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The Sunday Papers

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Sundays are for part two of learning how to dad. Isn’t it weird that it only takes two classes before you can be fully licensed to dad? There ought to be a longer montage where our dad-in-training buys sweaters and builds furniture and starts wearing a watch.

  • At Alphr, Thomas McMullan writes about how violence might be perceived differently in virtual reality.
  • “I’m expecting to see Fox News go a little wild with this at some point,” Dan Page, organiser of VR World Congress and VR consultant for Opposable Games, tells me. “Considering virtual reality has been used to treat PTSD sufferers by bringing them back to difficult and violent situations from their past, and to help people out with drug problems via repeated exposure to drug-filled virtual parties, there’s no denying that the sense of presence is convincing enough to have some effect on a user.”

  • Zam have updated their design! This is good news for browsing, and possibly bad news for old links. Still, it means you have a nicer way to read Robert Rath’s article on the birth of the flight simulator. And you can read Tim Stone’s article about the same here.
  • And all of it worked. The little wooden plane sat on a universal joint, with a set of electrically-powered pneumatic bellows able to tilt it this way and that. Pull the stick back and the nose would rise into a climb. Push the foot pedals and it would tilt as if banking. Link’s device could simulate pitch, yaw, and limited roll, responding much the way a real aircraft would. Soon, Link was using the apparatus to fill in the gaps of his training. By the early 1930s, Link and his brother were operating an after-hours flight school at the factory, charging students $85 for flying lessons in the Trainer.

  • I enjoyed this article about the man who made ET for Atari, often considered the worst game ever made.
  • “The CEO goes, ‘We need it for 1 September.’ That left five weeks to do it! Normally it’d be six to eight months to do a game, not five weeks.

    “Then he said, ‘Design the game and on Thursday morning, be at the airport and there will be a Learjet waiting to take you to see Spielberg.’

  • On the Failbetter blog, Olivia Wood writes up five things she’s learned as editor on interactive fiction.
  • I’m at a company where the producer can and does write. Where the tech team leave me fumbling for a dictionary pretending I can keep up. HR does art. Art does writing. Writers edit. Coders do UI and art and animation. The analyst designs. I’m not sure there’s anything the Creative Director can’t do (except art), and what he can do he does in several languages. And so on and so on. And that’s just the work skills – these people have extraordinarily diverse hobbies and talents.

  • Which you should chase down with this post by Emily Short on being edited.
  • Writing for interactivity, one often finds oneself building an interactive structure first — where do the branches go? How does the world state change? What happens to the stats? And it’s easy to write text that does the functional job of explaining those mechanics, but doesn’t accomplish much else. It helps having an editor who will go through and find those and send you back to rewrite them into something more interesting.

  • Brutal Doom inspires strong feelings, one way or another. Brendan Keogh argues that it is true to the spirit of the original Doom, revealing something more of its essence through what it adds.
  • A mod for the original Doom that adds kicking, mouse movement, iron sights, new lighting effects, and a whole range of other features, somehow Brutal Doom doesn’t feel like an attempt to make a ‘newer’ Doom. Instead, despite the addition of all this extra stuff, it feels like an amplification of a core Doom-ness. This is Doom made Doomier.

  • This is great: The Top Ten Saddest Statues In The Witness. A little spoilery, but not so that I minded. You can also read it via words here.
  • …he’s holding a book! Given the rest of the shit in this game, it’s highly likely that the book represents his Bad Qualities, or his False Beliefs, or his Many Burdens which he should be surrendering so he can be peaceful instead. The yelling lady is probably all like, “SURRENDER YOUR MANY BURDENS!!” and he’s probably like “NO, I NEED THESE IN MY LIFE TO DISTRACT ME FROM THE GREAT TURMOIL IN MY TROUBLED SOUL!!!” And he won’t take her hand! What a fool!

    Anyway, they’re pretty anguished!

  • Matt Lees’ Devil Daggers bit is good, as is Quinns Lees’ Disgaea 5 bit. Good bits.

Music this week is Jib Kidder’s Windowdipper, because it turned up on a playlist and because this music video made for a high school video production class is impressive.

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Who am I?

Graham Smith

Editor-in-chief

Graham is to blame for all this.

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