Issue: Volume: 30 Issue: 12 (Dec. 2007)

News - Imagine at Imagina 2008


From media and entertainment, to landscape design, to architecture, to industrial design, Imagina 2008 has something for everyone in the 3D community.

This conference and exhibition, which will be held January 30 through February 1 in Monaco, is attended by DCC professionals throughout Europe and beyond. With its focus on 3D imagery across a wide range of industries, Imagina’s diverse crowd is united by a common interest in computer graphics.

Among the many events at Imagina are conferences paneled by an equally diverse segment of industry experts. This year, keynotes will be given by Glen Entis (EA), John Tarnoff (DreamWorks), Samuel Windman (Google Earth), and Alvise Simondetti (Arup), representing the focus of the show’s four main industry segments.

In addition, there is an expansive exhibition area, a training and demonstration area, and a Job Opportunity Forum for students and job-seekers focused on any of the show’s core areas. The main event, though, is the Imagina Awards, which highlight the use of 3D simulation and visualization technologies applied to the artistic, engineering, and industrial professions. Another show spotlight will be the ability for attendees to preview such projects as Frederic Forestier and Thomas Langmann’s Asterix at the Olympic Games film, Tim Burton’s latest movie Sweeney Todd, and more.

Furthermore, Imagina is partnering with Renault to unveil a state-of-the-art panorama of a driving simulation, geared to the scientific and engineering audience.

“It takes more than eight months to build Imagina conferences in order to suit the needs of the attendees and match the constant and fast evolution of the computer graphics industry,” says Laurent Puons, Imagina general manager.

In fact, the shift from 2D to 3D technology is a global phenomenon and occurring in every sector imaginable, from those requiring a great deal of artistry to those where the resulting information, rather than the creation itself, is most critical. For a long time, 3D was perceived as the preserve of a handful of specialists, but now has been adopted by everyone; it is constantly evolving and expanding. As such, Imagina tries to introduce different professionals to 3D technology within an environment where those from all areas of the market can learn and share ideas and technology.

Today more than ever, the evolution of 3D software and hardware allows for ever-greater seamless continuity between digital and virtual models, from 3D calculations through to visual, acoustical, and haptic environments. As Puons points out, digital models are now considered a major component in the development process of every new product.

“They are one of the major tools used on a daily basis by creators and designers, right through from the presentation of the original idea to the validation of the concept,” Puons notes. “Digital models are used by engineers for testing a product before manufacturing and getting it to market. They are also important for sales and marketing teams. Naturally, they are important for the end user, be it for training purposes or learning how to maximize and maintain the product’s potential.”

The bottom line: 3D CG means creativity and technologies. But it also means productivity and business, bringing together buyers and vendors. This is made possible through the show’s Privileged Information Meetings, centered around 15 invited buyers with the goal of forging long-term professional relationships.

Last year, the show had nearly 1400 participants. This year, Puons expects the participation level to reach 2000, thanks to the addition of new programs and free access to the exhibition floor.
Imagina offers the best of two worlds: On a personal level, the beauty of the host city, Monaco, while professionally, the ability to expand your 3D horizons.
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