Events / Innovation

The Technical.ly Brooklyn guide to the Northside Festival

Each year a SXSW of our own comes to McCarren Park. Here's what you shouldn't miss this time around.

"Disrupting Transportation" panelists Gretchen Effgren, Joseph Kopser and Taco Carlier at the Northside Innovation Festival 2014. (Photo by Brady Dale)

The Northside Festival returns to McCarren Park next week, promising three days of ideas and three nights of music.

The festival has a particularly impressive lineup this year, which is matched only by its density. So we’ve taken a look and have some recommendations for you.


Leveraging Immersive Video for Brand Storytelling & Audience Engagement

Sabrina Dridje stands out on this panel, which will be a “discussion on the vast opportunities (and potential challenges) afforded to brands and storytellers with the rise of immersive video.”

Dridje is the former director of the Made in NY Media Center in Dumbo. She presided over a very good few years at the media center, in which it brought in a host of promising media startups. Dridje is now the managing director of the Telly Awards.

Also on the panel are Sarah Poorsattar, the director of product management for Vimeo, Jim Spare, the president of Eko, and Kyle Ranson-Walsh, from Discovery Communications.

  • 12 p.m., Williamsburg Hotel

NYU Tandon Flash Pitch Competition

The Future Labs at NYU Tandon is a university-based incubator that focuses on urban, data-intensive and artificial intelligence startups. It’s hosting this pitch competition, where young startups will pitch their vision to investor-judges, including Vipin Chamakkala, the principal VC at Work-Bench, and Jessica Peltz, a partner at KBS Ventures.

The Future Labs had an incredible 2016, including an acquisition by Uber and two 11-digit funding rounds.

  • 6:30 p.m., William Vale Stage


Trump and Russia, Separating Fact from Fiction

It’s a topic at the front of the minds of many, and the Northside Festival has managed to bring four of the most interesting and knowledgeable people in the world together to talk about it.

Reporter Adrian Chen wrote the book (ok, the article) on a certain kind of Russian online activity back in 2015 in his Times piece, The Agency. It’s good. You should read it.

Ben Smith, the editor-in-chief of Buzzfeed, made a landmark decision in publishing a dossier of Trump information from a private British intelligence agent this January, blowing the doors off the national debate on Trump and Russian interference, ushering the word “kompromat” into the American lexicon along the way.

Masha Gessen is a Russian-American journalist and the author of The Man Without a Face: The Unlikely Rise of Vladimir Putin.

The panel will be moderated by none other than Glenn Greenwald, a founding editor of The Intercept, and the reporter who broke the Edward Snowden story during the summer of 2013.

  • 10 a.m., William Vale Stage

The Next Wave of the Industrial Internet: A Conversation with Nanotronics

Nanotronics Chief Revenue Officer Justin Stanwix talks with Fortune’s Andrew Nusca about batteries, turbines, driverless cars, photovoltaics and how networks will look when all these things are connected.

  • 11:15 a.m., Wythe Main Room


Buzzfeed News Sit-down: NYC Mayor Bill DeBlasio

Buzzfeed EIC Ben Smith chats up the mayor.

  • 2:45 p.m., the William Vale Stage

A Performance by Heems

In addition to his rap duo with Riz Ahmed, Swet Shop Boys, and his solo career, Heems is a partner in a new online platform aimed at helping millennials volunteer and donate to social service organizations. We profiled him and the platform, Give One, last month.

  • 4:30 p.m., the William Vale Stage


There is way more going on at the Northside Festival than this, though.

See the full schedule
Series: Brooklyn

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