04 NOV 2018 by ideonexus

 Brian-Sutton Smith's Seven Rhetorics of Play

Play as Progress: Play is a way of turning children into adults. Play is valuable because it educates and develops the cognitive capacities of human or animal youth. Examples: All forms of children's play and animal play Play as Fate: Human lives and play are controlled by fate in the form of destiny, gods, atoms, neurons, or luck, but not by free will. Examples: Gambling and games of chance Play as Power: Play is a form of conflict and a way to fortify the status of those who control the p...
Folksonomies: games culture play
Folksonomies: games culture play
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04 NOV 2018 by ideonexus

 How Rules Make Games Pleasurable and Encourage Self-Regul...

Picture a child poised excitedly at the starting line of a footrace, ready to run down the track, breathlessly awaiting the starting signal. Rather than giving in to her intense desire to leap from the starting line, she waits for the signal that the race has begun. What's going on here? Why does our player anxiously hold back when she really desires to run? Developmental psychologist L. S. Vygotsky notes that "Play continually creates demands on the child to act against immediate impulse, i...
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04 NOV 2018 by ideonexus

 Degenerate Strategies and Cheating

Why isn't using a degenerate strategy considered cheating? Degenerate strategies take advantage of weaknesses in the rules of a game, but do not actually violate the rules. What kind of player would play in this way? The answer is both a dedicated player, who is overzealously seeking the perfect strategy, and an unsportsmanlike player, who has found a hole in the rules to exploit, even though he understands that he is not playing the game the way it was intended. These two kinds of players ca...
Folksonomies: games play gaming
Folksonomies: games play gaming
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Is the same true of memorizing algorithms to solve the rubiks cube?

31 OCT 2018 by ideonexus

 Insights on Being Well-Read

What is the true point of a bookish life? Note I write “point,” not “goal.” The bookish life can have no goal: It is all means and no end. The point, I should say, is not to become immensely knowledgeable or clever, and certainly not to become learned. Montaigne, who more than five centuries ago established the modern essay, grasped the point when he wrote, “I may be a man of fairly wide reading, but I retain nothing.” Retention of everything one reads, along with being mentally i...
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31 OCT 2018 by ideonexus

 Bumper Sticker Computer Science

A few of my favorites, not found in the linked article: "There are two ways of constructing software. One way is to make it so simple that there are obviously no deficiencies. The other is to make it so complex that there are no obvious deficiencies." C.A.R. Hoare "The purpose of software engineering is to control complexity, not to create it." Dr. Pamela Zave "The most important single aspect of software development is to be clear about what you are trying to build." Bjarne Stroustrup "T...
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31 OCT 2018 by ideonexus

 How a Nerd Walks Up the Stairs

Your steps should be in a cycle: short, long, long. Long in this case means a double step. Thus, you will cover five stairs in one short-long-long cycle. In addition, you should always start the first cycle on the same foot. Suppose you start on the left foot, then after two cycles you are back on the left foot, having covered ten stairs. While you are walking the stairs in this way, it is clear where you are in the cycle. By the end of the staircase, you will know the number of stairs modulo...
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27 JUL 2018 by ideonexus

 Shannon's Learning Mouse Theseus

Theseus was propelled by a pair of magnets, one embedded in its hollow core, and one moving freely beneath the maze. The mouse would begin its course, bump into a wall, sense that it had hit an obstacle with its “whiskers,” activate the right relay to attempt a new path, and then repeat the process until it hit its goal, a metallic piece of cheese. The relays stored the directions of the right path in “memory”: once the mouse had successfully navigated the maze by trial and error, it ...
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27 JUL 2018 by ideonexus

 Rules are the Persistent Identity of a Game Across Cultur...

There are at least two senses in which the RULES schemas offer a "formal" way of looking at games. First, the term formal is used in the sense of "form": rules constitute the inner form or organization of games. In other words, rules are the inner, essential structures that constitute the real-world objects known as games. For example, consider two games of Go that differ in a variety of ways. They might differ in terms of: Material: one version is played with stones on a wooden board; the o...
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27 JUL 2018 by ideonexus

 Break the Rules of a Game to Improve it

In The Well-Played Game, Bernard DeKoven advocates a fundamental adjustment in players' attitudes towards the rules of a game: You're not changing the game for the sake of changing it. You're changing it for the sake of finding a game that works. Once this freedom is established, once we have established why we want to change a game and how we go about it, a remarkable thing happens to us: We become the authorities. No matter what game we create, no matter how well we are able to play it,...
Folksonomies: gameplay
Folksonomies: gameplay
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Like adding a push-your-luck component to Candyland or how SFR took Dragon Dice and refactored the rules to make it work.

27 JUL 2018 by ideonexus

 Norman Borlaug, Giga-Lifesaver

In the 1950s and ’60s, another giga-lifesaver, Norman Borlaug, outsmarted evolution to foment the Green Revolution in the developing world.21 Plants in nature invest a lot of energy and nutrients in woody stalks that raise their leaves and blossoms above the shade of neighboring weeds and of each other. Like fans at a rock concert, everyone stands up, but no one gets a better view. That’s the way evolution works: it myopically selects for individual advantage, not the greater good of the ...
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