Kodak hits the skids — not a pretty picture

So, it’s now official. What’s been rumored for some time has come to pass. Kodak has filed for chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. This is indeed a sad day and not just for nostalgic 35mm film fans (remember those big SLRs we used to carry around our necks?), nor for Paul Simon music fans. Kodak was a rock solid megalith that no one ever would have thought could fall so far, although the writing has been on the wall for some time.

Epic’s 3D graphics wizard Tim Sweeney says business and technology are “intricately linked” (interview)

Tim Sweeney is one of the gods of 3D graphics in video games. He is the founder and chief executive of Epic Games, the maker of blockbuster video games from Unreal to Gears of War. At the upcoming 2012 D.I.C.E. Summit in Las Vegas, Sweeney will be inducted into the Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences Hall of Fame and he’ll be giving a talk for the first time at the exclusive industry event. Sweeney has led Epic Games for more than two decades and is the technological wizard behind the company’s industry-leading 3D graphics. Not only does Sweeney enable Epic’s designers to create some of the coolest games, which are catalysts for creativity that inspire the rest of the game developers. He also built the Unreal Engine, which Epic licenses to the rest of the game industry, raising the overall graphics quality of many games. Sweeney has led the company in its transition from PC game maker to console game maker and has helped it expand into iPhone and iPad games. Sweeney is a shy programmer, until you get him in a discussion about what is right when it comes to a technology decision. He is an advocate of open technology, and he has played a big role in pioneering 3D graphics. At Raleigh, N.C.-based Epic, his job is to see the future of games and create the technology that will deliver it to consumers’ living rooms with the highest fidelity. We’ll be covering his award ceremony and talk at the Dice Summit, which takes place Feb. 8-10. Meanwhile, we were able to interview him recently. Here’s an edited transcript of our interview with Sweeney.

Sulake CEO discusses Niko, Habbo Hotel and the drive to move audiences across platforms

With over 10 million unique visitors a month, Habbo Hotel is the world’s largest game and online community for teenagers, with users in over 150 countries. With parent company Sulake releasing Niko, its second iOS (iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch) game, this week, VentureBeat spoke to chief executive Paul LaFontaine, about his cross-platform strategy.

Top 5 reasons to support SOPA

You’re likely a little sick of hearing about SOPA by now. I know I’m sure as hell tired of writing about it. But yesterday, everyone from Google to Wikipedia protested the highly controversial bill, commonly resulting in a blackout of sites frequented daily by millions of users all around the world. It doesn’t matter how big of a rock you live under; if you didn’t know about SOPA before, you know about it now. I spent an hour last night in my bedroom talking about SOPA to Fiorello LaGuardia and he’s been dead for sixty years.