Category Archives: Review

“High Speed Rail: The Board Game” Review: The Nonviolent Utopian Interactive Senate Simulation

Board Games do not attract me by default. The closest I have come to enjoying board games is playing Risk, single player on my phone, and reading a lot about Nomic. But when Alfred Twu speaks, I listen, so if when announced his own fresh take on board gaming my ears piqued and my credit card edged ever so slightly out of my pocket. High Speed Rail: The Board Game emerged from High Speed Rail: The Map, of Guardian Fame. Neither the map or game, have rooted in any material claim to reality, but most things that inflame your imagination don’t.… Read the rest

Book Review: 23rd Century Romance

23rd Century Romance by Jake Hartnell : CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform: 202 pages. Paperback ($9), ePub and PDF (Free). http://23rdcenturyromance.com/. ISBN: 978-1492134237

Imagine a human on Alpha Centauri such that physics dictates that you can never physically be in the same time or space as this human. Now add the twist, that you have a magical instant messenger or Skype connection with that human. Would you consider having a (not necessarily monogamous) relationship with that person? That is the “Alpha Centauri relationship” thought experiment – would you consider having an entirely online having boyfriend or girlfriend? Some would say that despite the lack of physical connection, a meaningful psychological one could still be had, and that Alpha Centauri relationship could be part of a larger mosiac of relationships which could together be completely fufilling, if we do not require partner exclusivity.… Read the rest

Book Review: Working with MediaWiki

Working with MediaWiki by Yaron Koren : WikiWorks Press: 227 pages. Paperback ($35), ePub ($25), and PDF ($20). http://workingwithmediawiki.com/ .  ISBN: 978-0615720302.

Working With MediaWiki Cover
Working With MediaWiki Cover

Working with MediaWiki is the latest MediaWiki (MW) book to be released since March 2010, when MW1.15 was current (today in November 2012 Wikipedia uses 1.21). The text is split into two logical and spiritual halves. The first is a from-scratch guide to setting up and tuning MediaWiki in the style of the classical wiki we are used to seeing on the web today. That treatment covers best practices, as well as where two put the right type of brackets for the impatient coder.… Read the rest

Lessons from Songles

On the last page of Jaron Lanier’s You Are Not A Gadget: A Manifesto,typically where you expect some encompassing conclusion, you will receive the baffling premonition of, “I imagine a virtual saxophone-like instrument in virtual reality with which I can improvise both golden tarantulas and a bucket with all the red things. If I knew how to build it now, I would, but I don’t.”

 

Which if you have read all the pages as well as the last one, in true order, you will find to be fitting conclusion. For the manifesto is much more a poorly meshed attempt to collect his small findings, gigs, opinions and brainstorms since his day prototyping Virtual Reality in the 80s.… Read the rest