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Project Magma: The untold origin of Verdansk, the Gulag and 'Call of Duty: Warzone'

Washington Post - Technology News

Patrick Kelly remembers the pitch meeting vividly. The room full of developers and Activision executives had convened at Infinity Ward's offices in Woodland Hills, California, in early 2018. It was time for Kelly and his longtime colleague Dave Stohl, who together serve as co-studio heads for Infinity Ward, to pitch their big idea. The project was code-named "Magma." And the plan was to create the biggest ever battle royale, one tied to the world of the studio's planned 2019 release, "Call of Duty: Modern Warfare." Upon completion, the project would be re-christened as "Warzone." "Okay, so here's the thing," Kelly said, reenacting his pitch to the room.


Tiger Woods crash: Los Angeles police determine the cause of golfer's car accident

BBC News

The details of what caused Tiger Woods' car crash will only be released if the 15-time major winner gives permission for police to share their findings.


PlayStation CEO Jim Ryan on expanding the brand, and the far-off future of VR

Washington Post - Technology News

While the first two PlayStations grew a loyal fan base, titles for PlayStation 3 really started to crystallize what a "Sony first-party game" looked and felt like, furthering the console's appeal to consumers. "The Last of Us" for the third console ushered in a new age of luxuriously animated and gripping single-player stories. Guerrilla Games followed up with "Horizon Zero Dawn" for the PlayStation 4, as did Santa Monica Studios with "God of War." Now, Insomniac is releasing "Spider-Man: Miles Morales" and "Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart" in the PS5 launch window. Both titles feature elements that heavily lean into the immersive world Sony is seeking to create with its latest console. Ryan said you can expect this trend to continue, particularly since it supports the company's overall sensory engagement messaging.


Moxie social robot from Embodied designed to help children learn IAM Network

#artificialintelligence

Last week, Embodied Inc. launched Moxie, a social robot designed to help children with cognitive development. Moxie uses machine learning and the SocialX platform to perceive and interact. Maja Matarić, interim vice president and vice dean for research at the University of Southern California's Viterbi School of Engineering, co-founded Embodied in 2016. The Pasadena, Calif.-based company said it "has assembled a world-class team of experts in child development, engineering, technology, game design, and entertainment to create Moxie." Embodied has worked with advisors from Disney, MIT, Pixar, and The Jim Henson Co., among others.


Travis Scott's Fortnite Event Draws Record Audience

NPR Technology

Ansel, age 11, plays Fortnite featuring Travis Scott's in-game event, "Astronomical," on April 23, 2020 in South Pasadena, Calif. Ansel, age 11, plays Fortnite featuring Travis Scott's in-game event, "Astronomical," on April 23, 2020 in South Pasadena, Calif. On Thursday, Grammy-nominated rapper Travis Scott performed to millions of fans worldwide -- not during a living room set or from an empty venue, but via the massively popular video game Fortnite. Fortnite's developer Epic Games says the virtual concert drew in 12.3 million players, setting "an all-time record" for an in-game event. Over the course of the performance, Scott appeared as a towering version of himself which transformed into different globe-headed avatars transported through a series of impossible landscapes.


International Women's Day: celebrating the black women tackling bias in AI

#artificialintelligence

This intersectional group is disproportionately affected by instances of bias in both the design and application of AI, and they are also leading the fight to make new technologies more equitable for everyone. Intersectionality – the proposition that race, class, gender and other individual characteristics intersect in a way that impacts how a person is viewed, understood and treated – opens possibilities for deeper thinking about how injustices occur in everyday life. Kimberlé Crenshaw, a professor of law at Columbia and the University of California, Los Angeles, coined the term in 1989 in'A Black Feminist Critique of Antidiscrimination Doctrine, Feminist Theory and Antiracist Politics'. Crenshaw's work was rooted in Critical Race Theory – the belief that the structure of law and society are intrinsically racist – and she saw the failure to recognise the intersection of race and sex as part of that structure. In that essay, Crenshaw argues that black women, through being both black and female, suffer specific forms of discrimination that black men or white women may not.


Artificial Intelligence Could Diagnose Cancer

#artificialintelligence

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Esports injuries real for pros and at-home gamer, from finger sprains to collapsed lungs

USATODAY - Tech Top Stories

Almost 70,000 gamers are set to crowd Los Angeles Convention Center for the annual E3 expo, a highlight on the video game calendar. Some of the top attractions are esports, with competitions throughout the week attracting fans in droves. Inside an 8,000-square-foot state-of-the-art esports training facility in Santa Monica, California, the five players who compete in "League of Legends" for Team Liquid push their bodies to the limit. "I play eight-to-12 hours a day, not including our games on the weekends," Jake Puchero tells me over the phone. It takes a lot of mental focus and physical stamina." Puchero, better known by his in-game name "Xmithie," is a 28-year-old professional "League of Legends" player for Team Liquid. For those not following esports, "League of Legends" is an online multiplayer game that pits two teams of five players against each other in an online battle arena, and it's one of the most popular sporting events on the planet. More people now watch the League of ...


Nike Wants Your Sneakers to Fit Better, So It's Using AR

#artificialintelligence

Sometime last fall, a man walked into the Nike store in Pasadena, California. He was a runner, it was a running-centric store, and he was there to buy a pair of running shoes just like the ones he had worn in the past. The clerk asked him if he'd be willing to have his feet measured a new way. "I'm a 9," the runner said. "I've always been a 9. Just give me a 9." Still, he relented.


Bafta games awards 2019: God of War leads nominations

The Guardian

Sony Santa Monica's God of War has received 10 nominations for this year's Bafta game awards, leading a diverse pack of nominees. Rockstar's Red Dead Redemption 2 also picked up six nominations, as did Florence – a game about a relationship played from the perspective of a young woman – and Return of the Obra Dinn, a lo-fi monochrome mystery set on an abandoned ship. The contenders for best game are Assassin's Creed Odyssey, PlayStation VR game Astro Bot: Rescue Mission, Celeste, God of War, Red Dead Redemption 2 and Return of the Obra Dinn. Last year's winner was What Became of Edith Finch, an emotionally charged magical-realist game about the fate of an ill-fortuned family. The games beyond entertainment category, introduced to recognise games whose impact extends into the real world, comprises Celeste, Aardman Studios' first world war game 11-11 Memories Retold, Life is Strange 2, My Child Lebensborn, and Nintendo Labo.