Wednesday 28 September 2011

How To Learn From Games

The four games you meet in heaven

I’ve spent about a thousand hours a day playing computer games since way before I was born. That’s turned out to be quite useful, not because I work in games but because I don’t. Games have a lot to say and if you don’t make games, you can learn an incredible amount from them. The inverse is true for people who do make games, but hey, those guys are a bunch of nerds, right?

People are different and we can learn from each other
The problem is that there are more games out there than there are stars in the sky, so working out which ones can teach you the most is basically impossible. I’ve already played literally every game ever made, so here’s my break-down of THE GAME that can teach you the most, based on your profession.

It’s extremely important to note that you have to actually play these games. If you just read this and think you’ve learned anything except which game you should play, then you are an idiot. A big stupid idiot. Reading a few words written by another idiot about the most important games in the world is no match whatsoever for actually playing them. You spend more than it costs to buy these games and their accompanying consoles on lunch and stupid shirts in less than a week, so go and put the time in. In exchange, you will be hailed as a genius by your tribe. It’s not a bad deal.

Oh god just please go and play this now, oh god please. Way of the Samurai is half sword fighting game, half choose your own adventure. It’s set in 1878, at the end of the Samurai era. The fighting game is fun and the whole thing is very short. 

It’s arranged into areas and each area presents the player with a dilemma and leaves them to decide how to deal with it. Depending on how they react, the situation in the next area they visit may be affected. Because the game is very short, players can and will play through it several times, getting to see what the effects of their actions truly are from many different perspectives.

Typical Samurai dress circa 1878
The fighting bit is highly enjoyable and the desire to see what else might happen is incredibly high. You learn a great deal about 1870s Japan and you bloody love doing it. Go, now, play, now. You’re wasting your time if you haven’t seen how well this can be done. 

If you work in marketing then you are interested in gamification. And, if you are interested in gamification, you’ve heard that games people don’t think gamification is worth shit. Well Demon's Souls is the game that will demonstrate exactly what they are talking about, and it will do so with utterly brutal efficiency. 

Demon's Souls is fucking hard. Really, totally fucking hard. It is a game about loss. About losing. About losing over and over and over again, until you win. And when you win, it is the best feeling since that one time when you smoked rainbows while having sex with god, dressed as a unicorn.

What is this, I don't even...
If you want to understand what actual games rather than the operant conditioning machines of Facebook have to offer your profession, you’ll go home and beat yourself against this game until you finally bend it to your will, by which point you will have become an immortal being, a god among men.

Demon's Souls is the opposite of gamification and will teach you more about what gamification can actually offer than any other object in the known universe. Get on with it.

This one is as effortlessly enjoyable as it is embarrassing to every single person who works in online advertising. As the game is loading, it lets you play Galaga, an ancient 80s arcade shooting game. You play for a few seconds, then the game starts and you play that instead. 
They don't think it be like it is, but it do

It’s incredibly simple and fun. It is the most engaging pre-roll ever made. Literally no piece of pre-roll or interruption advertising has been as good as this was. And it’s been there since 1994, four years before Google existed. Go, get a PlayStation, and play it. Then stop making pre-roll videos, start engaging people through engaging objects and receive a colossal pay-rise and infinite respect from your co-lifeforms.

Oh how I envy you. To be able to go back to a time when I hadn’t played Final Fantasy 12 is a regular subject of my thrice-hourly daydreaming sessions. It’s a gigantic, huge, sprawling epic of a game that takes forever to finish. It’s on a scale with watching the whole of The Wire. That was worth doing and so is this.

The reason is that this is a game that basically plays itself. You tell it how you want it to play and it does that. It’s a game that seems to take control away from the player, but actually gives them greatly more, by giving them a position as director rather than actor.

Owls are both passive and interactive

If you want to know how to do passive, sit-back, yet interactive programming, then go and play this game, then have a good long think. Control isn’t just about pressing buttons and seeing a man jump or an enemy die. From the lightest of touches in the rightest of places, you can give people an incredibly interactive experience. Go and learn how. Now.

This is the end bit

I’ve said here before that we all do the same job, that we all need to look outwards, not inwards. Well now you know exactly where to start looking when it comes to games. The time and money you spend on actually playing these games will repay you a thousandfold. I don’t even have a joke to finish off with here. 

