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Archive for the ‘Blockparty’ Category

Your intro to the demoscene.

Wednesday, March 11th, 2009

Planning to attend Notacon and Blockparty this year, but still not entirely sure what a demo is? One of the Notacon presenters is helping you get started by posting a series in his livejournal called the daily demoscene. He also supplies brief commentary on his reasons for choosing to highlight that particular demo or artist.

Also, today was filled with demo programming discussion on our irc channel #notacon. Including the release of the source code from last year’s invite! It is a very rare event for demo source code to be released to the public, and we are very thankful to s_tec of Trailer Park Demos for sharing this with the community. Also, remember to check out the 2009 Blockparty invitation by XPLSV.

We are actively working on compiling links to source code and programming tips to get more people alerted to and involved in the demoscene. Feel free to drop in on #notacon to share your finds or ask for tips and advice. We hold an open chat session every Thursday night at 8pm Eastern, but feel free to stop by any time of day. You can also check out #blockparty on the EFnet IRC Network.

Not sure how to use irc? No problem! Go to the Notacon Wiki and we’ll help you get started!

You can also share your thoughts and questions on the Notacon forums, home of the room and ride share board.

Registration Information

Tuesday, March 10th, 2009

The first batch of registration codes were mailed out earlier today. If you registered and did not receive an email from registration2009 containing your registration code, please email us to let us know. There have been a few reports of the emails getting spam filtered, specifically by Google, so make sure to check your spam!

Also, the emails sent out contained the wrong date for registration check in. Registration check-in will begin on Friday morning, the 17th of April, not the 4th, as indicated.

If you have not done so, register now. The Notacon room block at the hotel is filling up quick and the pricing is only good through March 26th. Room booking can be done using the link on our travel page.

New this year: shoutouts! Anything you want to say (subject to approval) in the shout-outs section of the program. 140 characters or less for $20. Visit the Notacon Store to buy yours!

We have presenters… and a few new surprises for 2009!

Thursday, February 26th, 2009

Those of you who regularly visit the Notacon site may have noticed that we quietly posted our final slate of presenters last week. Now we will shout it from the rooftops, they have been chosen!

And boy, was it hard to choose! This year we received a record number of great proposals. To everyone who submitted, thank you from the bottom of our hearts. We always hate having to pass on a presentation, but we definitely enjoy having the problem of choosing from so much good material.

So there you have it, check out our presenters!

While we’re talking about this year, I wanted to point out a few major things we’re doing differently from previous years that you may not have heard about:

  • We are in a brand new venue that provides us awesome new opportunities
  • There will be a FREE preview of Notacon events on Thursday, April 16th starting around 7 PM. It will feature introductions from presenters about their topics, an opportunity to go “behind the scenes” to see what it takes for us prepare, as well as other fun stuff. Everyone is welcome to attend. If you can, start the con early with us!
  • Hackerspaces! This year we dedicate an area to hackerspaces and staffed by hackerspace members from around the world. It will feature hardware hacking, amateur radio and other great projects.
  • Game room! Whether you enjoy playing Go or Rockband, Settlers of Catan or Asteroids, our game room will be your refuge for rest and relaxation at Notacon.
  • Locksport! We understand how many of you are interested in locksports of all kinds. let the FOOLS (The Fraternal Order of Locksport) be your guide in our Lock Picking Village.

If you’re on the fence about attending, now is the time to register! Make sure you reserve your hotel room soon because they’re going fast!

Fatman and Circuit Girl

Thursday, February 12th, 2009

At last year’s Blockparty at Notacon, George “The Fat Man” Sanger and Jeri Ellsworth met for the first time. Shortly after meeting they created an entry for the wild competition and wowed us all. Well, they kept that collaboration going and have been sharing it with the world through videos that showcase the various projects and inventions they have been working on.

I’ve unfortunately only been able to watch 2 of the episodes so far, with my life so full of Notacon and that annoying thing called a full time job. I definitely plan to catch one of their live shows and participate if I can manage enough free time. I’m already entranced by Mr. Sanger’s views on creativity and music and want to learn more.

I’m in awe of the brains on these two and look forward to seeing what new information they’ll have in April, when they present Fat Man and Circuit Girl Live at Blockparty 3!!

