Gears by kathryn

"You and I and everybody [in the] entertainment industry fly by the seat of our pants. We don't quite know what's going to happen." 1

William Shatner, 2002



Learn more about my Advisory Projects and Speaking Engagements


Fog Seller 100x67Check out my novel, The Fog Seller, now available in Paperback and as an eBook
on Amazon


See the Index for my upcoming book "Daglow's Laws: 24 Insights on Technology, Culture and Interactivity"


Founders Space Entrepreneurs: Click here for class notes


Scroll Down for Recent Events & Upcoming Conferences



What Are Daglow's Laws?

Daglow's Laws reflect my commitment to long-term strategy and to hand-crafting great products in a world too often driven by short-term tactics and get-rich-quick schemes. 

Over the course of my 34 years in the games industry I began to write down "laws" to organize my thinking on four key topics:

1. How the games business leads and leverages trends in culture, technology and entertainment.

2. The great, often unseen forces that drive the industry, along with the hardware, software, genres and business models within it.

3. How to use this knowledge to guide our companies, projects and careers, critical in an era of entrepreneurial development and small-scale startups.

4. How we have to continually adapt and change to succeed as innovators in each new era.


Where They Come From  

I've been inventing new “Daglow’s Laws” for my keynote addresses and major conference presentations for the last 25 years.

I'm now turning these ideas into a book. As I collect and organize each chapter from my notes and presentations I'll post them here to gather feedback and comments.

Serious or satirical, each Law is an attempt to look at the large-scale long-term picture as context for deciding what we're going to do tomorrow morning when we start our day. 


How to Use These "Laws"

I don’t believe that any individual has the right to declare laws.

These "laws" are a collection of things I believe. Some may spark your thinking, some may even be inspiring.

Others may sound dead wrong, or even make you angry enough to write me an email to set me straight -- and if you do so I'd love to read your comments.

Each Law starts with a short summary I call "The Highlight Reel," followed by the full story. And each ends with "How to Apply This to Your Work."

If these Laws are useful and start interesting discussions, I'll be delighted. And if the shoe doesn't fit, just throw it away.


Index of Daglow's Laws

For a limited time here on my website I am posting a preview of my in-progress book, "Daglow's Laws: 24 Insights on Technology, Culture and Interactivity." 

From September of 2014 through March of 2016, I'll be adding the drafts of two full-length chapters per month.  I'd love to hear your feedback and can be reached via "ddaglow" at the ever-popular

Here are the first topics (which are active links to the chapter text), and the names of some subjects that are coming up:


The Games Industry Dictionary


Technology and Culture

Law of Motivation

Laws of Interface

Law of Innovation

Laws of Media

Law of Progress

Laws of Change

Law of Productivity

Law of Opportunity

Law of Internet Time


Video Games 

Law of Next Gen

Laws of Console Pricing

Law of Console Wars

Law of Monetization

Law of Console Business Models



Law of Teamwork

Law of Branding

Law of Self-Publishing

Maxim of Entrepreneurship

Law of Production

Law of Management



Scroll Down for More Information on Recent Events and Upcoming Conferences!




Clockworks photo credit: Kathryn, accessed 9/6/14. 

1  Shatner interview on Larry King Live, February 21, 2002

The Fog Seller: A San Francisco Mystery

Fog Seller Front Cover Med for Web

Some of you may know that I was a professional writer and teacher before the games industry began. In addition to being a Game Developer, for the last seven years I've taken little pockets of late-night time for a writing project I wanted to bring to life.

That project is The Fog Seller, a mystery novel set in San Francisco, and it just went on sale (e-book and paperback). If you've ever felt like people just make assumptions instead of really listening to you, this story will feel familiar. If you like mysteries or love stories please take a look at it on Amazon. I'd also be deeply grateful for an Amazon review if you give it a read.

The one influence from years of working on online and mobile games: the chapters are shorter than in many novels, to make them easier to read waiting to pick up the kids or as a break at lunch.

The Fog Seller is the story of Steve Ondelle, a Sausalito ferry deckhand and a deeply introverted young man who never answers questions about his past. He's the perfect suspect in a political assassination around a billion-dollar land deal, because he acts and sounds guilty even though he's innocent.

With his street-performer roommate Liam the Fog Seller and a bizarre collection of friends like Leonard the Human Statue, astronomer Paula Costa, The Prophet of Market Street, veterinary physical therapist Emma Hernandez, and radio DJ Phil Steen, Steve takes on the lies of the wealthy and the powerful in San Francisco.

I'd love to hear your feedback if you read it!

AIAS Foundation Announces 2015 Randy Pausch and Mark Beaumont Scholarship Winners


2015 AIAS Scholars

2015 AIAS Scholars -- Top Row: Debanshu Singh, Lauren Scanlan
Bottom Row: Sumeet Khobare, Ryan Sligh. 


As President of the Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences Foundation, the philanthropic arm of the AIAS, I am proud to share that we have announced our 2015 Randy Pausch Memorial Scholarship and Mark Beaumont Memorial Scholarship winners. You can also read about last year's winners here.