Saturday 24 September 2011

Facebook Makes Me Like You

I’m just a big fan of a certain length of paragraph

So Facebook has done another thing. It’s made your history look pretty and let you share all the important and not so important things in your life more quickly, more easily, more accurately and more often. This is terrible news.

See, Facebook is the anti-social network. It concerns itself with the people you already know and the things the people you already know, know. You can’t make friends on Facebook. We’ve all got our privacy options cranked up so far, we’re not even allowed to look at our own profiles, just in case we discover the shocking truth about what we did last summer. 

On Twitter I meet new people all the time. I actively try to make new social connections with people who are interesting to me, and hopefully me to them. And it works. I’ve has three real life meetings in the last two weeks with people I’ve met on Twitter. This has never happened through Facebook.

These little fellows are Twitter
Nothing Facebook has added will make creating those new social connections any more likely. In fact the more data is there for people to see on my Facebook page, the less comfortable I am with letting new people see it. I don’t want to be stuck in my past, I want to reach for my future. You’re only as good as your last gig, right?


There are two more nefarious and subtle elements to the lack of new connections on Facebook. Firstly: sharing is boring. If I share music, by listening to music on Spotify, you see me listening to that music and you decide to also listen to that music. We sit there, both listening to that music. We were listening to different music. Now we’re listening to the same music.

One of the best things about the internet was how it let you be weird in private. It let you look at anything you wanted, anything at all, no matter how strange, unsavory, socially unacceptable or simply at odds with your carefully curated public image. The world had been a place of mass-production and mass consumption. There are four cars, which one do you want? There are twelve bands, which one do you want to listen to? Be normal, you have to be normal, we can only do normal. 

This man would never happen on Facebook

Suddenly internets! And we could do weird. We could make content that only a handful of people wanted to see. Demographics could diverge and home in, the logical conclusion being that you would see your own individualised things that were for you. A demographic of one. By making ‘social discovery’ so simple, we make homogenisation a force once again. Listen to what I’m listening to. Watch what I am watching, Read what I am reading. Don’t be different, be the same

More insidious still, the strange choices I do make are also publicised. If you know everything you listen to, watch or read is going to be shared, will you listen to things that don’t fit with your public image? Worse, what if you’re not sure if what you’re listening to, watching or reading is going to be shared or not? What when there’s a little voice at the back of your head reminding you that maybe all your friends will see that you’re being, maybe, not completely the person you claim to be?


The second, yet more nefarious and subtle element is the feeling you get that you can’t be sure if Facebook is watching you or not. And if Facebook is watching you, Facebook is totally a snitch. A grass. An informer, a tattle-tale, a loud-mouth.

There is a kind of theoretical prison design called a Panopticon. The idea behind it is that the cells are arranged in a circle around a central tower. The guards look out from the central tower and can see into any of the cells at any time. There aren’t enough guards to look into all the cells all of the time, but the prisoners never know whether or not they’re being observed. The idea is that because the prisoners might be being watched at any time, they behave as if they are being watched all the time.

Behold the Panopticon!

Facebook is a social Panopticon. Some of the time, it watches us and we can never be completely sure when. Sometimes, when it watches us, it tells our friends what it saw, and we can't really be sure of that, either. And slowly and subtly we’ll act as if we’re being watched all of the time, because sometimes we are being watched, but we’re never quite sure when.

Who wants to live together?

Facebook anchors us in the past. It encourages to discover things that others have already discovered. It encourages us to find what it is that makes us the same as our friends, not what makes us different, and it does so while sitting outside our house in an unmarked van. Maybe it’s looking at what we’re doing. Maybe it’s listening to what we’re saying. Maybe it’s going through our bins at night. Maybe it’s not, but better safe than sorry. What goes on internet, stays on internet, right?

This image will stay on the internet forever
If this is a good or a bad thing is pretty much moot. It is going to happen, so how do we deal with it? What does it mean? The forces of individuality and conformity have been fighting each other forever, and surely this battle will go on for as long as humans are shuffling around, spoiling things.

Facebook is playing for the conformity team. You can decide how you feel about that for yourselves.

Monday 19 September 2011

There Is Only One Platform

If you had everything, where would you put it? Everywhere

If you work in media, in entertainment, in journalism, in advertising, in gaming, in TV, then you work with me. You work with me and I work with you and we all work with everyone else. Meet you at reception in five mins and we’ll grab a coffee, k?

