Zack Booth Simpson gave an interesting lecture last week at the Blanton Museum on UT campus…the Evolution of Evolutionary Design. I met Zack when he was technical director at Origin Systems, years ago. Since, he’s taken himself away from commercial games and into scientifically-influenced art and molecular biology, among other things.
At the talk, I got to see Richard Garriot for the first time since his return from space. (I got to say, “Welcome back to Earth, man.” Not something I get to say to friends often, except in the cases where I mean it figuratively, after someone has gone off on a delusional tirade or a severe bender.) We touched briefly on Ultima IV–due to recent commentary across the ‘net–which always gives me a thrill, imaging what a modern Ultima IV would look like.
The subject(s) of the Blanton talk were informed by Zack’s position at the nexus of science, art and bricklaying and the speech was excellent; catch it via video or repeat performance if you can. Pleasing nerds of all flavors, Zack covered, no lie:
Ornamentation, history of
Craftsmanship, death and rebirth of
Art, definition of
Culture, development of
Cell phone towers
Life, meaning of
Toward the end of the talk, Zack showed off some of his new procedural tech-tool-toys, which always fire the imagination.
(Technically, this post is a day or two late, but had I completed it the day following Zack’s speech–as I planned–the subject line would be accurate.)
After missing our flight and spending the night in New Jersey, Raph and I finally made it back yesterday. Now I’m trying to recover from jetlag and exhaustion.
What a great trip to Lyon. We had some meetings and worked on some creative stuff, but also spent a lot of time socializing with the guys from the Lyon office. Here are a few more pics:
This is the bar we haunted on several nights. Romu took us there the first time, then later Marco took a group of us.
On the final night, we had dinner with Raph’s family and friends. Fantastic food and great company.
My stars I love France. In many ways, Lyon is better than Paris: No tourists, no pressure to be cool. Just a working European city.
The first night Raphael and I were here, we were up for 32 hours, including travel, and we ate couscous and lamb at a Tunisian place off the town square.
Last night, knifed by the wind, we walked to Bistro St. Paul and ate truffles and cassoulet. Later, we met up with some game developers from Widescreen and one of the guys from the Polish team that made the Witcher at a bar themed in the American 60′s. Post bar, we waited on the *last* train of the night at the Vieux Lyon stop. At the next metro stop, we were out of time…no more trains. So we walked back to the hotel in the bitter cold.