This week, Amazon might send iTunes up the river, JJ Abrams might send two factions to war and Atari and THQ are sending their assets to other buyers.
Scott is a developer who has worked on projects of varying sizes, including all of the PLuGHiTz Corporation properties. He is also known in the gaming world for his time supporting the DDR community, through DDRLover and hosting tournaments throughout the Tampa Bar Area. Currently, when he is not working on software projects or hosting F5 Live: Refreshing Technology, Scott can often be found returning to his high school days working with the Foundation for Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology (FIRST), mentoring teams and judging engineering notebooks at competitions. He has also helped found a student software learning group, the ASCII Warriors.
With over ten years of audio engineering experience, Nick's addition to PLuGHiTz Corporation is best served when he is behind the mixing board every Sunday night to produce the audio side of F5 Live: Refreshing Technology, Piltch Point and PLuGHiTz Live Night Cap. While mixing live every week, his previous radio show hosting experience gives him the ability to co-host as well, giving each show a unique flare with his slightly off-center, yet still realistic take on all things tech. An integral part of the show, you can find Nick always enveloped in coming up with new (and sometimes crazy) ideas and content for the show and you can always expect the most direct opinion on the stories that he feels need to be shared with the world. During the few hours where Nick isn't sleeping or working on ways to improve the company, he spends his free time going to hockey and football games and playing the latest titles on Xbox 360. Email him for his gamertag and add him today for a fun escape from the normal monotony and annoyance that the Xbox LIVE gaming community can sometimes be!
Avram's been in love with PCs since he played original Castle Wolfenstein on an Apple II+. Before joining Tom's Hardware, for 10 years, he served as Online Editorial Director for sister sites Tom's Guide and Laptop Mag, where he programmed the CMS and many of the benchmarks. When he's not editing, writing or stumbling around trade show halls, you'll find him building Arduino robots with his son and watching every single superhero show on the CW.
Over the past two years, Cisco has been dumping many of its brands, many of which are consumer-facing, but all of them have been out of Cisco's strengths. Almost two years ago, the company cut loose its Flip Video camera business. A year later they closed up shop on the Cius tablet brand as well, not long after the announcement that a larger version would be launched. That larger tablet never made it into the world.
It seems like this has been a bad month for old school gaming companies. We recently reported that THQ has sold off its assets to various companies and has closed its doors for good. Now, Atari has also struggled to find a hold in today's gaming market and the company has filed for chapter 11 bankruptcy. The company said in a written statement that it is looking to "secure independent capital for future growth, primarily in the areas of digital and mobile games." This is a little bit different though, as the filing is for the American division of Atari only, and it is a move to try and find buyers for the American branch to break away from its less-than profitable French parent company.
Five years can make a big difference in the videogame industry. Five years ago, THQ was valued at over $2 billion; today, right around $72 million, or so would suggest this week's bankruptcy auction. The company, which has had a lot of trouble finding its footing in the modern gaming market, sold off most of its assets to former rivals, including Sega and Ubisoft.
This one is sure to ruffle a few feathers in Apple HQ. Amazon has just made it easier for iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch users to buy music on their devices and they don't have to use iTunes to do it. Instead, Amazon has launched a special iEdition of their music store, with HTML5, that is specifically tailored to the mentioned products that will allow consumers to buy music from Amazon and then access the music from anywhere they'd like.
In potentially the weirdest news since Disney purchased the company, Lucasfilm seems to be bringing JJ Abrams in to direct the announced seventh installment of the Star Wars franchise. Abrams is pretty iconic in the sci-fi and alternate reality genre, creating the cult icons Lost for ABC and Revolution for NBC Universal. He is also responsible for films such as Super 8 and Cloverfield, both of which attracted large audiences.