If you’re alive, you’ve probably noticed that devices are converging a bit. Most of the stuff you have is a screen and a computer and wifi and an input device. It runs twitter and you can look at cats in dresses and use it to buy a particular sort of hat. Your television might not be like that, but I’d imagine you’re expecting that to happen by about lunchtime. If you’re not, then look forward to a pleasant surprise at about lunchtime.

This hat

Convergence in devices is definitely a thing. The logical next step from the convergence of the device is the convergence of the content on that device. Of course that’s already happening. Advergaming and gamification are games nailed to advertising and marketing respectively. Branded content is video nailed to advertising. Behavioural economics is psychology in a bag with some economics. Interactive TV, when it arrives, will be games and TV, Social TV is TV and social networking. Everything that’s new in the media world is two old things falling very much in love, a trip to Vegas and the long wait for the stork to arrive.

My psychiatrist died. I don’t know how to feel about that

This process is not one that is going to stop. The convergence of things is not going to cease when we’ve added this and that together and made those. We’ll keep adding those together until we end up with them. Then we’ll repeat the whole process until, just like there’s only one basic kind of device, there’s also only one basic kind of content.

This is entirely sensible, because there’s only one platform when it comes down to it, and that platform is the human being. However you choose to get your message to human beings and whatever that message is, what you’re trying to do is get your message to human beings. Everything else is window-dressing.

Even I cannot justify using this image

There is one device, one type of content and one platform, because there’s only one product (or service). Emotions. When you make a thing, you do it because you want people to feel a particular way, think a particular thing and probably give you money because of it. What that thing is and how you make them feel is pretty much irrelevant. 

Let’s just be friends

If we accept that, stripped down to its stockings, the world of media is a bunch of people making other people feel particular ways for money - and we should, because it’s true - then we are on the verge of a rather smashing golden age. A media-scented Renaissance. It’s long been impossible for one person to be at the top of the many scientific fields, but it’s not entirely inconceivable for someone to have a pretty good grasp of pretty much all the major media forms.

Those people are going to make some goddamn amazing things now that canvasses broad enough to hold their ideas are not just possible, not just mainstream, but quickly becoming standard.

This is basically the real life X-Men

So whatever bit of media you work in right now, stop looking at it. Stop right now, turn around and look at any of the others. And keep looking and listening and touching and loving until you know what the other media forms can do better than yours can. Then stop looking at them as different things at all, because really - really - they’re not. I look forward to working with every single one of you.

Friday 16 September 2011

The Revolution Will Not Be Broadcast

Children are different

Moshi Monsters is a game for children. It’s made by a British company called Mind Candy and run by a man called Michael Acton-Smith. It is a mixture of virtual pets, mini-games, education and social network. You may have heard of it. You may not. You should check it out.

It has 50 million users. More than half of all British children between the ages of 6 and 12 play Moshi Monsters. It has one new sign-up every second and users in 150 countries across the world. It already sells a staggering quantity of soft-toys, clothes, music and magazines off the back of its huge and highly engaged user-base. Its next project is Moshi TV, a version of YouTube for kids. YouTube isn’t really the kind of place you’d want to let your kids wander unsupervised, so Moshi Monsters is going to step up and offer their own take on YouTube specifically designed for children. 

I've had a great evening. This wasn't it
Kids already love YouTube, love the way it puts them in charge of their viewing. Pausing, rewinding, choosing what to watch next, sharing what they’ve seen with their friends. this is how children see TV, this is how they understand TV to work. 

Children are idiots

More than that, young children not only don’t understand why they can’t pause the television, they also don’t understand why the television doesn’t respond to them touching it, like the iPhones they get to play with do. They don’t even understand why they can’t move around the characters in their favourite cartoons, why the content itself doesn’t respond to their input. To a child, interactive TV - interactive to a degree beyond any adult’s wildest imagining - isn’t some future dream, it’s what they expect.

Now it’s fair to point out at this juncture that children are idiots and don’t understand anything. But the world they are growing up in is mind-blowingly different to the world even today’s teenagers grew up in. YouTube launched six years ago in 2005. The iPhone launched four years ago in 2007. Farmville launched two years ago in 2009. The iPad launched a year ago in 2010. The media landscape has changed utterly in the time it takes to make a child and send it to school.

This child looks weird.
Back to Moshi Monsters. It’s not a broadcaster or a production house or a company with any previous experience in television whatsoever that’s bringing that brand-new vision of TV to the children of the world. It’s a game company. They have yet to launch this service, let alone make it a success, but this is only one of hundreds of examples of non-traditional entrants into the TV business. And there will more entering tomorrow than entered today.

