We had a workshop in the DINO project today in the lab (Digital Idea Places North) which tries to bring together people interested in the media and creative industries (with a particular focus on games, web media and film). A most interesting group of people turned up for the workshop (focus on art/culture and the industry) – more than 20 people. Game company people, artists, film people, an indy game producer, a scripwriter, a cultural analysis student, program leaders for degree programs at the university (interaction and design, scriptwriting), in total three company CEO:s and a managing director, an interactive history group, a few university people, students from the school of fine arts and others.
After the workshop there was an open seminar in the lab on the history of computer game industry. Ulf Sandqvist (economic history) talked about his research for a crowd of at least 30 people. The talk dealt with the history of the industry globally and nationally as well as current perspectives and a discussion of the current situation in Umeå. We have quite a few game companies here, some of which emerged out of Daydream. Ulf showed that most game companies historically have not really been doing well in Sweden. Things are better now (on the whole), but it is still not a really big industry in Sweden. But the potentialis large – partly because of the way a company can grow very quick if you pick a few major titles. And Umeå is well positioned I think.
I really enjoyed talking to so many interesting people. For instance, I got to know a bit about Nifflas’ work. Great stuff!