Video games and learning: waste of time, or valuable tool?

  In his book What Video Games Have to Teach Us about Learning and Literacy, James Paul Gee challenges the assertion that video games are a “waste of time” by discussing the potential of good video games to encourage deeper forms of learning and enjoyment of players.  According to Gee the best video games echo […]

Two games: 1066 & Jamestown

“The 1066 Game gets you right in amongst the battles, allowing you to directly control every barrage of arrows, cavalry charge and defensive stand taken by your armies. Mini-games add to the tension of issuing commands, and a distinctive portrayal of medieval warfare is delivered by the striking visual and dramatic animation.” –So says one […]

Simplicity

There is an Einstein Quote, “if you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough.” The two games I researched were Cotton Millionaire and Argument Wars and both these games engage the player with simple versions of complex issues, economics and civics respectively, for the purpose of growing understanding. Cotton Millionaire It’s the […]

There’s an App for That, But Why?

Stories from Main Street and The Will to Adorn are projects created by the Smithsonian Institution that are very different in subject matter and in execution but which share the element of encouraging members of particular marginalized groups to contribute their own stories to the endeavors. Both projects have websites and accompanying apps for mobile […]

Dude, Where’s My History?: A Look at Historical Mapping Interfaces

The advent of digital technology allowed a greater exchange of knowledge and ideas to enter homes at an astonishing new level. This change brought information and services straight to users that before may have required someone to actually leave their home to seek it. The advancement of mobile computing technology furthered the trend of information coming […]

Mobile Interface Theory: New Frontiers for Art Projects & Historical Learning

Jason Farman, in his book Mobile Interface Theory: Embodied Space and Locative Media (2012), explores how mobile media has changed / is changing how people interact with their worlds. Farman first establishes a theoretical framework of embodiment and sensory-inscription—which I interpret respectively (and simplistically) as space in direct relation to our lived experience and how […]

Exploring a New Frontier: Cultural Institutions and Digital Space

When I worked at the Mosaic Templars Cultural Center, an African American history museum in Little Rock, Arkansas, my favorite artifact to point out in our permanent exhibit was a piece of wall reading “White” and “Colored” that once resided over the water fountain of a public building in the city. Often visitors found this […]

Perhaps I Need to Rethink My Day Job Transcribing Oral History….

In the HiPSTAS (High Performance Sound Technologies for Analysis and Scholarship) grant proposal, the authors express the hope that participants in their program “will understand better how to ‘imagine what they don’t know.’” The readings for this week make clear that the practice of oral history could be and probably should be so much more […]