Video Montage from 2008

Thursday, April 17th, 2008

Gudshu put together a nifty montage of happenings from Notacon/Blockparty 2008 this year:

If you have cool video, pics or other media to share, let us know in the comments!


Monday, April 14th, 2008

A group of Notaconers will be at Penguicon in Troy, MI this weekend. Jason Scott (co-founder of BlockParty) will be giving multiple presentations, and I’m sure every one of them will be a hit! Sam Harmon will also be giving another workshop on circuit bending, which I can highly recommend.

If you see someone in a Notacon shirt, make sure to stop by and say hi.

Blockparty Speakers List Finalized

Saturday, January 26th, 2008

The Blockparty Speakers List has now hit 1.0 and is shipping. As part of the Blockparty @ Notacon event, we have a collection of demoscene-related speakers providing seminars and presentations that are woven into the other Notacon speakers. There’s no extra cost to see them and pretty much all will be hanging out throughout the weekend. The Blockparty website has all their information and biographies, and here’s the short list:

  • The Fat Man: Art Behind Enemy Lines: A Target-Rich Environment
  • Jake “virt” Kaufman: FM Synthesis – Beyond the Adlib
  • Fred Owsley: Circuit-Bending Will Get You Laid!! (Maybe)
  • Jim “Trixter” Leonard: Self-Preservation Mode: Lessons Learned While Archiving Demoscene History
  • Jeri Ellsworth: CPU Not Required: Making Demos with FPGAs
  • Tim Cowley: Automated Psychedelia : Translating sound into color and motion

TShirt design contest open.

Friday, January 18th, 2008

We’re nearing Notacon 2008 and we’re looking for talent to be portrayed as a piece of Notacon history! If you’re looking for a way to contribute your artistic ability to Notacon, here’s your chance! Design the art for an official Notacon and/or Blockparty shirt! As always, the themes are art, music, and technology. We encourage you to let your imagination run wild and be as creative as you want to be.

Submissions DUE: March 1, 2008

Please see the full rules and requirements for more information.

The Blockparty Invitation, 2008!

Tuesday, January 8th, 2008

The Blockparty 2008 invitation is now out. You can pick it up at the Blockparty 2008 page. Summary of the invitation: go here and pre-register for Blockparty and Notacon (one ticket). The rest of this message repeats this more elaborately. I spent some time before last year’s Blockparty (the demo party I co-organize) explaining exactly what “demoparties” are, some historical context, some thoughts on the future, some thoughts on the politics and so on. Everything I said still applies, so here’s a link to those.

If you don’t know what I mean when I say “Demoparty”, you sure as heck will after you sift through all of that. A little commentary on invites, however. Demoparties have been going on since the late 1980s, when they were called “Copyparties”. An aspect of them that rose up that was interesting was giving prizes to the best works of art created on the computer, be they music, sound, or demo (graphics/sound extravaganza program). Within a short time, crack screens might announce an upcoming copy party, pirates happily skipping along pirated releases of software, using them as a slow-motion RSS feed of upcoming happenings. This situation, like the demo parties themselves, started growing in unexpected directions, and over time a specific “demo” would be released in advance of a party (months in advance, often) to let you know a party was going to happen. Last year, we did that with a work called, simply Blockparty, released by the demo group Northern Dragons, which is a North American demo group (a rarity). This year, we brought on a group called Trailer Park Demos to do the demo. After months and months of work, (and day-long stretches of time in it, besides), they’ve come out with a real kicker, the Blockparty 2008 invitation. The page on our Blockparty site providing this demo is here. You can download it, as well as the soundtrack for it, and some remixes. A quick mention of that soundtrack. I suggested that it would be a neat idea to have something pretty much no demos tend to have: a hip-hop/freestyle soundtrack, using the talents of one Dual Core, a team who have really been putting together a great show and couple of albums recently. They agreed to it and so there’s a very neat vibe to this invitation, making it in some ways uniquely American. Like the party. This invitation was released at a demoparty in Europe called “The Ultimate Meeting” (or tUM), and it placed in the middle of the pack for the combined demo competition. It was then released on the demoscene ratings board Pouet, and the entry on the site for this demo has garnered very, very favorable reviews. Consider coming to this event, entering the contests, winning the prizes. All the information is here for you. Enjoy the invitation. People broke themselves bringing it to you.