ETC Panel: USC Students Discuss the Future of Entertainment

The ETC invited nine undergraduate students from the USC School of Cinematic Arts to the December 13, 2018 All Members Meeting to discuss their impressions regarding the future of entertainment. Click here for a six-minute highlight reel from that one-hour conversation, featuring student perspectives on immersive storytelling, social media, content distribution and more. ETC plans to produce student discussions at least quarterly in 2019 — twice at our Executive Board Meetings and twice for our All Members Meetings. We encourage everyone at an ETC-member company to attend (as appropriate) and ask questions at these future sessions. Continue reading ETC Panel: USC Students Discuss the Future of Entertainment

Students Discuss Their Media Habits at ETC Member Meeting

The ETC@USC has produced a 10-minute highlights reel edited from a one-hour discussion with a panel of eight USC students that took place at the ETC’s April 6th All Members Meeting. The panel of undergraduates included students studying business, the arts, journalism and technology. The students discussed what motivates them to go to a movie theater, the role of big screen TVs in their lives, what they think of VR and AR, what they would buy if they were given $3,000 to spend on entertainment, and a number of other interesting topics. Visit the ETC website or YouTube channel to access the video.

Continue reading Students Discuss Their Media Habits at ETC Member Meeting

Skidmore Combines 360VR Experience with Acceptance Letter

Skidmore College, a liberal arts institution in Upstate New York, is sending its student candidates a new form of acceptance letter. Each package includes a cardboard VR viewer with a link to an immersive, 360-degree video that illustrates life at Skidmore. The 360VR makeover is an attempt to go beyond the traditional college tour or promo video. “This was a chance to answer one of the top questions accepted candidates ask, which is what is it like to be a Skidmore student when I’m not in class,” explained Luke Meyer, director of marketing and engagement. Continue reading Skidmore Combines 360VR Experience with Acceptance Letter

Teens Create Shareable Video Bios with Facebook’s Lifestage

Constructed as a way for high school students to get to know their classmates, Facebook’s new Lifestage is a standalone iOS app, aimed at people 21 and under. The user answers a series of biographical questions by shooting video rather than writing text, and Lifestage turns the clips into a video profile that others can watch. Users, who can swipe to block and/or report sketchy visitors, do not need a Facebook account but instead select their high school to see video profiles of classmates. Continue reading Teens Create Shareable Video Bios with Facebook’s Lifestage

Researchers Demo Environmental Modeling Scanner at NAB

Korean grad students are developing an Environmental Modeling Scanner that takes an interesting approach to detailed scanning of complex and crowded environments. Their hardware/software capture volumetric architectural and décor details and, in post-processing, extract people and any other moving or unwanted elements from the model. The approach creates a model by scanning an environment, the result of which can be combined with other capture sessions. They are demonstrating their solution at the NAB Show’s VR Zone in the North Hall of the Las Vegas Convention Center. Continue reading Researchers Demo Environmental Modeling Scanner at NAB

Google Expands Access to its Educational VR Field Trip App

Google has released a beta Android app for its Google Expeditions Pioneer Program that allows educators to bring their students on a virtual reality field trip. The VR content includes immersive educational experiences in locations such as Machu Picchu, Mars, the Great Barrier Reef and Buckingham Palace. Students use Google Cardboard headsets to view the content while the teacher can use a tablet to guide their students through the location and monitor where each student is looking. Continue reading Google Expands Access to its Educational VR Field Trip App

Microsoft Developing a Classroom Edition of ‘Minecraft’ Game

The building-block game “Minecraft” may make its way into classrooms next fall. Microsoft is planning to launch a classroom version of the game, which will allow teachers to create custom challenges and track students’ progress on their building projects. This new version of “Minecraft” would be based on “MinecraftEdu,” a spinoff of the original game that was sold to Microsoft last year. Microsoft plans to charge $5 per student annually for the classroom version of the game. Continue reading Microsoft Developing a Classroom Edition of ‘Minecraft’ Game

