This past week, LearnLaunch hosted their annual Across Boundaries conference at the Hynes Convention Center. Every year, education professionals, entrepreneurs, K-12 schools and college professors and students come together to engage in speaking panels, explore new technologies and network with other like-minded individuals. The conference explores a multitude of topics, ranging from education and innovation to digital technology and emerging tech industries.

This year, the conference was visited by a team of three members from the Berklee Community: Lori Landay, a professor of cultural studies and new media artist, Yao Wang, a recent Berklee graduate and music technology enthusiast, and Roopam Garg, a current Berklee student, guitar player and composer. The general focus of the Berklee team’s presence was the future of music and virtual reality (VR), Augmented reality (AR) and mixed Reality (XR).

Lori showcased projects and technologies taught in her new and innovative class “Startup A New Reality”. This class explores new techniques and ideas centered around different technologies around VR, AR and XR, as well their intersections with artificial intelligence and robotics. Students of this class learn to use these tools in a variety of different applications such as live performances, studio sessions and creating immersive soundscapes and music videos. Click here to read more about Lori’s class.

Yao’s project, entitled “Unraveled” was centered around the potential of immersive 360° spatial audio in music productions. Hugely ambitious, this project involved more than fifty students across seven majors  and explored new challenges in composition, arranging and mixing. A behind-the-scenes video alongside the actual 360 musical experience are set to be released on the Berklee Youtube Channel in early 2018. Read more about Yao’s project.

Roopam’s project is based on one of his long-term goals, which is to create an immersive abstract music “video” (or rather world) based on one of his instrumental compositions with his band The Surrealist. In this world, users and music listeners would be able to walk around and experience abstract elements floating around and flying in space, with spatial audio and interactivity. Read more about Roopam’s band The Surrealist.


Roopam Garg
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