Children are terrifying

There’s a time in the future, no-one knows when, where broadcasters make these visions a reality. Between now and then, they are open to disruption. Are broadcasters comfortable with that? It’s not just the obvious giants that are trying to steal their cakes, not just Google or Apple or Microsoft or Facebook whoever. It’s not just the media start-ups, Zeebox or Starling or Tunafish. It’s also start-ups in the general entertainment sphere who have a lot of users and absolutely no pre-conceived notions of how the world of television works.

Children see the world differently and aren’t going to be satisfied with you telling them that ‘it just works that way honey’. That applies just as much to the children of the media world as it does literal children. It’s not the direct attacks that broadcasters should worry about. It’s not about Google wanting to steal your content and put their own adverts by it. It’s about companies not only redefining what broadcasters do, but redefining what content is in the same open-minded flick of the wrist. About taking the entire question, the worries, the concept of entertainment itself, and turning it on its head. 

This is not a metaphor and I am not the dog in the metaphor this isn't
The television program itself is as ripe for reinvention as the way it’s delivered. Today, a child will grow up surrounded by devices and products that are desperate to shape themselves to their needs and entertain them on their own terms. And the speed with which these new, user-focused objects are being produced is increasing, faster and faster every day. Today’s idiot is tomorrow’s customer. Prepare yourself for the rise of the idiots.

Wednesday 14 September 2011

Mobile Is About Personal, TV Is About Shared

There are many iPhones, but this one is mine

There’s buzz aplenty in various media worlds about the power of mobile. But the power of mobile isn’t that it’s mobile, it’s that it’s personal. There are certainly a lot of useful things that mobile, personal computers - or phones, as you may know them - can do because they are mobile. GPS, location related offers and services, photography, communications, augmented reality. These things are big and real and will make a bunch of people quite offensively rich. 

However, the bigger and more relevant part of the mobile, personal computer space, is that they are personal and they are computers. There is no mobile internet. There is just the internet. Sure, you have to consider input devices and screen size when making a website useable on mobile phones, and the clever folks out there will add location based stuff where it’s relevant, but the real power of the smartphone is that it belongs to me and is just for me and I can use it whenever I like.

Madam, your pet dog requires immediate medical attention.

The television is not personal, is not mine. I mean, I bought the damn thing, and I spent the price of a shitty car on it, but it’s not mine to do with as I please. It’s a bargaining tool, one which features in regular household debates over the merits of costume dramas and property shows versus hundred hour long Japanese role-playing games and another twenty-seven laps of Le Mans in Gran Turismo.

I would make them eat each other

If I want to play GP Story or Quarrel on my iPhone, then I can do that pretty much whenever I want. And, indeed, aside from tube journeys, the only times I do that are when I’m trying to block out the needlessly jaunty stings of some hideously over-excited screed about how a working-class person has done up their bathroom. 

The television is a shared screen, and when you’re strategising around its place in the living room of the future, that’s the way you should see it. What gets displayed on the television is visible to all. The smartphone’s place in the living room of the future, the bedroom of the future and most importantly of all, the toilet of the future is as a personal screen, with only one set of eyes on it.

But what if Steve Jobs had been a cat?
When you want those two screens to be working together, you need to keep this in mind above all things. The broadly interactive TV shows of the future may well have several people in the same room interacting with them in several different ways at the same time. Or, they may have no-one interacting with them because the people in the room are arguing about which is the best ever episode of Bergerac or what’s the best way to murder Jedward.

I’m not going to keep writing just to stick to a format I invented myself

So those in the TV/games/advertising/can-we-just-admit-these-distinctions-are-growing-more-meaningless-by-the-day/etc businesses should remember that technology doesn’t drive their business, users do. The way a device is used is what defines it, not what it’s designed to do, or what it can do.

Owls about that then?

Your users will have to share whatever is on their TV with everyone else in the room. They can keep whatever is on their smartphone’s screen to themselves. The TV is shared, the smartphone is personal.

As you were.

Thursday 8 September 2011

TV Programs Will Become Software

This is connected TV

I’ve mentioned Eric Schmidt’s MacTaggart lecture before. In it, he tells his audience that they will need engineers at every level of their organisations because, basically, everything is becoming software. He is completely right. He is far righter than you are giving him credit for.

