No, not photographs. We’re starting to pick up speed on Headshots from the Heart. It’s an internet telethon where I and three others will play Borderlands for twenty-four hours, all on a web cast. There’ll be prizes, giveaways, auctions, challenges, and more! We’re doing it for Child’s Play, a charity which purchases games and toys for children’s hospitals. On May 26th and 27th you can tune in and donate. More details are available on our site.

Headshots from the Heart

I’ve played a lot of Borderlands since it came out, and spent a lot of time in its co-operative mode, playing with friends who’d moved away. The unique art style, entertaining gameplay, and interesting mechanics kept the game vibrant and fun, and led to many hours of goofing around and shooting Jason Voorhees lookalikes in space scrapyards. Unlike other games, it was easy to pick up and put down, there was no commitment to playing out a map, a dungeon, or anything else. We could play as long as we had time.

Fast forward a year, and I heard about Desert Bus for Hope, a great event run by Loading Ready Run, a sketch comedy group based in BC (That link is dangerous. With over 900 videos, their site can swallow quite a bit of your time). Their strategy was to play for days, turning it into an endurance challenge. I mentioned, jokingly, that we should do something similar with Borderlands, only over a shorter period of time. To keep it challenging, we’d get people to donate on a per headshot basis. Headshots are often a mark of gamer pride, and viewed as the height of skill. A response I wasn’t expecting was “We should do that.” That was back in June, and it’s been slow going. None of us have ever done anything like this before, so we’ve been learning what we can and can’t do, testing our tech, and trying to gather sponsors in order to do auctions and have giveaways, trying to keep our space as vibrant and interesting as possible. The folks at Child’s Play and Loading Ready Run have been a great help. We’re really looking forward to it, and I encourage you to donate, sponsor, or get involved in another way. Child’s Play does good work.

This week was also the 50th anniversary of the University of Waterloo Philosophy Department, which we celebrated with a pair of talks by James Conant, a prominent philosopher of just about everything, as well as a reception which gathered a number of our retired professors, including Jim Horne, who served in the philosophy department when it was first founded. It had never really been clear to me before the kind of tradition I was part of not simply in philosophy, but at Waterloo, and the kinds of stories which remain in the department, some of them wonderful, and some of them haunting. I won’t recount any of them here, but it left an impression in a manner similar to the conference. The rest of my week has been filled with research and writing, which I’m about to return to. There’s a lot of things coming due soon, and I’ve got to stay on top of them.

TPK this week finished off my series on making a character with “How to Contribute Meaningfully“, and the wiki update detailed the society of the Kalashtari, who once ruled Temir. Concept Crucible ┬ástarted with a post on the most important feeling, and Saturday’s lesson in logic introduced two new rules of inference, Addition and Conjunction.

Paper Progress:

  • Obligations of Authenticity in Social Media: Compiling Reading List
  • Power Relations and Ethics in Multi-level Games: Compiling Reading List
  • Applied Stakeholder Ethics: Compiling Reading List

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