Electronic Arts(also called EA for short) is the parent company that owns and operates Ultima Online. Although Origin Systems Incorporated is the studio that initially wrote and developed Ultima Online, it had been previously acquired by EA in September, 1992.
Electronic Arts has a history of acquiring smaller game studios to enlarge itself, most recently the acquisition of Mythic Entertainment in June, 2006.
EA is currently among the top computer and console game companies and, as of 2007, is the 7th largest software company in the world.
EA first packaged it's software titles to resemble vinyl albums to appeal to consumers and to also imbue their programmers with a pathos of feeling like rock stars.