Daily News Brief: Piracy Stings Nintendo


Piracy Costs Nintendo $975 Million

Oh, the bitter sweetness of success. Nintendo can barely up keep with demand for the hot selling Wii console, and the DS remains a popular handheld. But it's not all fun and games. According to Jodi Daugherty, Nintendo of America's senior director of anti-piracy, the company, along with its publishers and developers, took a $975 million sales hit in 2007 directly related to international piracy. Yikes! Looking to reduce that number, Daugherty stated " Nintendo will continue to work with governments around the world to aggressively curtail this illegal activity. "

Are Tech Careers Lucrative?

If you answered either yes or no, you're right! This past year saw stalwarts like CompUSA shut their doors, a reduction in overtime pay, and mass layoffs aimed at restructuring. At the other end of the spectrum, tech salaries in 2007 reached a record high . According to data collected by IT staffing firm Yoh, average hourly wages hit $32.39 last October . Jim Lanzalotto, Yoh's VP of marketing and strategy, said he is " cautiously optimistic " that wages will continue grow in 2008.

GeForce 8 Getting PhysX

Physics processing remains a hot topic when discussing the future of videocards, particularly since NVIDIA acquired AGEIA . Answering some of the questions raised, NVIDIA CEO Jen-Hsun Huang held a question-and-answer session during a fourth-quarter conference call. Huang said we can expect to see the PhysX engine ported onto CUDA (Computer Unified Device Architecture), a programming interface built into all GeForce 8 GPUs. Looking longer-term, Huang hopes the integration will prompt gamers to invest in higher end videocards, SLI, and even tri-card setups. We can already hear 'W00ts' emanating from the power supply industry...

Duke Nukem Forever

Admit it - you feel a tingle every time news surfaces with a DNF update. We do too, but we also get a tingle before breaking wind. Take from that what you will, but not everyone's amused with DNF's speculative buzz. Reacting to a news story claiming 3D Realms had confirmed a late 2008 release, the developer's boss Scott Miller called the news outlet " lying bastards ," according to a Next-Gen.biz article. The original news source posted an update following Miller's comments, but the drama continues. Read more here .

NPD Introduces Subscription Tracking

We've longed complained that PC gaming sales numbers don't show the overall picture, as they ignore both subscription based sales and digital downloads. We even made mention of it yesterday , but what a difference a day makes. Today we learned the NPD Group is introducing subscription tracking in the form of quarterly Subscription Reports . Said Martin Zagorsek, NPD's vice president, this move represents " an important step towards NPD's ultimate goal of providing a truly complete view of the North Amercian PC game and video game markets ." Here's hoping the next step includes digital downloads.

Walmart May Be Going Blu

Not that HD-DVD needs any more nails in its coffin, but Walmart's latest announcement may have sealed the casket. According to a CNN Money report , the retail giant will phase out all HD-DVD movies and hardware in its 4,000 Walmart and Sams Club stores by June. Combined with the mass exodus of support from both studios and other retailers, it's hard to imagine HD-DVD mounting a comeback, and there's talk of Toshiba throwing in the towel .

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