My Derive

A dérive is usually defined as an aimless walk through an urban environment. The idea of the dérive was developed by the Situationists, a group of European artistic and political avant-gardes. Guy Debord, famous Situationist, stated that during a dérive one should be fully aware of his or her surroundings, but manage the trip based on emotion. Often times a dérive was used as a tool of rebellion by the Situationists. Continue reading

Rich Gold: This is not a Pipe

This article talks about the illusion that a photograph presents. A photograph is simply a photograph, only a representation of an object or event. It does not compare to the actual three dimensional object. A person cannot have the same sensations with a photo as he or she can with the actual object. The object can be held for example, to determine more about the object whereas the photo is only a grouping of pigments or pixels that are a representation. Often times, objects can be transformed into symbols. When symbols or icons are formed, it is called semiotics. Semiotics deals with how things are processed and grouped in sign systems. Continue reading

Dissolving the Magic Circle of Play

Dissolving the Magic Circle of Play: Lessons from Situationist Gaming written by Anne-Marie Schleiner. This article provides the reader with a brief background of the Situationist group and what their objective was. Rather than discussing history in detail, she focuses more on games of today and how they apply to the way the Situationist wanted to play games. Continue reading

Theory of the Derive

A derive is directly translated to “drift” in English. It is an event that is recorded, hopefully simultaneously, where one walks a path (typically an urban scenario) that he or she has taken before. It sounds as if it is nearly a subconscious journey, only paying attention to the geography and unexpected events. It is a constant battle between these two categories, or brain activities. On one hand the participant should let go and relax, but also dedicate close attention to environment detail. Chance is taken into account, factors such as precipitation can both improve or decrease the effectiveness of the derive. Derives are playful in nature although are directly linked to the Situationist movement. This term was coined during the movement, in which a group of artists vocally and physically showed their common dislike for some political parties and urbanism. Continue reading

Game grids

Our group used cold/hot media and violent/non-violent experience for Chart 1. We picked MXC(Most Extreme Elimination Challenge), Guess Who, Grand Theft Auto, and Human Tetris. Cold and hot media are always in relation to one another, at one point in time an item might be cold but when compared to a different item(s) it could be hot. Marshall McLuhan coined the term hot and cold media. Hot media takes less interaction and is highly defined. On the other hand, cold media is the exact opposite. For this reason, we have placed MXC, Human tetris, and Guess Who in the cold media range, leaving GTA on the hot media side. Violence vs. non violent is rather self explanatory, although its interesting to point out that we have two polar opposites considering hot and cold media, yet both are very high in terms of violence. One being realistic, while GTA is video game portraying violence. Continue reading

Conservation at Crossroads: A view from the side of the road

Conservation at Crossroads: A view from the side of the road by Frances Kuo deals with one of the world’s persistent problem. Simply put, the ever growing lack of nature. It’s affecting society in many ways, probably more than what most realize. This article does a great job providing details and information from previously conducted studies. Continue reading

Nature and Significance of Play as a Cultural Phenomenon

The article discusses play and tries to define it. After reading the article I decided to look at the formal definition of the word play and was astonished. lists ninety-four, yes ninety-four definitions. Huizinga splits the article into two categories, play that is childlike and play that forms from ritual. The author speaks of the longevity of play, and the fact that it is older than even culture. Furthermore, the reasoning behind play is deeply analyzed, pushing it farther than psychological and physiological meaning. He flirts with a fine line, stating you can deny a number of things including God, justice, and seriousness but not play. Moving on, Huizinga is fascinated with idea of seriousness versus play. How they interact, how they help mold or deconstruct the other, and how each is categorized? Childlike play often comes to mind when speaking of play.He refers to play as imagination or feeling otherworldly. It is not a always a welcome spot for realistic ideas in play. This thought has been embedded into children’s mind for quite some time now and it is still evident in today’s culture. Continue reading

ARG summaries

Storytelling 2.0: Alternate Reality Games

This interview was with Elan Lee and Sean Stewart of Fourth Wall Studios. To summarize, the article discussed the marketing plans behind Alternate Reality Games and what events they have been used for. Not directly mentioned in this reading, but a point that came to mind is the ARG not only markets the product at hand but it also generates revenue in other ways. Considering the numerous ways that people communicate for ARG and the amount of time and effort involved I can imagine a strong future. Evolution of ARG is already progressing although I had never heard of this genre until last semester. As Lee says, traditional ARG is something you had to be there for and if you missed it you missed it. Today, that is changing, now it is a much longer and complex ordeal. I appreciate the ARG can be more structured, like a graphic design/marketing approach or loosely structure for entertainment purpose. I believe that companies like Fourth Wall will continue to push the world to use ARG more frequently. Continue reading