That’s a wrap

2019 Interns

This summer, no fewer than four University of Kent students have spent time in the Arcade office. The university’s pioneering Employability Points scheme challenges students to earn ‘points’ through co-curricular activities that qualify them to apply for experience opportunities, such as those with Arcade.

University of Kent Employability Points Logo

Supath Shrestha and Joram Antwi each joined us for two week work experience positions, and Emily Williams committed most of her summer – eight weeks – to being the Arcade intern! Most recently, Sean Massey came to the end of his work experience, bringing our summer programme to a close.

He said, “Prior to my time at Arcade I was hesitant about a career in marketing due to my degree not being directly related. However, thanks to my experience here I have become more confident in my abilities, taking on roles in market research and being giving a variety of different responsibilities; including looking into the company’s brand identity and creds deck.

“I feel I have not only developed myself personally but, working alongside Alex, have gained vital knowledge that I will be able to use and adapt to different scenarios in the future. I aim to further develop myself as a marketer and strategist to eventually gain a role within the industry.”

We were blown away by all of their commitment and dedication, each finding ways to contribute hugely to our immersive technology business and, we hope, learning a bit along the way too.

We thank all four of them for all their hard work and wish them all the very best for the future, which looks incredibly bright.

References for all four of the students are available, please send an email to contact@arcade.ltd.

Find me a fox and make it Snappy

Snapchat-Enabled Digital Billboard

Arcade have published our first Snapchat lens as a part of our work with Welsh National Opera. To support the immersive experience A Vixen’s Tale, opening in Cardiff on October 5th, we added a hidden surprise to the #WNOfollowthevixen poster campaign across the city.

Using a custom lens for Snapchat, built in Snap’s Lens Studio, we created an AR experience that gives a glimpse of what visitors to A Vixen’s Tale can expect, and introduces the world to the Vixen herself.

A refrain from The Cunning Little Vixen, Leoš Janáček’s opera that is the inspiration for both A Vixen’s Tale and the Snap lens, is used to add an operatic soundtrack.

Snapchat lens features music from The Cunning Little Vixen, opera in 3 Acts, by Leoš Janácek. Revised version by Jiri Zahrádka, by arrangement with Universal Edition A.G. Wien. ‘Bezi liska Tábouru‘ appears courtesy of Decca Classics.


Tickets to The Cunning Little Vixen can be bought here. A Vixen’s Tale is open to all, for free, at Wales Millennium Centre from October 5th to November 3rd.

Arcade partners with Welsh National Opera

The Cunning Little Vixen Opera Poster

Following a competitive pitch and period of embargo while work has been feverishly flying ahead, we are delighted to announce Arcade’s first partnership with Welsh National Opera.

A Vixen’s Tale is inspired by one of the pieces WNO is staging this autumn, Leoš Janáček’s The Cunning Little Vixen. It will take the form of a human-scale sensory ‘tunnel book’, inviting visitors to step physically into the opera’s themes and settings where they can use augmented reality to experience a hidden world of enchanting narratives. Through playful interactions, immersive illustrations and an arresting soundscape set across five physical arches, visitors will walk with the titular Vixen and experience her story for themselves.

A Vixen’s Tale is the latest innovative digital project for WNO, following the success of recent work including Freedom 360Rhondda RebelWNO Field and Magic Butterfly, cementing their status as digital pioneers.

“We are thrilled to be working with WNO, who continue to set the benchmark for innovation in arts and culture,” said Jon Meggitt, Arcade CEO, A Vixen’s Tale is one of our most ambitious projects to date, and we can’t wait to see the effect it has on opera-goers old and new.”

David Massey, WNO Digital Producer said, “We’re hugely excited to be collaborating with Arcade on this exceptional project. Digital innovation is very much at the heart of many of our engagement projects. We hope A Vixen’s Tale will immerse and delight audiences of all ages, giving us the opportunity to explore new and exciting ways to tell stories infusing music, theatre and performance.”

The free experience is open to all and will run for four weeks at Wales Millennium Centre, opening on Saturday 5 October when WNO will also hold an Explore Opera Day. It will also be preceded by an augmented marketing campaign for those in the Cardiff area – details coming soon!

Hello, James!

