Listen to Songs, Digital Stories and Gavin's Film Music
America 3000 Trailer
"It is 900 years after the Great Nuke and the roles of women have changed dramatically, much to the displeasure of men and mutants."
"Night Flight" by GlobalMantra
Tuesday, August 07, 2007
My research into MMORPGs and Learning - Introduction
My research into MMORPGs and learning has finally got underway.The plan was originally to use World of Warcraft as the vehicle for a "virtual ethnology", to quote Constance Steinkuhler. However, getting hold of the game to install for seven players, and then organising the subscription for them proved to be too much of a barrier. We decided to go with a very similar MMORPG called Rappelz. which is free. More about that shortly.
Also, I have just started a new job at William Colenso College, in Napier NZ, and although I got a surprisingly good level of interest from the technician and HOD ICT, and fantastic support from the principal and year 9 curriculum director, the fact that the school ICT infrastructure had been set up to prevent exactly what I was proposing, in the end was too much. The download of the client in itself was 1.6 Gigabytes, and we couldn't get it to run on the PCs in the lab we tried it in, it seems the video cards weren't up to it. However I plan to interview them both for their ideas on what the barriers are and would be in the average school and include that in my study as well. The ideal situation would be to play the game in the school environment as one of my ideas is that if we can include the games culture in our learning culture and blend them we might get the best of both worlds not the worst! Also the message is that school can be an exciting and engaging place to be, where youth culture and media literacy is embraced rather than alienated.
Anyway the outcome was that we decided to go to a local Internet cafe/online gaming place that is very close to the school. The mother/baby learning unit agreed to lend me their van in the middle of the day and I negotiated 5 sessions with the cafe for $50 all up, i.e. $10 per session for all seven players, which is pretty good. The owner was king enough to install the game on all seven PCs, and also some software for real time screen video capture, which is fantastic - I could record each session with a video camera set up in the room to capture the real time dialogue and conversations and also reference that with the real time video screen capture. The program records the session and saves it as a .avi file.
I am also interviewing each student with a list of questions about video games and learning, what they expect, whether they think video games have a place in learning etc. This will hopefully give me the triangulation I need. My plan is to synchronize the 2 videos and use a coding system to find evidence for socio cultural or high level learning/21st century competencies etc having just finished James Paul Gees book "What video games have to teach us about learning and literacy", I am hoping to develop a set set of categorories that I can use to explore my data for evidence.
Kate, the year 9 Curriculum Director has selected 6 students from 2 year 9 classes. The school is a bit different in that they are using home group classes with one teacher in the junior school, although the classes do have specialised sessions for ICT and technology. She describes this group as "the goths". Having met them, they don't particularly seems that Gothic, but they are perhaps the more "arty" or "alternative" or maybe "geeky" kids. Anyway they are a wonderful group and out of the six, two are girls, so I will have some interesting gender issues to examine as well, it will be interesting to see what I find!! Here goes...
How Creativity is being strangled by the Law - Lawrence Lessig
This is Lawrence Lessig's TED presentation, On "How creativity is being strangled by the law." Lawrence Lessig is Professor of Law at Stanford law school and founder of the Creative Commons Movement. See Lessig.org
Information revolution - Automaton Overture by GlobalMantra
This music is a piece from the multimedia show "Automaton". I composed the music, for which I won the Chapman Tripp Sound Designer of the Year Award. I made this video for fun, I hope you like it.
Find more videos like this on Classroom 2.0
Find more videos like this on Classroom 2.0
Gavin's Remix on Remix!
This is my version of what Larry Lessig had to say about copyright and the internet, as well ideas about Remix Culture and the theories of Eisenstein. Acknowledgements to Mike Jones, Don Tapscott, Lev Manovich & Larry Lessig.
Shift Happens - Gavin's Remix
This video is actually my remix video made from a slideshow on slideshare.net originally created by Karl Fisch, acknowledgement goes to "Elephant (Dub Mix)" brilliant music by Spiral System from Zen Connection 4, see http://www.zenconnection.com.au/ Since he showed this presentation to a group of students in 2006, this has been viewed in various forms by over 5 million people.
Ray Kurzweil on "I've got a Secret" 1963
Ray Kurzweil appeared on this TV show as a very young man in 1963. His secret was that the piano piece he played had been composed by his computer. Even in 1963, he was 30 years ahead of his time! He went on to invent the first digital synthesizer with Stevie Wonder in the early 1980's.