play between worlds exploring online game culture mit press

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Play Between Worlds

Author : T. L. Taylor
ISBN : 9780262250542
Genre : Computers
File Size : 41. 17 MB
Format : PDF, Kindle
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In Play Between Worlds, T. L. Taylor examines multiplayer gaming life as it is lived on the borders, in the gaps -- as players slip in and out of complex social networks that cross online and offline space. Taylor questions the common assumption that playing computer games is an isolating and alienating activity indulged in by solitary teenage boys. Massively multiplayer online games (MMOGs), in which thousands of players participate in a virtual game world in real time, are in fact actively designed for sociability. Games like the popular Everquest, she argues, are fundamentally social spaces.Taylor's detailed look at Everquest offers a snapshot of multiplayer culture. Drawing on her own experience as an Everquest player (as a female Gnome Necromancer) -- including her attendance at an Everquest Fan Faire, with its blurring of online -- and offline life -- and extensive research, Taylor not only shows us something about games but raises broader cultural issues. She considers "power gamers," who play in ways that seem closer to work, and examines our underlying notions of what constitutes play -- and why play sometimes feels like work and may even be painful, repetitive, and boring. She looks at the women who play Everquest and finds they don't fit the narrow stereotype of women gamers, which may cast into doubt our standardized and preconceived ideas of femininity. And she explores the questions of who owns game space -- what happens when emergent player culture confronts the major corporation behind the game.

Raising The Stakes

Author : T. L. Taylor
ISBN : 9780262300476
Genre : Games & Activities
File Size : 58. 68 MB
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Competitive video and computer game play is nothing new: the documentary King of Kong memorably portrays a Donkey Kong player's attempts to achieve the all-time highest score; the television show Starcade (1982--1984) featured competitions among arcade game players; and first-person shooter games of the 1990s became multiplayer through network play. A new development in the world of digital gaming, however, is the emergence of professional computer game play, complete with star players, team owners, tournaments, sponsorships, and spectators. In Raising the Stakes, T. L. Taylor explores the emerging scene of professional computer gaming and the accompanying efforts to make a sport out of this form of play. In the course of her explorations, Taylor travels to tournaments, including the World Cyber Games Grand Finals (which considers itself the computer gaming equivalent of the Olympics), and interviews participants from players to broadcasters. She examines pro-gaming, with its highly paid players, play-by-play broadcasts, and mass audience; discusses whether or not e-sports should even be considered sports; traces the player's path from amateur to professional (and how a hobby becomes work); and describes the importance of leagues, teams, owners, organizers, referees, sponsors, and fans in shaping the structure and culture of pro-gaming. Taylor connects professional computer gaming to broader issues: our notions of play, work, and sport; the nature of spectatorship; the influence of money on sports. And she examines the ongoing struggle over the gendered construction of play through the lens of male-dominated pro-gaming. Ultimately, the evolution of professional computer gaming illuminates the contemporary struggle to convert playful passions into serious play.

Videogames And Education

Author : Harry J. Brown
ISBN : 9781317452669
Genre : Business & Economics
File Size : 72. 11 MB
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Video games challenge our notions of identity, creativity, and moral value, and provide a powerful new avenue for teaching and learning. This book is a rich and provocative guide to the role of interactive media in cultural learning. It searches for specific ways to interpret video games in the context of human experience and in the field of humanities research. The author shows how video games have become a powerful form of political, ethical, and religious discourse, and how they have already influenced the way we teach, learn, and create. He discusses the major trends in game design, the public controversies surrounding video games, and the predominant critical positions in game criticism. The book speaks to all educators, scholars, and thinking persons who seek a fuller understanding of this significant and video games cultural phenomenon.

The Connected Home The Future Of Domestic Life

Author : Richard Harper
ISBN : 9780857294760
Genre : Computers
File Size : 76. 28 MB
Format : PDF
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The title of this new book: “The Connected Home” reflects the move away from the idea that smart homes would alter the lives of those living in them by providing technologies to take over tasks that were previously the responsibility of the householder, such as managing entertainment, education – and even eating! Up until around 10 years ago this view was commonplace but time has shown that the technologies to support a smart home have not developed in such a way as to support this premise. Instead, what people do in their homes has moved the concept of a smart home into that of the ‘connected home’. The rise of on-line games technologies, video connections via Skype, social networking, internet browsing etc are now an integral part of the home environment and have had a significant effect on the home. The contributors to this exciting new book consider and discuss the effects and ramifications of the connected home from a variety of viewpoints: an examination of the take-up of personal computers and the Internet in domestic situations; an analysis of the changing intersection of technology and human habits in the connected home; the impact of gaming, texting, e-book readers, tablets and other devices and their effect on the social conditions of a household; the relationship between digital messaging applications and real geography; and an overview of how sensing technologies for the smart home might evolve (lightweight medical technologies for example). The book culminates by addressing unfinished ambitions from the smart home agenda, the factors that have prevented their realisation, and addresses the need for extending research into the area.

