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President Barack Obama made his SXSW debut on Friday (Mar. 11), serving as part of a Keynote Conversation at their Interactive conference.

For his 45-minute conversation with Evan Smith, CEO / Editor in Chief of The Texas Tribune, the president discussed the role technology plays in civil engagement. In addition, the in-depth talk spilled over into topics like climate change and the recent privacy/security debate that’s ongoing with Apple and the FBI.

Aside from hot-button issues, Obama’s discussion also focused on the connectedness of society — how we can “start coming up with new platforms, new ideas across disciplines and across skill sets to solve some of the big problems we’re facing today.”

He also spoke directly to nearly 2,000 members of the tech community, explaining their importance in our society. “The reason I’m here is to recruit all of you,” he said. “We’re going to need the tech community to help us solve this problem,” in regards to the privacy controversy between Apple and the FBI.

Press play and watch the full interview above.

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