the art of gamemodding

  It seems that the time of harvesting the fruits of my efforts finally has arrived. Today again an invitation to write an article for an anthology came in—I didn’t even send a proposal … God, am I satisfied and proud. Alas, the problem is the now emerged density of deadlines. But self-organization is the key to damming up this kind of trouble. So I skimmed through my physical and digital folders and found yet another abstract I submitted to … well, honestly, I can’t remember where to I sent it. But obviously it was not accepted or even received. … Continue reading

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censorship’s bloody spell

  Although the matter meanwhile ↑has been settled for good—more or less—I nevertheless will recount a portion of it, as it delivers some insights into various issues, namely the computergames and violence debate and the perception of ↵machinima by insiders of the movement and by outsiders.  ↑“BloodSpell” is a feature-length machinima-movie by ↑Strange Company based on the computergame ↑“Neverwinter Nights”. It is released on the Internet piecemeal in the shape of five to seven minutes long episodes every two weeks or so. Until today all in all ↑seven episodes can be downloaded, the eigth being on the verge of release.  … Continue reading

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face off/on

appropriation’s commodification   ↑Boingboing reported that a ↑new application for the Xbox 360 by Digimask allows gamers to paste their own faces on game characters. ↑Gamersgame reported that the developers of an upcoming ↑beat ‘em up, ↑“Battle of the Gods” (BOTG) launched an unique promotion event via eBay. If you win the according auction currently running your likeness will be included into the game as a background character.  Back in ye olde times when ↵MP1-modding was striving, and when we were still in the first stages of the infamous ↵Lightsaber modification, DopeTek, a founding member of our team, perfected his … Continue reading

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game over

  Using everyday household objects ↑PES has done a wonderful ↑stop motion movie recreating famous computergame classics like ↑Pac-Man, ↑Frogger, ↑Space Invaders et al. All actions are synchronized to the original game sounds. The movie is called ↑“Game Over” [1:35min | .mov | 7.89MB], and what I want for Christmas are playable recreations of the games featured in the movie, featuring the graphics from the movie. There’s still enough time till Christmas—gamemodders of the world, go ahead …      via entry at boingboing … Continue reading

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kitsch guns

antonio riello’s ladies weapons    This is definitely not street tech, but an artist appropriating the aesthetical appropriation of weapons for his own expressive ends. Italian artist Antonio Riello [of whom I couldn't find an own site on the Web, but about whom I have read at diverse pages that he was born in Kabul, Rio de Janeiro, and Marostica, Italy] has peculiar interests: “Since the beginning of his artistic career,” ↑Hoard Magazine wrote in 2001, “he wanted to be a social reporter investigating his immediate environment. He is particularly interested in the “dark sides” of Italian contemporary life.”    … Continue reading

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golden guns

Because of current events—namely Saddam Hussein Abd al-Majid al-Tikriti since today facing court again—and because I just discovered something different on which I will report later, I felt the urge to rewrite and revive an old entry I ↑originally posted over at ethno::log:    ↑Bruce Sterling received the above picture from ↑William Gibson, ↑posted it at his weblog and commented: “Wow, a custom-detailed, one of a kind, post-consumer-altered MP5!” [Nitpick: a Heckler&Koch MP5k] Ain’t that a fine example of aesthetic technology adaption? Envision an exhibition in an ethnographical museum, showing weapons like the above one—and of course the gold-plated AK-47s … Continue reading

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animator vs. animation

  The legacy of ↑Xiao Xiao lives on—in Alan Becker’s ingenious ↑Animator vs. Animation “An animator faces his own animation in deadly combat. The battlefield? The Flash interface itself. A stick figure is created by an animator with the intent to torture. The stick figure drawn by the animator will be using everything he can find—the brush tool, the eraser tool—to get back at his tormentor. It’s resourcefulness versus power. Who will win? You can find out yourself. —This took three long months … I think it’s worth it.” I think so, too.  At least since the times of Tex … Continue reading

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afrigadget

solving everyday problems with African ingenuity    Yet another blog collecting instances of cultural appropriation of technology, in the case of ↑Afrigadget it’s a group-blog: “The purpose of Afrigadget is to showcase African ingenuity with technology. Many times Africans do not have access to the same quality tools or items that are found in other areas of the world. What is available to be used to solve problems or fix equipment can be wide and varied. You would be surprised at what can be made, fixed or created with bailing wire, inner-tubes and wood.” Afrigadget features not only high resolution … Continue reading

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bedford’s appropriation

the social organisation of craftsmen’s innovation in Sudan project by Prof. Dr. ↑Kurt Beck, Chair of Anthropology, University of Bayreuth    The glistening Sifinja [meaning "Sandal", the local name for the modified Bedford TJ], after hundreds of thousands of kilometres still a blazing beauty. On the streets of Latin America, Asia, and Africa, richly decorated trucks are a common vista. Occassionally this has been noted, alas, the fact escaped that the trucks are not merely outwardly decorated, but are reconstructed from scratch up in extremely unorthodox fashions, and thereby are adjusted to local conditions and indigenous cultural orientations. Without any … Continue reading

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street use

  That’s exactly what every anthropologist interested in the cultural appropriation of technology needed online—Kevin Kelly’s blog ↑street use “features the ways in which people modify and re-create technology. Herein a collection of personal modifications, folk innovations, street customization, ad hoc alterations, wear-patterns, home-made versions and indigenous ingenuity. In short—stuff as it is actually used, and not how its creators planned on it being used. As ↑William Gibson said, “The street finds its own uses for technology.””  Heavily related entries are: ↵truck-canoe hybrids, ↵Bedford’s metamorphosis: Hotbeds of creativity—the appropriation of the truck in Sudan, and ↵balineros—and in a way ↵perfect … Continue reading

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