19th - 21st September 2007            Perth, Western Australia



Keynote Speakers


Professor Masa Inakage, Keio University, Japan


Media Design Aesthetics: Emotional and Entertaining Experience Design for the Ubiquitous Society

Abstract: Our society is in the midst of paradigm shift from mass media-based society to personal media-based society, driven by the digital revolution. Mass media and communication media are converging to form massively connected personal and everywhere media. In the personal and everywhere media, the interaction of people, artifacts, and the environment contributes to the emotional and entertaining experience in the daily life. Thus, the experience design is the core activity of media design, and aesthetics is the key component in the media design formula. The talk touches various areas of media design through the lens of content design and supporting technology research drawing on the recent research projects at Keio University, including digital cinema, ubiquitous contents, and participatory communities.

Masa Inakage is a Professor of the Faculty of Environmental Information at Keio University and the President of the Media Studio. He is an internationally-renowned digital artist, director, and producer. He is one of Japan's leading authorities on emerging technologies and digital entertainment content production. His artworks and animation works have been shown internationally at galleries and festivals. He has spoken widely and delivered numerous papers and articles on the subject of computer graphics and digital entertainment as well as business strategies. He is actively involved in variety of projects, including feature films, broadcast programs, interactively displays and events. His current research projects include digital cinema, digital entertainment, media design, and ubiquitous content design. He is a member of ACM SIGGRAPH and Visual Effects Society.


Junichi Osada (NEC Design, Ltd.) and Zenjiro (YOSHIMOTO KOGYO, Ltd.), Japan


Research Collaboration for “Humorous Interaction”

2-Man Stand-Up Comedy (Manzai) with a Robot

More details at: http://www.incx.nec.co.jp/robot/english/papejiro/index.html

Abstract: We are now in the process of developing PaPe-jiro as part of our research in human-robot communication. For a robot companion in the home, the mere ability to assist the family with various chores is not enough; it also needs to be able to converse with family members in a pleasant way, so that they develop a fondness for it. We feel that this is one of the most important aspects of our current robot research and development. In collaboration with well-known Japanese comedian Zenjiro, we tackled this challenge by focusing on developing the robot's sense of humor. In this experiment, PaPe-jiro joined Zenjiro onstage as the "straight man" to his comedy routine. This allowed us to explore the possibility of the robot's ability to laugh and joke, as well as search for an appropriate brand of robot-specific humor.

Junichi Osada is a senior designer at NEC Design, Ltd. He is also an adjunct instructor at the Faculty of Art and Communication Evening Division in Tama Art University. He is in charge of the art direction of the personal robot - "PaPeRo", and the research and development activities in the NEC Central laboratory. He is one of few designers who have experience in designing personal robot in Japan. His design works and researches are based on interaction design with music and sound. In the PaPeRo development, he focused on the communications between human and robot. He models the behavior of all robots as design objects. They are motion, tone of the voice, scripts by text-to-speech synthesis, sound/music effects, and words of voice-recognition, etc. As for these design objects, the art direction by using the dimension of "Tempo" of music is his original work. He also advances the cultural science collaboration research in the area of robot research with the sociology , social psychology, clinical psychology and philosophy. The collaboration with different domains is practiced, and one of the aims of his activities is to cultivate this novel research areas. At the University, he takes care of Sound and Music design exercises. He is a member of JSSD, JPA, and JCSS.

Zenjiro became an assistant of a famous comedian, Ryutaro Kamioka in 1986. His first stage was "Kibun wa Jamaica" comedy show on Yomiuri TV in 1987. He appears as regular host on a lot of TV and Radio shows. His Representative program is "TEREBI NO TSUBO". He has started challenging himself performing in English and performed all over the world since 1999. He appeared in "Stand up night" on HBO, USA, "Adam & Joe Show"on BBC, UK,"Just for laughs" on CBC, Canada. Zenjiro also has a strong interest in New type of Comedy culture. He has started performing with Robot and performed in 2003. He made talking comedy Robot jointly with NEC company. He and robot have been the guest on the BBC "Japanorama" TV program in 2006. He hopes to continue his acting work and joint development to make funny jokes with Robot at all over the world.


Invited Session

Session title: Virtual Realities and New Entertainment


Ryohei Nakatsu, Ph. D.

Professor, School of Science and Technology, Kwansei Gakuin University

Chair, IFIP TC 14 (Technical Committee on Entertainment Computing)

2-1 Gauen, Sanda, 669-1337 Japan

E-mail: nakatsu@ksc.kwansei.ac.jp

Various kinds of research have been undertaken in the field of virtual realities (VR). Basic concept of virtual reality is to construct three-dimensional virtual world and to give people who are inside this virtual world the feeling of presence.  By using VR technologies, it has been expected that people could virtually go to different countries and learn different cultures through their own experiences.   Also it has been expected that people could even go to different planet or different time and learn astronomy or history through their own experience.  Although various kinds of VR technologies have been studied and developed, however, VR has been adopted to only a few applications.  This means that only a small effort have been done for the real applications of VR technologies.

We believe that entertainment is the most appropriate application area of VR.  The basic concept of entertainment is to lead people into virtual world and give them totally difference experiences from their daily experiences.  Also it is important to emphasize that entertainment is not only for pastime.  Entertainment has been taking very important parts in our life by refreshing us and activating our creativity.  Recently by the advancement of computers and networks, new types of entertainment have been emerging such as video games, entertainment robots, and network games.  By applying VR technologies we can expect that more and more new entertainment will emerge.  Also it is expected that various kinds of business and education applications would emerge starting from these new entertainment.

The goal of this special session is to give the audience the information on the most advanced VR technologies and the possibilities of new entertainment utilizing these technologies.  Also we expect that the lecturers would inform the audience of our future life and future societies these new entertainment would realize.  Since our lectures have very different backgrounds and expertise, it is expected that the audience would grasp the whole trends in the area of VR and entertainment through the talk of the lecturers.