James Harvey

We are delighted to welcome James Harvey to Arcade following his Computer Science Masters degree at the University of Sheffield.

Welcome to Arcade, James! So, what have you done that you’re most proud of so far?

Thanks! Well it may be slightly cliched, but I am most proud of the work I did on my dissertation. Essentially this was working on an approach to use immersive technology to aid in the reconstruction of broken archaeological fragments. Not necessarily because of the subject matter itself, rather because it’s something that got me truly involved in immersive technologies from a personal and professional standpoint, and I’m glad I got the opportunity to do it.

Lovely. What are you most looking forward to with Arcade?

It’s going to be great to work with an ambitious, talented group to deliver experiences through AR that change the way people not only interact with each other, but the spaces they visit. Pushing the boundaries of what people think a typical AR experience can be. I think immersive technology has so much untapped potential as a tool to enhance how we can tell stories to one another in both a personal and shared capacity, from completely new unseen worlds to familiar environments enhanced through the use of AR.

Couldn’t have put it better ourselves! So, what do you get up to in your spare time?

While I try not to spend too long in front of a screen, I’m a gamer at heart and it’s probably what you’ll find me doing most evenings. Getting away from my computer though, I really enjoy long hikes and camping, and try to get to the hills whenever possible.

Music of choice?

Throughout the day, anything from LoFi to 90’s HipHop gets me most productive. I’ve moved away from my Indie/Rock phase but occasionally these playlists will be given a listen.

Approved. Feel free to take control of the office juke box. Anything else you think we should know or are prepared to admit to?!

Due to being too worried to drive on a real track, I took up sim racing to enjoy all the thrills racing provides but from the safety of my room. Though I’ve probably spent enough money on it that I could’ve just bought myself a real car.

Safety first, James. Thanks for talking to us – now let’s get to work!

If you have any questions for James you can give him a shout at james@arcade.ltd.

Thanks Joram!

Joram Antwi

Joram Antwi was the latest University of Kent student to join Arcade on work experience this summer, having been studying Computer Science. He had this to say about his experience:

“My time in Arcade was very productive,  I spent my two weeks working on a live project built with AR foundation in Unity. I managed to develop a working prototype by the end of my period, which felt very rewarding to complete with the knowledge and time I had.  Through my journey developing the application and learning on the go, I found it fun to see it slowly come to life as I broke through road blocks of code.  Through my experience I have discovered many areas I need to progress in, to become a better developer. I remain passionate in pursuing a future of developing creative applications that add value to people’s lives and productivity.”

Thanks for your commitment and great work, Joram, and all the very best of luck for the future.


Joram can be contacted on joram.antwi@hotmail.co.uk, or for references please email contact@arcade.ltd.

Welcome, Emily Williams!

Emily Williams

Please join us in welcoming Emily Williams, our second intern from the pioneering Employability Points Scheme at the University of Kent. Emily is with Arcade for eight weeks, and we asked her to tell us a bit more about herself and her aspirations.


I landed the internship with Arcade through my University’s Employability Points scheme, which rewards students for doing extra-curricular activities. I have a real passion for theatre and in my first year at university I directed a play and performed in six others in theatres across Canterbury. I also became social media co-ordinator for the University’s student newspaper. As a result I was eligible to apply for internships, and the opportunity to work for Arcade was too good to miss!

I have worked in a range of creative industries, from digital marketing agencies to publishing companies and film productions. Each job has given me a different insight into content creation. 

 

When I first applied to Arcade, my only experience with immersive tech was the Derren Brown Ghost Train ride at Thorpe Park. I could hear the screams from down the carriage and I remember thinking, wow, this is the future of entertainment!

It’s fascinating to view storytelling from a digital perspective. I love to break the fourth wall in theatre and I think it’s so interesting how AR and VR have the ability to turn an audience into active participants. 

I began writing stories and reading them aloud in class when I was 10. That passion grew and grew until I decided to pursue English Literature and Creative Writing at University. 

As a writer, it’s exciting to see how technology allows big ideas to be manufactured and brought to life. There’s certainly no limit to the imagination in AR. 

At Arcade, I am being given the opportunity to get involved in upcoming projects by brainstorming new ideas, attending meetings with clients and learning about UX/UI design. 

