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NEoN Digital Arts Festival 2009

Save Jones joins speakers list for Scottish event.

Dundee 10th October 2008: Dave Jones, one of the most influential people in the history of gaming, has today been confirmed to speak at the inaugural NEoN Digital Arts Festival, which will take place across the city of Dundee Friday 13th to Sunday 15th of November.

Dave has driven the success of Scotland’s flourishing games industry, having co-founded DMA Design, which would be later renamed as Rockstar North, creator of the best-selling and universally acclaimed Grand Theft Auto series. In 2002, he formed Realtime Worlds that scored a major hit with its original title Crackdown that has enjoyed incredible success on Xbox 360. His team’s latest title, the massively multiplayer online action game APB looks set to revolutionise the way we play online when it launches next year.

Jones commented: “I’m excited and honoured to be asked to open NEoN – we have such a phenomenal amount of local talent across all forms of digital media and the NEoN festival showcases this talent. I am looking forward to seeing both what’s on show at NEoN itself and what comes out of the creative brainstorming and partnerships that will inevitably take place there too”.

Jones joins a roster of influential and iconic figures from all walks of the digital arts, including Pixar character creator Bud Luckey, academic manager for Microsoft Andy Sithers, commissioning editor for Channel 4 Alice Taylor, Simon Parsons of the BBC, as well as video game soundtrack composers Tommy Tallarico and Jack Wall.

Project manager for NEoN Donna Fordyce welcomed Dave to the group of event speakers: “Dave has proved to be a great asset to the Scottish digital arts, with an influence that can be seen the world over through his games and interaction with the wider digital media industry. He is a key player in an industry that continues to grow steadily and, through his NEoN session, will deliver a fresh perspective on the sector today.”

Ticket rates, event programmes, news alerts and booking details for NEoN Digital Arts Festival can be found on the official event website at and on the official Twitter feed as weareneon.

For further information on the festival, please contact project manager Donna Fordyce via the details below.


Donna Fordyce

Project Manager - Industries

Scottish Enterprise

Enterprise House

3 Greenmarket

Dundee DD1 4QB

T:01382 305585

F:01382 201319



About Interactive Tayside

Interactive Tayside is a partnership between public, private and academic sectors to develop and promote Tayside's digital media industry. Digital media represents a key part of Tayside's economy and through Interactive Tayside, a local delivery mechanism has been established that aims to build the digital media industry in the area, encourage higher levels of collaboration between businesses and with academia, develop new commercial opportunities and promote the high-quality skills and talents of the area's digital media practitioners to a wide audience.

Historically, Tayside has always been a hot-bed of creative talent, particularly in the publishing, design and music industries and the area has always been renowned as a breeding ground for innovation and skills.

Today, Tayside continues to enjoy a vibrant and rapidly expanding cluster of businesses, organisations and individuals engaged in digital media and creative industries sectors. There are over 350 businesses operating in the area of digital media in Tayside, employing over 3,300 people and generating a combined annual turnover in excess of £185 million. The sector has experienced growth in employment of 225% since the year 2000 and a further two thousand jobs are expected to be created in the sector within the next 3 years (by 2010).

The area's 2 universities and 3 further education colleges carry out leading edge research and deliver innovative and high quality teaching across a wide range of digital media related subjects. Every year, over 900 students, from over 50 different nationalities, graduate in digital media disciplines from the region's higher and further education institutions.

Computer games and electronic entertainment, mobile platform development, software development, animation, graphic design, publishing and music and just some of the specialisms in which Tayside companies excel.

The region is home to many exciting digital media companies including Scotland's largest games development studio, Realtime Worlds, BAFTA Award winning mobile development studio Dynamo Games, 2d and 3d animation studio, Ink Digital, and also the largest internet service provider in Scotland, ScotlandOnLine. Tayside's success stories in these industries are numerous.

Though Interactive Tayside, liaison between businesses, academic institutions and support agencies is actively encouraged, creating a stimulating environment in which 'start-ups' and established companies alike can quickly translate ideas into commercial reality.

In addition to this informative, regularly updated website offering all the latest news on Tayside's digital media industry, Interactive Tayside offers a regular events programme; events that are free and open to everyone, covering a variety of topics relevant to the digital media industries and affording ample opportunity for attendees to network informally with like-minded individuals. Be sure to sign up for our newsletter so as not to miss out on all of the region's digital media news and invites to our events.

Enterprise is actively encouraged in Tayside by a flexible and dynamic support structure. Everything you need to develop your business or turn ideas into reality is available here from a variety of institutional and commercial sources. As you would expect from a centre with a renowned academic reputation, Research and Development and training and skills are thick on the ground for large and small businesses. With this support, Tayside continues to be a rich source of intellectual capital, media content and commercial opportunity.

The vision for the digital media industry in Tayside is to become ever more renowned for the standard of its creative and technical talents and skills, internationally recognised for the quality of its products and level of innovation, globally networked, and make an every increasing contribution to the economy of the Tayside area and Scotland as a whole - establishing Tayside further as an international centre of excellence in digital media.

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