Everything I know about work life, I learned in Dungeons & Dragons

December 14, 2009

Interesting post about Dungeons & Dragon play and how it relates to work:

One spell, used well, can be more powerful than an entire book full of spells. I first met Ivan when he showed up for a game in Steve’s standard D&D world. Ivan drew up a first-level wizard character who had almost no hit-points and only one wimpy spell: cast an illusion. Whereupon Ivan’s character cast an illusion of a 5th-level illusionist… and proceeded to run that powerful “5th level illusionist” through the rest of the game. Years later, Ivan played in a play-by-mail dungeon (yes, children, we did those things before e-mail) in which the DM permitted custom spells. Ivan’s “swap” spell seemed Mostly Harmless: Transpose a 1″ cube of anything with another 1″ cube of anything. Whereupon Ivan set up a magical FedEx business (for very short messages) and a sideline of an assassin-business (swap a square inch of heart muscle with anything else; who could tell that murder was done?). This taught me to get everything possible out of the tools at my disposal. It also taught me to expand my notion of “What do I have, and what can I do with it?”

Game dynamics in the real world

December 9, 2009

I read this post about game dynamics in “real life” (aka not a game), which started a thought chain… In a nutshell, game dynamics in social media and in IRL (in real life, whatever that really means, I live mostly online… lol) appear in:

  • Rewards and points to play, such as frequent flyer programs and Las Vegas casinos/resorts
  • Facebook is a game because of its immediacy and real time updating
  • Multilevel & local marketing on facebook and elsewhere
  • Time management & productivity tools (facebook, lifehacker, etc.)

I would add:

  • Networking/building alliances (linkedin, facebook, twitter, also, IRL, etc.)
  • Task oriented duties / completion of a task (I see this as different from a tangible reward, because sometimes the reward is just a completed profile or a thank you)
  • Learning
  • Chance and probability (I know the Google “I’m feeling lucky” is not completely random, nor is the suggested friends on facebook)
  • Exploration/Creative play

..and if I think long enough, I will come up with some more, I am sure.

For Zynga game users (you know, farmville, mafiawars, vampirewars, etc….)

November 13, 2009

Interesting article about the fallout over Zynga (Farmville, Mafia Wars, etc., which all have huge communities on facebook) and its scam ads. Hmm, yet another reason to pay attention to what you click on and ALWAYS read the TOS. 😉

“Zynga insists they are serious about cleaning up the industry. And today Pincus has announced that the company will remove all offer advertising from their games.

This isn’t a meaningless action. Offers account for 1/3 or so of Zynga’s rumored $250 million in revenue.

All offers will be removed by the end of today, says Pincus, “until we can control their inclusion and presentation ourselves.”

The blog post also discloses that Zynga is an investor in DoubleDing, an offer provider that competes with OfferPal and SuperRewards. DoubleDing was serving the mobile offers that popped back onto Zynga on Friday.”

Read the Tech Crunch article here and the earlier article hahere.

Be careful out there folks.

Obsolete technologies: the losers

August 19, 2009

Today’s post is all about obsolete technologies.

Contrary to the what?s next people, I do not believe libraries are going anywhere. I do think libraries will continue to evolve as community space and that more of our products and services will be digitally based (especially if kindle continues to catch on), but considering most libraries are free, we fit perfectly into the economy of free! Also, one of the trends what?snext is predicting for 2010 is back to basics, which includes a re-interest in analog. Sooo…. all of you people who suddenly decide you want to read a real book instead of your kindle? I know where you can find one or two, or several thousand. 😉

PCWorld lists among its 40 losers (I’m not listing them all here):

1. Playing Video Games at the Arcade (I think there will still be arcades around for a while, but they will be big megaplexes aimed at families, kids parties, events, etc., which we have already started to see.)

2. Running out of Hard Drive Space (LOL, I wish this was obsolete and with cloud based services, it may very well be… but honestly, our devices like digital cameras create bigger files, so I will be surprised if I ever get to the point where I feel I will NEVER run out of space…. LOL)

10. Taking Polaroids (sigh, I keep hoping that someone will continue to make the film — there is a market)

11. Waiting for pictures to develop (among the general photographers I can see film dying, but a niche community is already rallied behind film, just as LPs have continued to be popular.)

