Web Summit 2013, one of Europe's premier technology festivals, is now underway in Dublin.
The two-day event runs from 30-31 October and will welcome more than 10,000 attendees from 80-plus countries to the Irish capital.
Known as "Davos for geeks" and "Europe's SXSW," Web Summit features a sexy mixture of the crème de la crème of established tech firms, rising industry stars, and intriguing off-piste speakers.
Some highlights are sure to include main stage slots by legendary skateboarder Tony Hawk, a last-minute appearance by Hyperloop visionary Elon Musk, and the superbly named Cisco CTSO Padmasree Warrior.
Other big names set to be trotted out include WordPress developer Matt Mullenweg, security gurus Eugene Kaspersky and Graham Cluley, plus Indiegogo founder Slava Rubin.
Elsewhere, Web Summit 2013 is playing host to a number of startup initiatives headlined by the ESB Spark of Genius pitching competition and the Alpha programme showcase.
Thanks for joining us! For a full run down of what to expect this week, check out our preview of Web Summit 2013 and be sure to share your thoughts on the event via the comment section at the bottom of this article, or by interacting with us on social media.
- 02 November
Having said that, everyone I met was still hugely positive about Web Summit. The top tech event on the calendar? Very possibly - it's certainly in my top two and, as Oscar Wilde famously said, the best will always do.
It's definitely as progressive an event as I've seen, though that's not to say it's devoid of growing pains. In particular, I did overhear a fair few folks wondering if it hadn't scaled a tad too quickly - 3,000 to more than 10,000 attendees in a year is a fantastic achievement and indicative of the quality of the conference, but some of the intimacy has been lost - a factor that's incredibly important for startups looking to connect with investors and the like.
Some closing thoughts on Web Summit 2013 before we hit up sunny Barcelona for Alfresco Summit Europe next week. All in all, you can't really argue with the acclaim Web Summit has received. Dublin itself is always a fantastic host city, whatever the purpose of your trip, and the sheer density of geeks ensured that the atmosphere both at the RDS Main Hall and all over town was even more endearing than usual.
Before we start winding up, another great company we saw at Web Summit was ad tech startup OnScroll - to learn more about the exciting young firm, check out our interview with OnScroll founder Babac Vafaey
"If privacy is important you, don't trust tech companies - trust yourself." That was the heart of the message delivered by security guru Graham Cluley in interview at Web Summit 2013. Follow the link to find out more.
- 31 October
In other words, watch this space
Teaser: "The enemy has changed. We have this new enemy – government."
Just had a brilliant one-to-one with security guru Graham Cluley
In a short while, we'll be sitting down with security guru Graham Cluley, and highlights later in the day include the closing main stage session with Hyperloop dreamer Elon Musk
And we're back! Apologies for the delay today, a combination of breakfast meetings and deteriorating Wi-Fi means we're a bit slow off the mark, but rest assured that a full day of coverage lies ahead!
- 30 October
Thanks for joining us for Web Summit today - tomorrow, things get even more exciting! We've got interviews with Indiegogo founder Slava Rubin and security guru Graham Cluley, plus main stage appearances from the likes of Eugene Kaspersky, Tim Armstrong, Matt Mullenweg, and Elon Musk to look forward to! And, hopefully, a Red Sox World Series victory to raise a flat white too as well
Have to generally agree with the rave reviews that Web Summit has received today. Some pain points, of course, but you really got the feeling you were part of something special today
In all, more than 10,000 people graced the RDS Main Hall in Dublin 4 today
For the Tony Hawk/Kevin Rose hobnob and the Spark of Genius announcement, the main stage arena hosted some 3,500 people - more than the total attendance of Web Summit 2012 combined
Web Summit founder Paddy Cosgrove takes the stage to round out the day
Viddyad take the stage to claim the Spark of Genius gong
And the winner is.....Viddyad, the world's first fully automated cloud-based video ad creation tool for business!
However, we've now got today's big announcement on the cards - the winner of the ESB Spark of Genius startup competition!
Sadly, that's all from the Tony Hawk/Kevin Rose love up folks
Well played Kevin Rose slipping that into the session
And here's your headline, media hawks (geddit?): "iOS is starting to look more like Android these days."
Tony Hawk: "You get immediate feedback - it's like you have this million-plus person focus group. The feedback is brutally honest but at the same time you get to know what they're looking for, what inspires them, and how to engage [with] them. The thing I've learned? Don't be boring."
Online and social media have changed the name of the game for public figures, Tony says
"Most of my best tricks come from mistakes...or combining existing tricks"
Tony Hawk: "I take [failures] more as lessons than setbacks. You have to take that adversity as a way to learn and not something that's going to block you."
When Tony Hawk first pitched a skateboarding video game he "came up against a wall of no" but succeeded in "planting a seed" within the industry. Bruce Willis was viewed as the ideal skate game lead at the time, apparently
We get a short introduction from Engine Yard investor and developer Eamon Leonard and.....we're go! Tony Hawk and Kevin Rose hit the stage like a killer backside heel flip
We're bunkered down in the main stage at the RDS awaiting this afternoon's headline session, a "Fireside Chat" with skate legend-cum-entrepreneur Tony Hawk and Google Ventures partner Kevin Rose
In less than two hours, skateboarding legend Tony Hawk will take the main stage at Web Summit 2013. Join us in Dublin live from 16:20 GMT - maybe even a tad earlier if we're feeling cheeky
MongoDB founder Dwight Merriman: "Big data and NoSQL? It's happening. It's a big deal. We're seeing the largest change in the data layer that we've seen in 25 years."
We're sitting down with Dwight Merriman, co-founder of MongoDB and one of the featured speakers at the Summit to hear his thoughts on startups, the database market, and his company's recent $150 million (£93m) funding round - watch this space.
A fascinating discussion that, the crux of which was that there is still tremendous room for growth in a number of markets some pundits see as nearing saturation point - social being one prime example.
Tony Conrad of True Ventures, one of the main investors in WordPress and MakerBot, still sees a lot of potential in open source projects: "I'm still excited about open source opportunities - in the right sectors. There's tons of growth in a lot of outlying areas."
James Malocco from Microsoft Ventures: "When we look at the markets that get us excited - we've got big investments in Rio [de Janeiro, Brazil] China and Israel. Where [do] we see great outcomes? Israel is one of the best markets in terms of our investments."
Currently on the main stage: the "Markets That Should Get Your Heart Racing" panel discussion
Some highlights today are sure to include Tony Hawk's speaking slot this afternoon, as well as the announcement of the ESB Spark of Genius startup competition winner.
This is the scene from inside the RDS main hall in Ballsbridge as Web Summit 2013 starts to get rolling - the venue is so industrial chic it hurts. We've got a busy day ahead, so stay tuned!
Hello from Web Summit 2013 and sunny Dublin!