News and EventsThe ITP Buzz
Join the IBM Watson Case Competition and apply your knowledge and skills in a real-life business case judged by IBM and other business leaders! You will get to work in a team of business and engineering students giving you a unique experience from working with students outside of your major. In participating in this competition, you will also get to network with professionals from IBM Watson, one of the most well-known and innovative companies. This 3-day competition is Friday-Sunday, February 8-10, 2013. Prizes include iPad minis, Kindles, and more for the finalists!
A team of gamers from the Information Technology Program in the Viterbi School of Engineering will advance to the finals of a Call of Duty tournament this weekend.
Read full story at the Daily Trojan: http://dailytrojan.com/2013/01/16/viterbi-team-to-compete-in-call-of-duty-contest/
By Sophie Fei Xu
It was like a dream. I had taken ITP 320 with Professor Kale and was taking Professor Vawter’s ITP 454 class. Professor Vawter introduced an opportunity to apply to attend the SAP SAPPHIRE conference. I was accepted and that is where my dream began.
SAP paid for the whole trip including flights, hotels, food, and even a private concert. On my flight to Orlando, I was placed in the First Class Cabin, surrounded by Deloitte senior managers. One partner revealed that 70% of their SAP related projects started at the annual SAPPHIRE Conference. Later on, I found out that the whole plane consists of Sapphire attendees. It was such a huge event that there were 3 SAP SAPPHIRE check-in windows right at the airport.
SAP SAPPHIRE is an annual conference meant for SAP customers to meet with SAP-related service providers, including Microsoft, IBM, PwC, Accenture, Dell, Hewlett Packard, and hundreds more. There were keynote speaker events, live demos, and new product launches. The three-day event attracted over 16,000 attendees to Orlando, another 10,000 followers online, and major press presence such as CNN lobbying in 6 studios right on the show floor.
SAP University Alliance team selected 40 college students from North America to display SAP’s influence as well as to evaluate the next generation of SAP professionals. In addition to exploring the show floor, the University Alliance Team presented to the executive board, learned about SAP HANA from its developers. We were also provided an overview of career opportunities. During one show floor tour, I conversed with an Accenture representative manager. He was so impressed by my knowledge of SAP that he presented me with a job offer right on the spot.
The evening schedules were as full as our day schedules. We had dinner in Downtown Disney with the executive board. On our last night, SAP threw a private Van Halen Concert at the Orlando Amway Center for SAPPHIRE attendees only. All the venders provided unlimited food and drinks that were paid for by Deloitte the concert sponsor.
It was such an exciting and inspiring event I was sad see come to an end. I would have never had the privilege to be part of such a remarkable event had I not taken courses with the Information Technology Program. I want to extend a special thank you to Professor Kale and Professor Vawter who encouraged me to apply and helped make my dream a reality.
USC vs UCLA in Call of Duty Black Ops II
Dec. 1, 2012
USC beat UCLA! The prize: competition organizer/sponsor NVIDIA is awarding four high-powered computers – $12,000 in GeForce powered PCs – to ITP. Read full details at http://www.geforce.com/whats-new/articles/rivalries-match-2-roundup
Photo courtesy NVIDIA.
Founder and CEO
Shirin Salemnia currently serves as Founder and CEO of PlayWerks, a company that specializes in being the leading independent producer of children’s interactive media and entertainment with content/IP on multi-platforms, and consumer products across all age demographics. The company strives to create and distribute innovative quality entertainment for the Children’s Entertainment Industry.
Previously, Shirin worked as the Research Manager & Bratz Brand Manager at MGA Entertainment, where she combined her child and youth marketing expertise with her toy marketing experience to perform ongoing research and analysis of the most current industry trends, consumer motivations and competitor activity for over five years. Salemnia was also responsible for the design development of MGA’s Play Lab – a place where dyads and triads of children and their parents gather for in-house qualitative research right on MGA’s premises.
Prior to MGA, Salemnia worked at Mattel, Inc. in Worldwide Consumer Research for the Girls Division. Here, in addition to conducting both qualitative and quantitative research, she was responsible for supporting Strategic Planning in all related new business ventures.
