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Elspa equivalent

Friday, January 25, 2008

Was looking for some numbers and figures about the gamesindustry, more specifically the general number of game (software) releases in 2007. Haven't found any real numbers on it, wonder if those stats are available and if I'm just googling with the wrong terms.

According to ELSPA, NPD and ESA the industry faced a staggering growth in sales last year (2007) which is great of course. As many people as possible should enjoy games. Anyhow, I came across several different organisations/associations that keep themselves busy with market research and other business- and consumer research on the interactive entertainment industry. Found one for the UK and one for the US, so.. where is the Dutch one? Of course we aren't that big yet, but some nice initiatives, universities/educational institutes and small companies are trying to give a face to the Dutch games industry, so gief numbers! And one place where I could address all my questions to.

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Blended Learning

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Currently preparing classes and considering using some social networksites and tools for teaching. Ning seems to be useful to create your own social network and there are even options for educational purposes (see education.ning) such as ning availability without ads for free. I signed up for at least two ning networks: Classroom 2.0 and Bibliotheek 2.0 (Library 2.0) recently. But with all these networks it's actually hard to keep up with everything. Nevertheless it is a great way to see how others deal with the whole 2.0 things in education and within libraries. Also good to know that people are actually actively thinking about it instead of shunning it.

Another treasure I came across today is VoiceThread. It is basically an online media-album that can hold loads of different types of media such as images, documents and videos. Nothing new there you say. But the beauty is that anyone can use voice, text or video to comment on it. There is even the possibility to comment by telephone. The coolest feature however is "The Doodler": it captures a drawing as an animation on the image or videofile and syncs it with the voice or text comment. The latter makes it not about the end doodle but exactly the process of doodling, which makes it all the more interesting.
A file that has been uploaded can be commented on (in all its forms) by many different people which makes it a collaborated work and experience. Brilliant! The comment system sort of works like it is used in Viddler when it is a video or slideshow. Comments can be made at certain segments of the video and the doodles can also jump from segment to segment. The person that made the comment appears to the side of the mediafile with his or her name and picture.

Have a look at this voicethread. Just click a couple of images and see or hear what people have to say about the classroom of the future.

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Cello & Beatboxing Flute

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Greg Pattillo and Eric Stephenson doing their thing on the cello and flute.
I especially like the part from 01:22 on. I want to hear more cello pieces like that.

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Amazing Beatbox Harmony in Subway

I love to watch Beatbox vids, as it is amazing to see and hear what the human voice is capable of. Everyonce in a while I go through these stages that I watch a whole lot of them. Today I stumbled upon the brilliant one you can watch below. In the Paris subway a group of people suddenly burst out singing and beatboxing. And what a superb job they do!

Obviously I had to find out who they were and turns out they are a group called Naturally Seven that's touring the world. They also got some cds but to be honest their own music is not really my taste, but I guess it's all about live performance for them. Luckily there are loads of youtube and other vids out there which shows their amazing talent. Anyhow love that they started singing in the subway and blew the passengers away with an amazing show. Please note the passengers around them. It's interesting to see how they all have different reactions to it. The guy that is next to the leadsinger looks actually almost annoyed at the performance and an older woman joins in with the singing at the end. Great stuff!

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To be honest, I never heard of these Paternosters, until I saw this vid, the comments on it all focus on the dangerous looking elevators. And they really -do- look dangerous! People stepped in and out cabinets that moved up and downward without stopping. Of course I was curious what they are and where I can find them to try it out myself. Apparently those elevators are called Paternoster, and are supposedly not any more dangerous than a normal evelator.... uhuh. I hope they keep childeren far away from it. Anyways on Youtube you can find quite a few clips on Paternosters. One such Paternoster can be found in Leicester University. See clip below!

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Games as lifestyle

Monday, January 14, 2008

Interesting quote which is related to a short note about the whole affair with Jeff Gerstmann, a Gamespot game editor that supposedly got sacked for writing a negative review about that one game, all of the gamesindustry got buzzing about it (see Penny Arcade Comic also) :

If you pick up your average lifestyle magazine you'll note that nobody is hauling Karl Lagerfeld over hot coals because his latest line of pantsuits shipped late. Nobody is saying that L'Oreal's new face cream "sucks rhino balls." Instead you have content that is all about getting people in the targeted lifestyle excited about upcoming products they might want to buy.

This quote in itself has nothing to do with that Gerstmann affair but made me think somewhat. Indeed games are picked up as a lifestyle nowadays (which the writer of the article links to the announcement of Steve Colvin becoming the executive vice president at Gamespot, who was himself a former president of the publisher that publishes Maxim and other lifestyle magazines) but doesn't share its traits with other lifestyle magazines. Game magazines and websites are among other things, all about giving proper credits to the games that deserve it and bash the ones that don't, or... erm critically analyze games and review them to give the reader and gamer an indication of what the games are about and if they are worth their dimes... or so it should be.

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Well this sounds...

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Yes I can relate to a bunch of what Stacey, freelance writer in NY, has to say in this Escapist column.

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Headtracking + VR + Wiimote

Might be an oldie for most, but felt I had to share it anyways:

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Fictional Interaction Design

(via interaction culture)

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