“Oh: they have the internet on computers now.”
Collision, one of the world’s biggest tech conferences, has returned to downtown Toronto; June 26-29, 2023.
Day 1 is in the books. Lots of talks about A.I. Well tech in general but clearly companies and creators are working through the various A.I. issues from security to ethics to identity. Collision is like SXSW Toronto. It’s like a trailer for the future.
For Day 2? There’s some fun (and #PantsWorthy!) things to check out.
Wednesday’s talks range from AI and journalism (“and” journalism or vs journalism?) to Twitch sharing how to design for community to marketing in the metaverse. Behold the future.
All the sports meets innovation talks happen today. From sports branding to talks from former NBA players such as Baron Davis and Shane Battier.
Juju Smith-Schuster represents the NFL. While the CMO of the Golden State Warriors and CTO of MLSE reveal their perspective off the court and in the boardroom.
Wednesday’s sports focus means it’s the day I circled when the Collision 2023 schedule appeared online. We’ve transcended typical on-court metrics. Let’s pop the hood on these dynamic topics and understand how they work.
Thankfully you don’t hafta sit there all day and attempt to absorb all that speaker knowledge.
You can get your 10K steps in by wandering the show floor and connecting with a variety of individuals at the booths. That’s what I’ll share today; some hidden gems on the showroom floor.
I mean…isn’t tech supposed to be fun?
There’s so much food at Collision. Scored this sweet donut from the AWS booth. Come hungry to learn, come hungry to eat.
📷 SAMMY SUGGESTION: THE GOOGLE BOOTH (& AWS)
Why #PantsWorthy? When is Bard coming to Canada? Well while we wait for for Google’s AI chatbot what we do have access to in Canada is Douglas Coupland. Doug is the highlight of the Google booth (which basically is running a functioning Starbucks.)
“Douglas Coupland collaborated with Google researchers to produce a new series of slogans, using machine learning. Together, they tuned a language model on all of Douglas’ written work (>1M words) along with social media posts on topics selected by Douglas, and worked with it to create Slogans for the Class of 2030.”
Yo, that’s fresh. According to one of the slogans: “In The Future We Will All Be The 1%.” An encouraging sentiment.
📷 SAMMY SUGGESTION: SMALL WORLD OF TECH
Why #PantsWorthy? There’s fascinating booths from different countries: Netherlands, Italy, Portugal, many others including local destinations like Montreal, Quebec and Toronto. All sharing their tech status slash innovation gardens peppered with local flavor. I haven’t checked out all those international booths but I’ll continue my worldwide pilgrimage.
A few years back I was fortunate to check out Mexico City. There I got to meet a number of people involved in Mexican startups. I hadn’t realized how robust their tech systems are. Developmers, visions, VCs, comp sci talent and much more. Our media tends to focus primarily on Silicon Valley, but there’s a lot of cool things happening in a lot of cool places.
So this is a fantastic way to go…places. Isn’t that the whole point of a startup? Heh.
📷 SAMMY SUGGESTION: PROJECT ARROW
Why #PantsWorthy? Another classic Canadian Arrow. In the late 50s Canadian engineers crafted the Avro Arrow. The sleek jet was designed for Canada’s Air Force but it never made it to production. Prime Minister John Diefenbaker abruptly halted the development, all the skilled engineering and production staff scattered and that was that.
Today? Check out Project Arrow: the first, original, full-build, zero-emission concept vehicle. This includes a 3D-printed composite chassis. Which is good news I guess…the part can’t be on backorder if you can just “print it.”
It is designed for autonomous driving (yeah!) though not really designed for the public. It’s really a CES 2023 concept vehicle. So not quite the Batmobile but a step forward in the next iteration of cars.
Just outside the Enercare Centre where the conference is happening is a long beautiful line of food trucks. Like I said, come hungry…come curious and you will be rewarded.
Sammy Younan is the affable host of My Summer Lair podcast: think NPR’s Fresh Air meets Kevin Smith: interviews & impressions on Pop Culture.