16. Enjoying complete privacy (sigh, unfortunately, I agree, that this is on the way out — between GPS and cameras most everywhere, there are few places on earth that are truly private

18. Wearing a calculator watch (I would add, wearing any watch… Watches are done, except as either fashion statements or as worn by those who explicitly need a watch visible on their arm, such as divers….)

27. Holding up a lighter at a concert (if you’ve been to any concert in the last few years, what do you see? Cell phones, no lighters…. I can’t believe this made the list of obsolete technologies, though)

29. Using proper grammar and pronunciation (As English is an evolving language, I am really not sure what this means. If it means standard grammar as was taught in the early part of the century, then yes, it is changing. Who uses dreamt anymore?)

31. Flipping on an incandescent light bulb (I surely hope we do not end up as a fluorescent world, fluorescent bulbs are terrible for people with migraines.)

38. Faxing (people still do that? LOL)

Off of the top of my head, here are the things that I see as going the way of the dinosaur: travel agents (but not tour guides), video rental stores, the mp3 player as mp3 player only (wifi/web enabled mp3 will stay for a good long while), digital video cameras (every digital camera will shoot video or every video camera will capture stills, so one device), watches (who wears a watch now besides people without a cell phone or those who need a device on their arm (divers, runners, etc.), and we’ll continue to move to one mobile device for everything.

I do think, at least for a very long time (which in technology terms can be months — LOL), that there will continue to be a division between professional level products and one device that does everything, but at a lesser quality. So while camera/video phones exist and will get better and better, the professional level products will continue to be more purpose driven (i.e., a camera is just a camera…) and offer higher quality. I do think there will be overlay in the prosumer and pro models, but it will be a long time (if ever) before we see professional video or stills from a phone.

New art, new writings, podcasts & video — it’s moonshine

February 13, 2009

The latest issue of moonshine, a magazine of the southern arts is available online (& free) at

A game of words — a game of chance? What is love? Inspiration? Creativity? A reflection of ourselves? Our best selves? Our worst selves? This month we explore the many dimensions of being human from complex family dynamics to first love to the love of beauty and art… inspiration and creativity. The tie that binds — Writings, music, paintings, photography… perhaps, by the light of the moon. Take a moment to find some inspiration in the work of Southern writers & artists.

Jasmine Rizer’s Little Miss Straight-Edge Goes on Vacation (pt. 1) — or is it? You can be the judge of that one! Lisa R. Taylor reflects on her family and shares Lies from my Grandmother (essay). Savannah writer Hunter Dasten presents 3 poems: A Ballerina’s Dance (For Krysten Marie) (poetry); The Perfect Word; and Tightrope Walkers. Lost at Sea (poem) by Brenda Basham explores the depth of humanity, as does John S Moon who tells us about My True Love (poem). Georgia writer Niles Reddick shares Lead me Home (a novel excerpt), which focuses on the day-to-day, work relationships, and more. Despina Panagakos Yeargin asks The Questions of love, while McCabe Coolidge continues his series, Seven Questions with this question: Who do you think your guardian angel is? Thoughtful poetry from Russell Lee Hale I (a pair:Kiss Me Goodnight; Words Without), Sandy Vanderbleek (bite lip) and an enchanting tale of a roadtrip, Christopher Kupcho’s Watermelon & Beer.


Studio views features Sandra Babb’s essay Powdered Pastels Demonstration (you’ll never believe where she is painting now!!) and Jill Kettle interviews painter Durand Seay.

Brenda Basham Dothage is having some Psychological Ponderings: Self-Esteem while Dorothy Birch explores A Season of Love — I bet you will be surprised and delighted by this article, too — but then, I’m not going to give away the secret!

Donna Rosser aka the Barefoot Photographer shares her Digital photography basics while Robin Fay shares videos that she and her niece have made while exploring the latest underwater video cameras in Photography and Video to the Extreme.

