Episode 58 – Zombies vs Mummies

Porter Stowell joins Phaedra and Michael M for a rockin’ good time across a broad set of topics for this week’s show. Phaedra shares her stories from the Serious Play Conference in Seattle earlier this week, highlighting how Ross Smith has created a building with personality to interact with the people who enter and use it. We playfully riff off of the idea that a water fountain may say “glad to be of service” and how other aspects of the building personality may interact with people, and how municipalities could interact with citizens, rewarding them for taking action to help maintain the city.

Porter highlights how crowdsourcing has been incorporated in charity concerts, and the team speculates how technologies such as Foursquare (and Foursquare mayors) might be engaged for validation of the crowdsourced contributions.

The panel then turns to the question of ethics that was started during last week’s show, and reaches a consensus that disclosure is key for organizations using games to achieve a goal beyond that of simple entertainment. If you play a game, and the outcome of that play may be in the furtherance of another goal, the player should know in advance what their play is helping to attain so they may make an informed decision to play or not. Porter, Phaedra and Michael speculate on what it would take to gain informed consent to build the Death Star, and what kind of spin would be needed to do so.

How does Michael spend his vacation? Well, playing games! He shares his experiences with a couple of iOS games — Sid Meier’s Pirates, Plants vs Zombies 2, Motor World, and Simpson’s Tapped Out. We have an intense discussion as to whether mummies are zombies before Porter calms Phaedra and Michael back down. A thread between Motor World and the Simpsons is that both use doughnuts as a scarce currency. It’s all about the doughnuts.

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Porter has been playing a game played by 30m people, growing by 60% every year, where you sorting through useless data points in order to win. Porter stumped Phaedra and Michael on this riddle – see if you can identify what game it is before Porter gives it away!

Selected show links

Serious Play Conference, Seattle August 19 – 22, 2013 — http://www.seriousplayconference.com
Ross Smith — http://www.linkedin.com/in/rosss42
Douglas Adams, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy — http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Hitchhiker%27s_Guide_to_the_Galaxy
Bill Gates, The Road Ahead — http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Road_Ahead_(Bill_Gates_book)
Nolan Bushnell — http://nolanbushnell.com
Gabe Zimmerman — http://www.gamification.co/gabe-zichermann/
Zoran Povović — http://homes.cs.washington.edu/~zoran/
Fold.it — http://fold.it/portal/
Dragonbox — http://dragonboxapp.com
ESP Game — http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ESP_Game
reCaptcha — http://www.google.com/recaptcha
World Community Grid — http://www.worldcommunitygrid.org
SETI@Home — http://setiathome.berkeley.edu
Waze — http://www.waze.com
Ender’s Game — http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ender%27s_Game
Sid Meier’s Pirates — https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/sid-meiers-pirates!/id499794670?mt=8
Plants vs Zombies 2 — https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/plants-vs.-zombies/id350642635?mt=8
Motor World — https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/motor-world-car-factory/id580666714?mt=8
Simpson’s Tapped Out — https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/the-simpsons-tapped-out/id497595276?mt=8
Techmo Bowl — http://tecmobowl.org

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Mummies, Microsoft, Motors and much, much more!

Listeners — you are in for quite the treat, with a jam-packed show from last Friday, filled to the brim with stories from Seattle, debates about whether mummies are zombies (or whether Egyptian zombies are mummies!), buildings that have come alive with Microsoft technology, games with pirates and automobile construction and oh, so much more. So much more, that it is taking even longer for our post-recording team to create the audio file you need to hear. When we say “it’s all about the doughnuts”, you will see exactly what we mean shortly.

We’re aiming for Tuesday, so stay tuned!

Episode 28 – Dating Flashmob

Michael and Phaedra express their love of martial arts, and how they don’t mind deceiving themselves in the least, by gaining cardio exercise benefits while doing something inherently fun.  “Dirt runs faster than I do” says Phaedra, thinking that zombies chasing her would be a great motivator to run even faster!  Talk about living in the undead moment!

 

Phaedra and Michael talk about a wide variety of alternate reality games (ARGs), from the recently started Google Niantic Project, to the stolen Audi (from 2006 if you can believe that!) to the MIT Game Lab’s Smithsonian game.

 

Then, the concept of applying games to dating is raised, and while you may think that Phaedra and Michael would start thinking about The Dating Game — no, they take it fully in the more modern way, with phones acting as agents and helping to arrange Dating Flashmobs!

 

Concluding this show with saving throws featuring videos from Rhett & Link, Michael and Phaedra agree that if you have a tough problem, call the bacon bot ARG and have a good laugh.  And a hot tip…  if you watch the video in full screen view, there are some hidden videos interviews to find.

 

Selected show notes links

 

TechCrunch article:  Are Games Really That Persuasive?  — http://techcrunch.com/2012/11/10/are-games-really-that-persuasive/

 

Quest Center — http://chquestcenter.com

American Ninja — http://wunc.org/tsot/archive/American_Ninja.mp3/view?searchterm=american%20ninja

 

Zombies, Run — https://www.zombiesrungame.com

 

Niantic Project — Day of Weirdness — http://www.nianticproject.com

 

That’s Niantic — not to be confused with Nyan Cat — http://www.nyan.cat

 

Requesting an invite via Ingress — http://www.ingress.com

 

Audi game — find the stolen Audi — http://kotaku.com/038191/stolen-audi-could-be-viral-marketing-game

 

MIT Game Lab Smithsonian ARG — http://www.fastcompany.com/1748531/mit-creates-one-video-game-youll-be-thrilled-see-your-kid-get-hooked

 

 

saving throws 

Michael M — rub some bacon on it video — http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wSReSGe200A

Phaedra — the breakup song — http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TyfNZs2dPto&feature=relmfu

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Episode 17 – Things are weirder than expected

Michael and Michael welcome a special guest this week – Dr. Ian Bogost“. Many of our listeners will know Ian from his work – Cow Clicker. We have a deep discussion on how games do and do not change the world, while focusing on the essence of games – seriously! Even though we have a few audio problems this week, it doesn’t stop Michael from talking about pranking!

Links we discuss:
Privates
From Cronkite to Colbert
Pride and Prejudice and Zombies
Cow Clicker
DrawSomething

Ian’s Books Mentioned during the show:
How to do things with Video Games
Alien Phenomenology, or What It’s Like to Be a Thing (Posthumanities)
Persuasive Games

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