Austin Game Conference

Oct. 27-28

Hey, you. The one trying to stay sharp so that the 15-year-old who renders polygons in his sleep doesn't innovate his way into your cubicle. What you need is the Austin Game Conference, taking place at the Austin Convention Center. This unabashed tech fest is less for the dreamers and more for the people living the dream by making a living in the gaming industry (those people should also be able to cover the $195 registration fee). For now, here's some of what you have to look forward to (for more, see www.austingameconference.com):

Keynote speaker John Smedley, president of Sony Online Entertainment (today, Thursday, Oct. 27, 9:30am): Sony came, saw, and conquered the gaming world in a few short years. Who better to shed light on what's up and what's coming in that world then one of Sony's bigger bigwigs?

Game Writers' Conference, Day Two, Oct. 27: One of two miniconferences within the Austin Game Conference. As video games grow more cinematic, so does the demand for decent writers. Half-Life 2 and Splinter Cell didn't write themselves. The writers for those and more will help you along the road to the Citizen Kane of games.

Women's Game Conference, Day Two, Oct. 27: Marketing departments don't seem to have gotten the memo that the ladies got game. Let these two days serve as notice: They are not going to wait for you to catch up. It's time for great games on their terms.

Technology Pavilion: All the latest tools and products surrounded by the people that know how to use 'em. Next door, the Machinima Theatre entertains the tech troops with its offspring of film, animation, and game development, including the SXSW-tested and hipster-approved Red vs. Blue series.

Career Pavilion: The big players will be there: Sony, Microsoft, Midway, Activision, Ubisoft. Get out of the unemployment line and start schmoozing.

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