Web Summit adds film director Sonnenfeld to list of speakers
THE DUBLIN Web Summit is continuing to add speakers to its list, with director Barry Sonnenfeld the latest to sign up for the event.The latest addition to the Web Summit line-up joins a list of 200 tech industry heavyweights for the two-day event that includes blogger Robert Scoble, Moshi Monsters’ Michael Acton-Smith and internet activist Wael Ghonim.
With two weeks to go to the event, it is shaping up to be the biggest yet, with more than 3,000 people expected to attend.
Organisers say more than half of these will come from outside Ireland and some 250 start-ups will exhibit at the event, pitching to potential investors and customers.
Men in Black director Sonnenfeld was Esquire magazine’s “digital man” until recently, giving his opinion on the best GPS devices, smartphones and 3D camcorders for the magazine.
Sonnenfeld is also vocal about new technology and in the past is reported to have expressed his dislike of Facebook.
“Barry has directed some of the biggest blockbusters of our time,” Web Summit founder Paddy Cosgrave said.
“He is at the heart of new technology, so we’re delighted that he will be joining an incredible line-up at what has become Europe’s biggest tech conference.”
The Web Summit has been announcing its list of speakers over the course of the past few weeks, starting in July with a list of 10 women.
They included TED speaker and founder of MakeLoveNotPorn Cindy Gallop and Shauna Mei, founder of AHALife.com.
Earlier this week it was announced that Skype co-founder and tech investor Niklas Zennstrom would deliver a keynote on the main stage at the Web Summit on October 17th.
Co-founder of video site YouTube Jawed Karim will also attend. He will be joining the judging panel at the Electric Ireland Spark of Genius competition, which is also taking place at the summit.
The top 100 start-ups, who were chosen from a list of 1,000 entries, will pitch their ideas on two stages.
The short-list will be narrowed to 12 semi-finalists, before four finalists battle for the top prize.
Also speaking at the event is Digg founder Kevin Rose, Mozilla chief executive Gary Kovacs and Victoria Ransom, who sold her social media marketing business to Google for $450 million.
The Web Summit has grown significantly in size over the past couple of years.
Founded in 2010, it counted 500 attendees from all over Europe in its first year, increasing to more than 1,500 in 2011.
This year saw the introduction of a number of new elements, including a link-up with entrepreneurs travel community StartupStay that teams start-ups with hosts in the country to help them avoid high accommodation costs.
For the first time, the event will feature a stage dedicated to cloud technology, with speakers from VMWare, Risk Factory, HP, IBM and Microsoft speaking. Other stages over the event will cover digital marketing and developer-focused speakers.
The Web Summit takes place on Wednesday, October 17th, and Thursday, October 18th, at the RDS in Dublin.
Dublin Web Summit Ones to watch:
Film director and former Esquire “digital man”
Co-founder of YouTube
Atomico, and co-founder of Skype
Co-founder of Stripe
Co-founder of Decoded
Founder of 4chan
Chairwoman of Mozilla
Co-founder of search engine Yandex
Internet activist who helped to jump-start Egypt’s revolution
Founder of MakeLoveNotPorn and If We Ran The World