May Gets Off To A Great Start!

Here at UDEN, we continue to find ways to bring Utah's creators of digital entertainment and technology together, whether by sharing knowledge and expertise, networking or advocating for our growing community. Our membership meetings have proven to be really popular and valuable, so we're aiming to hold them quarterly.  The next one?  Funny you should ask, it's happening Wednesday, May 2nd at 6pm, downtown Salt Lake City as part of #HIVEIGNITEWEEK! Here is a preview:

UDEN's membership meetings are always great for meeting other people in the community -- perhaps you're looking for a collaborator for a new project, or maybe a new team member; perhaps you want some advice or maybe you need to find a talented digital contractor?  We can't understate the importance and power of networking for you, your career, your business.  We make it easy, with a friendly atmosphere and some great food (at UDEN #19 it will be from Argentina's Best Empanadas of Salt Lake City).  Best of all, it's free, thanks to generous sponsors who want to help us grow this community.

UDEN #19 will kick-off with some knowledge sharing; an excellent keynote presentation about effective social media strategies from UDEN member and long-time supporter Chad Mustard of Blue Helm, sharing  some of the best practices for using social media to help you and your business rise above the noise.

Many of you have already sent in your RSVPs - thank you - but if you didn't, now would be a good time before we close registration. Here:


As creators ourselves, we like to try new ideas and test them to see what works. Last year we introduced a heavy focus on new technologies, including augmented and virtual reality and helped a handful of new companies startup. Tomorrow we're trying  another new idea, an entire week of events to help our community connect, learn and grow, called #Hive Ignite Week


Comprising film, gaming, VR/AR, audio, education, YouTube, digital journalism, eSports, storytelling and streaming, the week will showcase some of the best companies, creators and technologists in this space sharing their knowledge, showing their products and discussing how to grow the ecosystem for long-term economic success.  


The free event line-up includes:

  • panel discussions
  • a documentary movie screening (voiced by Harrison Ford) with exclusive director Q&A to follow
  • hands-on product demos
  • presentations sharing knowledge and expert opinion
  • live eSports match between the University of Utah and BYU - the "digital Holy War"
  • vendors showcasing their services
  • hands-on interactive applications and
  • an Interactive Jam where creators come together to make something: perhaps a VR movie, an AR utility, a Livestream extension, a linear storybook animated comicbook app, a print and play tabletop game, or whatever else!  


Maybe you can spare your lunch break to participate?  Perhaps you'll spend a few hours with us at a couple of the sessions that especially interest you?  Or maybe you'll spend the whole week with us, where we can offer free work-space at Access Salt Lake for you to work between sessions, complete with complimentary wi-fi and a coffee shop on site.  

A handful of the sessions and exhibitors are illustrated in the attached images, but for the full line-up including times, please go to, where you can RSVP for the events you're interested in.


Please remember why we're doing all of this: it isn't a money making exercise, our aim is to promote the digital entertainment sector in Utah.  That means you!  It only works if you support what we're doing, so we ask that even if you can't attend, you can still help us by sharing details of our events in your own networks; tell colleagues, retweet our posts, add your voice to the dialog we start.


#HIVEIGNITE WEEK and UDEN #19 are only possible thanks to the speakers and exhibitors contributing their time for free, to our volunteers for organizing the events and to our sponsors for generously contributing resources: The Utah Film CommissionBlue Helm Communications, IGDA SLCAccess Salt and GrowTix.  Thank you all!


We're in the entertainment industry, right?  So let's share news and updates about what we're all up to in our community!  We have added a 'Product Announcements' page to the UDEN website, where you can go and add whatever news and announcements you would like to share with the community and the World!   Maybe you have come across some interesting data about our industry - share it on this page too!

Jump right in here:


Throughout May - FREE FILMS!

This month you can find terrific, engaging independent film showtimes all across the state. The wonderful Utah Film Center maintain a great list here:

Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays – Entrepreneur Launch Pad

The Entrepreneur Launch Pad (ELP) helps startups and small businesses on the Wasatch front. Free mentoring, education, resources for growth. These meetings in Sandy, Kaysville, and Orem.  More info here:


 - maintain a comprehensive list of upcoming events for the gaming industry, here:

FILM - Our partners at the Utah Film Commission have an events calendar, here:

You can find an interesting, wide variety of tech-related events at our good friends Silicon Slopes' events page here:

- The VR/AR Association maintain a growing list of events relevant for those involved in the creation of VR and AR, here:

- the Utah Games Guild maintain a calendar of local events here:

REMEMBER: if you have an upcoming event you would like to share with UDEN members, you can add it to our website for FREE here:

From all of us at UDEN, our thanks for your continued support, we hope to see you next week!

     - Jon Dean

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