Monthly Archives: January 2012


For weeks I’ve been strolling through Gregory Maguire’s four-volume fantasy about Oz. These are wonderful books — and yet, at the end of the saga, I find myself curiously dissatisfied. What was wonderful about the first book, Wicked, was that … Continue reading

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This Is Your Game on Mugs

Sometimes an upgrade is a mirage. Sometimes cool new features remain tantalizingly out of reach. [Note: This piece has been edited on Jan. 26 to reflect new information.] I’m getting ready to enlist testers for my almost-completed interactive fiction game, … Continue reading

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500 Yards of Window Dressing

The first text adventure games were extremely terse, compressed affairs. Players encountered the messages “You can’t go that way” and “You can’t see any such thing” a whole lot — and nobody minded. Players today have much higher expectations. If, … Continue reading

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Sounds Good

There’s nothing new in the world. Everything has been done before. The idea of including music in a text adventure game may seem a bit eccentric — but of course graphic computer games have had music since the very beginning. … Continue reading

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Writing Interactive Fiction

I’m working on a new text adventure game to enter in this year’s Spring Thing competition. The release of TADS 3.1 was one of my main motivating factors; it adds some very desirable features to the TADS authoring system. I … Continue reading

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Complicity Through Silence

Sometimes I make statements critical of religion. Not infrequently, someone (usually it’s someone who apparently espouses a religious faith) responds by pointing out the good things that religion brings into the world. It would be silly to deny that religious … Continue reading

Posted in religion | 10 Comments

Remaining Tolerant

Among today’s headlines, an Indiana state legislator has introduced a bill that, if enacted into law, would allow local school boards to force teachers to teach Creationism in science classes. The legal niceties of this don’t interest me. I’ve read … Continue reading

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Why Not? Here’s Why Not.

I don’t have a TV, nor do I subscribe to a newspaper. But lately I’ve become a regular reader of Huffington Post. (A news junkie always finds a way to get his fix.) Over on the right flank, we have … Continue reading

Posted in politics, society & culture | 3 Comments

Something’s Happening Here

Watched about 20 minutes of a live video stream from Occupy Oakland tonight. Nothing much to be seen except people standing around on streetcorners, a bunch of cop cars lined up along a curb, assorted signs, whatever. What was interesting … Continue reading

Posted in politics, society & culture | 5 Comments