Kodak Shoots for Filmmakers, Students with Super 8 Camera

Eastman Kodak went retro this week at CES with a film camera based on the Super 8 design from 50 years ago. Kodak ceased production of Super 8 cameras in 1982, once video had become more popular for recording home movies. Today, most consumers use their mobile phones or small action cams for shooting personal video. Citing the preference of some Hollywood directors to produce their movies in 35mm or 70mm, Kodak chief exec Jeff Clarke believes there are professional as well as amateur filmmakers who would appreciate the opportunity to work with film rather than video. Continue reading Kodak Shoots for Filmmakers, Students with Super 8 Camera

GoPro and USC Ink Deal to Use Cameras for Film, Games, VR

In GoPro’s first ever deal with an educational institution, the camera company and USC School of Cinematic Arts announced that USC students will receive help to distribute, monetize and promote content created with GoPro camera equipment. As part of the deal, GoPro will donate 150 cameras and accessories, and GoPro camera technology will be incorporated into the school’s filmmaking curriculum — including education, workshops and one-on-one tutoring — this fall. The cameras will also be used for gaming and VR. Continue reading GoPro and USC Ink Deal to Use Cameras for Film, Games, VR

Federal Program Hopes to Provide Affordable Internet Access

The Obama Administration announced its plan to create a program that would provide thousands of public housing residents with access to free or low-priced Internet services. In some areas broadband services could be reduced to as little as $9.95 a month. Statistics from the White House Council of Economic Advisers highlighted that fewer than half of American low-income households presently have Internet access. The ConnectHome initiative is expected to reach nearly 275,000 households, including 200,000 children. Continue reading Federal Program Hopes to Provide Affordable Internet Access

Amazon Partners with Universities to Deliver Student Savings

Amazon is looking to build a greater presence on college campuses by working with three universities to run co-branded websites and distribution centers for students on campus. The websites will sell textbooks, student apparel, food and just about anything else one could buy from Amazon. The universities that have agreed to partner with Amazon for the “Amazon Campus” initiative include Purdue University, the University of Massachusetts Amherst and the University of California Davis. Continue reading Amazon Partners with Universities to Deliver Student Savings

Snapchat Adds ‘Our Campus Story’ Exclusively for Colleges

Snapchat’s popular “Our Story” montages from live events around the world are so popular that the company is adding a similar feature to share students’ college experiences. The “Our Campus Story” feature only allows people on campus to post and view the communal story. Like with “Our Story,” Snapchat will still approve all of the posts before they get added to the mix. The new feature launched last week at UCLA, the University of Southern California, Penn State, and UT Austin. Continue reading Snapchat Adds ‘Our Campus Story’ Exclusively for Colleges

Advertising May Result From $10 Billion Snapchat Investment

Snapchat is expecting a $10 billion investment from VC firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers. Even though the startup does not have a clear business model, its valuation has increased dramatically from last year’s $2 billion. The investment could help Snapchat advance into the advertising world, a move that is expected this year. Snapchat, which is the third-most used app among millennials, may become a viable platform for generating revenue from the age group through advertising. Continue reading Advertising May Result From $10 Billion Snapchat Investment

New Form Digital Studio to Launch Program at USC This Fall

Director Ron Howard and producer Brian Grazer’s newly launched digital studio, New Form, will team up with students from the University of Southern California’s School of Cinematic Arts to develop digital content. Two-person teams of students will participate in the year-long program to develop scripted series for the Web and pitch their projects. At the end of the first semester, three of the pitches will be selected for production to take place during the second semester. Continue reading New Form Digital Studio to Launch Program at USC This Fall

University is First to Recognize Video Gaming as Varsity Sport

A private university in Chicago is leveraging the growing popularity of eSports to become the first U.S. school to formally recognize electronic gaming as a form of collegiate athletics. Starting this fall, Robert Morris University-Illinois will consider “League of Legends” a competitive varsity sport, and will offer athletic scholarships to star players valued up to 50 percent the cost of tuition and room and board. The university is currently recruiting student gamers for the first year of competition. Continue reading University is First to Recognize Video Gaming as Varsity Sport

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