News & Updates

Digital Reality Platform Hosts First Ever Interactive Virtual Event of its Kind: Burning Man

By PureWeb10.16.20
Burning Man | Virtual Event | Press | PureWeb

Hundreds of thousands of Burning Man fans from around the world were able to gather under the open skies of Black Rock City for the first ever virtual desert festival. They attended live shows and explored camps with friends, all from their homes through PureWeb’s virtual event platform.

Calgary, AB, October 15, 2020 - This year’s Burning Man, the iconic week-long transformative art event built entirely in the Nevada desert, was cancelled. Instead, like many physical events these days, the entire spectacle was moved to a virtual format and enjoyed worldwide through PureWeb’s proprietary cloud-streaming platform.

Several distinct virtual projects were hand-picked to be part of the official Burning Man Multiverse. One of those is The Infinite Playa, a photo-real virtual Black Rock City built using Unreal Engine. This technology empowered creators like Android Jones and Meow Wolf to bring visions of elaborate 3D stages to life in a setting where users can interact in real time.

“When we started exploring the idea of using Unreal for virtual events I was blown away by the possibilities,” Says Helix Wolfson, co-founder of Infinite Playa. “We riff for hours on what this type of technology can do for live events of all kinds – conferences, festivals, training and education.” Combined with PureWeb’s tech, which makes accessing these files as simple as going to a website, we see the events industry going through an evolution.

Once users create an avatar, they’re transported to the digital desert where they can ride bicycles, meet friends, and visit stages to watch live streamed performances by artists like Diplo and Big Gigantic.

An interactive experience like this is much more complex than streaming a movie over Netflix. It requires instant computing in a huge game file that is constantly building a unique experience around every user at once. That’s where PureWeb comes in, with technology built specifically to deploy these digital realities to users anywhere, at scale, no matter the device they’re using. For the first time ever, anyone with an internet connection could get a taste of Burning Man.