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GDC 2008 Gets Keynote From Futurist Ray Kurzweil

GDC organizers CMP have announced that renowned futurist Ray Kurzweil will keynote the 2008 Game Developers Conference on "The Next 20 Years of Gaming" -- a look at the next two decades of video games and what the landscape may well look like come GDC 202

January 3, 2008

3 Min Read

Author: by Staff

Celebrated inventor and futurist Ray Kurzweil will deliver a keynote address at the 2008 Game Developers Conference (GDC) inspiring attendees to take a dramatic look at the future of games and electronic entertainment. Described as "the rightful heir to Thomas Edison" by Inc. magazine and "the ultimate thinking machine" by Forbes, Kurzweil is uniquely positioned to speak to the GDC audience about the next two decades of videogames and what the landscape may well look like come GDC 2028. GDC, the world's largest industry-only event dedicated to the advancement of interactive entertainment, returns to the Moscone Convention Center in San Francisco for a week of networking, learning, and inspiration February 18-22, 2008. Complete details and registration for the conference are available now at the official GDC website. "Bringing the future to life today has always been at the heart of the game industry, so it's essential to have our vision refreshed by one of our greatest living thinkers," said Jamil Moledina, executive director of the Game Developers Conference. "As a technology inventor and prophetic visionary, Ray Kurzweil is that rare individual who can inspire the next evolutionary step forward in what games can do." Ray Kurzweil has repeatedly been recognized as an intellectual pioneer by some of the most respected American media sources. He was described as "the restless genius" by the Wall Street Journal, and "the ultimate thinking machine" by Forbes. Inc. magazine ranked him #8 among entrepreneurs in the United States, calling him the "rightful heir to Thomas Edison," and PBS included him as one of 16 "revolutionaries who made America," along with other inventors of the past two centuries. As one of the leading inventors of our time, Kurzweil was the principal developer of the first CCD flat-bed scanner, the first omni-font optical character recognition, the first print-to-speech reading machine for the blind, the first text-to-speech synthesizer, the first music synthesizer capable of recreating the grand piano and other orchestral instruments, and the first commercially marketed large-vocabulary speech recognition. Among Kurzweil's many honors, he is the recipient of the $500,000 MIT-Lemelson Prize, the world's largest for innovation. In 1999, he received the National Medal of Technology, the nation's highest honor in technology, from President Clinton in a White House ceremony. In 2002, he was inducted into the National Inventor's Hall of Fame, established by the US Patent Office. He has received fifteen honorary Doctorates and honors from three U.S. presidents. Kurzweil has written five books, four of which have been national best sellers. The Age of Spiritual Machines has been translated into 9 languages and was the #1 best selling book on Amazon in science. His latest book, The Singularity is Near, was a New York Times best seller, and has been the #1 book on Amazon in both science and philosophy. The keynote, "The Next 20 Years of Gaming," is scheduled for February 21, 2008, from 10:30am to 11:30am PST in the Esplanade Room of the Moscone Center's South Hall. Ray Kurzweil will join the distinguished list of luminary GDC keynotes which includes Shigeru Miyamoto (GDC07), Phil Harrison (GDC06 and GDC07), Satoru Iwata (GDC06), Ronald D. Moore (GDC06), and Will Wright (GDC06 and GDC05). GDC 2008 will also feature sessions on breakthrough titles such as Bioshock, Crysis, Halo 3, Rock Band, Singstar and more, from leading members of the game development community including creator of the Magnavox Odyssey game system Ralph Baer, Microsoft/Bungie engineering lead Chris Butcher, managing director of Crytek GmbH Cervat Yerli, president and creative director of 2K Boston/Irrational Ken Levine, Richard Bates, lead programmer at Sony Computer Entertainment Europe, Senior Producer at LucasArts Entertainment Haden Blackman, and many others. For further information and to register for GDC, please visit the official GDC website.

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