Centipede Creator Speaks At Austin WIGI Conference

centipedia.jpgNext weekend the Austin Game Developers Conference will be playing host to "She Got Game", a conference presented by Women in Games International on Saturday the 8th that looks at the experiences of women in the gaming industry. The keynote speaker for the event will be Dona C. Bailey, a Professor at the University of Arkansas who is known in gaming circles as the first woman to create an arcade game. In 1980 Bailey designed and programmed the arcade classic Centipede along with Ed Logg, and her keynote will focus on women in the industry cultivating and communicating powerful ideas.

"I'm hoping to be helpful to someone now who may be in a situation similar to the one I was in at Atari, said Bailey, " I often wish there had been a group of WIGI colleagues back then from whom I could have gotten advice!"

Other topics to be discussed at the conference included the importance of diversity in development teams and how to expand MMO content and game play for women. More details after the jump.

Women in Games International to present conference at Austin Game Developers Conference "She Got Game" Looks at Experiences of Women in the Interactive Game Industry

August 30, 2007 - Austin, TX - Women in Games International will hold its next conference on Saturday, September 8 in Austin, Texas. Entitled "She Got Game," the conference will offer information on current trends in diversifying the games industry talent pool and how these efforts will impact the industry and its products in the future. This half-day seminar provides timely, useful information for women and men alike, as well as new and veteran game developers.

"She Got Game," presented in conjunction with CMP Game Group's Austin Game Developers Conference, will be held on Saturday, September 8, 2007 from 11 am to 5 pm. Speakers include industry experts from Amaze Entertainment, BioWare, Midway, NCsoft, Sony Online Entertainment, Ubisoft, and numerous other games industry companies.

"WIGI and its commitment to organising these meaningful events is invaluable to the game community," said Izora de Lillard, Event Manager for Austin Game Developers Conference, "The impact of offering this level of information, community and expert information to an often overlooked sector of the industry has been profound. We're proud to be involved." Fiona Cherbak, Chair of WIGI's Strategic Alliances committee, adds "Co-locating this latest WIGI conference at the Austin Game Developers Conference creates a unique opportunity to supplement the overall experience of peers and professionals who attend the various games industry events in Austin this September. This promises to be the most abundant games-related event offering in Austin to date."

Keynote speaker is Dona C Bailey, Professor at University of Arkansas. She was one of the few female game programmers in the industry in the 80's, and was also the programmer and designer responsible for ever-popular Centipede game. "I'm hoping to be helpful to someone now who may be in a situation similar to the one I was in at Atari, said Bailey, " I often wish there had been a group of WIGI colleagues back then from whom I could have gotten advice!"

Bailey's keynote will focus on how women in the industry can cultivate powerful ideas, how to communicate those ideas effectively, and how to use artful creativity to perhaps broaden game audiences. Bailey is one of many other industry notables, visionaries and experts scheduled at the event. Her keynote speech will be offered in the morning, the event then moves on to a variety of panels after lunch and finishes the day with an array of roundtable discussions.

Topics vary to include issues of the past, present and future of women and their impact in game development, including panels such as "Diversity Equals Dollars: Why having a diverse development team is good for your bottom line." Industry experts will discuss how workplace diversity and environments have evolved in the games industry over the last 2 decades, what the experience is like now for people entering the industry, and why diversity equals profitability.

Another panel is titled "Her Virtual Life: Women and Online Games." With the statistics showing that MMO's are the second largest market for women gamers, industry experts will address how game developers can utilise this information to expand MMO content and game play. Roundtable discussions will include topics such as "Attracting and Retaining Female Players in Virtual Worlds," "Looking Good on Paper" and "Making Good Industry Connections."

Located at the Austin Convention Center in Austin, registration for "She Got Game" is $US55 for general attendees, $US40 for WIGI members and $US30 for students with I.D. AGDC pass holders will be admitted for no charge, but must pre-register. Space is limited, so interested attendees are encouraged to secure their spot by registering online today at www.womeningamesinternational.org.


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