Toy Fair Impressions

Just some quick notes while the experience is fresh in my head:

The Chronicle: 2/9/2007: Caught in the Network

The Chronicle: 2/9/2007: Caught in the Network - Very interesting development here with academics using Tor, software created for keeping your Internet usage private. A professor at Bowling Green, who teaches about the social implications of authorities censoring Net usage, was asked not only to stop using Tor but to not teach his students about it. Apparently, the university's IT policy doesn't have an entry for irony. [My]

Game Prototyping

Welcome to the Game Prototyping Workshop!

Making a game can be easier than you think. With a few simple concepts, you can start to piece together a prototype, in any language, that can help you test your mechanics, sketch out an interface, or examine different possibilities for artwork. In this workshop, we'll use Python to:

  • Build the "main loop"
  • Get input from the user
  • Process the rules of the game
  • Display the result on screen as graphics

all by making a simple version of Space Invaders! In one short evening!

Let's get started!

New Inkscape!

My favorite vector editor, Inkscape, has a new version available. Sweet Gaussian blurring, nice new path effects, interesting additions to their calligraphy tool. I haven't had a chance to try out all the new features, but it looks like a pretty good update. And the version after this is supposed to start animation support for SVG! Wicked!

Imitating A Scanner Darkly | Illustrator Techniques

"Scanner"-Style Self Portrait

Imitating A Scanner Darkly | Illustrator Techniques - [My]
The set of basic design skills is an area I've been playing catch up on, so it's always interesting for me to see how various techniques produce effects that interest me. This includes the rotoscoping tricks put in place with "A Scanner Darkly."

The article points out some obvious procedures that nevertheless eluded me. I had tried, before this, to cheat and use software that pulls out color areas and converts them to SVG paths.

Why We Should Fear YouTube

Fresh on the heels of the Boston PD detonating LED displays of Err of ATHF, as well as me listening to Brewster Kahle's talk on information, I notice that the videos of the project, made by the "guerrilla" marketers who dropped these projects onto major cities, have been removed from YouTube "by the user."

Yahoo, Regulation, and Constraints

Slashdot | Why You & Yahoo Should Like This Human Rights Law - [My] This is a pretty good article, not only for the human-rights issue, but for government regulation in general. I've blogged about this in the past. This is one of those frequently occurring cases where not only does an industry need regulation, in some ways, it may want it. Since any one company can't act ethically, because of its shareholder obligations, regulating the entire industry allows the "good" companies to do the right things, as well as making the others toe the line.

Response to Brewster Kahle

I listened to the talk given by Brewster Kahle, a personal hero of mine. I've long been a fan of his work at the Internet Archive. I've made a lot of use of the Open-Source movie area and the Prelinger Archive, two of the projects he mentions in the talk.

A theme he keeps coming back to is the Library of Alexandria. We're going through a period where we could have a tragedy on the scale of that great burning. Kahle covers the technical, legal, and moral requirements that we must fulfill to avoid this catastrophe.

Google Patents

Google Patents - [My] I've recently been leery of both Google and patents, but this search area is pretty great, especially if you're like me and love old mechanical drawings. Check out the mechanical man!

Human Nature According To Malcolm Gladwell

I'm listening to Malcolm Gladwell's talk at Pop!Tech. I'm blogging in real time as I listen, so this is straight from my head to the blog.

A chair maker decided to use mesh that allowed the chair to breath and yet does not pinch, as well as a bunch of other cool innovations. (I had one of these at my previous job--they're great!)

Anyway, the chair has to be comfortable and look good. It was very comfortable--an 8 out of 10. Still people didn't like the way it looked--in fact they thought it was ugly. Market testing, for this aspect, was abysmal! Even designers weren't keen on it. People said it looked like lawn furniture!


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Copyright Mike Edwards 2006-2009. All content available under the Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike license, unless otherwise noted.

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