The world’s first 3D-printed handgun, The Liberator, has had its liberty taken away by the government.
Tag Archives: designer…
MojoKid writes “Google has its hands in every other aspect of the tech industry, so why not gaming, too? It appears as though the company is eyeing a run at the gaming market by hiring Noah Falstein as its “Chief Game Designer”. Falstein’s LinkedIn profile has been updated to reflect his new title, which is the latest in a long career. He started out in 1980 and put in time at (the recently-defunct) Lucasfilm Games as well as 3DO and Dreamworks Interactive.”
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The former Opera Software designer accused of leaking trade secrets to Mozilla denied the charges yesterday, but confirmed that the lawsuit takes aim at a search revamp he worked on while a consultant for the maker of Firefox.
Opera Software has sued a former designer, claiming that work he did for the company ended up in a project at rival Mozilla, according to Norwegian press reports today.
Like flat screens and french fries before them, smartphones have been supersized, swelling in length and girth as more Americans use them to surf the web and send emails.
Energ2’s nanostructured carbon anodes can boost lithium-ion battery capacity by 30 percent.
A Seattle-based startup, EnerG2, has developed a carbon anode that significantly improves the storage capacity of lithium-ion batteries without requiring a new battery design or a different manufacturing process.
One of the main problems with buying designer clothing off of eBay and other auction sites is that there is really no guarantee that the item you are purchasing is actually what it appears to be. Despite a crackdown by eBay on counterfeit designer goods, the site still has a problem with fakes (though eBay will refund you if an item is fake). YC-backed Lollipuff is an auction site that fully authenticates any designer clothing and accessories it sells.
SchrodingerZ writes “Raymond Cusick, a production designer for the BBC show Doctor Who from 1963 to 1966, has died from illness. ‘Terry Nation, who died in 1997, wrote the 1963 story The Daleks, in which the “satanic pepperpots” first appeared, but it was Cusick who came up with the machines’ distinctive look, including the bobble-like sensors, eyestalk, sucker and exterminator weapons.’ His horrid creation has remained a prime enemy in Doctor Who for over 50 years, and have remained relatively unchanged. His tireless work however was never fully awarded, as his only pay for the project was about £100. Cusick also worked on such shows as Z Cars, Dr Finlay’s Casebook and The Forsyte Saga to The Duchess of Duke Street, When the Boat Comes In and Rentaghost. He officially retired in 1987. Claire Heawood, Cusick’s daughter, has said that her father was ‘suffering from an illness and died peacefully in his sleep on Thursday.’”
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William Volk may not be the world’s oldest game designer, but he’s up there. He started out as a play tester for Avalon Hill in 1979, and since then has worked for Activision and other major players in the game space. His current job is with PlayScreen, where he’s working on their Word Carnivale iOS game, which is not violent at all. But over the years Volk has worked on slightly violent video games and has watched public outcries over video game violence since 1976. He’s also tracked how much less violence we’ve seen since lead was removed from gasoline. (Editorial interjection: Aren’t most remaining pockets of massive gun violence in cities where many poor kids grow up in apartments that have lead paint?) Due to technical problems during the interview, some of the conversation is missing, primarily about the recent spate of multiple murders. It seems, for instance, that Newtown shooter Adam Lanza was heavily into violent video games, which is sure to spark plenty of new discussion about how they affect players. But then again, as Volk reminded me in an email, “If people were influenced by video games, a majority of Facebook users would be farmers by now,” a meme that has been floating around Facebook since last year, if not earlier.
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We’re still eagerly awaiting Steambox-spec’d hardware in our living rooms but Valve’s endeavor into hardware will move on minus one party member, noted inventor / hacker Jeri Ellsworth. She reported the firing in a tweet earlier today, however any reasons, future plans or possible link to the project itself were not mentioned. When we spoke to Ellsworth last fall, she was working on controller prototypes to address mouse/keyboard use from the couch. At the time she also happily noted the Valve corporate culture’s acceptance of risk-taking and failure on the way to new product development. We’ve attempted to contact both parties and will report back if we hear any other details — especially if they include any more fashion / Commodore 64 mashups.
Filed under: Gaming
Source: Jeri Ellsworth (Twitter)
Daniel Raffel says that when he started work on the app that eventually became the how-to platform Snapguide, people advised him to make a “food guide” app (he has worked as a chef so might naturally gravitate to that vertical). He resisted, possibly because he had a bigger ambition in mind: “My goal is to inspire people to make things that they might otherwise buy,” he told me in a conversation earlier this week. In an online/offline world filled with lots of ways to consume just about anything you want, wherever and whenever you want, Snapguide is one of those places that runs counter to that, and its flavor of DIY — delivered via a series of mobile-friendly, photographic and video-led how-to guides covering everything including crafts, makeup, cars, and — yes — food, is growing.
