Throughout the year I speak at various conferences.


Moderated a panel on May 4th, 2011: “Transmedia Storytelling – Crossing the Line towards Infinity and Beyond”


Moderated a panel on May 6th, 2010: “Transmedia Storytelling II – Crossing the Line towards Infinity and Beyond
The Fabric of Dreams: Games, Graphic Novels, Social Marketing, Web, TV, Movies, Apps.” Panelists included Adam Armus (Executive Producer, Heroes), Flint Dille (Writer & Interactive Storyteller), Lori Schwartz (SVP, Director of IPG Emerging Media Lab) and Behnam Karbassi (Founding Partner, No Mimes Entertainment).


Spoke on a panel entitled The New Frontier: When a TV Show Becomes a Branded Business Proposition on January 25th, 2010 for the National Association of Television Program Executives.


I spoke at the HOW Conference, June 23rd-27th, 2009, in Austin, Texas.

Here’s an interview about how I got into design.

This is what I covered:

TV, Internet and mobile devices have long been considered the digital trinity but there is a radical evolution and mutation of screens that include but are not limited to: video games (online and console), electronic billboards, ARG’s (alternate reality games) and virtual worlds. Cutting-edge tech like immersive 3D environments, contact lens displays and brain-wave based (hands free) computer control devices will be explored…


Below is an excerpt from a speech I gave at LATV Fest on July 22, 2008, entitled: “Future Trends. Where do we go from here?” I discussed ARGs (Alternate Reality Game) with a panel that included Tim Kring (creator of HEROES), Jesse Alexander and 2007 Primetime Interactive winner Matt Wolf.

LATV Festival Sessions Webcast.

We are in the midst of revolution. This has been said many times but as we are in the midst of it, it’s easy to lose sight of the incredible changes that have happened. We are finding that Moore’s law (“that the number of transistors that can be inexpensively placed on an integrated circuit is increasing exponentially, doubling approximately every two years”) is not slowing down.

Let’s jump out there. According to futurists like Ray Kurzweil, within the next decade computers will start to disappear, becoming small enough to be embedded into our clothing, our environments, eventually allowing for images to be written directly to our retina so that we have a full-immersion virtual reality/augmented reality experience.

Additionally, Kurzweil posits that by 2029 reverse engineering of the human brain will have happened—a $1000.00 computer will be more powerful than the human brain in terms of raw capacity. Machines will share their analytic abilities directly with humans. Nanobots will go inside our brains and interact with neurons, shutting down “real” senses from the outside as we commune with another person within the VR of our minds.

Sir Ken Robinson, an internationally recognized leader in the development of creativity, innovation and human resources, spoke at Promax BDA last month and mentioned that computers will reach human intelligence capabilities within the next ten years.

I bring all this up to illustrate the rate of accelerated change that we are in. TV’s model for development and transmission hasn’t really changed in over 70 years. The stuff I just spoke about is coming right now. TV executives will need to start to evolve and mutate quickly in order to stay relevant in this shifting landscape...


Below is an excerpt from my speech, entitled “Designer As Interactive Storyteller” that I gave in New York, June 2008:

I’ve always been intrigued by semiotics, the study of signs and symbols and their use or interpretation.

My fascination with images and storytelling started early, when I collected Marvel and DC comics as a kid. The thing about comic books or “graphic novels,” as they are referred to today, is that they are a combination of graphics and words, not one or the other. The interesting thing is that graphic images alone or words alone, are given more respect individually but when combined, they struggle for respectability. Scott McCloud’s book, Understanding Comics is an excellent resource on the semiotics of comics.

When I was nine years old, I went to school in Japan for a year and discovered manga, Japanese graphic novels. Unlike their US counterpart, manga is taken seriously and is read by a range of demographics, from children to old people. What is fascinating is that the Japanese language uses kanji, which in themselves are comprised of characters that are pictographic or symbolic. Unlike the combination of English characters and image, the Japanese eye can view the writing as image as well as the image it overlays on the page. This was an epiphany of sorts and it informed how I studied the language, which essentially consisted of reading a ton of pulpy manga before graduating on to more serious fare—books without images. The thing that stuck with me though, was that the comic book panel paradigm changed—for English reading, it was image and word bubble imposed on it and for Japanese reading, it was image and word integrated. There was a difference between the Western way of looking at something and the Eastern way of looking at something—I needed to change my POV, which was really hard as my brain was wired in a certain direction.

During the digital revolution, starting in the early 90’s, I encountered a similar experience. At the time I was working at Wired Magazine, which was a great place to be for the explosion of, to excavate an aphorism from that time, “paradigm-shifting” technologies and culture. This was the time of cyber-punk and 24.4 modems. Wired launched Hotwired and it immediately became apparent that the paradigm of print publishing wouldn’t work. A different approach to design had to be developed. At the same time, a couple of Hotwired employees launched a stripped-down site called suck.com, which was designed for easy reading within the confines of the web-browser. In many ways, it was very Web 2.0, a decade ahead of its time. Ultimately, I think the most recent iteration of the Wired website, is the most successful.  It took a lot of time and work to get to this apparent simplicity but the design was informed by understanding the medium, its limitations and advantages…

CONTACT: info@titaniumsky.com

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