Just got back from GDC and wanted to give everyone a quick update with regard to the show.
This ywar's GDC was bigger than last year with a record setting 10000+ people pre-registered, but something didn't seem quite right. There was a lack of excitement than prior years, or so it felt.
I spoke in 2 sessions this year. One was at an event called the MMORPG Boot Camp that was held by Zona, Inc. in the Hilton hotel and was packed to capacity. I talked about scalable architectures and how game companies today need to build scalibility and expanding features into their design, not as an afterthought. The session was received VERY well and we got a tremendous amount of positive feedback.
Our second session, was interesting.....We had, let's just say, not a small but "intimate" group of people show up for the talk. This was due to bad session time, location, and lack of a description in the show program, but, ok.
Our buddies at FullSail (Shawn Kendall, Sirus (what is his last name anyway?) and Dustin Clingman) did a full day tutorial on Java game programming (yea guys!). The room was full for the entire day and was very well received. I believe that this will become a perminant track for GDC moving forward.
We discussed Java technologies overall, Sun technologies in the games space, and showed game demos that were provided by Cyperstep, our very own Cas and Herkules, and FullSail. The people that did attend were very impressed. (BTW Cas, I suck at your game
Need more practice and have to try it when I haven't been out drinking the night before)
There was a 2 day mobility conference this year as well. I did not attend, but I hear good things
Ok, the show. The usual suspects were there. ATI kicked major ass! nVidia looked good but with the announcement of the ATI 9800, nVidia has their work cut out for them.
A VERY cool little company named aJile (www.ajile.com
) was showing a cartridge for the GameBoy Advance that allows you to play J2ME/MIDP games on your GBA! The cartridge has a Java processor with a hardware based VM and does multi-threading in hardware as well. The performance is somewhere in the neighborhood of 8-10x performance increase over software processing. The best part is....the cart will retail for $99! The full development kit including the cart: $199. EXTREMELY COOL INDEED!
Another semi-suprise was the focus on MMORPG by several companies. Companies like Zona, Silver Platter, Big World, and Quazzel (sp?) were there showing their solutions for back end infrastructures to enable the next generation of games to exist.
Of course, Sony kicked ass, Nokia unveiled the nGage, and Microsoft discussed XBox 2.
Laslty, I was amazed with how many people came up to me and told me that they are developing in Java and really believe in the language. Even more amazing (
) is the people who came up to me and told me how much they rely on this humble site
Thanks to all who participate and contribute.
All in all, it was a great show. The parties were kick ass and I realize that I can't stay up drinking all night any more. Body can't handle it
Peace out peeps