Our music review is a podcast by Hannah Leatherbury with Terrance Simien, music & more (podcast). Terrance performs his zydeco music and also reflects on his music and advice for other artists. Book reviews for February/March are Big Box Reuse by Julia Christensen, (book review by Jasmine Rizer), which explores what happens to the land and buildings after a bigbox retail store moves out.All the King’s Horses and All the King’s Friends by Ken Upright (book review by Rachel Anders) focuses on southern stories by regional storyteller, Ken Upright. Why I Came West: A Memoir by Rick Bass (book review by Heather Kline) is a memoir of travelling to the West. Andrew Shupling reviews the graphic novel Good as Lily by Derek Kirk Kim.

Check in with a Short Girl comix, book reviews, work from the Southerncreativity gallery (@ Flickr), art announcements & calls for entries.

twitting a twebinar

July 22, 2008

So, I’m in the middle of a twebinar called Game Changing Moves: Who Really Owns Your Brand?
Anyhow, so it’s a webinar with a twitter element thrown in and I am taking a break. The topic is interesting (branding in the web2.0+ world), but I think this might be more multitasking than my brain can handle. I’m having a hard time watching the video feed, listening to the audio, and reading the ongoing companion stream of quickly appearing dialogue going on via twitter. Maybe, it’s just because I have a headache.

Library/Web 2.0 Workshops (Feebased; online)

January 11, 2008
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Xtreme Web Searching (Live Online)
2/12-2/13/2008, 10:00 am - 12:00 pm
Registration and Pricing Information:

Becoming a Library Advocate (Live Online) - NEW!
2/12/2008, 10:00 am - 12:00 pm
Registration and Pricing Information:

E-Resource Wrangling: An Introduction to ERMS (Live Online)
2/12/2008, 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Registration and Pricing Information:

Basic MARC Tagging for Serials (Live Online)
2/12-2/13/2008, 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Registration and Pricing Information:

Instant Messaging for Communication, Reference, and Outreach in
(Live Online)
2/13/2008, 10:00 am - 12:00 pm
Registration and Pricing Information:

Preservation of Photographic Materials (Live Online)
2/13/2008, 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Registration and Pricing Information:

Dreamweaver (Live Online)
2/15/2008, 10:00 am - 12:00 pm
Registration and Pricing Information:

more on myspace

May 23, 2006

myspace and other online social networking things are kind of interesting, ya know? Although blogs/journals have an aspect of social networking, especially with the use of feeds, comments, and blogrolling/links tools, social networking online really started to take off with six degrees. The Six degrees community was loosely based on the kevin bacon game which is loosely based on the play six degrees of separation which is loosely based upon the theory of Small World Phenomon which was developed by Stanley Milgram. Basically, the everybody is related theory. 😉 Six degrees the community was online from ’97 to 2001 and sold for 120$ million US. Yes, million. Following the success of six degrees, Friendster (2002), LinkedIn, and finally myspace (2003). After what sounds like a falling out at Friendster over people posting pet info, dogster.com and catster.com started as offshoot of friendster.

Developing sort of at the same time but with a slightly different scope (online publishing vs. social networking) was the blog: xanga (1996), LiveJournal (1998), blogger(1999), Diaryland(1999).

I’m not sure I really like myspace, mostly because it seems so juvenile in a lot of ways. I was part of six degrees and friendster and I even participated in a six degrees study a few years ago which was very interesting. Basically, you were given the name of someone else in the study, and you had to try to find a way to send a message (predetermined from the researcher so that we all had the same message) without direct contact. You could only use friends, aquaintances, etc. and it all had to be done via email. I do not know if my message every made it to my intended target, I know that whoever had my name never got their message to me. Of course, when you take into account how many people actually vote, or do community service, or anything to better the world in anyway, well… the fact that the messages ended up in limbo, is probably to be expected.

Anyhow, a few interesting/odd things about myspace:
Teen posts suicide note on myspace

MySpace Celebrities
more about myspace as a culture

the myspace generation

social networking blog
wikipedia: six degrees
wikipedia: six degrees of separation