Cindy Poremba is a Professor of Game Design at Sheridan College. She speaks internationally at conferences and invited lectures and has published work in journals such as Eludamos, Loading and Games & Culture, as well as edited collections and magazines. Cindy is currently on the Board of Directors of Toronto’s Hand Eye Society, North America’s oldest videogame arts non-profit. She organizes exhibitions as an independent curator, including Joue le jeu (Paris, Fr), XYZ: Alternative Voices in Game Design (Atlanta, GA), and creates games and “new arcade” events as a member of the kokoromi experimental game collective.
In her opening talk "Experiment! Anti-Hype Inspired Design Cindy explore how from 2006-2010, the kokoromi collective hosted a series of arcade parties known as GAMMA: each focused on a particular theme designed to encourage game designers to take risks with experimental, non-commercial games, custom designed for cross-genre audiences in a lively public space. This year marks the 10th anniversary of this influential “new arcade” collective and provocative GAMMA series, which has had a lasting impact on both the contemporary independent game scene, and the discourse surrounding games and art. How did a bunch of oddball contrarians change the gaming landscape... with a party?
Victor is a PhD candidate co-supervised by Dr. Stacey Scott in the department of Systems Design Engineering and Dr. Edward Lank in the department of Computer Science at the University of Waterloo. He received his MPhil in Computer Science, B(Eng) in Computer Science Information Engineering from the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology. His primary research interest is Human-Computer Interaction and its applications in large interactive surfaces, particularly in interface design to better engage novice users. He is also interested in extending his work to gameplay and collaborative work, in combination with technologies such as mixed reality and wearables.
David is an experienced senior executive and accomplished serial entrepreneur. He has led, founded, acquired and successfully sold a large number of gaming, broadcast, entertainment and technology related businesses over the past thirty+ years. He is currently the CEO of Boom Gaming and a partner at the Debono Group.
David received his MBA from the Schulich School of Business and is graduate of the Banff School of Fine Arts Electronic and Film Media Program.
He has also served as a Sessional Professor in Strategic Management of Technology at the University of Windsor's Odette School of Business Executive MBA program.
Lynn Hughes is a digital media and games researcher, artist, curator and teacher who holds the Chair of Interaction Design and Games innovation at Concordia University. She was instrumental in the founding and financing of the Hexagram Institute for Media Art and Technology and, more recently, co-founded (with sociologist, Dr Bart Simon) the Technoculture, Art and Games (TAG) Research Centre -a radically interdisciplinary centre that fosters game research and design. Lynn’s own production focuses on the design of full body, sensor based games.
Stephenie Koerne is the Digital Media Instructor and Multimedia Technician for the Master of Digital Experience Innovation (MDEI) program at the University of Waterloo Stratford Campus. Additionally, Stephenie is the instructor for GBDA 228: Digital Imaging.
Stephenie has an extensive background in the fine and digital arts. Her primary area of interest in photography is in alternative and experimental methods, and merging traditional historical processes with contemporary digital processes. She has a wide-breadth of knowledge working with, and teaching, a variety of creative software programs.
Stephenie received her Bachelor of Arts in Photocommunications from St. Edward's University in Austin, Texas, and her Master of Fine Arts in Photography from the Academy of Art University in San Francisco, California.
Jonathan Rodriguez speaks and consults on a variety of game-related research and development topics, helping his clients discover and implement creative solutions to practical design and development issues. After six years of industry experience followed by seven years of graduate studies, Jonathan is finally getting close to completing his Ph.D. in Computer Science at the University of Waterloo. He also developed the artificial intelligence for the game Rival Books of Aster, held several workshops on design and creativity, and was the lead organizer for two game jams. He currently lives in Kitchener, Ontario with his wife and three children.
Severin Smith has designed, prototyped and implemented a diverse range interactive systems including novel haptic and graphic interfaces for the hands and feet, wearable gaming systems, real-time mobile/web tools for emergency responders and large scale multimedia lighting systems. He has an interdisciplinary background spanning both Engineering and New Media Art.
He's currently co-founder of the Minuum Keyboard a YCombinator backed startup designing new ways for people to communicate via text, image and other rich content.
Diane Watson is a PhD student at the University of Waterloo studying Human Computer Interaction in the David R. Cheritan School of Computer Science. She is heavily involved in the Games Institute at the University of Waterloo. Her PhD focus is on gamification; in particular, how positive behaviours can be encouraged through games. One such game is Reading Garden, a motivational game that encourages undergraduate students to participate in self-study activities such as reading the text book. She has also investigated how people's psychological needs are being met when they use interactive touch surfaces.
