One of the truly wonderful things about the Internet is that although I couldn’t go to the Thinking Digitally conference (I wish I had now!), I am able to watch, listen and learn about a world that I’m interested in, but don’t know enough about. The Thinking Digitally conference is held annually at The Sage, Gateshead since 2008 and the latest was delivered from 19-21 May 2015 for those those curious about how technology is shaping our future. It’s an experience for those who have a desire to learn and who seek connection to a community of other innovators, inventors, leaders, makers and creators of our future. It is a feast of ideas and should open your mind to new possibilities as it did mine. The sessions are here:

http://www.thinkingdigital.co.uk/stream/session-1/

http://www.thinkingdigital.co.uk/stream/session-2/

For instance Holly Goodier, currently the Director of Marketing and Audiences at BBC Digital, and a member of the BBC’s Digital Board leading teams responsible for research, analytics, creative strategy and marketing across the BBC’s digital portfolio, speaks about the emotional web observing that younger people are watching less television. A younger audience prefer online to television, the preferred entertainment option for the older generation. She drills down into how younger audience behave connectively,  meeting other people online as a form of entertainment. “Don’t spend time predicting the future; let’s make it what we want it to be” declares Holly Goodier from @BBC@ThinkingDigital #TDC15.

Tony Hey as former Vice President of Microsoft Research Connections, a division of Microsoft Research, talks about embodied applications such as a speeding company car emailing the boss!  Ade Adewunmi is amongst the other speakers, who is Government Digital Agent at Government Digital Service. But….Sam Aaron who is a Post-doctoral Researcher at the University of Cambridge Computer Laboratory and codes music for people to dance to is a revelation. Do you know what a Raspberry Pi is? Sam will tell you if you watch the conference (from c.1hr 10 mins). Sam (who was compared to Mozart on Twitter during his talk) entertainingly demonstrates ‘experiment and play’ to the audience and how to program some music including how to include drum and bass and adding reverb. What may appear to be, at least on the surface an IT media conference turns into an amazing trance session!  One member of the audience tweeted: ‘Watching @samaaron use Sonic Pi is one of be most mesmerising, gorgeous things #tdc15‘. Apparently a 10 yr-old can do music programming! Sam asks the audience at one point: ‘is this interesting’. The audience cheer in euphoric response. A full list of speakers is included here:

http://www.thinkingdigital.co.uk/speakers/

 

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Holly Goodier (Director of Marketing and Audiences at BBC Digital)

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