What is the Web Summit remembered for the Dysnix team?
We travel to Lisbon having a short transfer in Geneva and exactly from this point begins our journey to the Web Summit 2019.
One thing that kind of jumps out at us in Switzerland is lots of people discussing the upcoming event everywhere. They're talking about the Web Summit on the plane, at passport control, in cafes, on the phone. We have a feeling that there are only Web Summit participants on the plane flying from Geneva to Lisbon.
Finally, we are in Portugal and our first task is to register for the Conference. Many signs are pointing to the registration pavilion at the airport, a plethora of multilingual volunteers are ready to help if you just got lost or need any kind of support. Having got our coveted badges and bracelets, we go to the hotel and start our preparations for the first events.
We've gone to the Web Summit primarily to find potential contacts and possible projects matching our expertise in DevOps and AI/ML.
The first day at the Web Summit traditionally begins with a huge queue of all participants trying to get inside quickly, four or five general checkpoints and mandatory police checks on the way to the first pavilion.
After successful checks, we've got inside. Our first impression is the wild and chaotic movement of a huge number of people across pavilions. But 15 min. later you understand that everything has been properly designed and the startup booths have their zones in each of four huge pavilions.
There are alpha, beta, and growth start-ups divided into zones according to their activity areas: FinTech, MedTech & Pharma, AI & Machine learning, HR, Education, Tourism, Mass Media, etc.
But! As you're walking past booths of startups without any interest because they seem not matching your expertise and interest, all of a sudden - in the education zone we come across three coolest startups in the field of AI/ML. Okay, we turn around and start over again from the first pavilion.
It's lunchtime and the best time for networking - there're food zones with many cafes between each pavilion, where attendees and participants can network, make new acquaintances, set up meetings.
Speaking about contacts exchange, we have not noticed a tendency towards using usual business cards but mostly the WS application i s used.
Lunch is over, we have two more pavilions for research and in the evening we're having the first networking parties.
A little bit about startups and their ideas they presented to the world and of course to investors.
More and more startups are founded not for the sake of the idea, but to help people benefit from their solutions and products and sure to save the Earth. They have a narrow specialization and deep expertise in a particular domain area. Technologies themselves are not in second place, but rather in the third one after the expertise and environmental performance of products they created. By the way, we've noticed the increasingly blurred boundaries of the modern world. There are startups from Kyiv, Lima, Hong Kong, Seoul, Riga, New York, Los Angeles, Nairobi, and Lisbon. There is no distinction between first-, second- or third-world countries. Everyone is excited about what's going on around and friendly.
Our networking at the evening event ends deep after midnight and we primarily remember it for the atmosphere of absolute freedom and desire to communicate thereby making contacts as easy as possible. We're spending our event having lots of small talks, short intros, making contacts and so on.
On the second day of Web Summit along with communication with startups, we also attend internal events held by the Web Summit organizers and their partners, workshops from entrepreneurs, members of the Women in Tech group, meet-ups from Google, Bucking, Amazon - we wish, we could be everywhere at once.
The atmosphere of the second day of the Web Summit wasn't so stressful: all the exhibitors, attendees are quite calm, even relaxed, fussiness and haste have just disappeared, everyone became friendly and interested in each other.
On the same day, we are at Night Summit, this is the main night event of the Conference.
Night Summit is more like a disco than an event organized by the Tech Conference. There are lots of dancing, alcohol, loud music, and a wide network of contacts. Standing in a queue with a glass of beer in the rain we get acquainted with the investors from Manchester and Madrid.
Look! Why so many people are standing in a queue? Do they want to buy some food or wine? No, they are standing in a queue at the souvenir shop that looks like a museum to buy traditional Portuguese souvenirs and gifts. A lot of fun, networking, freedom, new acquaintance...
The third and the last day at the Web Summit - most of the participants have already left, you can see more often people with suitcases, and on this day we have a little adventure - a short trip to Cabo da Roca. This is the most Western point in Europe. And quite traditionally we meet participants of the Web Summit from Japan and other countries in the bus. It's short networking on our way to Sintra and back. And here we're packing our suitcases, carefully pack our business cards, review contacts in the WS application and understand that the hard work is just beginning.