Thursday, April 26, 2007

Lift Off

Walked past the Pitt Building where our Dreaming of the Future installation is. Funny to think of Thomas Thomas sleeping up there amongst the debris as we walk past. If you look at the left hand window of the tower there is a light on, that's out installation. On the Dreaming of the Future website you can zoom the camera out the window and maybe see us walking past!

The Domes in Parkers Piece lit at night, the central point of the festival.

We have all had the lurgy this week. Robin fell asleep on the job.

Today we start in Cambridge. We are all set, I wont say everything is working because I am getting superstitious about Dragons (as you should be when messing with myths!) but the set up has gone well and all our tests have been pretty succesful.

The venue is ok, certainly will get alot of interest as right next to the student union at Anglia Ruskin. We have a really enthusiastic volunteer working with us, Window he's called (well Chris) who looks great in the Monster costume as he is about 7ft tall!

Last night was the launch night and was nice to catch up with all the people we know and have met from our previous workings in Cambridge, and met some very interesting artists from Bristol who also work with MRL and do pervasive stuff. Polar they are called.

The launch had a good night of Cornish Rave performance, was funny and odd interactive music making installations. Saw a cool acid techno drummer, who had set up a laptop to a drum kit and made live techno by drumming, was itching to have a go. Getting a wah wah wah by banging away, cool.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

ENTER Cambridge

Today we are in Cambridge. We have a fancy flat next door to the venue. Meeting Chris at 10am to see the venue, check out if the big projector we have brought will work there and do some tests. GPS is fixed and everything is working.

Cambridge is so cool, feel like I'm in a Merchant Ivory film or Chariots of Fire, lots of posh boys with the flapping hair playing rugby and football on Parkers Piece (a park full of excited students and where the main bit of the festival is happening), opposite our city living flat.

Off to find croissants for breakfast for Matt and Robin.

Friday, April 20, 2007

What next?

Well we have been off on holidays and got back and are now off to Cambridge ENTER_unknown territories festival next week, showing Dragons, the mutli-player game. Will try and blog from there and link with festival blog too.

More information: ENTER website

more pictures

The view from the hotel

The team in Matt's hotel room

Divers swimming out to Alcatraz
Robin in the bar where we drank many Tequila's and met a guy who works with Python, and drank more tequilas...

Capra, escape from Alcatraz!

The docks and looking out to Golden Gate Bridge

Leif in a bar, again

A crazy mural outside the bar
Another Tram
The choclate factory across from Alcatraz, now that is torture!


Lombard Street, where Bullet was filmed - our taxi driver did a very scary impression of the car chase down here!
Museum of Modern Art - me and Robin sneaked off on the last day to get away from games and look at fine art, bliss, my centre of worship. Lichenstein, Picasso...
Leif at the Nokia Ngage party, free bar (really... even the champagne), Leif got very drunk, well we all did, lots of cool geeks there! and we all got a free Nokia blow up sofa that supposedly Capra took to Yosemite and blew up and sat amongst the trees on it (this is a second hand story)
Out and about round Union Square, a tram turning on it's turning thing.
A fire engine (how old fashioned is that? I thought America was a futuristic society)
Houses like in all the films.
Capra - King of the World! He came from the jungle and now look at him in the Hilton hotel, San Francisco negotiating contracts with Hewlett Packard (his words)
Big bus - another example of the futuristic look of America!
What we were really doing there - sitting a computers in a hotel room.

Final photos from San Francisco

Although it was over a month ago and we became incredibly slack at doing any blogging, here are the final pictures of San Francisco.

The workload took over from blogging and all that fun stuff and we got absorbed by the games developers conference. Overall it was a wonderful challenging experience. We were put in the centre of the Hewlett Packard Booth, to showcase their new Mediascape application through our game.

We ended up showing the single player game as it is the most robust version and after some issues with networks it felt like the most appropriate in that environment. It complimented well with Tom's presentations on how Mediascape worked and from our evaluation that took place afterwards it appeared that it was very well received. Certainly lots of exhilarated smiley faces returned from playing in the streets around the Moscone Centre, many "awesomes" (although it seemed a often repeated response all around the trade fair). Being squashed between Nintendo and Nokia Ngage was a good buzz, particularly when people pointed out that our game was one of the only innovative and new things there. Finally and probably most importantly for us, Hewlett Packard's commercial side response was very positive and interested.

Here is a BLOG response and video from one of the testers from the development test prior to the demo at GDC.
Alex Vorbau's HP blog

After the long week of testing and demo-ing our gang got pretty close from hanging out in the Hilton.

We had a last day of relaxing, cycled all the way to some Redwood trees, over the Golden Gate bridge, to Sausalito and then off to some surburban park with some redwood trees, we got lost too many times to get to the real forest. I was on the back of a tandem with Capra which was quite amusing / scary...