Author Archives: David J Edery

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The Washington Post writes about Madden’s tremendous impact on the NFL and its fans. No longer surprising, but always fun to see a concrete example of the power of games in full effect. Relatedly, a very funny (but fake) letter … Continue reading

50mb Vs 500mb

As you may have read, Sony is trumpeting the fact that PS3 game downloads will have a 500mb size restriction, ten times the current limit for XBLA games. This is effectively no different from Sony’s claims that blu-ray makes the PS3 superior to the Xbox 360 in general. More megabytes == higher quality.

Right.

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Using Games to Tap Collective Intelligence (Part 2)

It’s taken a while, but I want to return to my article on using games to tap the wisdom of crowds. First and foremost, I’d like to bring attention to the writings of Raph Koster. Raph informed me that he’s been thinking about this idea as well for quite some time now. However, Raph one-upped me: he found someone who actually tested the theory! From Raph’s blog:

What [Byron Reeves] showed was a mockup of a Star Wars Galaxies medical screen, displaying real medical imagery. Players were challenged to advance as doctors by diagnosing the cancers displayed, in an effort to capture the wisdom of crowds. The result? A typical gamer was found to be able to diagnose accurately at 60% of the rate of a trained pathologist. Pile 30 gamers on top of one another, and the averaged result is equivalent to that of a pathologist — with a total investment of around 60-100 hours per player.

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Via Publishing 2.0, news of digg.com-related controversy. The popular news site, in an effort to stifle abuse, now attempts to neutralize “voting blocks”, which has apparently decreased the influence of some of the site’s more popular users. Something worth following … Continue reading

Scheduled Bonuses vs. Other Morale Boosters

I’m subscribed to a producers’ mail list that recently hosted a discussion about the pros and cons of milestone-related monetary bonuses for employees. Perhaps unsurprisingly, there were a broad variety of opinions. I thought it might be interesting to share some quotes (plus my own thoughts, of course!)

There appeared to be consensus on the long-term ineffectivness of this type of bonus. A number of well-known research studies [example] have had similar conclusions. All the more interesting, then, that this form of compensation remains widely in-use (not just in the video game industry, but many others as well.) Comments from the list:

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Internet communities (such as YouTube and MySpace) propel Weird Al Yankovic to his first top 10 album in 30 years. This is my new favorite example of the power of online, grassroots buzz. :-) Interesting GoPets Interview. Good quote: “In … Continue reading

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The first iteration of the GDC 2007 schedule was just announced, and it looks like I’m on it (twice!) Check it out.  :-) PC Gaming in an Age of Connected Consoles Speaker: David Edery (Worldwide Games Portfolio Planner, Xbox Live … Continue reading

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Retro gaming continues its resurgence; Konami’s classics are headed to the Nintendo DS. In Second Life, user-created content is trouncing corporate-created content (popularity-wise). Another set of console sales predictions (this time by IDG). IMO, the picture will be a heck … Continue reading

Joys of Homeownership

I really wanted to write another article about games and the wisdom of crowds this weekend. Instead, I spent some time hacking the limbs off overgrown trees in my otherwise spectacular backyard, which I just acquired (along with the house in front of the backyard.) The house is nice, too, but I can’t do anything with it until the floors are ripped up to accommodate my wife’s taste in hardwood, and the walls are painted to obscure the previous owner’s fascination with florescent green and blue stripes. (To be fair, they had kids, which I’m told can trigger natural but horrific lapses in aesthetic judgment. It’s all part of the same biological mechanism that prevents parents from realizing that their children are ugly, singing woefully off-key, and/or kicking the back of my chair during a movie.)

But I digress. My backyard rocks (see the photo below for indisputable proof). My article on the wisdom of crowds, on the other hand, does not rock, because it does not exist, and probably will not exist until I have imposed my will to a sufficient extent upon the hapless vegetation that inhabits my new domain. [Insert maniacal cackle here.]

I am considering the purchase of more power tools. Life is good.

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A perspective on the strength of Chinese local casual game platforms, and the variations in consumer demand. In2Games develops a “more accurate” and “universal” (i.e. USB) motion-sensitive game controller. Very interesting, but probably futile unless a major platform or publisher … Continue reading