Just a few days ago, we told you that Brian Reynolds, Zynga‘s chief game designer is stepping down from his post after almost four years at the company. At the time, it wasn’t clear what Reynolds planned on doing next, but the man has spoken, and while he’s still not 100% sure what he’s going
Editor’s note: Rajat Paharia is the founder of Bunchball, a provider of online gamification solutions.
Gartner recently issued a press release that made the following provocative assertion: “Gamification is currently being driven by novelty and hype. Gartner predicts that by 2014, 80 percent of current gamified applications will fail to meet business objectives primarily because of poor design.”
HushHush has launched as a new “design-oriented” daily deals site in the UK, promising big discounts on fashion, interiors, gardening, and food and drink, from well-known brands such as the likes of Calvin Klein, Dolce and Gabbana, and French Connection. That may not be so note-worthy in itself — not another daily deals site, I hear you say — if it wasn’t for the site’s founder, serial entrepreneur and investor, Mark Pearson, who as the person behind MyVoucherCodes (and its parent company, Markco Media), has form in the discount shopping space.
Hey designers! You could build another app. Or you could save some lives by entering the White House’s Health Design Challenge to give the electronic medical record a much-needed redesign. Right now the thing’s an abomination — all courier font, hard to read. If you can do better, you could win $ 25K and get your design rolled out to 6 million VA patients and open sourced for all the world’s doctors.
Online designer shop Fab.com, which boasts some nine million users, is insourcing its Indian technology partner, True Sparrow Systems, by acquiring the company. The buy was reported in The Economic Times which described it as a cash and stock deal. The value of the deal was not disclosed. The paper notes it’s the first time a U.S. based ecommerce company has acquired an Indian technology startup. True Sparrow Systems announced the acquisition on its website, with founders Deepa Shah & Nishith Shah posting the following message We are proud to announce that Fab has acquired True Sparrow. We had founded True Sparrow in 2007 in Pune, India. Guided with a unique culture around Make Mistakes, Get Shit Done, and Ship It, the company has worked on innovative technology products. Along the way, we met Jason Goldberg. Together, we founded Socialmedian. And later, the three of us along with Bradford Shellhammer founded Fab. Fab is everyday design. Millions of people around the world use Fab to discover everyday design products at great prices, to connect with the world’s most exciting designers, and to share their favorite design inspirations. True Sparrow and Fab have always been one team. And today, we are one company. Today is a new beginning. Today is a start of another remarkable journey with the Fab family. Onwards and upwards! True Sparrow, which has 85 staff and is based in Pune, was also a technology partner for Fabulis — the predecessor to Fab, before the company pivoted from being a social network for the gay community to an ecommerce hub for selling designer goods. True Sparrow carried on working exclusively for Fab after the pivot. The paper quotes Fab’s cofounder and CEO Jason Goldberg commenting on the acquisition: “A large part of our success has been due to the technology team at True Sparrow. We wanted to make sure that as we make Fab into a long-term sustainable business, the technology team is a part of the company. Ours has been much more of a partnership and collaboration than outsourcing. Now, it is great to bring it together as one company.” Nishith is also quoted as saying: “There might not be any example of an Indian technology partner as the cofounder of a US ecommerce company. It is exciting for the team to become Fab employees.”
Looks like we can kiss goodbye to any lingering politeness in the rivalry between these two UK chip houses, because the smaller one has just embarked on a cheeky expansion. Having been known mainly for its PowerVR graphics processors, not least in many Apple products, Imagination Tech could potentially push into the CPU arena too, through its $ 60 million acquisition of MIPS Technologies. Just Like ARM, MIPS designs low-power RISC processors for consumer electronics, but it has generally focused on smaller chips for devices like routers and TVs rather than smartphones and tablets. In addition to a portfolio of 82 exclusive patents, a squad of 160 MIPS engineers will now be transplanted to Imagination, where they’ll no doubt be debriefed and reassigned to conquering the world.
If you remember classic games such as Wing Commander and Privateer from the 90s, then you might be happy to hear that the designer from both games is making a triumphant return by working on a new space-based MMO called Star Citizen. Legendary game designer Chris Roberts spent the last several years producing movies like
Thought you’d seen all of the iPhones (and iPads)-that-never-were? If you did, then you were wrong as Apple industrial designer Christopher Stringer testified as a witness in the case vs. Samsung today, revealing many details about the company’s design process. That included more pictures of phone and tablet prototypes being filed as evidence, while he reportedly also brought a few along for show and tell. The Verge has a few galleries of CAD shots and pictures of rejected designs, including more of the lozenge edged types we’d seen before, and iPads complete with a curved grip around the edge. AllThingsD chimes in with a few interesting tidbits from his testimony, including the revelation that Apple designers actually sit around a kitchen table to debate the progress of current projects, and explaining that earlier iPhone prototypes were labeled iPods either because they had not yet decided on a name, or were already trying to obscure iPhone identity from potential leaks. There’s more info at the source links, take a careful look at the iThings around you and imagine what might have been.
