American Social History Project • Center for Media and Learning

CUNY WIRED!: A CUNY New Media Conference That Rocked

Published March 24, 2011


Ioannis Stamos
Ioannis Stamos, Hunter College Computer Science, presents the Reconstruction of Photorealistic 3D Models in Urban Environment.

On the afternoon and evening of March 15, 2002 more than 150 new media enthusiasts gathered at the CUNY Graduate Center to share their passion, projects and points of view at CUNY WIRED! This inaugural conference, whose primary goal was to build a community of new media producers across the CUNY 19-campus system, highlighted the exceptional work that is being done on many of our campuses. Representing over a dozen CUNY colleges and a handful of other universities, participants transcended the boundaries of their academic disciplines to engage in a unique and exciting dialog as they viewed cutting edge new technology projects. The two panels and a dozen breakout area demonstrations displayed a broad range of new cross-disciplinary applications. The first panel presented science and humanities projects employing sophisticated 3-D visualization techniques. The second dealt with new media and communication, from robots, to sensory computer controls, to a virtual orchestra. The audience responded enthusiastically with questions and debate about representation in the digital age and the application of new technologies. Keynote speaker Demetri Terzopoulos of NYU’s Courant Institute then intrigued the audience with his discussion of artificial intelligence and the creation and application of artificial worlds in virtual environments.

CUNY WIRED! The aftermath

CUNY WIRED! demonstrations
In the bustling demonstration area, Fritz Umbach (seated left) of The Graduate Center's Center for Media and Learning, displays and discusses The September 11 Digital Archive. Gregg Morris, (standing center) of Hunter College's Film and Media Department discusses the online journal The Word with attendees.

The Graduate Center’s New Media Lab, run under the auspices of the Center for Media and Learning/American Social History Project sponsored the conference with the support of a CUNY faculty development grant and the office of Executive Vice Chancellor Louise Mirrer. We plan to continue these efforts to strengthen the position of new media at the University with subsequent conferences that will build upon the interest and enthusiasm that was evident at CUNY WIRED! The next conference will engage faculty and others in questions about teaching with technology — acknowledging the many innovative approaches, programs, and materials that are currently in many stages of development and use.

CUNY WIRED! The site and the network serves as a gateway to the many innovative programs, projects and Labs from across CUNY that appeared at this event. All of those who participated can be reached via email through the site (click CW network) that also links to other CUNY online projects. You can also see the recently uploaded photographs of the conference (click conference). We welcome all submissions of CUNY new media sites to the Network. Those interested may visit the New Media Lab, located on the X-level of the CUNY Graduate Center, to view any or all of the conference proceedings on tape. The New Media Lab has invited the public to visit our space and many have done so – especially some who are in the process of setting up labs on their campuses. We are committed to fostering a growing community of new media producers with CUNY WIRED! serving as the catalyst. In the coming year, we aim to build on the excitement of our great day of networking. We intend to cultivate ambitious faculty and student projects and new cross campus and cross disciplinary collaborations as all of us involved in CUNY WIRED! stay wired!

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