Keynotes Speakers

Richard A. Bartle: Too Real? Adding the Real to the Imaginary Drop by Drop

The more immersive that imaginary worlds are, the more that people like them. We can make them more immersive by adding more realism through technology. This talk works through the effects of adding increasing amounts of the real to the imaginary and explores what the consequences for immersion will be.
Dr Richard A. Bartle is Honorary Professor of Computer Game Design at the University of Essex, UK. He is best known for having co-written the first virtual world, MUD in 1978, and for his Player Types model which has seen widespread adoption by the MMO industry.
His 2003 book, Designing Virtual Worlds, is the standard text on the subject, and he is an influential writer on all aspects of online design and development. In 2010, he was the first recipient of the prestigious Game Developers Choice award of Online Game Legend.

Kate Edwards, the Indiana Jones of the Digital Gaming World

Kate Edwards is the CEO and principal consultant of Geogrify, a consultancy for content culturalization, the Executive Director of Take This, and is the former Executive Director of the International Game Developers Association (IGDA). In addition to being an outspoken advocate that serves in several advisory/board roles, she is a geographer, writer, and corporate strategist. Formerly as Microsoft’s first Geopolitical Strategist she protected the company against political and cultural content risks across all products and locales. She has assisted many clients on a variety of geopolitical and cultural issues across many products and game franchises. Kate is also a columnist for Multi-Lingual Computing magazine.
In October 2013, Fortune magazine named her as one of the "10 most powerful women" in the game industry and in December 2014 she was named by as one of their six People of the Year.

Mia Consalvo: The Business and Culture of Live Streaming on Twitch: Evolving Paradigms

Mia Consalvo is the Canada Research Chair In Game Studies & Design at the University of Concordia in Montreal, Canada where she teaches courses on the theory and research of digital games and gameplay. Her primary research focus is on game studies, with particular interests in players and the culture of gameplay.
She is author of several books: Cheating: Gaining Advantage in Videogames (MIT Press) and Players and Their Pets: Gaming Communities from Beta to Sunset.

Martin  Walsh: Mixed Reality – A Game Changer for Interactive Audio Technology

Mixed Reality (MR) brings with it the promise of a future where synthetic experiences are perceived to coexist with the reality of our physical world. While the technological consequences of this future are often discussed and researched for optical and imaging technologies, they are less well understood for the equivalent audio components of those experiences.
True-to-life audio synthesis and reproduction is a vital component of the cues that lead to a sufficient suspension-of-disbelief necessary for a fully immersive MR experience. This brings many new challenges and opportunities for interactive audio synthesis and rendering algorithms along several application categories, including gaming, entertaining and social interaction.
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During the following presentation, we will describe some typical MR application scenarios and the challenges they may create for a truly believable and immersive sonic experience. We will see how many of these challenges do not have an equivalence in the fully enclosed worlds of VR and gaming. We describe how the latest research in acoustics, audio synthesis and machine learning will provide potential solutions to these challenges, such that we can eventually create seamless visual and aural mixes between what is real and what is perceived to be real.
Martin Walsh received a PhD in spatial audio from Trinity College Dublin in 1996. From there he joined Crystal River Engineering in California, where he co-developed one of the first industry standard positional 3D audio APIs for VR and gaming. He later joined Creative Labs Advanced Technology Center as an audio research manager, where he worked on many of the company's 3D audio technologies for soundcards and headphones. In 2008 Dr. Walsh joined DTS where he now holds the position of VP, R&D for interactive audio processing. His duties include leading development of all technologies associated with the interactive 3D audio program, with a particular focus on gaming, virtual and mixed reality.

Lynn E. Fiellin: Videogames for good? Using 2D and VR Gaming as Health Applications Targeting HIV, Smoking, and Opioid Prevention

Dr. Fiellin will discuss the work her play2PREVENT Lab and Yale Center for Health & Learning Games have been engaged in for nearly a decade focusing on the development and evaluation of videogame interventions targeting risk prevention and health promotion in adolescents. She will specifically focus on games they have developed for HIV prevention and HIV testing and counseling as well as smoking prevention. They are also embarking on new work developing a game around opioid use prevention and have established a new Lab called play4REAL which focuses on using VR gaming to address behavior change with a first project targeting smoking prevention in teens.
Lynn E. Fiellin, M.D. is an Associate Professor of Medicine at the Yale School of Medicine and at the Yale Child Study Center. She is also Founder and Director of the play2PREVENT (p2P) Lab at Yale ( ) and the newly formed Yale Center for Health & Learning Games ( ).
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Her work focuses on developing and testing novel videogame interventions to promote health and reduce risk in youth and young adults. She has received funding from the CVS Health Foundation, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the NIH, the BEST Foundation/Conrad N. Hilton Foundation, Women’s Health Research at Yale, and the Dartmouth Center for Technology and Behavioral Health.
Dr. Fiellin and her team of researchers, game developers, and community partners have created and evaluated interactive evidence-based games addressing a number of health-related and medical issues ranging from HIV prevention, testing and counseling, to tobacco and marijuana smoking and e-cigarette use prevention in adolescents. She builds collaborations and partnerships between researchers, educators, commercial game developers, and community-based organizations with the goal of developing and rigorously testing innovative, effective, and targeted game interventions, tailored for specific populations and with the scientific data behind them to demonstrate that they work.

