Spring Tech

AES Virtual Vienna Expo Is On

AES Virtual Vienna Expo Is On

Key expos for professional audio have been canceled and postponed through the summer so far, but the Audio Engineering Society is banking on being able to produce its annual European convention — virtually — in June. Originally scheduled to take place in Vienna, Austria, the AES Virtual Vienna Convention in now set for June 2 – 5, 2020 using an online format. The virtual event will feature live streaming, on-demand audio/video/multimedia presentations, interactive Q&A, and forum dialogs in order to, as the event’s website says, “…realize the personal connection and emotional feedback that is at the heart of AES live events.”

All Access registration for this first-of-its-kind AES live event is available for $50 for AES members, $175 for non-members, with additional discounts available for currently enrolled audio students. Registration is now open.

The 4-day event will feature eight-hours of streaming content scheduled each day. Additional sessions will be available on-demand to registered attendees both during and for 90 days after the Convention. Realtime Q&A with presenters will follow scheduled presentations; ongoing Q&A dialog will be available on all sessions.

Going Virtual
While the AES is an old hand at complex events, Frank Wells, its Director of Communications, acknowledges, “There’s definitely a learning curve.”

Wells says much of the work is taking place ahead of time, for instance soliciting academic papers and other contributions for what is expected to host 200 to 400 scheduled elements.

However, he adds, “Going virtual puts a lot of new decisions into the process. How will you host the event  — will you use standard conferencing platform or a specialty platform designed for Conventions? How many connections can the platforms accommodate balanced against expected attendance, and how can you estimate attendance for something you’ve never done before?”

Presenters include audio technology thought leaders working in recording and production, acoustics and psychoacoustics, sound reinforcement, archiving and preservation, networked audio, product development and audio education.

Sectors addressed include studio recording, live sound, networked audio, broadcast & streaming, music production, post-production, game audio, spatial sound, audio for AR/VR/XR product development, and more.

The AES Virtual Vienna Convention is led by AES Convention Co-chairs Piotr Majdak and Nadja Wallaszkovits; Facilities Co-chairs Thomas Gmeiner and Michael Mihocic; Papers Co-chairs Thomas Sporer and Areti Andreopoulou; Workshops and Tutorials Co-chairs Matthias Frank, Ana Monte and Daniel Deboy; Technical Tours Co-chairs Michael Iber and Andreas Büchele; Student Volunteers Coordinator Katharina Pollack; and Education Chair Magdalena Piotrowska.

A schedule of live streams and recorded content with live Q&A dialog is expected to part of the package. AES Virtual Vienna will host some of the free-to-all content from its traditional structure on Facebook and YouTube, with the rest on an event platform that will combine eight-hours of streaming content on each of four days, with two simultaneous tracks of content to choose from on the first two days from an extensive on-demand menu.

“AES is excited by the prospects of actually reaching a larger audience than ever,” says Wells. “We’ve lowered the cost of admission drastically, making an intriguing value proposition for anyone with both a passion for audio and access to the internet.”

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