TECHNOLOGY AS A TOOL FOR NATION REBUILDING
8:00 – 8:30 Welcome Breakfast
8:30 – 10:00 Introduction and Welcome from First Nations Technology Council
Opening by Elder
Conference Theme: “Technology as a Tool for Nation Rebuilding” – Danny Watts, FNS Co-Chair
Introduction of Agenda – Norm Leech, T’it’q’et Administration, Moderator
10:00-10:20 Health Break
10:20 – 11:20 Roundtable – Gaming as Industry, Community, and Education - After an overview of the video game industry, panel participants will address key questions regarding how video games can be integrated as a tool for Nation rebuilding and open up for questions from conference attendees.
Moderator: Beth A. Dillon, Simon Fraser University
Roneil Reddy, Gekido Design Group Inc.
Jim Sink, Backbone Entertainment
Sean Smillie, Action Pants Inc.
Loretta Sarah Todd, Aboriginal Media Lab
11:30 – 12:50 Panel – Current Gaming Research - Speakers will share examples of current research in gaming in distinct areas.
Games as Education – How games are being used as learning tools in educational settings - Don Bergland, University of Victoria
Games as Cultural Spaces – How games and related forms of Interactive media are being used as cultural spaces.
Nancy Mackin, University of British Columbia, University of Victoria, Mackin Tanaka Architects, Michael Griffin, University of Oxford
Education of Game Development – Capacity-building through learning how to design and development games. Beth A. Dillon, Simon Fraser University
1:00 – 2: 00 Lunch
2:00 – 2:50 Panel – Voices of Youth - Young panel participants who have had different opportunities to develop games will talk about their experiences has brought change to their lives and how learning through gaming is different from the formal education system. Panelists will include Barry Collins from Locus project well as young participants working with the Aurora Research Institute’s CIGEMON project.
3:00 – 3:50 Workshop – Game Development Workshops - Conference participants will get exposure to programs related to game development, so bring your laptop if you can.
Session 1: Game Design Prototyping - Mike Wuetherick, Gekido Design Group Inc.
Session 2: Making Content in Ancient Spaces - Nancy Mackin, University of British Columbia, University of Victoria, Mackin Tanaka Architects, Michael Griffin, University of Oxford
Session 3: Building Game Characters - Barry Collins, Locus Project, Brad Collins, Locus Project
4:00 – 5:00 Expo and Action – Game Projects and Technologies - After concluding remarks, discussion areas will be provided for groups to talk about initiatives and bringing their project ideas to life. The Showcase and the Expo will be open for browsing and interacting with representatives.
Showcase - Open throughout the day, the Showcase will feature posters and interactive access to information about past, current and future projects, technologies, and groups working in the area of indigenous gaming.
Dr. Don Bergland is currently an associate professor of digital arts at the University of Victoria where he teaches courses in media development, digital arts, and 3D interaction. As the former Director of Visual & Audio Arts for Electronic Arts, the world's largest video gaming company, he helped develop major game titles for PC-CD, Sega, Nintendo, and 3DO. He has won over 20 awards for his active work in industry as a graphic artist, designer, animator, writer, and producer and his creative work has been featured in over 120 international exhibitions and performances. He is also the co-author of a series of 6 books dealing with the art of First Nations culture called, Art First Nations: Tradition & Innovation.
Brad and Barry Collins are self-taught game developers with over 16 years combined experience in the video games industry. Together, Brad and Barry have been involved in a number of commercial and independent game development projects including the recent game adaptation of the movie Eragon.
Beth A. Dillon is an Anishinaabe, Metis, and Irish video game writer, journalist, and academic acquiring a PhD in Interactive Arts & Technology from Simon Fraser University, editing CMP's GameCareerGuide.com, and serving as IGDA Game Education’s Communications Director.
Michael Griffin is a Commonwealth scholar at the University of Oxford and a recipient of the Governor General of Canada's Academic Medal. He obtained his first degree in Classics from the University of British Columbia. Michael's doctoral research focuses on ancient philosophy and new digital media for communication in culture, higher education, and politics. In 2004, Michael founded Ancient Spaces, a UBC-funded initiative to immerse young people in the roots of civilization, ranging from the First Nations of British Columbia to the ancient Middle East, Greece, and Rome (www.ancientspaces.com). In 2006, Ancient Spaces was featured in Wired magazine, on CBC Radio, and on CBS in the United States. Last year, Michael delivered the e-learning keynote for the Government of British Columbia's 'Campus 2020' Symposium, and spoke at the Governor-General of Canada's home on the subject of Technology and the Arts. He divides his time between Oxford's Oriel College and Vancouver, where Ancient Spaces is based.
Nancy Mackin MAIBC Ph.D. (Architecture, Landscape Architecture, First Nations Studies) is Adjunct Professor at UBC and the University of Victoria and Principal of Mackin Tanaka Architects. She likes to involve communities in the design of buildings and landscapes, and is delighted to work and teach with Ancient Spaces software that enables people to interactively explore environments of the past and future. Her graduate course, Landscapes and Architecture of Northwest Coast First Peoples, invited Nisga'a and Haida cultural experts to direct students as they modeled villages, places, and technologies from the Northwest Coast region. Nancy is principal on a forthcoming "Textbook of Traditional Knowledge in Northern British Columbia" and co-wrote "Architecture for Elder Health in Remote British Columbia: a Nisga'a-led Research". She is an adopted Killer Whale from the Nisga'a village of Gitwinksihlkw.
Roneil Reddy has been a game industry designer, writer, editor, and producer for the past decade: contributing to numerous titles at Radical Entertainment, working in marketing for Xbox most notably on Microsoft's launch team for Halo 2, directing Vancouver's oldest video game school, College of Interactive Arts, founding iterationNation, and co-coordinating the Northwest Games Festival. His current projects involve innovating a new episodic game genre, collaborating on the organization of a governing body spearheading Vancouver's campaign to become "the Capital of Digital Entertainment," and managing developer relations for Beyond Virtual Inc.
Jim Sink is a game designer and the business development manager for Backbone Entertainment, the most prolific developer for Xbox Live Arcade. He is currently involved with a number of unannounced Playstation 3 and Xbox 360 downloadable titles. His credits include the Xbox Live Arcade games Contra, Frogger, Yie Ar Kung Fu and Rush ‘n Attack, as well as Sonic Rivals PSP.
Sean Smillie has been involved in gaming since 2001. In his career Sean has worked for Buena Vista Games, Electronic Arts Canada and currently serves in the role of Senior Writer/Game Designer for Action Pants Inc. He has worked as a game tester, intern/slave, freelance writer, assistant and associate producer, game designer, and associate director. He is active in promoting the Canadian video game industry by serving on advisory boards for Selkirk College, the IGDA, and the Canadian Awards for the Electronic and Animated Arts – and hosting the dangerously informal Friday Night Get Togethers for film and video game folk in Vancouver.
Loretta Sarah Todd is an internationally acclaimed Cree and Metis director and writer known for her powerful, visual storytelling. Her films have screened world-wide, including at the Sundance Festival, American Indian Film Festival, Yamagata Documentary Festival and the Museum of Modern Art - to name a few. She has received many prestigious honours, including a Rockefeller Fellowship to New York University and attendance at the Sundance Scriptwriter’s Lab, plus awards and citations from notable events such as the Hot Docs Festival and the Toronto International Film Festival.
Mike Wuetherick is the Founder of the Gekido Design Group. With over 20 years of game programming and 10 years of experience in Internet-based development, Mike has been involved in everything from E-Commerce and
Affiliate system, Content Management, Customer Relationship and Content Delivery systems for Video, Audio and XML-based data networks.
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