Posts

ODG at AWE

Image
Nothing is more humbling than receiving credit for someone else's great work - not that it stops me.  Ralph Osterhout is a close friend of twenty years and four years ago he invited me to start working with him and the amazing team at Osterhout Design Group.   To say Ralph is legendary for his work and presence is a disservice to reality.   A short list of his inventions includes PVS 7 night vision goggles, Navy Seal Rebreathers, the Shark Dart (look it up), Dry Suits for swimming under the polar ice caps to blow up bad guys' submarines, the Yack Back player from Home Alone, high intensity water pistols, the weapons "Q" presents as his own in The Spy Who Loved me and the magic trick where Teller drowns on stage in Penn and Teller's act and these are just a few.   So when he asked me to stand in for him at Augmented World Expo and present the teams work I accepted only with tremendous humility and apprehension.  Here it is. 


VR/AR for Beginners

Image
Pioneers 2016 Vienna

The team at Pioneers are doing a stunningly amazing job of building an innovation community in Europe.

In the summer of 2016 they gave me the opportunity to stand in one of the most awe inspiring venues in Europe to talk about VR and AR.   The most amazing part is at the end where I can barely control the excitement of the live demo working.



The Danger of Echo Chambers and Value of Disagreement

Image
Ken Rutkowski started a casual group for a bunch of friends to get together on Saturday for breakfast and collaboration.  It was never only about business help and support were offered and provided in all aspects of the life and work.   The group grew in connection and size and now Ken hosts MeTAL in a theater in Los Angeles.    He asked me many times to come to talk about games and the game industry, but this time he asked me to talk on a day he was not around.  I went somewhere else completely.   Before mainstream discussions of fake news, filter bubbles and the Russians, I got myself worked about what was going on with social media and search.   This is probably the only talk you will ever see that quotes Ghandi, Tolstoy, Karl Popper, Margaret Mead and Stuart Smally all in the same discussion. 


The World is a Game

Image
In my never-ending quest to prove to my parents - and myself - that my career in games is more than personal indulgence I spend a lot of time thinking about how many things are driven by the technological advances and understanding of human behavior derived from the work of so many creative geniuses. In this talk from Ken Rutkowski's MeTAL in Los Angeles I flap my arms and articulate why everything from the Ford Factory to Uber to a job at IBM is really game and how the game industry learnings can save the world - or at least make it more efficient.


E3: So Long, We Hardly New You Edition

Image
When asked, I told people I started this blog as a cathartic outlet.  I didn't really care if any one read it, and I wrote when I had something to say.  People started to read.  I mean, who doesn't like to watch a good train wreck. There was a period of time I had a lot to say, and after a while the compulsion was gone.  I guess it worked.  I catharted.   Or so I thought. This morning I saw this quote from Mike - boy do I miss Doug Lowenstien - Gallagher:  "The video game industry's explosive growth and technological innovation were front and centre at E3 2014," said owner and manager of E3 Michael D. Gallagher. "Video games are the most innovative and engaging force driving our culture and entertainment experiences the world over. Congratulations to our incredibly creative members, partners, exhibitors, and the hundreds of millions of gamers who engaged with the show online and through social media." He was trying to say this E3 - the one where I could …

Telescreens In The Home - Kinect: I Am Not Paranoid, Someone is Watching Me Edition

Image
Maybe cliche' by now, but still creepy . . .  
Quote from 1984 About Telescreens

"The telescreen recieved and transmitted simultaneously. Any sound Winston made, above the level of a very low whisper, would be picked up by it; moreover, so long as he remained within the field of vision which the metal plaque commanded, he could be seen as well as heard. There was of course no way of knowing whether you were being watched at any given moment. How often, or on what system, the Thought Police plugged in on any individual wire was guesswork. It was even conceivable that they watched everybody all the time. But at any rate they could plug in your wire whenever the wanted to. You had to live- did live, from habit that became instinct- in the assumption that every sound you made was overheard, and, except in darkness, every movement scrutinized.
-1984, Book 1, Chapter One, George Orwell

Quote from Katherine Boehret Allthingsd review about Xbox One with Kinect:

A Skype video call t…

GameStop Hosed Me Today: How To Fix GameStop in 6 Easy Steps Edition

Image
Both of my regular blog readers keep asking why I do not write more.  It is easy enough to tell my mom to stop nagging, but I still answer to the other one - even though his English is not so good.  That dear reader, is customer service - something GameStop sadly lacks.   I realize the global nature of the statement and should explain it is not entirely true.  I never met anyone at the top of the company who is not gracious, a pleasure to deal with and painfully conscious of the customer relationship.  Unfortunately, those are not the people we deal with when we buy a game.  The stores are run by managers drawn from the mold of The Comic Book Guy from The Simpsons and choose to operate on an entirely different level.  Sure, they serve a customer, just not  the ones who want to buy a game.

It is very hard to find stores carrying a wide selection of games any more.  This creates a wonderful opportunity for a store brand itself as a game focused operation and encourage people who want g…