- Artifacts: An Archaeologist's Year in Silicon Valley
An archaeologist explores the material culture of Silicon Valley.
- The Games Design Reader - A Rules of Play Anthology
Classic and cutting-edge writings on games, spanning nearly 50 years of game analysis and criticism, by game designers, game journalists, game fans, folklorists, sociologists, and media theorists.
The Game Design Reader is a one-of-a-kind collection on game design and criticism, from classic scholarly essays to cutting-edge case studies. A companion work to Katie Salen and Eric Zimmerman's textbook Rules of Play: Game Design Fundamentals, The Game Design Reader is a classroom sourcebook, a reference for working game developers, and a great read for game fans and players.
Thirty-two essays by game designers, game critics, game fans, philosophers, anthropologists, media theorists, and others consider fundamental questions: What are games and how are they designed? How do games interact with culture at large? What critical approaches can game designers take to create game stories, game spaces, game communities, and new forms of play?
Salen and Zimmerman have collected seminal writings that span 50 years to offer a stunning array of perspectives. Game journalists express the rhythms of game play, sociologists tackle topics such as role-playing in vast virtual worlds, players rant and rave, and game designers describe the sweat and tears of bringing a game to market. Each text acts as a springboard for discussion, a potential class assignment, and a source of inspiration. The book is organized around fourteen topics, from The Player Experience to The Game Design Process, from Games and Narrative to Cultural Representation. Each topic, introduced with a short essay by Salen and Zimmerman, covers ideas and research fundamental to the study of games, and points to relevant texts within the Reader. Visual essays between book sections act as counterpoint to the writings.
Like Rules of Play, The Game Design Reader is an intelligent and playful book. An invaluable resource for professionals and a unique introduction for those new to the field, The Game Design Reader is essential reading for anyone who takes games seriously.
- Working Minds - A Practioner′s Guide to Cognitive Task Analysis
How to collect data about cognitive processes and events, how to analyze CTA findings, and how to communicate them effectively: a handbook for managers, trainers, systems analysts, market researchers, health professionals, and others.
Cognitive Task Analysis (CTA) helps researchers understand how cognitive skills and strategies make it possible for people to act effectively and get things done. CTA can yield information people need--employers faced with personnel issues, market researchers who want to understand the thought processes of consumers, trainers and others who design instructional systems, health care professionals who want to apply lessons learned from errors and accidents, systems analysts developing user specifications, and many other professionals. CTA can show what makes the workplace work--and what keeps it from working as well as it might.
Working Minds is a true handbook, offering a set of tools for doing CTA: methods for collecting data about cognitive processes and events, analyzing them, and communicating them effectively. It covers both the why and the how of CTA methods, providing examples, guidance, and stories from the authors' own experiences as CTA practitioners. Because effective use of CTA depends on some conceptual grounding in cognitive theory and research--on knowing what a cognitive perspective can offer--the book also offers an overview of current research on cognition.
The book provides detailed guidance for planning and carrying out CTA, with chapters on capturing knowledge and capturing the way people reason. It discusses studying cognition in real-world settings and the challenges of rapidly changing technology. And it describes key issues in applying CTA findings in a variety of fields. Working Minds makes the methodology of CTA accessible and the skills involved attainable.
- Spaces Speak, Are You Listening? - Experiencing Aural Architecture
How we experience space by listening: the concepts of aural architecture, with examples ranging from Gothic cathedrals to surround sound home theater.
We experience spaces not only by seeing but also by listening. We can navigate a room in the dark, and hear the emptiness of a house without furniture. Our experience of music in a concert hall depends on whether we sit in the front row or under the balcony. The unique acoustics of religious spaces acquire symbolic meaning. Social relationships are strongly influenced by the way that space changes sound. In Spaces Speak, Are You Listening?, Barry Blesser and Linda-Ruth Salter examine auditory spatial awareness: experiencing space by attentive listening. Every environment has an aural architecture.The audible attributes of physical space have always contributed to the fabric of human culture, as demonstrated by prehistoric multimedia cave paintings, classical Greek open-air theaters, Gothic cathedrals, acoustic geography of French villages, modern music reproduction, and virtual spaces in home theaters. Auditory spatial awareness is a prism that reveals a culture's attitudes toward hearing and space. Some listeners can learn to see objects with their ears, but even without training, we can all hear spatial geometry such as an open door or low ceiling.
Integrating contributions from a wide range of disciplines--including architecture, music, acoustics, evolution, anthropology, cognitive psychology, audio engineering, and many others--Spaces Speak, Are You Listening? establishes the concepts and language of aural architecture. These concepts provide an interdisciplinary guide for anyone interested in gaining a better understanding of how space enhances our well-being. Aural architecture is not the exclusive domain of specialists. Accidentally or intentionally, we all function as aural architects.
- ReThinking a Lot - The Design and Culture of Parking
Parking lots as landscapes ripe for transformation: new uses for urban spaces traditionally considered banal and devoid of culture.
There are an estimated 600,000,000 passenger cars in the world, and that number is increasing every day. So too is Earth's supply of parking spaces. In some cities, parking lots cover more than one-third of the metropolitan footprint. It's official: we have paved paradise and put up a parking lot. In ReThinking a Lot, Eran Ben-Joseph shares a different vision for parking's future. Parking lots, he writes, are ripe for transformation. After all, their design and function has not been rethought since the 1950s. With this book, Ben-Joseph pushes the parking lot into the twenty-first century.
Ben-Joseph shows that parking lots can be aesthetically pleasing, environmentally and architecturally responsible, and used for something other than car storage. He introduces us to some of the many alternative and nonparking purposes that parking lots have served--from RV campgrounds to stages for "Shakespeare in the Parking Lot." He shows us parking lots that are lushly planted with trees and flowers and beautifully integrated with the rest of the built environment. With purposeful design, Ben-Joseph argues, parking lots could be significant public places, contributing as much to their communities as great boulevards, parks, or plazas. For all the acreage they cover, parking lots have received scant attention. It's time to change that; it's time to rethink the lot.