Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Virtual Lecture

In three places at one time...

I usually try to keep Second Life work and real world work separate, but this was too interesting an opportunity to not bring them together a little. I work for a large UK University, within the School of Film, Music and Media (music area) and this has been something that I have wanted to try out for some time now...

Very early, Tuesday 17th Oct 2006 I dragged myself out of bed and prepared myself to deliver a hands-on 'Master-Class' on the subject of Sound-Design for Games.

The session was arranged by Gary Hazlitt (SL Name) and was aimed at a group of undergraduate and postgraduate students (sound-designers & screen composers) based at the Australian Film, Television and Radio School, in Sydney. It was part of a day long workshop they were running investigating this area.

Earlier, the students had been divided into 2 groups and presented with an opportunity to layer soundfiles in bespoke 3D environments (either a Haunted Castle or a Spaceship scene). My session came at the end of their day and included live demonstrations of game-audio techniques, interactive sound (conducted from within a computer simulated 3D environment), amid verbal Q&A discussions.

(...oh... and we released a swarm of virtual bees to demonstrate transient sound and localisation!)

Using voice-over-IP we created a 2-way audio connection for conversation (UK <--> AUS, with my voice amplified and played into their teaching room) and also simultaneously established multiple connections to Second Life (on-line virtual-world based in San Francisco, California. The effect being as if we were all present in the same space, via USA, UK and AUS.

All in all, I feel that this was a really interesting project/experiment, with a successful outcome. The learning experience felt very real, the technology held up well and, the students were great...

Edit: A load more images, and a commentary of the day here and here. (thanks Gary).

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Machinima Festival 2006

Very pleased to announce that my short film - Better Life has been nominated at the 2006 New York Machinima Festival (Academy of Machinima Arts and Sciences), for Best Virtual Performance (Custom Animation). Also nominated for Second Life based films in various categories are 'Game Over' (Pierce P), 'Machnima Island' (Richard Gras) and 'Silver Bells and Golden Spurs' (Eric Call). Best of luck guys!