A few tidbits of news to share with you today:
Public Secrets, the Webby-honored interactive documentary I designed with Sharon Daniel, will be exhibited at the Transmediale festival for art and digital culture in Berlin in late January/early February.
In addition, the Davis Humanities Institute is hosting a one-day conference on February 1 entitled “Beyond the Book: Humanities Scholarship in the Digital Age” which will feature a number of Vectors personnel and alumni, including Tara McPherson, David Theo Goldberg, Sharon Daniel, Minoo Moallem, Caren Kaplan, Jenny Terry and myself, among other distinguished speakers. The day includes a keynote panel, lunchtime roundtable, and afternoon demonstration sessions. For more information on the conference, download the pdf.
Unforeseen events have unfortunately forced the cancellation of the Flash Platform Workshop that was scheduled for Monday, December 3. Apologies for the inconvenience; if the workshop ends up being rescheduled I’ll post any information as soon as it’s available.
In other news, Adobe has recently posted a short Q&A between myself and Steve Anderson, associate editor of Vectors and director of the Ph.D. program in Media Arts and Practice at USC’s School of Cinematic Arts. Check it out when you get a chance!
Wanted to bring a few upcoming events to your attention. First up: on this coming Monday, November 19 at 10:00 am PST, I’ll be joining Dmitri Siegel, designer, writer and art director for Urban Outfitters, and Peter Lunenfeld, media theorist and professor at Art Center College of Design, as part of a panel on ‘Designing for Convergence,’ sponsored by Adobe and the new interdivisional program in Media Arts and Practice at the USC School of Cinematic Arts. This panel will be simulcast as an interactive online forum via Adobe Connect and you are welcome to join us! If you would like to attend, you will need to register first.
Two weeks later, on Monday, December 3 from 1:00 pm - 5:00 pm PST, I’ll be teaching a Flash Platform workshop focusing on programming in ActionScript 3.0 and MXML and at the basics of working in Adobe Flash and Flex (and how you decide when to use either one). This workshop will also be simulcast via Adobe Connect; I don’t have the registration link as yet but will post it when it becomes available. UPDATE: The Flash Platform workshop has been cancelled until further notice.
You can get more details about both events.
Also, I’d like to thank Scott Fisher for inviting me to speak at the USC Interactive Media Division’s weekly forum last night. ‘Seeking Eloquence in Interactive Space’ was the topic I tackled, and we ended up having some good discussion afterwards; got to chat with a few former students of mine as well. A pleasure.
Word comes from across the pond that Swing is going to be shown at tomorrow’s London Flash Platform User Group meeting. At a one-hour session called “Fwii Style” (all these Wii puns remind me of the early days of the Macintosh, when all software had to have “Mac” in the title) Adam Robertson of Dusty Pixels will hold forth on the wonders of Wii and Flash:
Forget your PS3’s and 360’s, the Wii is officially the coolest console ever, all thanks to its innovative Wiimote controller. And now you can get in on the motion sensing goodness using Flash.
In this session we’ll take a quick look inside the Wiimote to learn a bit about how it works, then discover how you can use it to control your own Flash projects, both through the official Wii browser (with the Wiicade API) and on your desktop (with FWiidom & WiiFlash). Much arm waving guaranteed.
The followup session, called “Make Things Physical” and taught by Leif Lovgreen, sounds pretty great too:
An introduction to physical interaction. Adobe Flash, the Make Controller Kit from MakingThings and a handful of analogue sensors. This session covers the basics of getting started with analogue input as an interface to Flash.
Expect strange things like ice cubes, food, flashlights and a boxing ball to be natural ingredients in this session.
Interaction with analog sensors was something I thought was still beyond the capabilities of Flash; glad to hear this barrier’s coming down.
Those in London environs, take note; sounds like an interesting evening.
I spent Saturday in Venice at LAFlashapaloozastock 2, a combination seminar/schmoozefest/job fair put on by the wonderful folks at LA Flash. If you’re in the LA area, have any interest in Flash and haven’t hooked up with this group yet, you’re missing out on a great community.
My introduction to LA Flash came last year, when I managed to snag a presenter slot at JobStock ‘06, a networking event where local Flash talent did three-minute presentations of their work alongside presentations from studios seeking flashers. I was immediately struck by the warmth of the community and especially its openness to people with a wide range of skill sets. Flash by nature has an extremely diverse user base in terms of expertise, and it’s a great to see a community that does such a good job catering to newbies as well as to more experienced folks.
The highlights of the day for me were presentations by Sam Rivello on building a custom blitting engine in Flash, and a talk by Aaron Simpson of Cold Hard Flash on the history of Flash character animation, including his Flash Animation 10, a survey of the most influential online Flash shorts and a welcome bit of cultural perspective.
At the end of the presentations they raffled off a Wii, an Apple TV, and a bunch of other good stuff…
...and the tacos were delicious!
[ image from ccharlton on flickr ]
Here’s a list of links to works cited in my recent talk “Storytelling in the Age of Divided Screens” at Gallaudet University.
I’m very happy to announce the launch of “Timeframing: The Art of Comics on Screens,” a new website that explores what comics have to teach us about creative communication in the age of screen media.
To celebrate the launch of Upgrade Soul, here’s a screen shot of an eleven year old prototype I made that sets artwork from Will Eisner’s “The Treasure of Avenue ‘C’” (a story from New York: The Big City) in two dynamically resizable panels.
The last couple of months have seen an uptick in published commentary on Strange Rain, much of it owing to notice the app received at this year’s Modern Language Association conference in Seattle.
Dialogue bubbles huddle together in the Unity authoring environment like backstage theatre performers awaiting their chance to shine in the forthcoming iOS and Android release Upgrade Soul, from Opertoon.