UCSC Media Systems project hosts leaders in the field, Aug.
Associate Professor of Computer Science Noah
Wardrip-Fruin (above), and History professor Alan
Christy (below), are just two of the UCSC faculty who
will take part in the Aug. 26-29 workshop.
All interactive media-whether in art, entertainment,
education, or research---are driven by computational
But it has become apparent that as interactive media have
been rapidly growing in importance to the field of computer
science, other disciplines in the arts and humanities are
also developing new approaches to computational
In fact, interaction between media-focused computer
science, the digital humanities and digital arts might have
the potential to drive major progress in interactive media
creation and understanding.
With that in mind, UCSC's Center for Games and Playable
Media, in collaboration with the campus's Institute for
Humanities Research, will host a three-day workshop, August
26-29, to discuss these issues.
The meeting is supported by an unprecedented group of
partners, including the National Science Foundation,
National Endowment for the Humanities, National Endowment
for the Arts, and both Microsoft Research and Microsoft
Participants will include academic leaders from across the
country who have been crossing the boundaries of
media-focused computer science, the digital humanities and
the digital arts.
Industry leaders from feature film, video games, and
virtual worlds will also be in attendance.
"This is the first project, to my knowledge, that has
involved the NSF, NEH, and NEA all together," noted Noah G.
Wardrip-Fruin, UCSC associate professor of computer
science. "And I think it's a sign of things to
"Computer science, the digital humanities, and the digital
arts are making important new connections--particularly
around our changing view of computational processes as
cultural objects, tools, and expressions--which this
project aims to bring to a new level of awareness and help
catalyze in taking the next step. It's an important thing
in universities, but also in industry," he added.
These efforts offer the potential to create endless
possibilities for media ranging from digital art to
computer games, interactive narratives, and transmedia
They also offer the opportunity to enable those with an
artistic vision to create types of media more
computationally complex than is now currently possible for
those not trained in computer science.
The goal of the gathering is to create a whitepaper
summarizing lessons learned and future directions to take,
as well as a set of multi-institution project proposals
designed to move the field forward.
In addition, talks from the meeting will be made available
on video, and the findings will be presented at other
national meetings across the country.
For more information and a list of event participants,
visit the event web