Inter Vention

Author :
ISBN : 9780262300902
Genre :
File Size : 69. 41 MB
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Virtually Sacred

Author : Robert M. Geraci
ISBN : 9780199379972
Genre : Computers
File Size : 73. 30 MB
Format : PDF
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Millions of users have taken up residence in virtual worlds, and in those worlds they find opportunities to revisit and rewrite their religious lives. Robert M. Geraci argues that virtual worlds and video games have become a locus for the satisfaction of religious needs, providing many users with devoted communities, opportunities for ethical reflection, a meaningful experience of history and human activity, and a sense of transcendence. Using interviews, surveys, and his own first-hand experience within the virtual worlds, Geraci shows how World of Warcraft and Second Life provide participants with the opportunity to rethink what it means to be religious in the contemporary world. Not all participants use virtual worlds for religious purposes, but many online residents use them to rearrange or replace religious practice as designers and users collaborate in the production of a new spiritual marketplace. Using World of Warcraft and Second Life as case studies, this book shows that many residents now use virtual worlds to re-imagine their traditions and work to restore them to "authentic" sanctity, or else replace religious institutions with virtual communities that provide meaning and purpose to human life. For some online residents, virtual worlds are even keys to a post-human future where technology can help us transcend mortal life. Geraci argues that World of Warcraft and Second Life are "virtually sacred" because they do religious work. They often do such work without regard for-and frequently in conflict with-traditional religious institutions and practices; ultimately they participate in our sacred landscape as outsiders, competitors, and collaborators.

Making Virtual Worlds

Author : Thomas M. Malaby
ISBN : 9780801457753
Genre : Computers
File Size : 58. 4 MB
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The past decade has seen phenomenal growth in the development and use of virtual worlds. In one of the most notable, Second Life, millions of people have created online avatars in order to play games, take classes, socialize, and conduct business transactions. Second Life offers a gathering point and the tools for people to create a new world online. Too often neglected in popular and scholarly accounts of such groundbreaking new environments is the simple truth that, of necessity, such virtual worlds emerge from physical workplaces marked by negotiation, creation, and constant change. Thomas Malaby spent a year at Linden Lab, the real-world home of Second Life, observing those who develop and profit from the sprawling, self-generating system they have created. Some of the challenges created by Second Life for its developers were of a very traditional nature, such as how to cope with a business that is growing more quickly than existing staff can handle. Others are seemingly new: How, for instance, does one regulate something that is supposed to run on its own? Is it possible simply to create a space for people to use and then not govern its use? Can one apply these same free-range/free-market principles to the office environment in which the game is produced? "Lindens"-as the Linden Lab employees call themselves-found that their efforts to prompt user behavior of one sort or another were fraught with complexities, as a number of ongoing processes collided with their own interventions. Malaby thoughtfully describes the world of Linden Lab and the challenges faced while he was conducting his in-depth ethnographic research there. He shows how the workers of a very young but quickly growing company were themselves caught up in ideas about technology, games, and organizations, and struggled to manage not only their virtual world but also themselves in a nonhierarchical fashion. In exploring the practices the Lindens employed, he questions what was at stake in their virtual world, what a game really is (and how people participate), and the role of the unexpected in a product like Second Life and an organization like Linden Lab.

Playing Along

Author : Kiri Miller
ISBN : 9780199929917
Genre : Music
File Size : 40. 14 MB
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Why don't Guitar Hero players just pick up real guitars? What happens when millions of people play the role of a young black gang member in Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas? How are YouTube-based music lessons changing the nature of amateur musicianship? This book is about play, performance, and participatory culture in the digital age. Miller shows how video games and social media are bridging virtual and visceral experience, creating dispersed communities who forge meaningful connections by "playing along" with popular culture. Playing Along reveals how digital media are brought to bear in the transmission of embodied knowledge: how a Grand Theft Auto player uses a virtual radio to hear with her avatar's ears; how a Guitar Hero player channels the experience of a live rock performer; and how a beginning guitar student translates a two-dimensional, pre-recorded online music lesson into three-dimensional physical practice and an intimate relationship with a distant teacher. Through a series of engaging ethnographic case studies, Miller demonstrates that our everyday experiences with interactive digital media are gradually transforming our understanding of musicality, creativity, play, and participation.

New Media

Author : Martin Lister
ISBN : 9781134083824
Genre : Language Arts & Disciplines
File Size : 49. 3 MB
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New Media: A Critical Introduction is a comprehensive introduction to the culture, history, technologies and theories of new media. Written especially for students, the book considers the ways in which 'new media' really are new, assesses the claims that a media and technological revolution has taken place and formulates new ways for media studies to respond to new technologies. The authors introduce a wide variety of topics including: how to define the characteristics of new media; social and political uses of new media and new communications; new media technologies, politics and globalization; everyday life and new media; theories of interactivity, simulation, the new media economy; cybernetics, cyberculture, the history of automata and artificial life. Substantially updated from the first edition to cover recent theoretical developments, approaches and significant technological developments, this is the best and by far the most comprehensive textbook available on this exciting and expanding subject. At www.newmediaintro.com you will find: additional international case studies with online references specially created You Tube videos on machines and digital photography a new ‘Virtual Camera’ case study, with links to short film examples useful links to related websites, resources and research sites further online reading links to specific arguments or discussion topics in the book links to key scholars in the field of new media.

Beyond Barbie And Mortal Kombat

Author : Yasmin B. Kafai
ISBN : UOM:39015084135691
Genre : Computers
File Size : 58. 92 MB
Format : PDF
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Girls and women as game players and game designers in the new digital landscape of massively multiplayer online games, "second lives," "modding," serious games, and casual games.

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