MusicEllis Paul concert

 Posted by (Visited 21758 times)  Music
Sep 302006

Last night we went to see Ellis Paul at the AcousticMusicSanDiego series. Antje Duvekot was the opening act, and she also joined Ellis on stage for much of the last set.

Ellis Paul is, bar none, one of the best songwriters in American music today. So naturally, the concert was excellent. You walked away feeling disappointed that so many great songs went unperformed — “Paris in a Day,” “Did Galileo Pray?” “Speed of Trees,” “Angel in Manhattan,” and so on… but so many great songs did get performed that you quickly realized there simply wasn’t enough time in one concert to do his catalog justice.

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Sep 292006

These four words mean different things, and frequently call for different talents and skillsets used by different people. And yet, they seem to get used interchangeably, and lumped into one person’s job. We should stop that.

“Management” means control. Yes, there’s degrees and degrees of control, there’s soft touches, and so on. But management, fundamentally, is about directing a group of people towards a stated goal. In the case of online services of all sorts, it means “keep them as customers.”

“Relations” means conversation. It’s about the relationship. Yes, there are “relationships” when you manage someone, and the enlightened manager knows her people. But the stated goal of a relationship is the other person — it’s about getting to know them for their own sake. It’s not about getting them to do what you want.

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Game talkSeed fails to germinate

 Posted by (Visited 6475 times)  Game talk  Tagged with: ,
Sep 282006

The experimental and quite different MMO Seed is closing its doors.

This is a real shame, as Seed had an aesthetic that was quite different from anything else currently out there. With a cel-shaded comic book look, and a game system heavily premised on non-combat roles and ongoing procedural narratives per character, Seed was definitely outside of the mainstream, but was shooting for mainstream-level production values.

Another one for the timeline, I suppose. 🙁

Game talkGemblo… if you like Blokus

 Posted by (Visited 14950 times)  Game talk  Tagged with:
Sep 262006

So today I finally got to play GemBlo, another game a lot like Blokus and its little cousin Blokus Trigon, which I have written about before. GemBlo is a Korean game, and it’s been backordered on FunAgain for ages. I ended up locating a copy from Boulder Games, but it appears they are out of stock as well. But I am glad I picked it up! Plus, it supports up to six players. Click past the break for a pic of the board and my thoughts.

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Game talkflOw

 Posted by (Visited 7299 times)  Game talk  Tagged with: ,
Sep 252006

Everyone else is pointing to Flow, so I might as well.

A while back, after seeing Spore, I wrote down in my design notebook (actually a Word doc on my machine), “You could do just the first level as a casual game.”

Lo and behold, here it is. First time I loaded it, btw, no critters appeared at all — so if you find yourself in a completely empty space, try reloading or heading for the circles that pop on the edge.

Game talkKloonigames and game prototypes

 Posted by (Visited 6019 times)  Game talk  Tagged with: ,
Sep 252006

is a new blog where the author is going to try to make a game month. He did his first one shooting for seven days of development, but actually finished it in three.

I noticed it because of this great summary article with a bunch of pointers to articles on rapid prototyping, something which I consider indispensable to the game design process. It’s worth following all the links, a very handy resource!