The 32nd SIGGRAPH 2005 International Conference on Computer Graphics and Interactive Techniques, was held July 31 to August 4 in Los Angeles this year.

This annual conference, attended by nearly 30,000 registrants, is the preeminent graphics-related conference that attracts artists, game designers, scientists, and film and video professionals from around the world.

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A literate individual has been traditionally defined as a person who can read or write text based material. This definition has worked well for several hundred years. Although the ability to read and write remains a definition of literacy for most of the world's population, it has come under scrutiny by those living in societies where the traditional book, magazine, and newspaper has been supplemented with audio, visual, and digital media.

Today, the term "literacy" is used in several contexts.

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Close your eyes for a moment and focus on your sense of hearing. What do you hear when you open your ear lids and listen to the soundscape around you?

Most media designers are well educated in visual design and have the ability to see the unusual in what to others often find ordinary and or mundane. Yet few of these same designers have learned to listen. This results in an unbalanced orientation to design with an emphasis on the visual with little attention to the unique contribution sound can make in a production.

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As a web manager for several educational sites I receive a lot of e-mail requesting "assistance" with various topics. Most all of the mail comes from people I of course don't know. My "first impression" of the person at the other end of the wire is created from the presentation of content in his or her e-mail posting.

My correspondence has caused me to think about the presentation of self through one's own e-mail postings. I recently read an e-mail cover letter sent by an individual applying for a job. It read something like, "Hi, I'm applying for that job in today's paper. My resume is attached." No Dear Sir, Madam, or even a To Whom It May Concern. Just, "Hi". There was no indication as to which job for which she was applying and no discussion about her qualifications. This hastily written note was destined no to make a good first impression.

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