Tech Conference Themes And (More) Speakers Revealed!

Smart cities, machines that think and space missions are on the jam-packed list of themes.

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From AR to VR: Lateral Vision Are Virtual Tour Experts

They specialise in exploring place and space.

Lateral Vision, who operate out of Tonsley in Adelaide, combine visuals with technology to create virtual tours, virtual reality and augmented reality.

Starting with Google Street View and capturing virtual tours for businesses, they found clients wanted more – so they developed their own virtual tour software platform. Their recent clients include Great Southern Rail (put on the HoloLens, and you can see the train passing through Australia’s desert from the comfort of your room) and Flinders University (an adventure through the uni).

Do you have a tech idea of your own? Here are the reasons why you should apply to our HWA LAB.

Five-day technology event #HybridWorldADL returns to Adelaide in July.

Tonsley In Adelaide Is A Playground For The Tech-Minded

Driverless vehicles, 3D holograms and more.

The garden at Tonsley

Last year’s venue for Hybrid World Adelaide, Tonsley, is a playground for the tech-minded. We caught up with some of the individuals and teams working on game-changing technology in the space, like Lateral Vision’s AR and VR; the Flinders Medical Device Research Institute’s OrbIT accessible gaming system; Voxon Photonic’s 3D holographic displays (no glasses required) and Aurrigo’s driverless pods. And that’s just the beginning.

Keep an eye on our website and social media in the coming days to find out more about each of these projects.

Do you have a tech idea of your own? Here are the reasons why you should apply to our #HWALAB.

#HybridWorldADL returns to Adelaide in July. More details about the event can be found here.

The Adelaide Game Developers Who Bring Childhood Dreams To Life

Mighty Kingdom create games for LEGO Friends, Shopkins and more.

It’d be an understatement to say we’re a fan of games here at Hybrid World Adelaide: the initial concepts, the process of development, and – of course – the finished product.

We talked to Mighty Kingdom, one of the companies leading the way in Australia’s game development scene. We visited them at Game Plus on Pirie Street in Adelaide, a co-working space for game developers and related tech start-ups. Check out the highlights below.


Do you have a game in development? Or a different tech idea altogether
? Apply to our #HWALAB for your chance to win a grant and make it a reality. More info can be found here.

 

The Sky’s Not The Limit, It’s The Beginning: A Chat With Dr. Alice Gorman, Space Archaeologist

We learn about her journey into the emerging field of space archaeology.

“Looking at the stars was a massive influence for me,” says Dr. Alice Gorman of her earliest memories observing space. “When I was a little kid, I grew up on a farm. We had the milky way right there.”

Gorman is a Senior Lecturer at Flinders University, and a leader in the field of space archaeology. But it wasn’t a field she originally intended to explore. She says the night sky, coupled with a set of science encyclopaedias her father bought from a travelling salesperson, actually prompted her to first become interested in astrophysics.

“I wanted to be an astrophysicist, and I also wanted to be an archaeologist. But in school systems, girls are discouraged from going into STEM… it’s not necessarily overt, but it’s definitely there. Or was there,” Gorman says.

“I had a revelation one day – while looking at the sky – that space junk might have archaeological value.”

“So I ended up becoming an archaeologist. It wasn’t until I finished my PHD and I was working in a heritage job, that I had a revelation one day – while looking at the sky – that space junk might have archaeological value. So that set me on this path.”

What is space archaeology?

To a person first hearing the words ‘space archaeology’, it might sound like an oxymoron.

“People generally think archaeology is about old stuff. And most of the time, it is. But it’s also a set of theories and methods. So you can apply those to any period, and what I’ve chosen to do is apply those to the contemporary era,” says Gorman.

“I’m focusing on space exploration as a technology, as an industry and as a whole social world. It’s really about human behaviour and interaction with technology – it just happens to be quite recent and modern.”

Why is space junk an issue?

Of particular interest to Gorman is space junk, or the objects humans leave behind after space exploration (as an aside, her Twitter handle is @drspacejunk). She’s critical of the amount of objects humans have abandoned in space, though she acknowledges the technical and financial difficulties associated with removing them.

“At the moment, everyone recognises we have a huge problem with the amount of space junk in Earth’s orbit. Everybody would like to do something about it, but the technological difficulties are so great that no one has yet,” she says.

“There’s often fuel left (in space junk), and the fuel is unstable and explosive. You have all these rocket bodies floating around with unstable fuel, and you don’t know when – or if – they’re going to explode.”

“You have all these rocket bodies floating around with unstable fuel, and you don’t know when – or if – they’re going to explode.”

Guidelines have been created to minimise the amount of new debris, but Gorman says almost half of all missions launched fail to meet them.

“It’s terrible! And the reason they don’t do that is because it costs money.”

Can space junk be valuable?

In Gorman’s view, some space junk is highly significant. She points to the Vanguard 1 and Australis-OSCAR 5 as examples.

“Vanguard 1 is now the oldest satellite in Earth’s orbit. It was launched in 1958, and is very much a Cold War satellite. The beginnings of space technology is fascinating,” she says.

“Australis-OSCAR 5 was built in the 1960s and launched in 1970, so it’s a piece of Australian space history that’s out there. At the global level, you might say it doesn’t mean anything – but it means something to Australians.”

Gorman is also fond of Indonesia’s first communications satellite, Palapa A1. She says technology can have a positive social impact.

“It launched in 1976, which is pretty early for a country that isn’t one of the big space players. The idea was that the satellite would unite all the different islands and language groups of Indonesia. Socially, it’s very significant.”

This year’s #HybridWorldADL will take place in late July in the city of Adelaide. For more details about the event, click here.