WRAL TechWire asked RIoT Executive Director Tom Synder to set the stage for the Internet of Things discussions taking place in coming days during South by Southwest. Synder, who is speaking at the event, wrote this post while en route to the Texas haven of tech and culture. 

There are few topics that dominate today’s news cycle like the technology sector. This week will be no different, with one of the biggest tech conferences kicking off today in Austin, Texas.

South by Southwest (SXSW) draws thousands from across the US and around the world to hear from tech CEOs, celebrities, and the hottest startup founders. Podcasters, bloggers, and media outlets large and small will cover every talk, panel, demonstration, and cocktail party, looking for the biggest scoop, like when Twitter launched from SXSW 12 years ago.

While unquestionably, the Consumer Electronics Show (Las Vegas), Mobile World Congress (Barcelona), and others are larger technology conferences – SXSW has captured a position as more important. Why is this?

Austin, like Raleigh, has done admirably in embracing diversity. “South By,” as it is commonly referred, started as a music festival. As it grew, a film festival was integrated, and people have always traveled to Austin for great food. Technology is really a late comer to the event. But it is the diversity of industries – and the diversity of participants who attend – that makes this event unique.

Continue reading at WRAL Techwire.