July 2, 2012

Cover Story

Built to Lead

Perhaps no Utah governor in modern memory comes to the office with a broad...Read More

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Derek B. Miller

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A New Code

Software and IT Industries are Embedded in Utah’s Tech Community

John Blodgett

July 2, 2012

Utah’s Got (Video) Game
Video gaming is a global industry, and the best game designers can work anywhere on that global stage, according to Jon Dean, Vice President and Executive Producer for Electronic Arts Interactive. So it’s saying a lot that one of EA’s primary studios is located in downtown Salt Lake City. “Utah offers a real quality of life,” he says. “[It has] four great seasons, mountain air, incredible outdoor activities, welcoming and diverse communities. The culture here is terrific for creative people, too, [with the city’s] great art, music and theatrical scenes.”

It also helps that Atari founder Nolan Bushnell—“perhaps the grandfather of videogames”—attended the University of Utah. Dean says EA finds the local universities “open to working with the video gaming industry to develop partnerships and future curriculum so that they turn out qualified candidates for our future needs.”

Silicon Valley Takes Notice
David Bradford has found himself in Silicon Valley numerous times over the years, attempting to raise funds for one Utah-based venture or another. He says it’s not as difficult as it once was, and suggests that the success of the software development and IT cluster has played a role in that. “People used to say, ‘Utah? Why Utah?’ Now I never get that. It is no longer a question in the minds of out-of-state VCs that Utah is a place to invest. It speaks to the fact that we have a momentum in this state.”


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