1. Title: Gaming Visionary: E-Line Media, Alan Gershenfeld and 'Never Alone'

    Abstract:

    Alan Gershenfeld, co-founder/president of E-Line Media, former studio head at Activision and chairman of Games of Change will explore how digital media and games can help share, celebrate and extend marginalized and under-represented cultures with a global audience. In addition to highlighting his work on a variety of impact game/media projects, he will tell the story of the making of 'Never Alone' (Kisima Ingitchuna), a game developed by E-Line in partnership with the Cook Inlet Tribal Council, a pioneering Alaska Native organization.

    The game has been downloaded over 3 million times, featured in over 750 articles and nominated for virtually every major game award (winning a British Academy Award). The tribal council has converted their revenue participation in the game into equity in E-Line and they are now E-Line’s largest shareholder and the company's chairman is CEO of the Tribal Council.

    Biography:

    Alan has spent the last 25 years at the intersection of entertainment, technology and social entrepreneurship. He is currently president and co-founder of E-Line Media, a publisher of digital entertainment that engages, educates and empowers — with a core focus on computer/video games. Alan has worked on impact game projects with the Gates Foundation, MacArthur Foundation, National Science Foundation, USAID, DARPA, White House OSTP, California Endowment, Cook Inlet Tribal Council, Games for Change, Google, Sesame Workshop, MIT Center for Bits and Atoms and the ASU Center for Games and Impact.

    Prior to E-Line, Alan spent seven years as CEO and co-founder of Netomat, a leader in mobile-web community solutions. As CEO, Alan helped to transform a network-based art project into a pioneering software company. Netomat was selected as a Technology Pioneer at the 2007 World Economic Forum at Davos. Before Netomat, Alan spent six years at Activision, a global leader in entertainment software. He was a member of the executive management team that rebuilt Activision from bankruptcy into a profitable industry leader with more than a billion dollars in revenue. At Activision, Alan served as senior vice president of Activision Studios where he supervised all product development at the company's Los Angeles studios. Titles released under Alan's leadership include "Civilization: Call to Power," "Mechwarrior 2," "Asteroids 3-D," "Muppet Treasure Island," "Spycraft," "Shanghai," "Pitfall," "Zork" and "Tony Hawk Skateboarding."

    Before Activision, Alan spent nearly ten years in the film industry where he worked in development, production and post-production roles on numerous feature films and documentaries. As a writer, Alan was a film critic for the "South China Morning Post" in Hong Kong, co-author of " Game Plan," a book about the computer and video game business published by St. Martin's Press, and has published articles on digital media and technology for learning and social impact in numerous publications including Scientific American, Education Week, Huffington Post, Slate, Politico, Marketwatch and Knowledge Quest. Most recently Alan co-authored, with his two brothers, "Designing Reality: How to Survive and Thrive in the 3rd Digital Revolution."

    Alan is co-founder of Experimental Design, a leader in future world building, and serves on the board of directors of FilmAid International, a nonprofit that uses film and video to empower refugees throughout the world. Alan is also a founding industry fellow at the Center for Games and Impact at Arizona State University and serves on the advisery boards of PBS Kids New Media, iCivics and the Joan Ganz Cooney Center For Educational Media and Research (Sesame Workshop). He is also on the advisery board and former chairman of Games for Change.

    # vimeo.com/288395831 Uploaded 30 Views 0 Comments
  2. Title: Exposing Interface: Visualizing Sonic Interactions in Multiplayer Digital Performance

    Abstract:

    This talk will address interdisciplinary investigations into action, agency, aura and spectacle in audiovisual music performance, with a specific focus on small ensembles. Using techniques from data visualisation, machine listening and machine learning this presentation investigates poetic ways of exploring productively the tension between legibility and co-agency in performance. Real-time video can reveal and structure collective and individual activity through the capture, transformation and re-presention of interactions. Explorations of visual form and graphic mapping provide new opportunities for performers and audiences to engage with provocation and process in immersive audiovisual performance. Works discussed will include "Reqiuem for Edward Snowden," "SKR1BL" and research in progress that builds on existing strands of work in creative computing, computer music and musicology but seeks to make newly playful and adventurous use of these technique. Our current research aims to pilot a framework for experimentation in graphical representations for multiplayer digital musical instruments in audiovisual performance though visualising and sharing musical gestures in performance, and by devising collaborative strategies for integrated and embedded audiovisual performance.

