recently put out on the market and some of the concepts in the works.
One of the company's top pieces of equipment includes Bose Frames that are currently available to purchase. These pieces of eyewear can play sound and music into your ear without you actually having any earbuds or headphones on. Mehu Trivedi is the director for Bose Frames and he said last year was the first time Bose went to SXSW. He said this year, they've started to get more involved.
"We're tying to really talk to more developers and creators about leveraging the platform to make even more great experiences that can leverage the products that we're bringing to the market," Trivedi said.
The device also also cancels 99 percent of the sound you're listening to by the time it leaves your ear. Bose also has created an augmented reality with its glasses that allows you to listen to a story in you glasses while giving physical and verbal responses that change the story as you progress.