Bookmarks for November 23rd through November 24th

These are things I’ve found interesting between November 23rd through November 24th:

  • FarmVille No Longer Most Popular App – "Phrases" has 54m users and it isn't even accessible within the US? Wow! (and yuck — I want to see what all the fuss is about.)
  • A Visual History of the Credit Card
  • A Third Kind of Freedom
  • Analysis: AI Fallibility And The Chick Parabola – I find these discussions fascinating since there are is always the assumption that AI is necessary.

    Three ideas shape my AI design:
    1) Turing's Fallacy: "Any opponent described as an AI will be seen as an AI to another player. Even if the opponent is in fact a human."

    This suggests that no matter how good your AI gets, it will always fail.

    2) The best games are ones with clear cause and effect. If players see AI as an environmental system (not an opponent) then it is better to give them something they can learn and master rather than presenting them with a fuzzy, confusing gameplay landscape. This is why Goombas are more memorable opponents than 99% of all AI ever created.

    3) Humans make the best opponents. In a networked world, AI is at best a crutch or learning tool. Why not put your effort into making a great multiplayer game instead of wasting it on an AI that is less effective and prone to failure?

    These philosophies changes the type of game that you make. It relegates decades of design to the waste bin. I recognize this and embrace it.

    take care,