LilaG writes “Drug tests spot banned substances based on their chemical structures, but a new breed of narcotics is designed to evade such tests. These synthetic marijuana drugs, found in ‘herbal incense,’ are mere chemical tweaks of each other, allowing them to escape detection each time researchers develop a new test for one of the compounds. Now chemists have developed a method that can screen for multiple designer drugs at once, without knowing their structures. The test may help law enforcement crack down on the substances. The researchers used a technique called ‘mass defect filtering,’ which can detect related compounds all at once. That’s because related compounds have almost equal numbers to the right of the decimal point in their molecular masses. The researchers tested their technique on 32 herbal products … They found that every product contained one or more synthetic cannabinoid; all told, they identified nine different compounds in them — two illegal ones and seven that are not regulated. The original paper appears (behind a paywall) in Analytical Chemistry.”
From the article: “The research is timely, too. ‘Many drugs of abuse in the Olympics are designer drugs,’ he [Gary Siuzdak] says, in the steroid family. Grabenauer plans to extend her method to other designer drug families.”
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Editor’s Note: Sales Marketing Manager Leslie Hitchcock is a non-editorial TechCrunch employee. In addition to working at TechCrunch and being super fashionable, she reviews startups and tech products occasionally on her personal blog, Leslie Just Joined.
Two weeks ago I sat next to Warby Parker co-founder Neil Blumenthal at a dinner. Because I cannot help myself when meeting someone as interested in the fashion world as I am, I naturally talked his ear off. What we specifically discussed was the panel Neil sat on at Disrupt called “When Will Fashion Tech Just Be Fashion?” One thing that came up in the panel was the concept of fashion startups disrupting traditional brick and mortar stores by cutting out the middleman and keeping prices lower, presenting a unique AND cheaper online customer experience. Win win, right? The market is booming with companies entering this space: Warby Parker, Shoes of Prey and Everlane to name a few.
The designer behind many of Apple’s most popular gadgets will be knighted Wednesday at Buckingham Palace in London.
Robert Westmore of Southern California designs websites for a living — but he was shocked to learn that he had designed the new homepage for the reclusive North Korean regime.
The man who was the top dog in designing the original three Silent Hill games has been vocal at his disappointment with the recently released Silent Hill HD Collection. In other words, he thinks that Konami has ruined the masterpieces he helped create, even though the HD Collection is supposed to be a significantly improved
In September, social game developer Idle Games launched on stage at TechCrunch Disrupt San Francisco, declaring that they were on a mission to become “the Pixar of casual games.” The startup’s first title, Idle Worship, is a throw-back to Peter Molyneux and EA’s Black & White, except, instead of finding it on a PC, Idle Worship will make its home on that social network everyone’s talking about.
Like Black & White, gamers get to play the role of a god, lording over villagers on an island in whatever way you choose — you can be a vengeful god, or a forgiving one. Both in its first title, and in the games it plans in the future, Idle Games is looking to provide a better alternative to the stale social games already out there produced by the bigs like Zynga.
Jonathan Ive, the industrial designer behind iconic products like the MacBook, the iPod, the iPhone, and the iPad, is named a Knight Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth.
Apple Senior VP Jonathan (or Jony) Ive has been credited with fueling the company’s resurgence alongside Steve Jobs with products like the iMac, iPhone and iPad, and for these successes has been made a Knight Commander of the British Empire as a part of the New Year’s Honour’s List. Aside from having a much better NYE celebration than yours, he’ll be tapped on the shoulders by the Queen’s sword and that will forever be Sir Jony to you, commoner (we’ll see if he can make it through the ceremony without suggesting some tweaks for better balance and usability — you can see his passion above as he
eats an invisible sandwich pontificates about new iMacs). It’s a bump up from his previous title of Commander of the British Empire and keeps the cycle going, as he released a statement appreciating the benefit of a “wonderful tradition in the UK of designing and making”.
[Thanks to everyone who sent this in]
Bundle up! Jack Frost scarf by geek designer and former “Project Runway” contestant changes patterns according to temperature.
The lead designer of the Android user interface has the job of making users fall in love with Google’s mobile operating system.
The Android operating system for smartphones commands about 57 percent of the global market. But Google, which developed Android, has long known something was missing. While people liked and needed Android, they didn’t love it. Not the way they love their iPhones.