Friday, December 20, 2013

My First League Of Legends Ribbon

Not such a big deal probably, but still important for me:

More on the League of Legends honor system here.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Aardwolf MUD Anniversary

An important anniversary which took place on December 7th was the milestone reached by the Aardwolf MUD - on December 7th, 2013 it has been open to the public for the whole 17 years!

The abbreviation 'MUD' stands for 'Multi-User Dungeon' (or 'Dimension'). The first one to use this wording was Dr. Richard Bartle who actually is conventionally and deservedly known as the developer of the first ever MMORPG known as 'MUD1' (1983) which is still operating technically.  

Today it may sound like a surprise, but not always were online multiplayer role-playing games graphical. The first ones and many modern ones (!) are text-based, and this is the case of Aardwolf, which is still popular and successful.

A random Aardwolf screenshot with zMUD 7.21 client used. Some strings about the score of Riathen, my character, and what he sees around him.

Must-Read: 'Homo Ludens' By Johan Huizinga

This post partially reflects a random thought to open a new thread of 'Must-Read' in addition to 'Don't Miss'. 

It happened that I read my birthday lecture on the topic of computer games. I decided to start with the most important book on games ever written which is conventionally 'Homo Ludens' (literally, 'Man the Player') by Dutch historian and cultural theorist Johan Huizinga.

There is probably no single most important book on general theory of games except of this one, because Dr. Huizinga was the first to write a comprehensive treatise on the topic. Furthermore, he was the first representative of the 'official' academic establishment to recognize the natural urge to play games and to put it above all else.

I could not establish the copyright holder, but hope that he/she does not mind.
If not, please contact me.
The main idea of Dr. Huizinga was that that play is the most important, albeit not sufficient, condition of the culture itself.

December 7th, Birthdays And MUDs

I may seem a little bit late (due to work), but better late than never. I had a 30th anniversary on December 7th, but I was not the only one. The others were Aardwolf MUD and Johan Juizinga. Before I explain this in my further posts, let me share a photo from the beginning of the day.

Photo is made by one of my students. You know who you are,
and you have all your rights reserved.
This photo is made at the end of my lecture on Internet law. An evil mastermind from University administration fiddled with schedule and made me read a lecture on my birthday. Fortunately, it was my new favorite course and I used the opportunity to speak about computer games and virtual law. The translation of the presentation title into English would be 'Legal Issues of Online Games and Virtual Worlds'

My soul was stirred with the way my students congratulated me: they presented me a hand made birthday cake with "3" and "0" candles which you can see at the photo. 


Fear Not This Night

I do not give up the idea that the most epic song of all times is the main theme of Skyrim (especially when performed by Lindsey Stirling and Peter Hollens), and yet I think that I have finally found something not less epic. 

If you enjoy epic and/or videogame music, you will not think that those five minutes on 'Fear Not This Night' of Guild Wars 2 are wasted. And it is not a surprise that the composer is Jeremy Soule again.

Work Work

Both November and December turned out as extremely busy months for me. It was quite hard to find time motivation to write here after all the work I had to face. Oh, and I will have to face more work until the end of the month. So, no time to rest yet.

But in the meantime, I can share one simple thought that is quite often overlooked: the closer what you do at work is to your personal interests, the more productive and successful you become. This is what Aleister Crowley actually meant when formulating 'Do what thou wilt' imperative.

Starting from the moment I decided a little bit more than a year ago to accept the fact that I enjoy computer games, that I cannot reject them in favor of popular opionion and that I have an urge to infuse them into my professional life, I became happier and more efficient. Really.

Yet this still requires some amount of work. But when most of the work is done I expect to catch up with my intial blogging pace. 

By the way, did you play Warctaft 3? A memetic peons' reaction to a mouse click looks quite suitable for the occasion. ^^

Picture borrowed from liza shulyayeva and, of course, eventually Blizzard