Peter Kafka

Recent Posts by Peter Kafka

What Happened at South By Southwest? A Google Guy Explains.

kevin-marksConfession: A whole lot of what happens at South By Southwest is above and beyond the capacity of your humble correspondent to understand or explain.

Luckily, we have a professional willing to interpret the goings-on, free of charge. Meet Kevin Marks, whose business card describes him as “developer advocate” at Google (GOOG).

Marks, who has previously put in time at Apple (AAPL) and Technorati as an engineer, now has a job that seems to involve being an, um, advocate on behalf of his employer, specifically for its OpenSocial program. I think of OpenSocial as the “everyone but Facebook” social-network alliance, and Marks didn’t disabuse of me that notion in our chat on Sunday.

But he did add some layers of nuance, and he was game when I asked him to tell me what the theme of the conference has been so far. In a word: Twitter.

The longer version is here:


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I think the NSA has a job to do and we need the NSA. But as (physicist) Robert Oppenheimer said, “When you see something that is technically sweet, you go ahead and do it and argue about what to do about it only after you’ve had your technical success. That is the way it was with the atomic bomb.”

— Phil Zimmerman, PGP inventor and Silent Circle co-founder, in an interview with Om Malik