Monday, January 12, 2009


A Duck Type
:: looking at Spore ::
OK, it's somewhat demented, but consistent with my view that shadow boxing with puppets is a way to sublimate violence, more than encourage it. Channel aggression into these games, play chess (cold), not war (hot). Even make the games remunerative in some way, educational.

From the Wanderers list:
Here's an invention, based on Spore and like those: kids breed their own chickens, based on various comical algorithms, on the computer (cartoon chickens), ready for combat in a game called 'Cockfight!'. At first parents object but then we show how it comes with a syllabus, like Clifford Geertz doing deep description, lots of National Geographic video about cock fighting cultures, and suddenly it's OK, and not only that, junior gets academic credit in the anthro department, plus you can play for real money, so some of the parents get involved, muscle junior aside, get involved in obsessive cockfighting for money -- all thanks to me.
As I mentioned later on edu-sig:
My own DWA / 4D has: Satellite Toshiba x1 (x2 counting mom's when she's around, plus she has a Sony Vaio which I'm not counting); OLPC XO x2; Ubuntu Dell laptops x2; various PC desktops x4 (3 in office, one for Spores etc., working on Spores-based Cockfight! concept, an alternative to violence against chickens (roosters), with real money bets possible, more on Wanderers Yahoo! list (have to knock to get in)).
Note I say "concept" i.e. I am not equipped to write this computer game all by my lonesome (nobody is -- takes a team). Most projects that interest me aren't one person jobs (e.g. the edu-sig link above talks more about my "bizmo" fleets).

In the context of Wanderers, I went on to compare having the Bucky & Ed stuff in philosophy to having a "combat chicken" on steroids giving philosophers fun ways to engage other departments on their own turf, more like in the old days, very Quadrivial.

Of course that's a trivializing metaphor, but hey, as a Quaker who plays Quake, I have my own karma to work out. My World Game Museum is another one of my outlets, helps me get through the day.