The sponsor interviews – ClickSuite

We talked with Emily Loughnan, Managing Director of Wellington based interactive media company, Clicksuite.

Webstock: Click Suite is one of the older web, or “new media”, companies around. Tell us about how Click Suite started and some of its history?

Emily: We started when Rex and I went to a television industry conference and heard about how TV would be interactive in the future. We were both blown away by what interactivity would do for audiences (removing the old passive couch-potato viewing experience and really involving the

We were so excited by this (and boring to be around because it’s all we talked about!) that just two weeks later we sent in the registration to form a company.

That was late 1993.

Since then we have lead (and followed) with a wide variety of technologies that deliver interactivity. These days the web is commonly featured in our portfolio, but we’re also doing work in digital sculptures, interactive displays, and in new user interfaces etc. It’s a VERY exciting industry to be in – it’s always challenging and changing.

Webstock: AS someone who could genuinely be called a veteran (and we mean that in the best possible sense!), what’s the current state of the NZ web scene?

Emily: I think we’re doing some great great stuff in NZ. We’ve (kiwis in general) made websites that really are innovative, there’s a lot for NZ to be proud of. I know from our own experience that we showed someone in the BBC a site we made here, and he was blown away at how much more efficiently we did it compared to one they made with similar functionality – and how much better it was in terms of quality.

That said, we need to keep innovating. To do that you need great people, but you also need brave clients, or backers. (They’re on my Santa list)

Webstock: What are some of the changes you see happening to the industry in the next 5 years? What are the sort of things we’ll be working on?

Emily: The really exciting developments in touchscreen and even gestural, or natural, interfaces means how we interact with the web is going to change. That means we are all going to have to think about a new paradigm in user experience because as the interface evolves, so too does the audience.

Webstock: Click Suite is associated with Jane McGonigal at Webstock. Tell us why you made that choice.

Emily: Well sometimes games are a great way to connect with certain audiences. We have quite a bit of experience in that space, and we are interested in Jane’s knowledge and experience. Besides, I fancy coffee with a futurist.

Webstock: This is Click Suite’s first time as a Webstock sponsor. What made you decide to become involved?

Emily: we have some serious webstock fans here. You could call it peer-to-peer pressure πŸ˜‰

Webstock: Heh! Thanks Emily.