July 26, 2010

One-Line C64 BASIC Music

from Post Position
by @ 10:10 am

Local sound artist/electronic musician Keith Fullerton Whitman released an extraordinary piece on the b-side of his November 2009 cassette hallicrafters, inc. The piece is called 10 poke 54272+int(rnd(1)*25),int(rnd(1)*256) : goto 10 and is 18 minutes of sound produced by a Commodore 64 emulator running the BASIC program that is the title of the piece.

The memory locations beginning at 54272 are mapped on the Commodore 64 to the registers of the SID (Sound Interface Device). By POKEing random values into them, the SID, although it is a musical chip, is stimulated to produce sounds in what probably seems like a non-musical way: based on the effect of register settings and the sequence produced by the system’s random number generator, a polynomial counter.

July 25, 2010

New Gameshelf Video on IF

from Post Position
by @ 12:56 pm

Jason MacIntosh at The Gameshelf has just posted a great 10-minute video introducing interactive fiction, with specific discussion of some good games to begin playing. I’m there offering some unconventional ideas about why it’s interesting for those new to IF to start off by playing complex, difficult games.

July 24, 2010

Space Cow Clicker

Command your space bovine!

Command your space bovine!

In space, social interactions are sparse. Space Cow Clicker overcomes this problem. In this parody of a satire, you command a battlecruiser (Space Cow) in an epic battle  to click enemy units. The first player to click all of the opponent forces wins: To click is natural, to command is Bovine!

July 21, 2010

Computational Creativity: ICCC-11 CFP

from Post Position
by @ 4:29 pm

A great event will be taking place in Mexico City at the end of April, one that is sure to help us connect computing and creativity in new ways. I’m helping to organize ICCC-11 and am planning to be there. I hope some of you will submit to this conference, and that I’ll see some of you there. -Nick

2nd International Conference on Computational Creativity

April 27-29, 2011
Mexico City, Mexico

Original contributions are solicited in all areas related to Computational Creativity, including but not limited to:

  1. computational paradigms for understanding creativity, including heuristic search, analogical and meta-level reasoning, and re-representation;

July 12, 2010


from tiltfactor
by @ 8:05 pm

Tiltfactor Logo with a crazy pinball Machine

device design by Ed Flanagan

We’re taking a moment to reflect on the lab’s move to Dartmouth. First, we found some press to share if you’d like to chart our progress with us! In an upcoming post, we’ll review all of our new games. It has been a lot of fun setting up camp at Dartmouth and we’re thankful for the support and enthusiasm around us. Thanks to colleagues near and far, friends, advisory board, the administration at our home institution, our emerging program, staff, interns, and STUDENTS!
Go Tilt!

+ + +

Ken Perlin Talk at UCSC

“Acting for embodied interactive narrative”

Ken Perlin, NYU

Date: July 16th, 2010
Time: 1:15pm
Place: Engineering 2, Room 192

This lecture is free and open to the public, but visitors should purchase a parking pass from the visitor kiosk at the main entrance. There they can also provide a map showing the best parking for the School of Engineering.


The transition from game play to emotionally believable embodied interactive protagonist-driven narrative requires something more radical than better animation blending or motion capture.  It requires rethinking the process of virtual acting from the ground up.  We must abandon linear thinking altogether and create virtual actors that can move, emote, interact and respond in real time with plausible expression, emotion and body language.

July 11, 2010

Computers don’t auto-educate

from tiltfactor
by @ 4:38 pm

There have been a variety of recent news reports on the relationship between computer ownership and education patterns around the world. The NY Times article from 9 July 2010, Computers at Home: Educational Hope vs. Teenage Reality, is one of the many articles discussing the recent studies by economists about class, income, computers, and academic achievement. Duke researchers just released a National Bureau of Economic Research working paper called “Scaling the Digital Divide.” It examined the introduction of broadband internet service from 2000-2005 in North Carolina. Their study examined the simultaneous effects on middle school testing scores in that period. Unfortunately, there were lower math scores as broadband was introduced, an after several broadband providers appeared to serve an area, there was a decrease in reading scores.

The study ultimately suggests that home computers and Internet access may have a negative effect for those already poor, and can contribute to widening academic achievement gaps between groups. Indeed, a study with middle schoolers and free laptops in Texas noted “there was no evidence linking technology immersion with student self-directed learning or their general satisfaction with schoolwork.”

July 7, 2010

Metadata Investigation, continuing

from tiltfactor
by @ 7:56 pm

What happens to game designers when they don’t know the “right” answers?

This is especially important in situations where designers need to somehow verify crowdsourcing data. What data can we obtain with the resources we have?

Well, what do we have?

1) In the case of our Metadata Games project for Archives, we have a huge collection of photographs.

2) Users who might want to interact with these photographs, and the user accounts they create.

3) The competitive relationships between players that might be fostered within our games.

July 3, 2010

Try Grow-A-Game online!

from tiltfactor
by @ 11:06 am

Try our online version of the Grow-A-Game© cards!

We are currently waiting for the arrival of our new editions of Grow-A-Game, so our ordering area is offline for the moment until they are in.

July 2, 2010

Recaps from FDG 2010

About 2 weeks ago, at Asilomar in Pacific Grove, CA for Foundations of Digital Games Conference, professionals gathered to present academic efforts in “all areas of research and education involving games, game technologies, gameplay and game design. The goal of the conference is the advancement of the study of digital games, including new game technologies, capabilities, designs, applications, educational uses, and modes of play.”

In case you missed it (and other than what you’d find in the conference proceedings), we shared every meal, played several games of poker, and sang show tunes as Jesper Juul played the piano (for not one but) two nights in a row. I have to admit that I’m lucky enough to both love what I do and all those in my professional family.

July 1, 2010

EISBot Critic Appears on The Colbert Report

In April, I blogged about adding chat capabilities to EISBot, with the goal of achieving the Eliza effect in StarCraft.  Nicholas Carr responded to my post, criticizing my approach:

The sure way to distinguish the computer’s messages from the human’s is to recognize that the computer has a rather sentimental attachment to the apostrophe and the comma.

Powered by WordPress