Archive for Neal Leavitt

GDC 2014: Reflections and Ruminations

Posted by Neal Leavitt on March 25th, 2014 at 8:26 pm

So another Game Developers Conference (GDC) has come and gone – 400 panels, roundtable discussions, lectures, tutorials, 350 exhibitors, 20,000+ attendees. Seems like every gaming publication and industry analyst swooned and fawned over Project Morpheus, Oculus Rift, Valve’s Steam Controller and how virtual reality in general is poised to take over the gaming universe.
What was also interesting, however, were the findings of a survey conducted before GDC opened its doors for the 28th time last week, a few emerging gaming industry trends, and one rather dopey game that even its developer said “is a small, broken and stupid game” – yet has now garnered literally millions of views.
The second State of the Industry GDC survey polled more than 2,600 North American game developers who attended last year’s conference. According to GDC, notable trends “include a preference for the PlayStation 4 platform for console developers, the prevalence of self-funded projects and the changing reliance and relationship with publishers.”
The survey indicated that 20 percent of developers intend to release their next game on Sony’s PlayStation 4, slightly edging out Xbox One’s 17 percent. Developers also want to do their own thing – 64 percent want to self-publish. And... Read more

Web/Text Messaging Jargon Rules the Biz World

Posted by Neal Leavitt on February 28th, 2014 at 7:02 pm

A client recently emailed me that ‘121 meetings might be the sensible approach’ – we were strategizing about holding a press event in advance of a conference.
SMH (‘Shaking My Head’), I wanted to have a bit of fun so SCNR (‘Sorry, Could Not Resist’), I lobbed back a zinger that we should shoot for 122 meetings, figuring AFAICT (‘As Far As I Can Tell’), the client had inadvertently made a typo.
AWK (‘Awkward’). Brain freeze. He meant ‘1 to 1’.
I thought about adding a smiley along with the reply but TBH (‘To Be Honest’), if I see one more emoticon, FMCDH (‘From My Cold Dead Hands’)…you can fill in the rest here.
All of the aforementioned further elucidates what’s finally happened. Internet/text messaging slang has taken over the business world, for better or worse – so, to quote the Borg from Star Trek, ‘resistance is futile.’
AAR (‘At Any Rate’), I started wondering how certain Internet slang, acronyms and text messaging aphorisms have steadily crept into our daily lives. How did this happen?
AFAICT (‘As Far As I Can Tell’), lots of theories abound but here’s a favorite – Harvard sociology professor Steven Shapin noted a few years ago that... Read more

Your Next Chauffeur May Be Your Car

Posted by Neal Leavitt on January 29th, 2014 at 7:34 pm

Wearables, wearables, wearables.
Attendees at CES earlier this month couldn’t avoid them – seemed like every other booth was pitching a smart watch or fitness app.
But the real ‘wow’ factor, in my humble opinion, was all the futuristic car technology on display. Automobiles are quickly evolving into moveable infotainment machines – and many major manufacturers – both foreign and domestic – unveiled prototypes that may be in a showroom near you quicker than you think.
“Cars will become self-aware where they can understand what’s happening inside and outside,” said Thilo Koslowski, an automotive analyst for market research firm Gartner. “We’re going to see a self-aware vehicle that looks out for you, controls the information and focuses on providing the right information at the right times to protect, inform and entertain you.”
Taking this even further, Roger Kay, who heads up market research firm Endpoint Technologies, recently wrote in Forbes that perhaps in less than 20 years, drivers will even have an ‘autopilot’ option, particularly on highways.
Kay said decision-making on a busy freeway is easier for a machine than a person, particularly when the machine can coordinate with other machines on the road.
“Traffic flows are better managed by an omniscient driving algorithm... Read more

Infographics Accelerating Online Marketing Efforts

Posted by Neal Leavitt on December 28th, 2013 at 10:25 am

In one form or another, they’ve been around for centuries.
Infographics- to use a buttoned down definition, are basically an assemblage of data depicted in visual form.
In fact, one of the earliest infographics was created by Christophe Scheiner, a 17th century German priest, physicist and philosopher. In 1630, Scheiner wrote Rosa Ursina (1630), his magnum opus on sunspots. He used infographics to illustrate the sun’s rotation patterns.
Jump-start almost 400 years. In today’s often frenetically paced digital world, infographics have now become yet another important online marketing communications tool, not only for the private sector, but increasingly in the public sector too.
Ai Ching Goh, co-founder of Penang, Malaysia-based Piktochart, which offers both free and fee-based infographic solutions, says teachers and students create about 20 percent of the infographics on Piktochart. She added the company recently surpassed 600,000 users worldwide.
According to David Jenyns, founder of MelbourneSEOServices.com, a Melbourne, Australia SEO consultancy, while the technology to create infographics hasn’t changed dramatically over the past 12-24 months, what has accelerated its growth/usage is the speed in which infographics is shared.
“Services like Slideshare and Pinterest are encouraging more people to use infographics; clients are finding that infographics are especially good... Read more

Hot Stuff for 2014

Posted by Neal Leavitt on November 24th, 2013 at 4:44 pm

Yes, it’s that time of the year again – Internet marketing pundits and prognosticators are popping up everywhere to opine about what they think will be hot trends in 2014.
Some of these trends seem interchangeable with 2013; others may have a significant impact for companies and customers as technologies continue to evolve and improve.
Here are a few that grabbed my attention:
Suraj Sondha, who founded UK-based consultancy Internet Marketing Highway, says Search Engine Optimization (SEO) will not be a primary traffic generation tool albeit it will still be a factor in page ranking. Local search will continue to be important, but we’ll see a rise in what Sondha calls Social Media Optimization (SMO).
“More people are turning to social media for research and information; they’re relying on their peers and brands they connect with,” said Sondha. He adds that Internet marketers need to better capitalize on this growing trend.
And mobile will matter more than ever. Forbes, for instance, recently reported that by 2017, 87 percent of connected devices sales (including desktop and laptop PCs) will be smart phones and tablets.
“The shift toward mobile is undeniable,” added Drew Hendricks, writing in Tech Cocktail. “Next year’s Internet marketing battlefield will... Read more