Focus on technology to keep Nevada in front of industry drivers
Mark Yoseloff spent a career designing, developing and manufacturing electronic games.
Whether it was handheld football in the early 1980s at Coleco Industries or slot machines at Bally Technologies in the 1990s or SHFL Entertainment Inc. in the early 2000s, Yoseloff has seen technology evolve over the past 30 years.
Today, a trustee with the University of Nevada, Las Vegas Foundation, Yoseloff remains passionate about technology, but he is concerned Las Vegas could be losing its well-deserved reputation as the center of innovation in the gaming industry.
Through his own foundation, Yoseloff is funding a unique program to give students a chance to learn how to bring a game from the classroom, to the casino floor or online.
Next Stop: International Conference on Gambling and Risk Taking
Gaming industry conferences are a dime a dozen these days. GIGSE, IGNA, ICE, NIGA, NIGC … Barcelona, Amsterdam … G2E Vegas, G2E Macau … It’s often many of the same people talking about the same topics related to gaming — forward thinking statements, sure — but all the different wonk-fabs have their own unique flavor and some stand out as a bigger deal than others.
Coming up next week, at Caesars Palace, just across the highway from the 2013 WSOP: the 15th annual International Conference on Gambling and Risk Taking.
This one is a symposium with roots going all the way back to the ‘70s. ICGRT is put on by UNLV’s International Gaming Institute and UNR’s (University of Nevada, Reno) Institute for the Study of Gambling and Commercial Gaming — yeow, that’s a lotta capital letters! But no wonder, as presumably ICGRT is how UNLV (and the entire University of Nevada system) cements its status as
an THE academic authority for a global industry meriting full-scale study not just by huckster entrepreneurs and casino big bosses, but by doctors of philosophy and unencumbered statisticians.
This gathering of gaming intelligentsia will feature some 300 presenters over five days. I’m part of the Corporate Communication and Social Responsibility panel, where I’ll be presenting industry leaders, regulators, and policy researchers my study on:
“LOL, OMG, WTF? Professional Practices for Gaming in Social Media”
Publish or perish, yo … good times ahead, for sure. Conference starts Monday. My group goes last on Friday… so
that makes us the headliner! after five days of intensive powerpointing just steps away from high-dollar blackjack and the Pussycat Dolls, I’m sure the crowds will be all warmed up for that serious learnin’ we’re ready to drop.
It’s not too late to get tickets here!
Potential competition for UNLV's $900 million "Mega-Event Center"?
The Las Vegas arena race drew a new deep-pocketed private competitor Friday when MGM Resorts International said it will partner with a powerhouse arena builder and break ground late this year for a new 20,000-seat arena on the Strip without a nickel of public money.
MGM Resorts will join forces with national arena developer AEG to build the sports and entertainment venue on its land behind the Monte Carlo and New York-New York. MGM did not offer a price tag or drawings. Construction should take 24 to 30 months after a late-2013 groundbreaking.
MGM, which owns 10 Strip hotel-casinos and the 17,000-seat MGM Grand Garden and 12,000-seat Mandalay Bay Events Center, moves to the head of the pack of contenders aiming to build an arena in the Las Vegas market.
Developer Chris Milam’s proposed arena in Henderson crashed and burned in 2012 when he said he could not rope in the NBA’s Sacramento Kings. Meanwhile, the city of Las Vegas’ agreement with The Cornish Group development company to build an arena in Symphony Park appears to be stalled. The exclusive deal between the city and Cornish will expire by the end of this year.
League continues to eschew perception people bet on football games
Boosters of a proposed domed stadium project on the UNLV campus have mentioned an NFL Pro Bowl and NFL pre-season games as potential events that would help generate millions of dollars for the local economy.
But there’s only one problem. The NFL doesn’t appear likely it would stage a Pro Bowl event or sanction a game at the proposed “Mega-Event Center,” as officials for the University of Nevada, Las Vegas and their private development partner are calling the proposed 60,000-seat venue.
An NFL spokesman said this week it’s unlikely the league would have any interest in staging an all-star game event such as the Pro Bowl at the proposed UNLV stadium. The stadium project is $800 million to $900 million and boosters plan to seek state legislative approval of a tax district contained to the UNLV campus to help pay for construction.
In an email to the Las Vegas Review-Journal, NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy wrote sports gambling in Las Vegas is the reason the NFL would not likely get involved in holding a Pro Bowl or approving preseason games here.