“We make games for the rest of us,” proclaimed Rob Glaser, founder/CEO of RealNetworks during his Casuality Seattle keynote June 27 in Seattle, Washington. Before the Internet, Glaser pointed out, there was no easy way to try casual games. There was no dedicated place to learn about and buy them, which resulted in what he described as “shovelware”. Currently, 23% of worldwide Internet users have broadband. The industry standard try-before-you-buy model has yielded a robust PC download business.
Casual games are appropriate on multiple platforms, Glaser suggested. The mobile platform provides a massive number of IP-enabled devices in the form of the “ultimate go-everywhere device.” Casual games are a great fit with the constraints of mobile phones, due to small screens and relatively slow processors. However, there are issues. Developers run into problems with device fragmentation.
Glaser pointed out Real’s own solution in the form of EMERGE, an evolving porting tool that allows people to develop from a single code base on over 300 handsets. Some features of games are automatically filtered out to find the optimized balance for each handset to create as rich a user experience as possible. EMERGE, according to Glaser, drastically reduces porting costs. [24×7]
ZAAZ Gets Acquired
Give it up for ZAAZ! The 65-person Seattle Web design and analytics outfit has been bought for an undisclosed price by the Wunderman agency of New York City. According to Adweek, the acquisition will strengthen Wunderman’s Web analytics offerings. [24×7]
Seattle Startup Launches XoomPad, Breaks the ‘Browser Barrier’
Coinciding with the 4th of July Independence day celebrations, Seattle-based XoomPad.com has launched its new satellite mapping service to free real estate agents and brokers from dependence on 4-5 large Real Estate firms monopolizing the Internet today. President and CEO of XoomPad.com, Vipin Singh, says XoomPad.com is built on one of the most scalable and robust technology platforms existing today, viz LAMP, (Linux, Apache, MySQL, and PHP). While the big Real estate brokerage firms have launched new websites featuring the latest mapping technologies, they often do not work on all browsers. Some Internet sites do not work on the latest version of IE and some do not work on Mozilla Firefox. XoomPad works equally well on all existing browsers, ending the widespread ‘browser barrier’ that is rampant today. [24×7]
‘Dancing Matt’ Does Jig Around World
Seattle Man Has Been To 55 Countries
Millions of people have seen a Seattle man dance his way around the world — twice.
Matt Harding’s Internet videos show him dancing everywhere from Bangkok’s red-light district to New Zealand and Argentina. It started in 2003, when Harding was living and working as a video game designer in Australia. He decided he had had enough of sitting around.
He didn’t even dance in the first few countries he visited. But after it kicked in, there was no stopping his feet.
“Last time I counted, I have been in 55 countries,” he said. Now he has his own Web site and a sponsor who paid for his latest trip around the world. Despite all of his locations, Harding said he only got in trouble once. Guards at the Parthenon in Greece took exception to his dancing in front of the ancient Greek temple and made him erase that part of his video. [24×7]