Today's round-up includes news of a tragic virtual death in the MMO world, information on the relative success of the PSP's UMD format, and some extremely theoretical views of the PlayStation 5 from a professional futurologist, as well as the latest product news and job postings.
- The Wachowski brothers, creators and directors of the Matrix films, and Matrix Online
writer Paul Chadwick have killed off one of the major characters of the film series within the online world. Laurence Fishburne's character Morpheus was assassinated in Matrix Online
, which will kick off a year-long storyline revolving around the question of his assassins and what he was trying to do with his last days in the Matrix. "We're going to milk Morpheus as long as we can," said Chadwick. "He's a great character."
- According to a report on MP3Newswire, the PSP-specific UMD format for movies has been more popular than some were expecting, with two movies, Resident Evil: Apocalypse and House of Flying Daggers, selling over 100,000 copies since their release on April 19. The success of the format has led several studios who had previously been supporting Warner's mini-DVD format to drop that format and prepare titles for release on UMD. All studios except Warner, but including Fox, Paramount, and Universal, now have UMD movie releases in the works, with the selected films meant for the 18-30 target market of the PSP's early adopters.
- Ian Pearson, head futurologist at British Telecom, has some unusual predictions involving the near future of computing, and used the recently-introduced PlayStation 3 to illustrate his point. Predicting that computers will soon be powerful enough to allow the rich to upload their consciousness, making them effectively immortal, Pearson said that "The new PlayStation is 1 per cent as powerful as a human brain. It is into supercomputer status compared to 10 years ago. PlayStation 5 will probably be as powerful as the human brain." Pearson believes that a sentient, superintelligent computer could be introduced as early as 2020, which could also be seen as an optimistic comment on the life cycle of the next couple of console generations.
- Also updated today: product news including the release of the Genetica 2 texture editor
, as well as today's job postings
from companies including Amaze Entertainment, Electronic Arts, Expresso Fitness, Hi-Rez Studios, High Moon Studios, KingsIsle Entertainment. Inc, LucasArts Entertainment, Midway Games, Planet Moon Studios, and Transgaming Technologies Inc.