By Alpa Agarwal


SXSW, MIX10 and DEMOSpring are exciting opportunities for you to meet the members of the Microsoft BizSpark team and to connect with the founders of several innovative BizSpark startups. We’ve got a variety of fun activities lined up for you at the conferences.

SXSW Interactive

March 12th – 16th, 2010, in Austin, TX, USA

Microsoft BizSpark invites you to join us for a “Meatup” for Startups, a meetup event with a decidedly Texas twist. Join the party for BBQ and great conversations with entrepreneurs from BizSpark startups, Cheezburger Network, Loopt, OneRiot, Piryx and Yammer. 5 attendees will be chosen from the audience to come up with a caption for a featured LOLcats picture. Cheezburger Network CEO, Ben Huh, will announce the winning caption voted on by applause. Winner will receive a Zune HD. Get Loopt on your phone to receive a sweet treat at the Meatup. Go to on your mobile phone to download Loopt now.

For an invitation, please email your name and company description to

March 15th from 5:30 – 7:30pm at the Beauty Bar (617 E. 7th St.)

Late Night with Cheezburger, sponsored by Microsoft BizSpark: Late-night party that will feature margaritas, beer, and of course—cheeseburgers, and karaoke

Sunday, March 14th, 10:00 pm – 2:00 am, Cedar Door, 201 Brazos Street, Austin, TX 78701

At the Microsoft BizSpark Accelerator at SXSW, 20 startups, including Microsoft BizSpark companies Metaio, Wildfire Interactive, NutshellMail, Amulet Devices, & Notice Technologies, will be selected from a pool of over 200 companies in the online video, audio, social networking and web apps spaces to make pitches to a panel of judges. March 15-16, 2010. Hilton Austin Downtown, 500 East 4th Street, Austin, TX 78701

The SXSW TECH Cocktail presented by TECH Cocktail & sponsored by Microsoft BizSpark, will showcase over 30 startups, including BizSpark companies OneRiot, Piryx, RedCritter & Wild Pockets, in a casual expo-style mixer. Sunday, March 14th. 8:00 PM – 10:30 PM. Palm Door, 401 Sabine St, Austin, TX 78701

Piryxtopia 2010 – A fundraiser for Haiti

This event is focused on raising money for the charity, “We Hear Your Voice,” which was started after the tragic earthquake that left Haiti in shambles. We Hear Your Voice began as a mission to unite a mother with her 3 Haitian children, but has grown into an effort to assist all children devastated by the disaster.
Saturday, March 13th (9PM – 1AM), Speakeasy, 412D Congress Ave, Austin, TX


Tweet-up with Windows Azure: Cheezburger Network CEO, Ben Huh will provide a how-to session on using Windows Azure for sites they anticipate will receive a lot of traffic. Saturday, March 13th, 4-6 pm, Windows Phone Blogger Lounge

Microsoft BizSpark startup OneRiot is teaming up with Taptu, a mobile search engine, and BizSpark startup Loopt, a location-based social-mapping service, to run a scavenger hunt with giant inflatable dinosaurs using mobile phones, geo-tagging and status updates.

The Yam-up (tweet-up) will be a quick overview about BizSpark startup, Yammer, and will focus on how they’ve created a new communications platform that improves the way co-workers and business partners collaborate. Yammer will be raffling off 2 flip video camcorders at the event.

Tuesday, March 16th, 4 – 6PM, Windows Phone Blogger Lounge

Bizspark startup Cheezburger Network speaks at How to Rawk SXSW Interactive, March 12th, 2PM

BizSpark startup Loopt talks about The Life Graph - You Are Your Location, March 15th, 2PM

BizSpark startup OneRiot talks about Social Search, March 15th, 11AM

BizSpark startup WildPockets talks at Anyone Can Create a Video Game session, March 15th, 9AM

Join us at other Microsoft activities:

  • Silverlight Interactive Lounge Space: Located on the 4th floor at the top of the escalator, in front of the tradeshow floor
  • Microsoft Bing: Behind the Scenes of The Decision Engine:One of the most anticipated, high-profile product re-branding and re-launch efforts of this past year, Microsoft's Bing didn't just gain mind- and search-share, it earned it through unique positioning and a holistic social media marketing strategy. An informative, entertaining look into how the right advertising and social media marketing efforts made.
  • Extending your brand? There’s an app for that:For many, brand extension into the digital realm means a Web site, a banner add, a viral campaign. But applications can extend conversations and perceptions of a brand, as well as add to discussions and ideas in compelling new ways. How can applications help your brand and idea be more authentic?
  • Opening Remarks: Privacy and Publicity: The SXSW Interactive Festival is very excited that danah boyd will serve as the Opening Speaker for the 2010 event. One of the world's foremost authorities on social networks, boyd works at Microsoft Research New England and also serves as a Fellow at the Harvard University Berkman Center for Internet and Society.
  • Browser Wars III: The Platform Wins:We're doing somuch with the Web platform these days, from cross-domain access mechanisms to new drawing and graphics tools. But in the end, we still have to deal with different web browsers. This discussion brings the leads from Mozilla (Firefox), Chris Wilson from Microsoft Internet Explorer, Google (Chrome) and Opera (Opera) together for yet another incendiary discussion about the future of the web.
  • Wounded Warriors:Microsoft and SXSW will host Wounded Warriors and their guests from the Warrior Family Support Center at Brooke Army Medical Center
  • Blogger Lounge:Will include Xbox, Windows Mobile 6.5/7 device bar, and a podcast/ blogcast area
  • Windows Phone-branded Taco Trucks:Available at a variety of locations at the conference
  • Microsoft SXSW Official Party: Innovation Expo featuring Silverlight, Win 7, Surface, Zune, Xbox, Monday March 15th, 8PM -12AM

Email Microsoft BizSpark team members, Brian Hoskins, Christopher Griffin, Midori Lawler & Sharon Koshy to connect with them at the conference.


March 15th–17th 2010, Mandalay Bay, Las Vegas

Explore the art and science of creating great user experiences at MIX10. Designers and developers will learn about Microsoft’s broad web platform and tools that help bring together the clients, servers and cloud services needed for creating great, rich web applications.

Demos will feature Microsoft Silverlight: the cross-browser, cross-platform and cross-device browser plug-in that helps companies design, develop and deliver a new class of rich, secure and scalable cross-platform applications and experiences on the Web. Silverlight delivers high quality video and leverages the .NET platform, with backend support for rapid development.

Email Microsoft BizSpark team members, Dave Drach, Julien Codorniou, Matthew Clark, & Michele Johnson to connect with them at the conference. Connect with the founders of Microsoft BizSpark startups Curse.Com,, and Seesmic.

Software and Web Entrepreneurs: Go Big with BizSpark and WebsiteSpark: Come and learn about BizSpark and WebsiteSpark from Microsoft. Discover how Microsoft provides startups and web professionals with the latest development tools, production server licenses and the marketing opportunities they need to get big fast, at no cost. Also hear about the worldwide network of experts available to help entrepreneurs succeed. Meet startups and web professionals who got very successful building innovative websites and applications on the Microsoft Stack with the Sparks program.