These $2,500 scholarships are awarded annually in the memory of Dr. Randy Pausch of Carnegie Mellon University, a pioneer in professional games industry education and author of The Last Lecture; and Mark Beaumont, former COO of Capcom, who also served as an executive at Activision and Midway. You can see a video of Dr. Pausch's famous Last Lecture on this year's scholarship announcement page.

In addition to their cash scholarships, the four AIAS Scholars are invited to attend the 2016 D.I.C.E. Summit and 19th annual D.I.C.E. Awards in Las Vegas on February 16-18, 2016. The Foundation assigns each Scholar one or more Mentors at the event, who advise them and introduce them to industry leaders. If you'd like to volunteer to mentor scholars at D.I.C.E. please get in touch with me! 

This year's winners are: 

Randy Pausch Scholarships

Sumeet Khobare, University of Southern California

Ryan Sligh, Southern Methodist University


Mark Beaumont Scholarships 

Lauren Scanlan, Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey

Debanshu Singh, University of Pennsylvania


The full press release with comments from the scholarship winners is located here.

If there is someone whom you or your company would like to honor by funding an AIAS scholarship in the name of another individual or organization, or if you'd like to financially support the Pausch and Beaumont funds, please contact me and I'll connect you to the right people at the AIAS. All donations are tax deductible.



Applications Open for 2015 AIAS Randy Pausch & Mark Beaumont Scholarships


2015AIASScholarshipsOpen-hdr[L. to R, AIAS Foundation President Don Daglow, 2014 Beaumont Scholar Danielle Powers, USC Games Director Tracy Fullerton, 2014 Pausch Scholar Chitvan Gupta, 2014 Beaumont Scholar Lee Anne Opfer, 2014 Pausch Scholar Anthony Scott at the 2014 DICE Awards ceremony.]


The AIAS Foundation is proud to announce that we have opened our applications for the 2015 AIAS Scholarships.

The Randy Pausch Scholarship was established in 2008 to honor the memory of Carnegie Mellon University Computer Science Professor Dr. Randy Pausch, who is best known for his book and video titled The Last Lecture (and the video is embedded at the bottom of this page). The Pausch Scholarships provide two $2,500 awards each year to students who are preparing for careers in the games industry, including animation, art, engineering, game design, game direction, music composition, programming and sound design.

The Mark Beaumont Scholarship, which also provides two annual $2,500 scholarships, was established in 2010 to honor the memory of former Capcom North America and Europe COO Mark Beaumont, who held executive roles in the games industry for over 25 years and was widely respected by his peers and teams. The Beaumont Scholarships are targeted at students studying for careers in business management, law, marketing, public relations, and sales.

All four scholarship winners are invited to participate in our mentorship program at the 2016 DICE Summit and at the DICE Awards ceremony, and the picture above shows the 2014 Scholars at the 2015 DICE Awards with myself and USC's Tracy Fullerton.

You can click this link to read about the 2015 Randy Pausch Scholarship winners and 2015 Mark Beaumont Scholarship winners.

You can also go to Information and the application form for the Randy Pausch Scholarships.  Right click on the page and choose "Save as..." to download.

And from here for information and the application form for the Mark Beaumont Scholarships.


Dr, Randy Pausch, "The Last Lecture"



I'll Be Presenting on Issues of Going Indie at GDC 2015


Yellow Brick Road Title

Going Indie: 10 Questions to Help Decide if it's Right for You

Location:  Room 130, North Hall, Moscone Center
Date:  Friday, March 6
Time:  2:50 PM - 3:50 PM

Pass Type: All Access Pass, Summits, Tutorials & Bootcamps Pass, Student Expo Pass, Main Conference Pass, Independent Games Summit Pass, Audio Pass, Expo Pass


I'm delighted to be discussing the topic of "Going Indie: 10 Questions to Help Decide if it's Right for You" at GDC again this year.

I'm especially happy to be delivering this session as part of the Game Career Seminar, which means that in addition to being open to the standard GDC all-access pass, it's also open to attendees with summit passes, student expo passes and expo passes.

Everyone always loves to give you advice about how you should or shouldn't be an Indie, and what your next steps should be.

But what we need most of all is to have a dialogue with ourselves, to figure out what we really want and how we really feel so we can make informed decisions on our careers.

That's what this session provides.  I'll guide attendees through a series of questions which you answer only for yourself (we don't see or share answers in the session), and provide context for how to look at your answers to have them guide you towards or away from an Indie work and lifestyle.

You already know the answers.  All we have to do is ask the right questions to bring them out.

I hope I'll get to see you there!



We're Looking for Mentors Attending the AIAS's 2015 DICE Conference


2014 DICE Scholars

(AIAS & DICE scholars join us at DICE Awards 2014, with thanks to DICE Scholars Sponsor Intel, L to R: Keith Leiker, AIAS Foundation President Don Daglow, Sarah Conde, Atlas Chen, Chris Burris, Khaled Abdel Rahman, Raymond Tan, DICE Mentor Warren Spector)


Are you going to the AIAS's 2015 DICE Conference?  

Would you like to volunteer to mentor one of our DICE and AIAS Scholars there?  

If so, please email me or message me on Facebook.  We have a great mix of scholars (some of whom you can read about here) following in the footsteps of the group pictured above, and some wonderful returning mentors as well.