Spoke November 29:
Jim Charne is a California, New York, New Jersey, and Wisconsin Lawyer. His goal is always to provide experienced, personalized, and attentive legal counsel to clients located all around the world, in all aspects of interactive software entertainment, games, music, e-commerce, and other intellectual property-related businesses. He was the first President of the Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences (AIAS), and has been recognized as a “Most Valuable Player” by the International Game Developers Association (IGDA).
Spoke November 15:
St. John Colon, Video Game Developer and part-time lecturer, Viterbi School of Engineering Computer Science Department
Spoke November 15:
Lyle Hall, President/CEO, Heavy Iron Studios
Before joining Heavy Iron early in 2002, Lyle created and produced original as well as licensed properties while working at studios such as DreamWorks SKG, Crystal Dynamics and Virgin Games.
Spoke November 8:
Camber Jones, Cushman & Wakefield
ITP lecturer Tom Sloper participated in Blue Marble Game Company’s first Brain Jam. Tom’s team created a two-player board game in one day, entitled “Hoarder/OCD,” in which players experience the challenges and joys of being obsessive-compulsive and/or a hoarder.
Spoke November 1:
Derek Asato, Vice President, The Bohle Company
Spoke October 25:
Jacob Black, Production Manager, Blue Marble Games
Jacob currently works for the Blue Marble Game Companyhelping to create games focused on rehab. From September 2004 through November 2011 he worked for Gameloft developing and publishing mobile games.
Spoke October 11:
Mike Costache spent the last 15 years as an entrepreneur, investment banker, author, university professor, motivational speaker, angel investor and as a pro-bono fundraiser for various children charities.
Spoke October 4:
Stewart Kosoy, Co-Founder of Digital Capital AG
Stewart Kosoy is highly regarded in the video games industry as a former Senior Partner at Interactive Studio Management, Executive Producer for MGM Interactive, Vice President of Product Development for GT Interactive, and Manager of Developer Relations at Sega of America.
Spoke September 27:
William Pitts, President of Napalm Entertainment
William Pitts, III, is an experienced game designer, coder and developer with more than 30 mobile and social games to his credit. He has served as creative director for independent startups, as well as a consultant for independent developer’s projects, and for several companies on the implementation of software and web design strategies. He has been instrumental with facilitating the user experience for companies without in-house tech staff. He also has served on the advisory boards of a number of technology companies.
Spoke September 20:
Tian Mu – Co-founder/CEO of Naked Sky Entertainment
Tian built a 3-person start-up into a high caliber game development studio. Since the company’s inception in 2002, he assembled a team of top-notch developers; secured various development, licensing, co-marketing, and distribution deals; oversaw the production of all the projects; ran theoperations of the studio; and raised funding from private investors for thedevelopment of a self-published, award-winning title. Tian has established marketing, distribution, and development partnerships with companies such as Microsoft, Sony, EA, Intel, nVidia, Epic Games, Riot Games, Valve, Paramount Digital, Majesco, and Bad Robot. Tian started in the games industry at age 15, working as a game designer at 7th Level while he was in high school. Prior to founding Naked Sky, Tian consulted for various software start-ups on business development, marketing, web development, and project design. He has studied in the U.S., China, and Japan, and has lived and worked in Asia, North America, and Europe. Tian holds a Bachelor of Arts in Economics and East Asian Studies from Wesleyan University.
The USC team is gearing up to win GeForce GTX Rivalries Competition against UCLA.
The team received their ammo crate (see photos below) from NVIDIA full with GeForce GTX gaming gear. The crate included all their survival essentials including copies of Call of Duty Black Ops II and more GeForce GTX goodness.