    Biography:

    Jules Rawlinson designs sounds, visuals and interactions and performs with live electronics. Jules’ output includes "A Requiem for Edward Snowden," a collaboration with Matthew Collings which blends live electronics with a chamber trio and realtime visuals. This work was selected for Creative Scotland’s Made In Scotland showcase at Edinburgh Festival Fringe in 2015, and has played at Glasgow’s CCA as part of Cryptic Nights, Aberdeen’s Sound Festival and Utrecht’s Gaudeamus Muziekweek. Other projects include commissions for the BBC, New Media Scotland, Glenmorangie, Cybersonica, Future of Sound / Future of Light and the New Radiophonic Workshop. Jules regularly presents and performs work exploring symbolic notations for live electronics at festivals, conferences and symposia including Sonorities, ICLI, Sines and Squares, Art and Sound, Seeing Sound and INTER/actions. Jules is a founding member of the LLEAPP network which has fostered an ongoing series of events at UK institutions. Jules has a doctorate in composition from Edinburgh College of Art, University of Edinburgh, where he is a lecturer in digital design. For more information visit pixelmechanics.com .

    Marcin Pietruszewski is a composer and researcher engaged in sound synthesis and composition with computers, exploring specific formal developments in the tradition of electroacoustic music and contemporary sound art, as well as extra-musical domains of auditory design, computational linguistics and psychoacoustics. He works across performance, multimedia installation and radio productions probing the dynamics between formalism of synthetic sound and its material realisation. He has collaborated extensively with musicians and composers and recent projects include a collaboration with Florian Hecker, graphic design company NORM from Zurich; philosopher Chris Schambaugh, The New School, New York; choreographer and dancer Agnes Cebere, Martha Graham School of Contemporary Dance, New York; and the Laboria Cubonics Collective, the authors of "Xenofeminist Manifesto." Marcin is a doctoral candidate in creative music practice at Edinburgh College of Art, University of Edinburgh. For more information visit marcinpietruszewski.com

    # vimeo.com/265233110 Uploaded 31 Views 0 Comments
  3. Title: Videogames and the Spirit of Musement

    Abstract:

    In 2013, game designer and scholar Eric Zimmerman declared that the twenty-first century will be defined by games, writing in his "Manifesto for a Ludic Century" that games will not only be the dominant cultural form, but that experience playing and designing games will be crucial for navigating a world increasingly defined by complex systems and information aesthetics that demand forms of thinking and interacting native to gameplay. There is much to recommend this view beyond the dazzling growth of the industry and mindshare videogames command in popular culture. We can point to the many distributaries of game design explored in the last decade, including games for change, games for health, serious games, gamification and other expressions of the "gameful world." Together these aspects of the growth and evolution of videogames beyond the entertainment model document an optimism about game media that we should nurture. However, we must also acknowledge that the dominant design practices of videogames have a synergistic relation to the behaviorist designs that we increasingly encounter in our everyday experiences of the contemporary media ecology. These designs address our habitual desires, patterns of perception, forms of thinking and interacting with digital media at their best, or narrow the role of our imagination and strategically exploit our cognitive biases and limits at their worst. It is this unacknowledged experiential, aesthetic dimension to the Ludic Century that will frame my engagement with videogames in this talk.

    Extending Paolo Pedercini’s argument that we must “hack” videogame media, the “aesthetic form of rationalization” in our age, into “expressive machines,” I suggest they must also become "musement" machines by design if they are to increase their critical value in the face of the prevailing dynamics of the media ecology. In order to explore this idea I turn to the work of Brian Schrank on the videogame avant-garde to develop a new perspective on the field, drawing insights on musement from the pragmatist aesthetics of C.S. Peirce and John Dewey along the way to discussing design strategies for what we might call a "poetics of musement" in some examples. The resulting view of the videogame avant-garde will not only confirm its traditional significance as a generative resource, opening up videogame media to new artistic communication, but suggest that its cultural visibility and influence on dominant design practices may be something of an imperative in the Ludic Century.

