Augmented and virtual reality, apps, the future of journalism, and the age-old debate of IOS vs Android will be among the topics up for discussion at RTE MoJoCon, the international conference on mobile journalism which will be held in Galway next week.
Heading west for the first time this year, the hugely popular conference has added a third day to its agenda for an action-packed programme of all things mobile and media-related from May 4 to 6.
The conference will see some 500 journalists from around Ireland and across the world converge on Galway to learn more about the many facets of emerging media, including mobile journalism, mobile content creation, mobile photography, and the new technology available to mobile makers.
MoJoCon — a contraction of mobile journalism conference — is the brainchild of Glen Mulcahy, head of innovation at RTE. According to Mulcahy, bringing the event to Galway after two very successful years in Dublin will see delegates have greater flexibility both in attending talks and workshops, and for networking in the evenings.
"We have a questionnaire after each event, and one thing that came back was the sessions during the day were very engaging, but because sessions were tightly packed, they didn't have time to network and meet other delegates," he explained.
When it came to looking for a venue outside of the capital, Galway was a natural choice for Mulcahy, who began his broadcasting career in TG4 and lived here for several years.
"Galway was after winning the 2020 bid and I thought, I'd love to go to Galway," he recalled. "We do outdoor activities, like photo walks and video walks, and Galway's a beautiful, scenic, city, and no matter where they go people will be able to take a good photo."
Now in its third year, RTE MoJoCon was the first conference in the world to focus on mobile journalism, and its reputation has grown to the point where 40 per cent of the delegates attending this year's event are from overseas.
The conference, which begins on Thursday May 4, will include a specially chartered #Mojotrain for delegates to travel from Dublin to Galway, learning about mobile photography and video from a number of MoJo trainers on the way.
Over two days in the Radisson Blu Hotel, RTE MoJoCon will host talks by some of the most respected people in the industry, brought together to discuss innovations in 360 video, virtual and augmented reality, app development, native content, and mobile video formats from Snapchat Stories to longform documentaries.
Speakers at these sessions include some of the leading lights in mobile and digital journalism, including Matt Cooke, Google News Labs lead for the UK, Ireland, and Nordic countries; Mashable UK editor Anne-Marie Tomchak; digital strategist Krishna De; Storyful founder Mark Little; and Robert Hernandez, one of the first pioneers in journalism for the web.
The third day, Saturday May 6, will see a range of workshops taking place covering video, spatial audio, livesteaming, and technologies specific to Android and IOS devices.
Throughout the conference an exhibition will showcase the products and services — from apps to hardware — available to help journalists and makers create the best media experiences. Exhibitors can also present their products on a showcase stage, which will be livestreamed to the 2,700-member #mojocon Facebook group.
The exhibition space is traditionally open to registered delegates only; however it will be open to the public on Saturday, when anyone with an interest in mobile technology can go along to view the latest innovations.
A number of fringe events, free to attend, will also take place on the Thursday evening. These events, which are open to the public, include discussions on virtual reality and 360 video, various aspects of mobile journalism and content creation, film making, and entrepreneurship, taking place at venues around the city.
Always at the forefront of emerging technologies in the mobile sphere, the conference will also feature the first 360-degree 8k livestream, with the new revolutionary ultra-high-definition Insta360 camera being brought to Ireland especially for the event.
"This camera we're using has only just been launched and this is going to be the first event it is being used at in Europe," Mulcahy revealed.
The full line-up of talks, speakers, workshops, and other events is available on mojocon.rte.ie
If you want the chance to catch the full RTE MoJoCon in Galway next week, visit www.facebook.com/GalwayAdvertiser today, where we will be giving away tickets to two lucky winners.