Vote for our school to get home field advantage at www.facebook.com/NVIDIAGeForce
With more than a decade of experience in the mobile game industry, Josh Hartwell is the CEO of one of the leading independent mobile game publishers in the United States, Mobile Deluxe. Hartwell evangelizes premium casual games on the mobile platform and has been instrumental to the development and publication of titles such as the Solitaire Deluxe® franchise, JAMDAT Bowling, and the Number 1 seller on Verizon’s deck, Big Win Blackjack. His leadership has brought Mobile Deluxe several industry firsts in the US, such as the first freemium app on Verizon, the first cross-app shared economy in the US, and the first peer-to-peer viral game replication technology for mobile. In 2012, Hartwell was named as a founding Board of Director on the Application Developer Alliance (ADA), a non-profit group that gives developers the tools, network, and policy environment to propel innovation.
Aaron Cammarata has been developing videogames since he taught himself Logo on a Coleco Adam as an 8 year old. He turned pro in 1995, and was worked for companies including Activision, Neversoft, THQ, and Locomotive Games. He has contributed to top-selling games for console, PC, and handheld devices, including Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater and multiple Pixar titles. He is passionate about innovation and creativity, and believes that videogames offer us entertainment experiences unlike any that have come before. In 2011 he founded game studio voidALPHA with partners Mark Day and David Nielsen, which currently has 4 titles in development. An avid gamer with a passion for game design as a craft, Aaron loves talking games, playing games, and making games. He holds a B.S. in Computer Science from Bucknell University.
Transform Entertainment is a pioneering company working to create AAA console games specifically targeting the growing women’s market. Brandii has nearly 10 years of design and development experience in the games industry working with a wide array of platforms, genres, and markets for games ranging from giant AAA MMO’s to award-winning indie titles. She has taught game design innovation, been published in respected game development textbooks, and helped start more than one collegiate game program.
Jeff Buchanan is a veteran of Sega, Activision, Gazillion Entertainment, Online Warmongers, Arktos Entertainment Group, Double Tap Entertainment Group, Majesco Entertainment, Riot Games, and Nival Interactive USA. He has 18+ years of game development experience, working as a designer, 2d & 3d artist, animator, producer, creative director, motion capture director, writer, and voice actor. He has been involved in studio startups, team building, and developing marketplace strategies. He’s traveled to numerous outsource studios in China, Eastern Europe, India, and Russia to gauge the abilities of the various organizations providing outsourcing support.
He breaks down his own film. He is taking one class this semester — Computer Forensics — which may or may not be taught by a current or former CIA employee.
“I don’t even know if I can answer that,’’ Barkley said when asked about the status of his teacher, photojournalist Pierson Clair.
Have a project you’re anxious for others to see? Now’s your chance to showcase your one-of-a-kind creation at this year’s USC Student Innovator Showcase brought to you by the USC Stevens Center for Innovation (Click here to apply). Get the chance to pitch your project to a panel of innovation experts from USC staff and faculty, along with successful entrepreneurs and investors from USC and the Los Angeles area. Participants also have the chance to win $9000 in cash prizes! Apply today http://stevens.usc.edu/2012_sisapplication.php
USC undergraduate and graduate students from all disciplines are encouraged to apply!
The 2012 USC Student Innovator Showcase will be on Friday, Oct. 19 from 9:00AM – 4:00PM in front of the Hancock Foundation Building. At the showcase, the panel of judges will make rounds to each project and will look for the most innovative ideas.
Following the showcase, the panelist will select no more than 10 finalist to give a 3-minute “fast pitch” during the Student Innovation Fast Pitch from 5:00PM – 7:00PM at Herklotz Courtyard followed by 2-minutes of questions and answers from the panelist, peers and parents. Awards will be given to the top 4 innovators and the evening will commence with a networking reception.
- Most Innovative Award, $4,000 funded by the USC Stevens Center for Innovation;
- Most Promising Business Concept Award, $4,000 funded by the Diem Shotwell Metcalfe Family Fund at the USC Marshall School of Business;
- Student Choice Award, $500
- Parents Choice Award, $500
Apply before the 5:00PM PST deadline on Sunday, Sept. 16, 2012 at http://stevens.usc.edu/2012_sisapplication.php
For more information, http://stevens.usc.edu/studentinnovatorshowcase.php
USC Stevens Center for Innovation