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Zynga is now worth less than their office building

The once great Zynga has been on the decline for quite some time now, but their company value is now less than the office building they are housed in. Zynga owns the $540 Million dollar building their offices are in, and somehow still have a $1.5 Billion dollar cash reserve, while the company is estimated to be worth $500 Million. The assets and value of the company are nothing to laugh at, however, it is far less than a few years back when Zynga was on top of the world. Medium has the full story.

After a long spate of difficulties with its product strategy and business model, the gaming company Zynga, once a Silicon Valley powerhouse, is now worth less than the office building in which it resides.

Zynga bought its current headquarters, a massive 668,000 square foot, seven-story building at 8th and Townsend streets, for $228 million in 2012. After falling on tough times, Zynga put its headquarters up for sale in February of this year, but the building’s value has been undisclosed until now.

WTU Episode #356 - Billionaire Pulls the Plug on Apple

We have just posted up Episode #356 of Weekly Tech Update. This week are discussing Microsoft’s Billion Dollar Mistake, a Billionaire pulls the plug on Apple and the State of Free-to-Play Video Games. Check out those and lots more tech stories at the link below.


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Free to Play Games Are the Future

I'm not a fan of the way most free-to-play games reward those with big wallets, but according to some people, F2P will be the best and only way to consume video games in the future. The fact is that as long as people continue to pay money, the game stays profitable. It's a lot better than producing expensive titles like The Division that get played for two months by most people and are done. The publisher still has the expense of maintaining servers for people that aren't paying any more money.

If you own a smartphone or have a Facebook account, odds are you've played a free-to-play game. Maybe you grew crops in Farmville or scrimmaged in Clash of Clans. If you're anything like me, one of those city-building games (the kind that publishers shrewdly pair with a popular intellectual property like The Simpsons or Star Wars), has sunk its claws into your free time and shredded it into gory pulp.

Source: TheVerge

AMD Polaris 10 is Solid

Some numbers from a "reputable" source have been leaked showcasing the upcoming Polaris 10 GPU from AMD. It appears that the $299 card could keep up with the R9 390 / 390X and will be a solid mid-range card for anyone wanting some great performance for a great price. Mainstream cards are where the market really operates and AMD hasn't had something affordable - and competitive in this bracket for a while. It's nice to see - if you believe the rumors.

AMD might be anticipating Nvidia to take a while in replacing Geforce GTX 960 and GTX 950 cards with its 16nm Pascal-based variants, but it will have a tough battle against any successor of the Geforce GTX 970 and GTX 980. Some people dare to call these cards the “Geforce GTX 1080” and “GTX 1070”, but we will see if that is the brand that Nvidia uses.

Source: Fudzilla

Tom Clancy's "The Division" Is Not

There have been more than a few bugs in the latest Tom Clancy game and some of these made cheating super easy. That whole fiasco - and thousands of people who are immature enough to cheat - has been partly to blame for the reduced numbers of people. This is news-worthy as crappy games with crappy programming get a lot of people interested - but can't keep them around. Consider the peak connected users of this game (113,877) and now the mere ~14,000 that are still playing. That's almost a 90% drop in players - all because many multiplayer games suck.

Division Numbers

Source: Steam

Software Update Bricks a Satellite

If you've ever tried flashing firmware on an optical drive, BIOS or even a router you may have accidentally "bricked" the device. Normally, there are ways to physically do some sort of a reset - if you can get your hands on the device. Other times, there simply is nothing you can do and you have a paperweight that may have cost you anywhere from a few dollars to maybe a hundred or so. Unfortnately for some former-tech over in Japan, he accidentally brickeed a $286 million satellite. Yup, your day could be worse.

The Japanese X-ray telescope Hitomi has been declared lost after it disintegrated in orbit, torn apart when spinning out of control. The cause is still under investigation but early analysis points to bad data in a software package pushed shortly after an instrument probe was extended from the rear of the satellite.

Source: HackADay

Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare + Remaster Warfare

The next installment of the Call of Duty franchise has been announced and "Infinite Warfare" takes the battle to space and beyond as mankind must try and survive their biggest threat yet. That's right. Aliens, space and more comes to do more damage to the fantastic series of yesteryear. As a bonus, if you pay $80 for a game that you'll enjoy for a couple of months, you get Call of Duty: Modern Warfare Remastered. That may be the best choice for some solid gameplay. Check out the video below.


Windows 10 Upgrades are Pushy

I'm a big fan on Windows 10. I've been using it since an early developer preview and I haven't had too many issues with the operating system. I do understand that when a company has a good product - and they're givijng it away for free - they want as many people on-board as they can. This big push to Windows 10 helps them a lot as support for an older OS won't be needed as long. The problem is, Microsoft has been really, REALLY pushy when it comes to upgrading and it's been a pain to say "no". This could ultimatly generate more negative feedback than positive for Microsoft and they don't need that at all right now.

Then there is Microsoft's increasingly aggressive tactics to get everyone running Windows 10. It started with a simple notification on the taskbar of Windows 7 and 8, making people aware of Windows 10 and offering to let them 'reserve a copy' to download when available. However, Microsoft then started pre-emptively downloading the Windows 10 installer to those who had opted to reserve a copy, taking up gigabytes of space. 

Source: TheInquirer

Dangerous Golf Game - from Creators of Burnout

If you're a fan of the destruction from games like Burnout: Paradise, you may be interested in the latest destructive game from the same creators. Dangerous Golf take destruction and marries it with a Golf game. Think of it more like Carmageddon meets mini golf and you've got the basic idea. It seems interesting until you watch the actual gameplay in slow motion and it could be quite tedious. Time will tell how well it sells, but I imagine it will be relegated to a budget title.

Ward admits that he doesn’t actually like the sport - "I think golf’s boring, golfers are boring, and golf games made for golfers are boring," he says - but he notes that he’s a fan of mini-golf, which similarly encourages trick shots, and was an early inspiration for the game.

Source: TheVerge

Kindle Oasis - Good, but Way Too Expensive

We talked about the Kindle Oasis a few weeks back on WeeklyTechUpdate and there is no doubt that the Kindle is their best yet. The specifications, features, battery life and resolution are all top-notch and that is evidenced in the massive price of this small reader. The street price in the USA is $290 and according to recent reviews - it's nowhere worth that kind of coin.

Amazon's Kindle Oasis is like a feast with the world's finest caviar. It's an all-you-can-eat Wagyu steak dinner. It's an $80 cup of coffee. Simply put, the Oasis is a $290 extravagance meant only for the few who can afford it. For the rest of us, it's just something to lust after. We called the $200 Kindle Voyage the "Rolls Royce of e-readers" two years ago, but instead of going cheaper (the standard Kindle is currently $60, and the backlit Paperwhite model is $100), Amazon pushed even further into luxury status.

Source: Engadget

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