Steve Wilcox is a PhD candidate in the English department at the University of Waterloo where he studies empathy, videogames, comics, and rhetoric. His focus is on the use of media for translating knowledge between bodies, communities, and cultures. He has designed a number of videogames, including Allergies & Allegories, a food-allergy knowledge translation game funded through a Canadian Institutes of Health Research grant. He has taught courses on digital cultures and gender and race in the games industry, and guest lectured on the use of games as arguments and the Unreal Development Kit. Lastly, he is a co-founder and former editor-in-chief of First Person Scholar, a weekly game studies periodical.
Elise Vist is a PhD Candidate at the University of Waterloo, Canada, in the English Department. She is a member of the IMMERSe Network and a researcher at the Games Institute, where she studies fannish immersion; that is, how we work to immerse ourselves in fanon, canon, and everything in between. When she isn’t playing role-playing games, Elise is the Associate Book Reviews Editor and the Podcast Producer at First Person Scholar, the Games Institute’s online games publication.
Ginny Dybenko comes to the role of Executive Director of the new Centre for Digital Media at the Stratford Campus of the University of Waterloo following five years as the Dean of the Wilfrid Laurier School of Business & Economics and over 30 years of corporate experience.
Her new role focuses on setting future direction for the University of Waterloo in Digital Media – an area critical to the University and to Canada. Ginny previous held a number of senior executive roles in both Bell Canada and a high tech startup – including a five year period as President and CEO of Bell Advanced Communications. In that role she contributed to Bell Canada’s pursuit of Canada’s first broadband initiative, Canada’s Information Highway, CA*net; the formation of a Professional Services business unit within Bell Canada and the pioneering of Bell’s first successful Electronic Commerce service offering.
I am a long-time faculty member in the English department at the University of Waterloo, Canada, and the director of the Games Institute (uwaterloo.ca/games-institute). The Games Institute was created to study game, game-driven interactions and technologies, and, in a broader scope, any form of rich, compelling engagement with digital technologies.
My years at the University of Waterloo have been spent helping to build the Rhetoric and Professional Writing program at the undergraduate level and the Rhetoric and Communication Design program at the graduate level while establishing a profile in the practice of professional communication and documentation. To those ends, I have published numerous how-to computer books and many feature articles, columns, and reviews in computer magazines such as PC Magazine, Smart Computing, PC Computing, PC Gamer, etc. In addition, I have consulted with a variety of technology companies on topics such as digital media creation, methods of effective interactive communication, proposal writing, copyright and patent issues, and public relations. As a games enthusiast, I have designed, developed, and produced board games of the complex simulation kind. All of this activity has found its way into my classes and my research, as has my long-time fascination with the writings of J. R. R. Tolkien. My games studies work includes the relationship of boardgames to videogames, the construction of narrative and dialogue in videogames, and the adaption of Tolkien’s works from book and film into games.
Bob retired from Christie Digital Systems Canada Inc. in February 2011 after an exciting career leading talented teams in the creation of ground-breaking high technology products. Christie is a global leader in projection and electronic display products and has the world’s largest installed base of digital cinema projection systems.
Bob is also a board member of Advanced Asset Tracking Systems Inc.
Before joining Christie, Bob was VP of Engineering at Delphax Systems (now Delphax Technologies Inc.), a manufacturer of ultra-high-speed digital printing systems.
Bob is currently Vice-Chair of the Ontario Centres of Excellence IT/Digital Media advisory board. He is also involved with several business incubator and accelerator initiatives –in particular, the Accelerator Centre, the University of Waterloo REAP program, and the Communitech Hyperdrive accelerator. He has also mentored with the Ryerson University Digital Media Zone and Haltech.
Bob holds a bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Waterloo in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada and a master’s degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Canterbury in New Zealand. He is a licensed professional engineer (P. Eng.) with Professional Engineers Ontario and has eleven patents.
Dr. Salvini, a seasoned executive with proven experience in growing highly profitable, world-class technology companies, comes to the Accelerator Centre from Christie Digital Systems Canada Inc., where he served as Chief Technology Officer guiding the company’s global research and innovation strategy. Prior to Christie, Dr. Salvini was CTO at Toronto-based Side Effects Software, where he led an award-winning team of mathematicians and software developers in the creation of 3D animation and visual effects software for Hollywood feature films.
He is an active leader within the local and digital media communities serving on numerous boards including as Chair of GRAND (Canada’s Digital Media Network of Centres of Excellence) and President of the University of Waterloo Alumni Council. In 2007, Dr. Salvini was named one of Canada’s Top 40 Under 40™, a national award that honors individuals for outstanding achievements in innovation, leadership, vision, and community involvement.
Dr. Salvini holds a BMath degree in Computer Science from the University of Waterloo, MASc and PhD degrees in Engineering from the University of Toronto, and an MBA from the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto. He lives in Kitchener with his wife and two children.