South by Southwest

SXSW.jpg

The South by Southwest festival is underway and this year it's issues not entertainment taking the main stage.

South by Southwest is an annual set of film, interactive media, music festivals and conferences that take place in Austin Texas. In past years the festival has brought us apps like Twitter in 2007 and FourSquare in 2009. But this year it's not the flashy apps getting everyone's attention its mainstream issues such as the battle between Apple and the FBI, online harassment and robots for the elderly.

President Obama became the first sitting president to open the festival saying he was committed to encryption but that authorities must be able to access data on electronic devices to fight crime and extremist violence.

But all of this doesn't mean there hasn't been time for any fun. Some new tech being tested includes ear buds that can adjust the sound of live music. Sony is showing of a device called the “N” neckband which rests on the neck, plays music, takes pictures and listens to voice commands. Sounds like this party has something for everyone.