Shops are becoming software. Amazon is already software and a shop. Supermarkets deliver to your house when you order online. They are becoming software. You can’t fix your car anymore because your car is now software. Google themselves are developing quite capable self-driving cars. Drivers are becoming software.

One day, Hippos will also become software

Computer games are, of course, already software. The wonder of social games, the wonder of Zynga is that they understood that better than anyone else. If you have software running on a connected device, then you can gather as much data as you like about the behaviour of your users. If that software is a game they love to play, that’s more data for you about how to make a game they’ll love even more. Or to offer to advertisers. Or anyone willing to pay for it. And it doesn’t matter that most of your audience pays nothing for your data-capturing entertainment, some of them pay more than enough for you to make a billion hundred money.

The TV is just a big screen

Television, well that will be software too. I don’t mean digital, I mean software. This is an important distinction to make. Catch-up TV and pirated shows, streams and files are digital, but they aren’t software. The BBC might know how many people watch their shows on iPlayer and probably more besides, but they’re not hooking that into anything particularly useful for their users or their business. Maybe they can’t. The BBC is weird.

Anyway, if you make your program a piece of software - I’m tempted to say ‘appify’ but that feels myopic and wanky - you can add so much more to it. You can bring attention back to it. BluRay already gets sort of close to this with director’s commentaries and live ads and so on, but the potential is so much greater. 

Lions look really weird when they're wet

When your program is software, your users can buy the soundtrack or the clothes or the car or the holiday or the book or the calendar or the action figure right away. Get the recipe, order the ingredients, follow the cast on twitter or facebook, read the wiki pages, hear the commentary, vote, watch deleted scenes, play-along, interact. And that’s without counting entirely new kinds of program that could only exist as software.

Broadcasters are probably fucked

Once your program is software, it matters far, far less if it gets pirated, because it’s not content so much as a shop. So I download your show for nothing, but I spend a few quid here or there. The adverts are still there, because the adverts are sourced for me personally by the software. And ads that actually mean something to me, I am quite happy to watch. Good adverts are good content, I am quite happy with good content.

Why would anyone advertise off the back of the data from BARB or Nielsen ratings, when they can instead aim their adverts with complete precision and confidence that they are targeting exactly the people they want their message to get to? I know I’m wasting half my advertising budget, I just don’t know which half, the old saying goes. I know I’m wasting 10% of my advertising budget, I just don’t know which 10% isn’t as catchy, is it? Shame.

This man will still be watching the radio in a shack. Seems happy though

Not soon, but not that far away from now, television will become software and free to air TV will become free to download TV. That will be better for users, better for production houses, better for advertisers. Not really very good for broadcasters, but you can’t win ‘em all, eh lads?

Wednesday 7 September 2011

TV is the Second Screen

TV is the second screen

There are a lot of surveys and statistics and sound-bites out there saying things like “The majority of viewers now watch TV with a second screen in front of them.” This is a rather presumptuous way of interpreting the data. I don’t doubt that the basic numbers are entirely correct and I don’t doubt that the trend is pointing to more of these behaviours, not less. But the entire statement is back-to-front.

The majority of home internet users have the TV on in the background. That’s a more accurate way of looking at things. This is an entirely logical conclusion. After all, if the TV was engrossing enough to retain people’s attention, they wouldn’t be looking at the internet in the first place. The internet is usurping the TV as the primary source of entertainment in the home.

Nothing further to add, your Honour

The TV is still being switched on. TV has the advantage of both being suitably ambient - the internet often doesn’t have any sound - and of being a habit. So you come home, you stick the telly on and you get on the internets. Sometimes you watch the TV, because something you like is on. Mostly, it just chunters away to itself, pleasing human noises filling your lounge.

TV is the second screen.

Social TV is bullshit

A recent blog at started with these words. “We love watching TV and more than that, we love discussing it with our friends.” Well sort of. How about we try “We love talking to our friends, and TV gives us something to talk about.” 

Social TV is a non-starter because it’s not about TV, it’s about social. We want to talk to our friends and TV is as good a subject as any. We’re already talking to our friends and the TV is on in the background and if it’s on in their backgrounds too, then hey, why not talk about it. That is social TV. 

People talking in big letters. About TV in little letters.

'Oh christ, I didn't expect you back so soon.'

The assumption that the TV bit is more important than the talking to friends bit could only come from inside the TV industry. Think about it from a normal human’s perspective for even a second and it instantly becomes obvious what the hierarchy is. 