    Biography:

    Terry Schenold believes that video games are a vital organ of cultural change in the twenty-first century. He is a doctoral candidate in English and a founding member of the Critical Gaming Project at University of Washington, teaching media and game studies courses for the Comparative History of Ideas Program. He is also adjunct faculty in the humanities and sciences department and occasional collaborator in design at Cornish College of the Arts. His most recurring research interests include reflective reasoning in ergodic media, digital media poetics, philosophical aesthetics, and digital game design and culture. He has published in the motley field of game studies, including an essay related to this talk, “After Ergodics: Noematic Work and the Function of Diegetic Information in Computer Roleplaying Games” (McFarland 2014). He is currently planning his defense and developing a course in experimental microgame design for fall 2018.

    # vimeo.com/265252997 Uploaded 25 Views 0 Comments
  4. Title: Composing With Living Systems: Performance Symbols, Objects and Animism

    Abstract:
    Rama Gottfried’s recent work focuses on magnifying the plethora of details that connect humans with the computers, instruments, plants, insects, amphibians, architecture and other animate and inanimate entities and spaces that surround us. In this talk, Rama will give an overview to the aesthetics and technical approaches used in his work for ensembles, spaces and human-computer systems, and discuss his current IRCAM/ZKM research project on “Symbolic Representation and Performance for Media Composition."

    Biography:
    Composer and media artist Rama Gottfried (1977) is recent doctoral graduate from the University of California, Berkeley where he studied with Franck Bedrossian, Edmund Campion, Adrian Freed and David Wessel. Previously, he completed composition studies at the Universität der Künste Berlin, the Manhattan School of Music, New York University, and the University of Vermont. His previous teachers have included: Walter Zimmermann, Marc Sabat, Nils Vigeland, Reiko Fueting, Justin Dello Joio, Joel Chadabe and Ernie Stires. He has had pieces featured at Lincoln Center's Mostly Mozart Festival, MaerzMusik, SPOR, Bludenzer Tage zeitgemäßer Musik, MATA, Klangwerkstatt, ICMC, Wet Ink and Machine Project/Hammer Museum festivals and sound installations at the Berliner Congress Center, Complice, Mino Washi Paper Museum, Stadtbad-Wedding and Pacific Basin Building. In 2002 he joined Ensemble Pamplemousse where he collaborated for many years working in electro-acoustic music and the merging of sound, installation and performance arts.

    In 2012, Rama was in residence at the Institut de Recherche et Coordination Acoustique/Musique (IRCAM) working with the Acoustic and Cognitive Spaces Team on aesthetic applications of Wave Field Synthesis and Higher Order Ambisonics. In 2017-18, he has been in residence at IRCAM and Zentrum für Kunst und Medientechnologie working on notation and audio/visual performance systems for spatial movement. In January 2018, Rama relocated back to Berlin and began a postdoctoral position at the school of Multimedia Composition at the Hochschule für Musik und Theater, Hamburg.

    # vimeo.com/264471160 Uploaded 33 Views 0 Comments
  5. Title: Being There: Augmented Reality for Remote Collaboration

    Abstract:

    Collaborating remotely on tasks that require engagement with the physical environment is difficult using existing technologies, since they do not adequately support a shared 3-D space or ways to effectively communicate spatial information. We present an approach for unobtrusive mobile telecollaboration that leverages physical and virtual environments, supporting rich interaction by using computer vision-based tracking and mapping, along with augmented reality techniques to convey spatial information about a novel scene. This allows for rich interaction among remote collaborators, useful in a wide range of applications from mission-critical field service repairs to helping a friend or relative program the DVR.

    Bio:

    Matthew Turk is a chair of the Department of Computer Science at the University of California, Santa Barbara, where he co-directs the UCSB Four Eyes Lab, focused on the "four I's" of imaging, interaction, and innovative interfaces. He received a Bachelor of Science from Virginia Tech, a Master of Science from Carnegie Mellon University, and a doctorate from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

    He has worked at Martin Marietta Denver Aerospace, LIFIA/ENSIMAG (Grenoble, France), Teleos Research, and Microsoft Research, where he was a founder of the Vision Technology Group. He co-founded a startup company in 2014 that was acquired by PTC Vuforia in 2016. Turk has received several best paper awards and has served as general or program chair of many conferences, including ACM Multimedia, Face and Gesture Recognition, WACV, ICMI and CVPR. He is an IEEE Fellow, an IAPR Fellow, and the recipient of the 2011-2012 Fulbright-Nokia Distinguished Chair in Information and Communications Technologies.

    # vimeo.com/264470293 Uploaded 25 Views 0 Comments

Spring 2018 Digital Culture Speaker Series

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