Game talkMetaverseU time capsules

 Posted by (Visited 6034 times)  Game talk  Tagged with: , , ,
Mar 282008

Henrik Bennetsen cornered everyone he could at MetaverseU and asked them a set of questions about the metaverse:

  • What excites you about current metaverse technology?
  • What concerns you about current metaverse technology?
  • What will be most the surprising impact of metaverse technology on society within the next decade?
  • What barriers will metaverse technology never overcome?

Now he’s posted all the videos of all the answers — and there’s some good stuff in there.

Here’s my answers:

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GamemakingMetachat is on Facebook now too

 Posted by (Visited 7076 times)  Gamemaking  Tagged with: , , ,
Mar 272008

You can get it here.

This actually connects to the same chat world as the one on MySpace, and the one on our forums. So it’s all one big happy cross-SNS virtual worldlet in Flash.

We also got a bunch of forums interested in trying to integrate a Metaplace world on their forums… it’ll be one based on Metachat to start with, though it can of course change later. It’ll be their own world, though.

Last time I mentioned this little app on here, people challenged the question of whether it was actually a world or not. Well, it supports hundreds to thousands, there’s physics, a sense of place and space, you can kick a soccer ball, interact in real time… the background could scroll, and you could have avatars instead of profile pics. So… close enough, to my mind. 🙂

BTW, we’re going to start spotlighting community members and their worlds. The first spotlight is up now — Tachevert (of WorldIV) and his world “Danser,” which is one of my favorite MP projects so far.

MiscWork in Progress!

 Posted by (Visited 6397 times)  Misc  Tagged with: ,
Mar 272008

Trying to upgrade since the header file got hacked again today. Sorry for the interruptions. Hope to have things back to normal in a bit.

ETA: ok. turned the plugins back on for now. Things should look ok again. We’ll keep an eye on things and replace the header again if need be. Upgrades seem to be stalling out for no apparent reason.

Mar 272008

So the UK has “accepted all recommendations” in a commissioned report by Dr. Tanya Byron, best known as a psychologist on various reality shows about troubled kids on British TV (not a knock — she does seem to be quite qualified in the psych arena). The bottom line of the report? Internet sites get a pass and “we need more education,” whereas packaged games get the BBFC ratings put on them in addition to the PEGI ratings already there. The BBFC will now have to review most games made, instead of only the couple hundred they used to.

This is a blow to the games industry — it shuffles their self-regulation efforts (PEGI) off to the back of the box, and puts governmental regulation front and center. The Times Online describes it as “cigarette-style health warnings.”

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Game talkA balanced look at violent videogames

 Posted by (Visited 6967 times)  Game talk  Tagged with:
Mar 262008

It’s nice to see more balanced treatments of the complex subject of videogame violence starting to make it both into the scientific community and the educational community. I’ll have to track down this book, Grand Theft Childhood.

From the interview on Open Education:

A number of our findings went against common wisdom. One surprise was how many preteen girls played M-rated video games. About a fifth of girls rarely or never played video games. But another fifth had played Grand Theft Auto “a lot in the past six months.” Based on some of their comments, we suspect that girls play these games differently and for different reasons than boys. Since we bought into the myth that girls don’t like violent games, we didn’t recruit them for focus groups in this set of studies. We hope to talk with GTA-playing girls in future studies.

Game talkA brief history of botting

 Posted by (Visited 16436 times)  Game talk  Tagged with: , , , ,
Mar 252008

It’s funny to see how the old debates sometimes just don’t change — they just move from being flamewars on forums to being flamewars couched in more polite language, as in the case of the Blizzard vs WoWGlider lawsuit.

The issue of running bots or enhanced clients is very very old. MUDs originally were played via vanilla Telnet. Vanilla Telnet is extremely annoying, because there’s no separate input bar from your output. Given that writing a vanilla Telnet client is very easy, it was not long before there were dedicated clients that wrapped Telnet with additional functionality. The best known of these were TinyFugue and TinTin, and today it seems like zMud is still retaining dedicated users.

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MiscOpen threadBlog seems functional again

 Posted by (Visited 10388 times)  Misc, Open thread  Tagged with: ,
Mar 242008

You may have noticed the blog being partially inoperative this weekend. Well, it seems to be back. We’ll see how it goes during the day.

The background: on Friday or Saturday I attempted to log into the admin dashboard only to be told that I had to upgrade my database. I assumed it was because my host was forcing me to go from the old 2.1.x version to the newer 2.3.3 version which has a lot of security fixes. Well, I clicked the “upgrade” link, it didn’t work, and then the dashboard became inaccessible. I got stuck in the endless upgrade loop described here.

I then spent two days trying forced and manual upgrades to 2.3.3, 2.2, and every number in between. Looked like it was always timing out when trying to update things. While I wasat it, though, I also uploaded the images for the new theme that I have been messing with — so at least there was a new look. 🙂

Morgan suggested forcing a database upgrade, which I didn’t see the point of, given that said upgrade is exactly what was failing each time. But it did make me go look at the value of the db_version field in the wp_options table. Which was “1” instead of what it should be. I changed it manually to 4773, and the upgrade link succeeded, and now it’s at 5183 (which is correct since we are currently running 2.2.3). So thanks, Morgan!

Tonight perhaps, I will try finishing the job and going all the way to 2.3.3. In the meantime, you may notice that some blog functionality is missing — translation, for example. Most of it is just commented out, and I will have to dig into the PHP for the sidebars to bring it back. The new theme is supposed to have a bunch of stuff rearranged, but I suspect it makes no sense to do that until I get to the latest version.

Post here if you see any obviously broken stuff, please!

Game talkGo buy shirts at Target!

 Posted by (Visited 7255 times)  Game talk  Tagged with:
Mar 222008

No, I haven’t succumbed to putting ads inline in the RSS feed. 🙂 Rather, it caught my eye that the Experimental Gameplay Project now has a clothing line, where the shirts come with the games. And they’re available right now at Target stores.

Among the games are things like Tower of Goo and Gish. So it’s a chance to support indie creators, get some great games, and also show off your gamer cred.

I sure hope the game developers are getting a good cut on this…!