TV is the second screen.

Look around you

I straddle the worlds of gaming and television. That’s my job, introducing them to each other, laying on some drinks, some sweet music, subtle lighting, then nipping out of the room and hoping they’ll make babies.

When I go to gaming conventions and seminars, I feel like an outsider, because all anyone cares about is games. Everyone is standing in a big metaphorical circle, all facing in, all looking at each other, completely ignorant that there’s a whole world of other stuff out there, ripe for the picking.

When I go to television conventions and seminars, I feel exactly the same and I see exactly the same thing. Apps, second-screen, marketing, advertising, gamification - I mix with all these incredibly close disciplines, all of which share considerable space on the Venn diagram I’m not going to draw, and they’re all looking inward, all trying to understand the world in their own terms and no other.

Well that’s some serious bullshit. Stop doing it. It’s dumb.

As if by magic, the shopkeeper appeared
The future of television, the same as the future of games, the same as the future of advertising, marketing, media, content itself, is a big, interweaved basket with bits of all of these things working together. Open your eyes, look around you, try, at least a bit, to understand the world in terms of the world and not your tiny bit of it. It’s not about the future of television, it’s about the future of entertainment.

And remember, TV is the second screen.

Monday 5 September 2011

Everything Is Already Gamified

Opening statement

You have already gamified your product (or service). You’re probably not pointsifying it in any meaningful way, you may be considering doing so, you may be considering more literally gamifying it. But in a not insignificant way, it was probably a game to start with.

There are rules to the way your product (or service), its marketing and its monetisation work. There are rewards for buying it. All products (or services), all marketing and all monetisation has some kind of ruleset and some kind of rewards. It costs this much, you use this many, this quickly, it makes you feel this way when you don’t have it and this way when you do. 

Panda-ing to my audience

You are already pushing people in one direction or another, making them feel one emotion or another, tell themselves one story or another. Games are, on some basic level, systems that make people feel and behave in particular ways. Gamification, in its populist form of pointsification, uses points and badges to do that poking and prodding around inside your brain, but its actual aims are no different to any of the other techniques used in product (or service) design, marketing, advertising or business strategy. If I make you do this, you’ll feel this way. If I make you feel this way, you’ll do this.

Some examples

The link between games and stories is incredibly close. Games can be seen as machines that tell stories, or more accurately, let their players tell stories. Stories can be seen as the results of games already played by the story’s creator. This makes sense of stories both as  personal anecdotes and as professional content.

Writing a book is, in itself, a playful activity. Writers toy with your emotions and play with your expectations. An author knows what they want you to do, to keep turning pages, to stop reading and consider what you just read, to laugh, to cry, to fear, whatever. They play a game which involves them arranging concepts and words into an order that will produce that behaviour in their reader. If they get it right, they win the game. Well done them.

Businesses themselves are definitely games. Ted Turner’s famous quote on the subject, much beloved of gamification presentations, is ‘Life is a game. Money is how we keep score.’ Business is definitely a game where money is the score. There are high score tables and badges and ranks and levels and level-ups. The stock market itself is a meta-game played on top of the games of businesses. Gaming rules and conventions are present in every aspect of the economy. And hey, that includes your product (or service).

Ted Turner owns the world's largest herd of bison. Should have used them to keep score.

So regardless of your feelings about the very literal and narrow practice of pointsification, recognise that gaming’s purity, its drawing out of the basic concepts of internal narrative, of self-determination, still has an awful lot to teach your business.


See there’s an opportunity here. Your product (or service) may well already be like a game, but it’s unlikely that it will be like a very good game. If you make it a better game, it will be a better product (or service), a better business.

Eric Schmidt recently gave a talk in Edinburgh, where he said that companies should be hiring engineers at all levels The future of everything is software, so you need people who know how to make software in the DNA of your company, advising at every level. He was quite right to say so. Everything is becoming software, or if not, it’s becoming a computer. And you need people who understand software and computers on a meaningful level at all stages of your business, to aid its strategising and decision making.  

Eric Schmidt (l) speaking to Edinburgh (r)

What I would suggest is that, since everything is already, on some level, a game, you need game designers at every level of your company, just the same as you need engineers. You need to have game thinking baked into your entire business strategy, just the same as you need technological savvy. Everything is software, so everything needs engineers. Even more everything is a game, so even more everything needs game designers.

The Future of Television Part Two: Part Two has been cancelled due to whatever.