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Saturday, 15 November 2008

Being a Gamer

I was in Game the other day, and was struck by how open and accessible, and indeed 'normal' gaming has become to society. The launch and huge success of systems like the Wii, DS and PSP have made gaming open to everyone. The Playstation, xBox and PC are no longer the sole haunts of the gaming elite, and dare I say it, geek-dom.

My mum's other half is a recent player of the nintendo DS, and it was while looking at the game library for gift ideas that I looked to my brother and said, "do you feel embaressed looking at the DS section?" And yes, like me he does! I feel I should be holding a sign proclaiming "I am looking for a present! I am a true gamer, I was there with the BBC, the master system and the amiga!" I feel the need to distance myself from the so-called "next-gen gamers" who I feel are not gamers at all!! I grem up gaming, and will always love it.

Similarly, when I am buying games like the Sims 2 and Singstar: Abba I feel like I should confide in the sales assistant that I actually love blowing the heads off monsters in Unreal Tournament, getting scared to deal in Alien VS Predator and role playing in modern classics like Oblivion. I don't want to be steriotyped as a next gen gamer who oly plays "girly" games and squeels at the sight of blood (althugh in RL, that would happen!)

It's not that I feel judged when I buy games, I'm glad that everyone has suddenly realised what a great hobby it is! But sometimes I look around at the games and sigh *ah, mainstream*, and I must admit, dodging prams and screaming kids never used to be a problem in game stores in the 90's. Then, there was recognition of us true gamers!!

Oh well. We'll see who is still gaming in 20 years time!

In the meantime, I'm going to go and rock out to Singstar: Abba, and unleash my girly gamer side upon the world...But I'll be avoiding the rads in Fallout 3 tomorrow ;)

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Tuesday, 8 July 2008

Love Rats and Doormats

The title for this blog is shamelessly stolen from a magazine article in Psychologies (linked in title) that I want to comment on today. The article (by Amelia Hill) was discussing the obsession behind famous infidelities.

The most interesting point in the article came near the end, where modern celebrity gossip and drama functioned like a morality play or Greek tragedy. Having studied Greek tragedy you can see why I was interested!

In a way, I can see how that might be. Some people have "Celebrity Worship Syndrome" (that's a quote from the article!) and read everything and anything about their hero's, but anything that ever makes the news is how celebrities are in the wrong, or have fallen, whereas Greek tragedy always some kind of GOOD moral message.

I have always found celebrity worship odd, I don't care who is staring in a film, if it looks good I'll go see it, if it looks rubbish I wont - I don't care who is in ok. Ok, I have a small soft spot for Johnny Depp - sue me :P Reality shows like Big Brother are just as bad.

Anyway, the article was quite interesting, and the magazine is good for those of us who don't want to spend money of celeb. gossip and pages of "fashion" that you would never. ever. wear. I recommend the mag. as a good read!

Here are some intersting quotes from the article:

A publicly scorned woman might arouse our sympathy at first, but once she decides to stand by her unfaithful partner, our support is crowded out other emotions. At best, there's pity...at worst, vitriol and scorn.


One of the most bizarre was how some Americans view Clinton:

How can a woman such as Hillary Clinton lead a contry when she can't 'control' her husband?


How idiotic is this sentence, let alone what it implies?! Gah!

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Tuesday, 16 October 2007

Facebook-Friend Wheel

I was perusing some profiles on facebook, and came across this friend wheel thingy. it looks pretty nd stuff, so I thought I'd try it out (link to mine in title). I was quite impressed with the results, it clearly shows my friendship, and I even learnt that some friends are friends with others of my friends, where I would otherwise have said it was impossible that they knew each other!

I found my wheel fairly interesting...it is comprised of two major groups, within which is high interactivity and many people, and there are some smaller groupings, that are very insular:

Major groups (most extrovert):
1. School/college friends (cyan/light green coloured lines)
2. Salvation Army people (yellow/orange coloured lines)

Minor groups (very insula):
1. UCL/NHM people (dark blue/dark purple lines)
2. B'ham uni friends (bright pink)
3. Internet friends (red - due east from Neill to Fredrick)
4. London friends not course related (red, east, Malte to Jack)

Random group:
1. Mid purple, NNE section

The random collection is very wierd, and wonder if they are so placed because they have no particular network they belong too.

I find it grouped them all very accuratly, and was quite impressed with the results. It also makes me look a whole lot more sociable than I actually am!! ^_^

Of course, it really could just be a product of how many people I know in various groups, but the fact that quite a few lines cross the circle is interesting. Or maybe I'm just looking for relationships that aren't there :P

What's curious is that I then went to look at other friends who had a friend wheel to see various results. Now, some wheels were very simple with few crossing lines. Seemingly this shows that they have various friendship groups, and they don't interact much. On the other hand, one of my other friends had NO blank space in the middle at all, with crossing lines EVERYWHERE. At first I was thinking "woah, this guy has friends everywhere" but then I realised that they were all probably from the same environment, such as work or uni for example. Fair enough, but is it as complex at is looks?

Maybe people who have isolated segments of connecting lines balance more friendship groups, or maybe they don't mix in different groups or something.

For some reason, I think there is an interesting study of sociology there somewhere, I just can't grasp it! Hehe.

That's my randomness for the day ^_^

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Wednesday, 11 July 2007

The Impact of Society?

A friend of mine at work let me to question the impact of society, or perhaps more accurately our peers, upon our lives. Of course this is a very wide subject, but I am thinking of it from on online sense.

The phenomenon that is Facebook has been in the news quite a lot recently (you may have to check the more obscure pages), and while they often praise the capacities of the website, they will often fall back to the "how much info do I want people to see about me?" or "I don't want them to see x photo of me - what will they think?!"

Do we really care about what people think of us so much that we are unwilling to let certain media images/videos or facts be displayed? If there is a funny and/or embarrassing image of me on Facebook - I see it, think "Oh no!" and then laugh, and more often than not, tag myself. (For those unfamiliar with Facebook this allows the image to seen via my profile under "images of me").

The way I see it, that image, or any image, is a snap shot of my life. It is a unique portrayal of ME. And I'm proud of me. Besides, if I'm stupid enough to get myself photographed when I'm so drunk I fell off a bench for example, then surely I deserve everything I get ;)

Laugh or hide, we all deal with it in our own ways, but I for one would rather take life with a pinch of salt and a smile on my face :)

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