//2011 Festival: A Word from IndieCade's 2011 Conference Co-Chairs

The IndieCade conference has hosted some of the most amazing talks of recent memory, and has become a go-to event for the indie community. It's that yearly event where we all get to take a deep breath, catch up with our peers, show and discuss our work, and recalibrate our expectations and hopes as to what it means to be independent game developers. Somehow, IndieCade is at once cozy and open, comfortable and inspiring in ways that is impossible at most all other game industry events.

Our primary goal in assembling the 2011 conference was to retain the caliber and scope of the sessions. Part of our strategy in doing this was to gather a good mix of experienced and new developers and a number of people outside of the "usual suspects." The conference sessions cover topics such as puzzle design, deep competitive multiplayer games, creative coding, minimalist storytelling, exploratory game design, inspirations from outside games, and much more. We tried our best to integrate the sessions with the rest of the festival, so that we all have the opportunity to see the amazing work this year's finalists have brought to Culver City!

See you in October in sunny L.A.!

John Sharp, Colleen Macklin, and Andy Nealen
Co-Chairs, IndieCade Conference 2011

//Conference Chairs Background

John Sharp
John Sharp is a game designer, art historian and educator. He has been involved in the creation and study of art and design for twenty years. John is a member of the game design collective Local No. 12, which focuses on games as a research platform. John is also a member of the Leisure Collective, a group dedicated to the intersection of games, narrative and art. John is an associate professor in the School of Literature, Communication and Culture’s Digital Media program at the Georgia Institute of Technology. John is a partner in Supercosm, where he focuses on interaction and game design for arts and education clients. His work has been recognized by ID Magazine, the Art Director's Club and the Webby Awards. This is John's second year as IndieCade conference co-chair.

Andy Nealen
Andy is a faculty member in the department of computer science at Rutgers University, where he teaches computer graphics and game design. Some time ago, he studied architecture and structural engineering, and worked in those fields before turning his attention to the study and design of computer games and graphics. He has since obtained a phd in computer science, helped out with the award-winning game Osmos, published work at siggraph, and spoken at various game and graphics conferences. Some of his current obsessions include minimalist game design patterns, the semiology of graphics, perceptual science, card/board game design, and simple graphical user interfaces. When not thinking about design and/or traveling, he indulges in training sessions of street fighter, star craft, chess, and go. Osmos won IndieCade's Best in Show Award in 2009.

Colleen Macklin
Colleen Macklin is an Associate Professor in the Department of Communication Design and Technology at Parsons The New School for Design in New York City and Director of PETLab (Prototyping Evaluation, Teaching and Learning lab), a lab focused on developing games for experimental learning and social engagement. PETLab projects include a curriculum in game design for the Boys and Girls Club, a set of statistical games for the Red Cross Climate Centre, and big games such as Re:Activism and the "fiscal" sport Budgetball, which is played every year on the National Mall in Washington, DC by college students and members of the legislative and executive branch. She is a member of the game design collectives Local No. 12 and The Leisure Collective. Her work has been shown at Come Out and Play, SoundLab, The Whitney Museum for American Art and Creative Time. BFA, Media Arts Pratt Institute, graduate studies in Computer Science, CUNY and International Affairs, The New School. Colleen chaired the IndieCade Big Games Program in 2010.