OrlandoiX Convention took over the Orange County Convention Center from Oct. 3 to Oct. 6. Eric Gutierrez, Central Florida Future
As one of the top theme park destinations in the world, the silhouette of a particular iconic mouse often overshadows the city of Orlando.
For those who call the City Beautiful home, Orlando is known for much more than its burgeoning tourism industry, and the vision behind the OrlandoiX Convention is to help the city stake a claim as a technological powerhouse.
OrlandoiX is a five-day international digital festival that features exhibitions of the latest advancements in interactive media, digital arts and entertainment technology, according to its website. The inaugural event kicked off with an Opening Night Party on Oct. 2 at Wall Street Plaza in Downtown Orlando and continued until Oct. 6 at the Orange County Convention Center.
"OrlandoiX was a vision that came from David Glass," said Mark Schaub, UCF alumnus and media relations coordinator for OrlandoiX. "He had this vision for an event that [would] really put the flag in the ground to say 'Hey, Orlando is serious about technology,'" he said.
Glass reached out to his colleagues in the technology community to help get the convention going. He gathered companies in Orlando, and technologists from around the world to come together to showcase Orlando as a thriving technology industry, Schaub said.
In addition to bringing technologists and industries together, OrlandoiX also hosted a series of speakers and panel discussions from industry leaders from around the world.
"We have some big-name folks like Michelle McKenna-Doyle. She is the CIO of the NFL," Schaub said. "We [also] have Kimberlly Gnatt. She is the director of global digital marketing for Coca-Cola," he said.
The first two days of the convention featured a gaming experience that allowed gamers to test about 80 different indie games and to connect with indie-game developers.
Joel Kincaid, a student of UCF's Florida Interactive Entertainment Academy seeking a master's degree in interactive entertainment, attended OrlandoiX to showcase a game that he and other FIEA students developed called Iceburglar, a mobile puzzle game that will be available for smartphones and tablets.
"We have had a really great time at OrlandoiX so far," Kincaid said. "We have had 90 people sign up to be play testers. We have gotten a lot of people on the game and people seem to really enjoy [it]," he said. "We have gotten a lot of feedback on the game so far, so it has been a really good experience for us," he said.
Eric Gutierrez is a Digital Producer for the Central Florida Future. Follow him on Twitter at @atticus_adrift or email him at EricG@CentralFloridaFuture.com.