They are the gamer's mecca, and a techie's pilgramage. The biggest and best tech conventions of the year gather together thousands of people to talk everything electronic. But the more popular events like E3 overshadow some of the other less known events that are just as fun and interactive. Here are the top five techie conventions that you need to go to this year:
Originally gaining steam with their music festival that takes place in Austin every year, SXSW (South By South West) has expanded their repertoire to include film and also an annual tech convention called "interactive". This year, the interactive convention will take place March 7-11 and will include keynote speakers like writer Austin Kleon and for all you cosmo-freaks out there, Dr. Neil DeGrasse Tyson (SWOON!) will be speaking, as well. You can view the daily schedule and other events on their website. Watch the recap above for last year's SXSW Interactive Festival.
Taking place in numerous cities throughout the year, TechWeek travels to the technology hubs of the country and brings together local tech entrepreneurs and innovators to discuss their latest improvements in the field. What started as a tiny gathering by Chicago University's tech students, the convention ahs expanded exponentially to include a yearly tour. This year, there will be five conferences held in Miami (dates TBD), Detroit (May 19-25), Chicago (June 23-29), New York (Sept. 29-Oct. 5) and Los Angeles (dates TBD). Some of the past keynote speakers have been Cameron K. Rasouli of CoLoft and Adam Leipzig of Entertainment Media Partners. Watch the 2013 Chicago Tech Week recap above.
The big kahuna of all things tech is the yearly E3 (Electronic Entertainment Expo), which culls tech giant bigwigs like Microsoft, Sony and Nintendo to showcase upcoming games and software. Held every year at the Los Angeles Convention Center in Downtown, E3 will be held this year June 10-12 and is featuring exhibits from EA Games and Activision. Watch the 2013 recap above and their promo video below.
Everything is bigger in Vegas, and that includes the tech expos. Every year at the Vegas Convention Center the largest gathering of techies and tech companies in the world come to speak geek. CES's wide variety of exhibitors range from AIO Robotics, which specialize in 3D Printing, to Gameloft, a social gaming developer. The 2014 convention has already passed, but they've already scheduled 2015 to be Jan. 6-9. Watch the video above to see a "robot roundup" of this year's convention to get an idea of what to expect next for year.
For those of us that just can't pry ourselves away from Apple technology (it's just so pretty!), there is a convention dedicated just for Mac-heads. Held in Apple's own backyard in San Francisco, the Macworld convention gives sneak peaks to what Apple is expecting to release within the year. It may not be as exciting as a true Mac unveiling, which is always a spectacle and media frenzy, but the three-day event covers a lot of ground including workshops on how to better utilize OSX software to managing bitcoins.