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Showing posts from April, 2008

MMO Gaming: (Not So) Wasted Time

In my last post, I highlighted what the terms Social Media and Web 2.0 really refer to, as well as some mild predictions of what is to be produced by this new means of media consumption. (I promise that the next time I am compelled to write a treatise of this length, I'll bust it up into smaller posts.) I ran across this link on LifeHacker, talking about where the time to be a participant in this new media will come from. This is a question I've faced many times from people . "Where do you get the time to read everything you do?" or "How can you spend all that time playing MMO games?". Clay Shirky does a much better job detailing it than I could here. His presentation also touches on many of the nuances of what Social Media is, so it's worth checking out, as is his book _Here Comes Everybody_ . So did I waste all this time on building and selling blasters in Star Wars Galaxies, or raiding dungeons in World of Warcraft? Not entirely. Here's some of

On Social Media: What is Web 2.0, and What Does It Mean?

I dislike industry buzzwords, and how quickly they get usurped by those who don't fully comprehend them. "Web 2.0" is a buzzword that has been being tossed around ever since O'Reilly and MediaLive International coined the term to isolate who survived the bursting of the dot-com bubble and why. Yet most people are still unclear on the concept, at best. "Web 2.0" doesn't refer to a platform, a particular set of tools, a programming interface, or even really a design methodology. It is an emergent effect, flowing naturally from the how the Internet works. It's only coming to light recently because, with the dot-com bust, we've separated the wheat from the chaff. As the speed of networks rise and the price of storage falls, the emergent behaviors are simply more evident than they were a decade ago. Universal Mccann International refers to this emergent trend with a better distinction, "Social Media", and defines it as "Online applicati

Phoenician ASCII

All communication, since the dawn of language, starts as synchronous communication, and tends towards the asynchronous. Oral histories disappear from cultures once writing and literacy is common enough to allow it. Orders delivered though synchronous communication (verbal conversation) can run a tribe but not an empire. Voicemail, e-mail, and text messages replace phone calls and face-to-face meetings. Having to be in the same place at the same time, let's face it, is inconvenient. Some 3500 years ago, in one of the great and shining moments of human achievement (cue the monolith from 2001), the Phoenicians reprogrammed the human mind. In the beginning, distinct sounds represented distinct thoughts. Words were the fundamental atomic nature of communication. I say "horse", and the idea of the equine quadruped pops into your head. (Computer scientists still honor this tradition when talking about PC architecture. The smallest chunk of memory that can be addressed is referre