William "Bing" Gordon, the gaming pioneer who helped create the Sims, has left Electronic Arts after 25 years to become a partner at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, the venture capital firm. "I think it's wildly exciting working with entrepreneurs," Gordon says. "I've been doing just games for a long time and thought it would be pretty cool to do something else." What advice will he share with portfolio companies? Eschew market research. "It told us that the Sims would not sell and that John Madden would be an unpopular spokesperson for a football game," he says....Elsewhere in the gaming world, Amazon.com CEO Jeff Bezos is personally investing $3 million in Kongregate, a San Francisco -- based website that offers more than 4,500 free games and that shares ad revenue with the games' creators. With Bezos's blessing, the site will begin to sell upgrades to certain games for a small fee. "Jeff was really focused on us building a business outside of advertising," says CEO Jim Greer....A lesson in bad timing: On the same day that San Diego State University announced plans to beef up its entrepreneurial studies program, 75 students were arrested for allegedly running a lucrative on-campus business selling drugs....Actress Karen Allen returned to multiplexes, starring in Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. Since her last big film, 2000's The Perfect Storm, she has launched a fashion line of hand-knit cashmere designs. The business is based in Great Barrington, Massachusetts, as is a yoga studio she founded in 1995.
Jul 1, 2008