The porn industry is often one of the early adopters for new technologies. VR is no exception.
The Federal Circuit overturned a District Court ruling that a patent directed to automated lip synchronization and manipulation of animated characters’ facial expressions was invalid under Section 101 as being an abstract idea. The patent disclosed that this automation is accomplished through rules that aim to produce more realistic speech by taking into consideration the differences in mouth positions for similar phonemes based on context.
Just days after a New York State’s Daily Fantasy Sports law was passed, the New York Gaming Commission announced it has issued temporary permits to 5 DFS operators. The companies are DraftKings, FanDuel, Yahoo, Fantasy Draft and Draft.
Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker has signed into law a bill to legalize daily fantasy sports in the Commonwealth. Massachusetts is the ninth state to legalize daily fantasy sports, and the eighth to do so this year. The legalization of daily fantasy sports, or “fantasy contests,” was included in a larger bill—H. 4569—related generally to job creation and workforce development.
As previously reported on our blog, New York enacted a law legalizing fantasy sports (subject to certain conditions and licensing). This undoubtedly makes DFS operators and players happy. But consistent with the notion that you cannot please everyone, some anti-gambling groups are not happy. It has been reported that some are considering litigation to block implementation of the new law. Casinos are also debating potential action. As reported, critics of the new law allege the New York legislature needed to obtain a constitutional amendment process to legalize a new form of gambling, instead of making a statutory change that declared fantasy sports contests to be “games of skill.” Check back for updates as this saga continues to unfold.
Welcome to Sheppard Mullin’s Weekly Web Wrap-Up, a quick list of the past week’s top news in the social media, gaming, and virtual goods and currencies industries curated by Social Media & Games Team. Here are some of the stories that we’ve been reading:
In the world of video-game-related crime, publishers are pushing pause on piracy concerns as the game-hacking business becomes more lucrative. TechCruch reports on the recent developments and trends in online gaming platforms that have made the $100B gaming industry an enticing target for cybercriminals. And it’s not just publishers; the players themselves are at risk. Industry awareness of the issue is growing; a Panopticon Labs, a startup that quietly helps publishers root out and stop in-game theft and fraud, won a coveted spot at this year’s TechCrunch Disrupt conference.
No, we aren’t talking about Buffalo Bill’s weekly poker night. Skin betting is a type of online wagering using virtual cosmetic items (i.e., skins), a transaction that blurs the line between gambling and social gaming. But the lucrative industry’s future is uncertain. Skin betting sites have been accused of tacitly endorse gambling via secondary skin markets based on the theory that skins are a type of digital currency like bitcoin. Valve has also clamped down on skin betting sites, sending major industry players a cease-and-desist letter that has garnered varied reactions. CSOLounge, the world’s largest skin betting website, announced it would seek an online gambling license in response to Valve’s decision. But whether such licensing will appease Valve—which cited Steam’s prohibition against commercial account use rather than gambling concerns—is questionable. We’ll continue to bring you updates as this story unfolds.
VR has fallen from the headlines as Pokémon Go AR continues to sweep the nation. But lest anyone forget the breath-taking possibilities of a well-executed VR game, here’s Techradar’s round up of ten upcoming VR games that have us on the edge of our virtual seats.
Pushing back against the handwringing and “neo-Luddite contrarianism” of many editorials, Wired brings us a refreshing perspective on the technological revolution that is upon us, and calls for an industry-wide set of ethical standards for augmented reality. Wired’s chief concerns? Pokéstalking and pursuit of Pokéquality. Pokéthics is a concern of Ninantic as well. After temporarily pausing some game features due to server outages caused by GPS spoofing, Niantic has permanently banned hackers from the game. Niantic is also trialing a new update, and it looks Charizard hot. The update will include a new tracking system and an XP fix, brings back power-saving mode, and adjusts curveball accuracy. Having trouble catching those elusive Pokémon? For a better Chansey, here are some tips for throwing Pokéballs.
If the success of Pokémon Go is any indication, common smartphones—rather than computer headsets—may be the just technology platform needed to move AR into the mainstream. Chinese search-engine operator Baidu has made that wager. At its Beijing conference, Baidu debuted DuSee, its new AR platform for smartphones. DuSee allow users to interact with computer-generated visual via their smart phones.
A recent 9th Circuit Court of Appeals decision confirmed that data derived from a compilation of publicly available information can constitute a protectable trade secret, particularly when a proprietary process is used to compile or search that information.
New Jersey’s sports betting law was struck down by an Appellate court decision. The court held that PASPA (the Professional And Amateur Sports Protection Act) prohibits states from authorizing by law sports gambling, and that the NJ law violates the federal law for purporting to do so. The court also ruled against a constitutional challenge to PASPA. This is a setback for NJ in connection with its efforts to revitalize its beleaguered casino and racetrack industries via sports betting. Ironically, this decision comes just days after New York passed a law legalizing Daily Fantasy Sports.
For now, if you want sports action in the tri-state area, you can bet on fantasy sports, but not real ones.
Governor Andrew Cuomo signed into law a bill to legalize daily fantasy sports in New York. This is the eighth state to legalize daily fantasy sports, and the seventh to do so this year. With the start of the NFL season just around the corner, the timing of this development is especially fortuitous, as daily fantasy sports operators who had run contests in New York prior to November of 2015 may receive temporary permits to continue doing so.