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Virtual World

BUSINESS
February 25, 2011 | By Ben Fritz, Los Angeles Times
DreamWorks Animation had good news and a bigger dose of bad news in its fourth quarter, as strong DVD sales for "How to Train Your Dragon" were reported alongside a disappointing DVD release for "Shrek Forever After" and a weak box-office run for "Megamind. " The Glendale animation studio also took write-downs on its unsuccessful "Kung Fu Panda" virtual world and the national tour of its live stage show "Shrek the Musical. " DreamWorks released three movies in 2010, the most it has put out in a single year.
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ENTERTAINMENT
June 10, 2006
It was nice of Christopher Knight to include me (and the rest of the public) along with himself as a "stakeholder" in the Getty ["Yes, You Can Be Too Rich," June 5], but he failed to make a case for having an "art expert" run a $6-billion enterprise. From my own observation, art experts belong to one of the most fractious groups in our society. Which one, then, would Mr. Knight approve? Possibly one that would carry out his own, oft-expressed goal for the Getty -- spend those billions buying masterpieces to turn the Getty into another Met-like mausoleum.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 6, 2011 | By Janice P. Nimura, Special to the Los Angeles Times
Reality Is Broken Why Games Make Us Better and How They Can Change the World Jane McGonigal Penguin Press: 388 pp., $26.95 As a nongamer, avowed Luddite and mother of a 7-year-old who is mesmerically attracted to anything with a screen, I was skeptical about the message in "Reality Is Broken. " But Jane McGonigal is worth hearing out ? her point in this provocative manifesto is that the energy and devotion that gamers pour into video games is a powerful force and that we are fools if we fail to harness it. Instead of dismissing games as frivolous entertainment or trying to unplug our children, we should take a close look at what games provide and figure out how to make reality as exciting and rewarding ?
BUSINESS
February 22, 2007 | Alana Semuels, Times Staff Writer
LIKE any pioneer, Marshal Cahill arrived in a new world curious and eager to sample its diversions. Over time, though, he saw an elite few grabbing more than their share. They bought up all the plum real estate. They awarded building contracts to friends. They stifled free speech. Cahill saw a bleak future, but he felt powerless to stop them. So he detonated an atomic bomb outside an American Apparel outlet. Then another outside a Reebok store.
BOOKS
August 4, 1991 | Robert Wright, Wright is a senior editor at the New Republic and the author of "Three Scientists and Their Gods: Looking for Meaning in an Age of Information" (HarperCollins)
Toward the end of "Virtual Reality," author Howard Rheingold peers into the world of tomorrow and offers the following report: "(T)here is no reason to believe you won't be able to map your genital effectors to your manual sensors and have direct genital contact by shaking hands." Then he asks: "What will happen to social touching when nobody knows where anybody else's erogenous zones are located?" I must admit that this question had never occurred to me.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 2, 1990 | ROBERT KOEHLER
In the past, Bill Moyers has talked with ideological gurus, idiosyncratic artists and iconoclastic scientists. To toast his new season of "A World of Ideas" (at 7:35 tonight on Channel 28), Moyers has found a new type to mix it up with. Meet Robert Lucky, techie with a human face. Lucky, in case you don't know, is executive director of the innovative Bell Labs' communications sciences research division.
BUSINESS
December 20, 2012 | By Chris O'Brien
If you're like me and have a child who lives and breathes Minecraft, then you'll want to take note of the following important scheduling note:  A documentary called "Minecraft: The Story of Mojang," which tells the story of the game and its creator, Markus "Notch" Persson, will stream Saturday at 5 p.m. Pacific time on Xbox Live .  For those not familiar with Minecraft, in short, it's a virtual world created and distributed by Persson's...
BUSINESS
August 30, 2008 | Dawn C. Chmielewski, Times Staff Writer
The newspaper industry is constantly bewailing its need for a new economic model, as the Internet upends the old one. Maybe it could take a page from the Club Penguin Times. The Club Penguin Times, after all, is more widely read than New York's Daily News, the Chicago Tribune or the Dallas Morning News. And it's not even 3 years old. But this weekly "newspaper" isn't tossed onto driveways or sold at newsstands. Rather, it's an online publication distributed to the estimated 6.7 million monthly users of Club Penguin, a snow-covered virtual world visited by more than 12 million kids, who adopt a colorful penguin persona and waddle around, playing games and meeting new friends.
OPINION
May 18, 2005
At least one thing is clear to me after reading "Geek Fun Isn't Frivolous" (Opinion, May 15), and that is that the editors of The Times have given up on dealing with reality in the Opinion section and are rabidly pushing the gobbledy-geek mentality onto a once thought-provoking and exciting menu concerning problems and philosophical differences in our extremely complex world involved with genocide, suicide bombers, starvation, gang warfare, ethnic wars...
BUSINESS
January 22, 2008 | Alana Semuels, Times Staff Writer
Stephanie Roberts knew Second Life was just a computer game, but she couldn't resist the virtual world's promise of a real-world interest rate of more than 40%. The 33-year-old from Chicago, who played the game as a raven-haired vixen called Zania Turner, deposited $140 in Ginko Financial and waited for the money to grow. Instead, it vanished five months ago when Ginko, perhaps the first Ponzi scheme in history perpetrated by three-dimensional online avatars, left Second Life.
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