President/CTO, Vortex Immersion Media
Ed Lantz is an entertainment technology engineer, entrepreneur, immersive experience designer and innovator in giant-screen digital cinema. He left aerospace engineering in 1990 to transform old-style planetariums into 360-degree immersive visualization environments, designing over a dozen dome theaters worldwide while at Spitz, Inc. including the Library of Alexandria in Egypt and Papalote Museo del Nino in Mexico City. He also led the product development of the SciDome digital planetarium which has sold over 100 units worldwide.
Ed co-founded Vortex Immersion Media in 2007 to bring VR, immersive and interactive experiences into mainstream arts and entertainment markets. Vortex produces interactive 360 experiences for theme parks, VR Cinemas and numerous Fortune 500 companies including EMC2, IBM, Live Nation, Microsoft, NBC Universal, Nestle, NFL, Nike, Nokia and Turner Broadcast. The company has produced 360 VR concert dome venues as large as 60 meters in diameter with capacity of 3,000 people for the world’s top artists.
Vortex also operates the Vortex Dome, the first commercial immersive media production studio and events venue located in downtown Los Angeles. The Vortex Dome hosts a wide range of arts and entertainment co-productions including live stage shows, fine arts performances, live concerts and immersive arts educational activities.
Ed has published numerous articles in journals and trade publications on immersive media and virtual reality, is a public speaker on panels and keynote talks including at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and ACM/SIGGRAPH. Ed’s personal focus is on the unique cognitive properties of next-generation multisensory “sentient” environments, the merging of virtual and real storytelling worlds, and the development of next-generation entertainment venues. Ed holds two U.S. patents on immersive theater technologies, was awarded a Master’s degree in Electrical Engineering from Tennessee Tech University.