An anonymous reader passes along this excerpt from Develop: "The average development budget for a multiplatform next-gen game is $18-$28 million, according to new data. A study by entertainment analyst group M2 Research also puts development costs for single-platform projects at an average of $10 million. The figures themselves may not be too surprising, with high-profile games often breaking the $40 million barrier. Polyphony's Gran Turismo 5 budget is said to be hovering around the $60 million mark, while Modern Warfare 2's budget was said to be as high as $50 million."
Arvisp writes "According to a blog post by former Google China president Kai-Fu Lee, Apple plans to produce nearly 10 million tablets in the still-unannounced product's first year. If Lee's blog post is to be believed, Apple plans to sell nearly twice as many tablets as it did iPhones in the product's first year."
coondoggie writes "NASA is looking to reduce the deadly impact of helicopter crashes on their pilots and passengers with what the agency calls a high-tech honeycomb airbag known as a deployable energy absorber. So in order to test out its technology NASA dropped a small helicopter from a height of 35 feet to see whether its deployable energy absorber, made up of an expandable honeycomb cushion, could handle the stress. The test crash hit the ground at about 54MPH at a 33 degree angle, what NASA called a relatively severe helicopter crash."
I sincerely doubt the next time there's a dire emergency in a school, that the maintenance guy responsible for shutting this thing down, will be willing to go running in to do it.
A Game Designer, as job description, is not the same thing as Game Programmer or Engineer. So focus on what it is exactly that you want to do. If you want to be a programmer, listen to these people talking about languages and it's hard and stuff. If you want to be a Game Designer, it's still hard and stuff, but has little to do with programming. Instead it's about game theory, storytelling, resource management, play mechanics, architecture, lighting, and puzzle and quest building. Game design is like being a movie writer/director, and sometimes cinematographer as well. You are the one who designs the game, the story, the mechanics, the levels and level design. All those really smart programmers write the stuff you need to make your game. There are usually proprietary tools with each studio, 3d tools and scripting tools, so being flexible and skilled at quickly learning new applications is vital (good exercise is to pick up 3DMax or Maya or Photoshop, and learn how to use it cold, no documentation. Most in-house tools are sorely lacking in instructions, so get used to that.) A Game Designer is a swiss army knife of skills, but seldom is one of them programming. And there's really no school for that.
Yes. It is a terrible idea to want a career in the entertainment industry, one of the rare GROWTH industries during this economic downturn. And it would suck to get into game design, as unlike the movie industry, is virtually union-free, removing a serious barrier for entry. I can't imagine a worse career than one with a starting salary above $50,000, senior salaries in the six figures, doing something creative, and consistent job security. Sounds awful.
For some reason, smokers get four or five 10-15 minute smoke breaks a day, outside of the normal break schedule (this holds even more true if the boss is a smoker). So claim smoking, then string all your alotted smoke breaks together, and go to the gym for an hour mid-day, or split it with a 30 minute walk/run, and a 30 minute self-directed calisthenic workout. A fake unhealthy habit is your ticket to good health!