I’m a freelance journalist and published poet, based in Manchester.
The cutting-edge in the city centre
The future arrives in Manchester this week, bursting with ideas about how we can unlock the past, shape the places where we live, interact with each other and be more creative. The innovators behind the FutureEverything Festival have organised a Summit of Ideas & Digital Invention, which will explore three major themes: Future Cities, the Data Society and the Creative Code.
These topics will be explored at a two-day conference on 21st and 22nd March. In addition to talks, debates and workshops new music and art performances will take place in Manchester city centre and Salford.
Here is a completely subjective pick of events that caught my eye when looking through the programme:
1) Andy Stott, from Manchester-based Modern Love label, will perform a headline set at Salford's Islington Mill on Friday 22nd March, incorporating vocals from his former piano teacher, Alison Skidmore.
2) The Closing Party at Islington Mill on Saturday 23rd March, features Space Dimension Controller (R&S Records), whose music is influenced by everything from George Clinton & Parliament Funkadelic to 1980s video games and science fiction film- soundtracks.
3) NVA's Speed of Light will illuminate Salford Quays at a free art event at 8pm on 21st, 22nd and 23rd March. The performance includes hundreds of runners in LED light suits.
4) New Interfaces for Culture: in this conference session at the summit, Steve Crossan, Head of the Google Cultural Institute, and Canadian artist Michelle Teran will explore the internet's future development and how it will change how we engage with each other.
5) Bringing Archives to Life: this session explores how resources of images, film, text and data can most effectively be unlocked. It will be led by Tony Ageh, Head of BBC Archives and Jill Cousins who is Director of the Europeana Foundation and an expert in digital libraries.
FutureEverything was founded in 1995. It has moved to a larger Manchester venue (4 Piccadilly Place) because of its increasing popularity. Drew Hemment, Founder and Chief Executive Officer says: "The FutureEverything Summit is shaping into what is set to be an intense, creative, thought-provoking and inspiring two days that will be of benefit to anyone involved and interested in, how our future world including culture, art, cities and society will take shape."
The Routes to the Future Innovation Challenge offers a cash prize and development fund of £11,000 for new software applications that will improve the experience of using public transport.
The summit replaces the now-traditional FutureEverything Festival, which will return next year.
Barcelona based duo Alba G Corral and Nikka perform at last year's FutureEverything