fun

After last year’s excellent Rules of play (↵Salen & Zimmerman 2004) now everybody recommends:  KOSTER, RAPH. 2005. A theory of fun for game design. Scottsdale, Arizona: Paraglyph Press.  For background information see the according ↑entry at game matters with extensive comments, and ↑Conversation with Raph Koster by Celia Pearce. And if we’re talking about ‘definitive’ books on computergames, here’s a hint: Chris Crawford’s classic ↑The art of computer game design is online already since 1997. Just to round it up, the ludologist ↑points to ↑The evolution of gaming: computers, consoles, and arcade, another take on game history. And then, academics … Continue reading

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digital literacy divide

↑Tony Salvador and ↑John Sherry, ↑triple-A members as well as researchers at Intel, have just recently published an article called ↑Taking the Internet to the people (↵Salvador & Sherry 2005), telling us about some of their findings after four years traveling the world to see how computers are used. See ↑Kerim Friedman‘s ↑fine entry on it at ↑Savage Minds, which thankfully points to the related weblog ↑worldchanging. initially via entry at ethno::log … Continue reading

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aggressive morning fever

↑BURKE, TIMOTHY AND KEVIN BURKE. 1999. Saturday morning fever: Growing up with cartoon culture. New York: St. Martin’s.  GOLDSTEIN, JEFFREY. 2001. ↑Does playing violent video games cause aggressive behavior?. Chicago: University of Chicago. Electronic Document. Available online: http://culturalpolicy.uchicago.edu/conf2001/papers/goldstein.html … Continue reading

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massive literature update

Pitfalls of virtual property (↵Bartle 2004) The power of gifts: organizing social relationships in open source communities (↵Bergquist & Ljungberg 2001) Anthropological perspectives on technology (↵Schiffer 2001) Technology as the anthropology of cultural practice (↵Aunger 2003) Ethnologie des joueurs d’échecs (↵Wendling 2002) Pushing the wood: Chess playing as an anthropological subject (↵Lavenda 2003) Nexus: Small worlds and the groundbreaking science of networks (↵Buchanan 2002) Six degrees: The science of a connected age (↵Watts 2003) A new science for a connected world (↵Valverde 2004) Self-organization and identification of web communities (↵Flake et al. 2002) A highly efficient waste of effort: Open … Continue reading

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synthetic worlds

↑Edward Castronova, who rose to fame with his ↑Virtual worlds: A first hand account of market and society on the cyberian frontier (↵Castronova 2001—see also ↵Castronova 2003 and ↑terra nova) has written his first full-length monograph [↑Overview]:  ↑CASTRONOVA, EDWARD. 2005. Synthetic worlds: the business and culture of online games. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. via entry at digital genres … Continue reading

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keitai

The Japanese term for mobile phone, keitai (roughly translated as “something you carry with you”), evokes not technical capability or freedom of movement but intimacy and portability, defining a personal accessory that allows constant social connection. Japan’s enthusiastic engagement with mobile technology has become—along with anime, manga, and sushi—part of its trendsetting popular culture. Personal, Portable, Pedestrian, the first book-length English-language treatment of mobile communication use in Japan, covers the transformation of keitai from business tool to personal device for communication and play.     The essays in this groundbreaking collection document the emergence, incorporation, and domestication of mobile communications … Continue reading

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FLOSS developers as a social formation

↑Frauke Lehmann, who will give a ↵presentation at my ↵cyberanthropology workshop, has put her M.A.-thesis (↵Lehmann 2004a) online under a CC-licence. The thesis is called ↑Entwickler Freier Software als soziale Formation [in German | .pdf | 873KB] and an English-language derivate of it (↵Lehmann 2004b) has been published at ↑First Monday: ↑FLOSS developers as a social formation. Here’s the abstract:  Developers of Free/Libre and Open Source Software (FLOSS) are often referred to as a community or as a scene. But so far this seems mostly just a rough expression. This paper takes a closer look at FLOSS developers and their … Continue reading

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polylog on violence

The forum for intercultural philosophy ↑polylog has a focus issue on ↑The Meanings of Violence and the Violence of Meanings. Included is an article by Andrew Strathern and Pamela J. Stewart, called ↑Violence: Conceptual Themes and the Evaluation of Actions. Very interesting regarding the computergames & violence issue. And Wim van Binsbergen’s ↑Violence in Anthropology, too. … Continue reading

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military training geeks

Two new publications from the extreme ends of the spectrum, but both touching my topic. Now guess which one of the two is closer to my mind and heart. KELTY, CHRISTOPHER M. 2005. Geeks, Social Imaginaries, and Recursive Publics. Cultural Anthropology 20(2):185-214. official abstract: This article investigates the social, technical, and legal affiliations among “geeks” (hackers, lawyers, activists, and IT entrepreneurs) on the Internet. The mode of association specific to this group is that of a “recursive public sphere” constituted by a shared imaginary of the technical and legal conditions of possibility for their own association. On the basis of … Continue reading

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