Brian Markwalter

The Consumer Technology Association has tracked consumer use and interest in AR/VR for several years. Now that we are a couple of years into widespread offerings on a variety of platforms, what do consumers think? This talk will address consumer sentiment on AR/VR and emerging B2B use cases. We will also dig into the trove of CTA data to look at the bigger picture of the many entertainment options available to consumers, which tech products consumers are buying and how they find and use content.
Brian Markwalter is senior vice president of research and standards for the Consumer Technology Association (CTA)™, the preeminent trade association promoting growth in the $321 billion U.S. consumer technology industry. CTA also owns and produces CES® – the world’s gathering place for all who thrive on the business of consumer technology. Markwalter is responsible for CTA’s extensive consumer research, market data and forecasting capability, and CTA’s ANSI-accredited standards development program which develops technical standards used in millions of products every year.

Aljosa Smolic: Content Creation for AR, VR, and Free Viewpoint Video

Augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) are among most important technology trends these days. Major industry players make huge investments, vibrant activity can be observed in the start-up scene and academia. The elements of the ecosystem seem mature enough for broad adoption and success. However, availability of compelling content can become a limiting factor. This talk will address this content gap for AR/VR, and present solutions developed in the V-SENSE team at TCD, i.e. 3D reconstruction of dynamic real world scenes and their interactive visualization in AR/VR.
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Prof. Smolic is the SFI Research Professor of Creative Technologies at Trinity College Dublin (TCD). Before joining Trinity, Prof. Smolic was with Disney Research Zurich as Senior Research Scientist and Head of the Advanced Video Technology group, and with the Fraunhofer Heinrich-Hertz- Institut (HHI), Berlin, also heading a research group as Scientific Project Manager. At Disney Research he led over 50 R&D projects in the area of visual computing that have resulted in numerous publications and patents, as well as technology transfers to a range of Disney business units. Prof. Smolic served as Associate Editor of the IEEE Transactions on Image Processing and the Signal Processing: Image Communication journal. He was Guest Editor for the Proceedings of the IEEE, IEEE Transactions on CSVT, IEEE Signal Processing Magazine, and other scientific journals. His research group at TCD, V-SENSE, is on visual computing, combining computer vision, computer graphics and media technology, to extend the dimensions of visual sensation, with specific focus on immersive technologies such as AR, VR, free viewpoint video, 360/omni-directional video, and light-fields.

Kay Meseberg

Kay Meseberg is the Head of Mission Innovation at the European cultural network ARTE, based in Strasbourg, France. Meseberg’s research concentrates on immersive and interactive media. As Director of ARTE360, he produced numerous innovative works in immersive and interactive media, spanning a variety of fields in the arts and humanities. Meseberg maintains an active lecture circuit, including notable speaking engagements at SXSW Interactive, ZDF Digital at the Lichter Filmfest Frankfurt International, and the B3 Biennial of the Moving Image in Frankfurt, Germany.
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He is a member of the editorial board of the magazine of ideas Square Idea, and he has produced numerous award winning journalist works as Chef d’Edition of the platform ARTE Future and for the investigative TV-magazine Frontal21 of ZDF. Meseberg started working in interactive media and web-productions in the 1990s before graduating from the University of Potsdam. After his contribution of the world's first VR-documentary, "Polar Sea 360" in 2014 he has been working on interactive and immersive media while heading the ARTE unit dedicated to new media technologies. Meseberg is also an Innovation Ambassador for the IMZ, the International Music and Media Centre founded under the aegis of UNESCO in 1961, in Vienna.

Jacquelyn Morie: The Fluid Realities of the Future

Real & imaginary - the physical and the virtual - are about to enter into a dance in which they will whirl at such a velocity that we may have a hard time telling them apart. We need to think about how these realities can, do and will affect us as human beings, especially as these are experiences we live and remember and that become a part of our very being.
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Jacquelyn Ford Morie is an artist, scientist and educator working in the areas of immersive worlds, games and social networks. Until 2013 she was a Senior Research Scientist at the Institute for Creative Technologies. In 2013 she started a spin-off company called All These Worlds, to take her work in virtual worlds and avatars to a broader audience.
Jacquelyn was formally trained as an artist and medical illustrator but ultimately decided to pursue fine art. Her Bachelor's degree in Fine Art was awarded cum laude by Florida Atlantic University in 1981. She next received a Master's degree in Fine Art from the University of Florida in 1984, studying with noted photographer Jerry Uelsmann.
She studied computer graphics at the University of Florida, under Professor John Staudhammer and received her Masters in Computer Science from University of Florida in 1988. Morie received her PhD from SmartLab at the University of East London in 2008 in immersive environments.

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