Seven SXSW Conference Speakers You Just Can't Miss

Ray Kurzweil, Melinda Gates, and other brilliant minds come to town


Ta-Nehisi Coates

Seven SXSW Conference Speakers You Just Can't Miss

Though SXSW began as a humble music festival in our fair city, arguably the best parts about the weeklong brouhaha now are the brilliant minds who come to town. Though an Interactive pass grants primary access to most of these speakers, any badge will give festivalgoers secondary access to them. 2018's lineup of brains is sure to make the waits in lines worth it.

W. Kamau Bell

Saturday, March 10, 9:30am
Austin Convention Center, Ballroom EFG
United Shades of America host, social commentator, and comedian in conversation with Black-ish creator Kenya Barris about how America speaks about race in the era of Trump, and how comedy and storytelling spark meaningful conversation.

Ta-Nehisi Coates

Saturday, March 10, 2pm
Austin Convention Center, Ballroom D
Known for being deeply introspective, pensive, and bitingly honest, the acclaimed journalist and bestselling author of Between the World and Me speaks with The Atlantic editor-in-chief Jeffrey Goldberg about how experiences have shaped his understanding of American society and himself.


Melinda Gates

Melinda Gates

Sunday, March 11, 2pm
Austin Convention Center, Ballroom D
Philanthropist and technologist joins TaskRabbit CEO Stacy Brown-Philpot and Hearst Magazines CCO Joanna Coles to discuss the future of the American workplace in an ever-changing technological and social landscape. No word if they will examine the effectiveness of Windows 95.


Nonny de la Peña

Nonny de la Peña

Tuesday, March 13, 11am
Austin Convention Center, Room 18ABCD
The "Godmother of Virtual Reality," credited with being one of the founders of the field of immersive journalism, de la Peña strives to invoke an empathetic response in her audience using innovative storytelling technology.

Whurley

Tuesday, March 13, 2pm
Austin Convention Center, Ballroom D
Don't know what quantum computing is? Strangeworks CEO William Hurley discusses how the next step in our technological future shouldn't be dismissed as theory bordering on the realm of science fiction.

Ray Kurzweil

Tuesday, March 13, 3:30pm
Austin Convention Center, Ballroom D
Master of many trades and holder of an ungodly amount of doctorates. Heralded as something of an innovation psychic, futurist Kurzweil now works at Google researching machine intelligence. Hopefully, he'll be giving us a piece of his mind.

Susan Wojcicki

Tuesday, March 13, 5pm
Austin Convention Center Ballroom D
The ways we spend our time entertaining ourselves is ever changing, but Americans still like to park themselves in front of a screen after a long day. YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki joins Wired editor-in-chief Nicholas Thompson for a talk about the future of media entertainment.

Keep up with all our SXSW coverage at austinchronicle.com/sxsw. For scheduling on the go, here's a SXSW Film Pocket Guide, which includes the handy Film Grid. Sign up for our South-by-specific newsletter at austinchronicle.com/newsletters/ for news, reviews, and previews delivered to your inbox every day of the Fest. And for the latest Tweets, follow @ChronSXSW.

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KEYWORDS FOR THIS STORY

SXSW, SXSW Speakers, SXSW Interactive 2018, Susan Wojcicki, Melinda Gates, W. Kamau Bell, Nonny de la Peña, Ray Kurzweil, Whurley

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