One of the interesting Steampunk-related events coming up this weekend is an endeavor titled Virtual Con... to better explain it, I'll defer to the official press release...
First of It's Kind Virtual Sci-fi/Fantasy Convention Keeps Costs Down
St. Louis, MO (http://www.virtualcon.org/)—The price of gas and other economical factors adversely affected attendence at many media conventions so far this year. At these events, fans of science fiction, fantasy, steampunk, supernatural thrillers, anime, and comic books converge with an avid enthusiasm akin to a religious pilgrimage at hotels and other convention centers across the country for weekends filled with a celebration of all things geek. A few of the shows grew in attendence this year, but many declined. Many fans are having to work extra jobs or overtime hours to make ends meet (if they aren't unemployed). Even if they can get the time off, they must gravely assess the current cost of road trip with gasoline prices soaring, while hotel rooms and restaurant meals don't get any cheaper.
One convention coming up on Nov. 11th, 12th, and 13th, looks to address this by using videoconferencing technology. Virtual Con 1 (http://www.virtualcon.org/) will allow fans to enjoy the convention experience without leaving their homes, or simply by going over to a friend's house for a virtual “con party”. The fan community will be able to rub shoulders with actors, authors, indy movie moguls, comic book artists, voice actors, and other celebrities from the convention world just as they would at a “brick & mortar” convention by using an easy-to-use user interface provided by the corporate training specialists at Smart Training. The interface will also provide a movie room, a cooking lesson from Stuart Bergman aka “The Con Cuisine Guy”, and a lesson in pirate fashion from the makers of “Salty Eye for the Mundane Guy”. Actor Guest of Honor is Jackson Bostwick of “Shazam!” and “Tron”. Author Guest of Honor is Shane Moore of “The Abyss Walker” series.
If your upcoming weekend is open, I'd certainly recommend the proverbial virtual trip to Virtual Con! For more details, please visit: http://www.virtualcon.org/
(and a tip of the hat to Mr. J.E. Klement for the lead on this event - my thanks, sir!)