Bill Guschwan: A History of Video Game Development

Posted in Conferences, Companies on September 17, 2008

Video games are a product of software and hardware advances. This presentation will feature the works of Ken Kutaragi of Sony as a major figure in the history of the video game.

Ken Kutaragi invented key parts of the PlayStation after creating the sound chip for the Nintendo NES. Like others in the Japanese computer industry he is interested in the affective experience of people with technology. His latest achievement with Sony was the PlayStation 3 which features his Emotion Engine which is a microchip with 9 coprocessors.

Bill Guschwan graduated from Notre Dame and moved on to Apple with some colleagues. He was on the founding team for Quicktime, where he wrote technical articles and created the first Quicktime sample movie. He was then on the founding team at 3DO, and moved on to Sony where he was the main technical liaison for the PlayStation in the US. He worked for Ken Kutaragi in 1995 in Japan at the Sony headquarters. Currently, he works in the interactive arts and media department at Columbia College, is the resident juggler for the WNBA's Chicago Sky, is a Pilates instructor at Ultimate Fitness in Evanston, and enjoys dancing, drumming and philosophy in his spare time.

Bill will use various PlayStation software and hardware examples to show how the technology advances are directly related to a change in the affective experience of the player. He will also draw parallels in other platforms such as the use of Apple's QuickTime data compression in the Macintosh's Myst, John Carmack's elegant 3d calculation design in the PC's Doom, and Miyamoto's innovative synced sound in the Mario games on the Nintendo.

Finally Bill will speculate on why the PS3, despite superior hardware capable of supporting advanced game design, has been challenged by the XBox and especially the Nintendo Wii.

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May 14, 2008

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