In the coming weeks, I plan to write and edit articles for the Arcade website, and I also want to expand awareness of Arcade’s brand through marketing and social media.

I’m excited to see how AR and VR technology will progress in the future, it has great potential to enhance how we experience the world. I am fortunate to be surrounded by such talented mentors at Arcade. I learn something new and inspiring everyday!


Many thanks Emily, we hope you enjoy your time with us!

Arcade opens new Dutch office

Hallo

The Future’s Orange

We are delighted to announce a huge milestone for Arcade today as we open our first international office in Utrecht, Netherlands. Arcade’s presence in the Netherlands is an exciting opportunity to expand our purpose of ‘connecting people to place’ throughout mainland Europe. 

The office will be led by Sten Duindam as MD. Sten has been with Arcade since its early days, combining his work with studying for a Creative Technologies Masters degree at HKU (Hogeschool voor de Kunsten Utrecht). 

“Sten has played an integral role in Arcade’s success to date and has proven himself more than capable of taking on the challenge of building the Arcade offer in his native Netherlands,” said Jon Meggitt, Arcade CEO. “Please join us in congratulating him on his new role and wishing him the best of luck as he leads Arcade Netherlands into the future. Or should we say, ‘veel succes’!”

Arcade uses digital technology – and location-based augmented reality in particular – to help a variety of organisations connect their audiences more meaningfully to the physical spaces around them. “Our work to date has focused on visitor attractions, museums, heritage sites and other place-oriented institutions that are primarily UK-based, which makes this international expansion an important and exciting moment for Arcade,” said CSO Alex Book. “We can’t wait to get started.”

To contact the Dutch office, please email sten@arcade.ltd or call +31 (0) 6 57 99 92 27.

Sten Duindam in the Arcade London Office

Arcade selected as a Creative Industries Council ‘One To Watch’

Creative Industries Flag
Arcade named as one of Createch's 'Ones to Watch'

We are delighted to have been selected as one of 50 UK companies at the forefront of creativity and technology. According to the CIC, “The report reflects the UK’s strong international reputation in both technology and creative fields, with the government estimating that global companies plan to invest at least £1.2bn in UK technology.”

“Compiled by innovation specialists Springwise with support from London & Partners, Digital Catapult and the GREAT campaign, ‘Ones to Watch’ features examples of how creative and tech expertise can combine to transform products, services, and experiences.”

CIC Co-Chair and BBC Studios CEO Tim Davie said, “The publication of the ‘Ones to Watch’ report provides outstanding examples of companies of all sizes from across the country who are breaking new ground in this area and changing our lives.”

Arcade’s work with SEA LIFE, Madame Tussauds and Roald Dahl was used to demonstrate our focus on creating transformational experiences that connect people more meaningfully to place.

Alex Book Presenting at Createch

CSO Alex Book presented a showcase of Arcade’s work at Createch 2019 to an audience of over 400 UK and overseas digital industry professionals from the private and public sectors, and was joined on the bill by many notable speakers including Margot James, Minister of State for Digital and Creative Industries, Facebook’s Christina Weaver Jackson, Bill Bush from the Premier League and Dr Jeremy Silver, CEO of Digital Catapult.

Arcade launches the new Madame Tussauds AR app: Fame Cam

Emma Watson with Augmented Reality in Madame Tussauds
Play Video

The latest Madame Tussauds app, Fame Cam, was launched today. Developed by Arcade, an immersive technology company specialising in location-based augmented reality, Fame Cam lets Madame Tussauds visitors bring the waxwork figures of their favourite celebrities to life.

Using the app, visitors can see celebrities’ facial expressions move, change their outfits and learn more about them, all in AR. By exploring all of the celebrities, visitors are rewarded with discounts in the gift shop.

“This was quite some undertaking,” said Arcade CEO Jon Meggitt. “We had to integrate deep neural net machine learning with AR to produce the quality, accuracy and seamlessness of the immersive experience, which was hugely challenging but massively rewarding. When you see the results, and the visitors connecting with the models so much more powerfully, it was definitely all worthwhile. We’re delighted with the app, and hope Madame Tussauds visitors enjoy the experience as much as we did creating it.”