Friday, 17 October 2008

slideshare presentation - please vote!

I don't normally cover ki work stuff here (my real job), but there's a competition going on over at Slideshare, to come up with a presentation relating to the Credit Crisis. Check out the presentation below, and if you like it, please vote for it here.

Monday, 28 April 2008

Trouvu la ringon perditan

An exciting 360 degree ARG is really taking shape. Designed in part by Jane McGonigal, creater of numerous multi-layered game experiences in the past, this has the makings of a classic.

To get involved follow these easy steps (taken from McGonigals blog, avantgame)

1) First, watch The Lost Ring trailer at
2) Next, learn the legends of the ancient games, including The Lost Olypmic Sport, by watching the video podcasts at
3) Then, meet the global cast of characters -- they're blogging in eight different languages! -- at
4) Finally, if you're hooked, visit the players' wiki to catch up on the story and puzzles so far -- it's at

Let me know if you find the lost ring...

Friday, 7 September 2007

Future of Digital Media

Looking at going for a job with Quba and in the application form they posed this question:
What are the main current digital media trends, and what impact do you think will they have on business communications in the next 5 years?

It's a tough one, as things seem to be changing in this field so quickly. All the same, here's an attempt at the answer.
People nowadays expect a lot more than they used to from their digital media experiences. Instead of just being passive consumers, people now like to interact and play with their media, to customize their features, to create, contribute and share their own creations, and to access exactly what they want, when they want it. Only ten years ago, people were mostly sat in front of TV screens for terrestrial and cable channels, videos and game consoles. Now things are moving towards all forms of entertainment and social interaction coming through the computer screen. Before families fought over the TV remote -now they’re fighting over the computer.

Right now we’re experiencing a kind of mini-boom in Internet use, where huge numbers of users are flocking to be a part of ‘web 2.0’ communities and to make use of the many online features now available. The video-sharing site YouTube counts about 13 million users per month, the social-networking site Facebook claims to have 66 million regular users and is forecasting 180 million within two years and Google Earth has had 200 million people download their software. Google Earth alone has a number of users equivalent to the population of the 5th largest country in the world. This a change in the way people interact with media of epic proportions, and it’s a hugely exciting time for everyone, especially digital media developers, because digital culture is changing so quickly and there’s plenty of opportunities for new and innovative ideas.

The market has changed so much in the past two years, that it’s hard predict exactly what will happen in the next five, but it’s probably a safe bet that trends of content-creation and the desire for interactivity will continue. As more people around the world gain access to technologies such as digital cameras, video cameras, personal computers and mobile phones, so this surge towards creating large-scale digital communities is likely to continues. I am pretty sure that mobile phones and PDAs will become more and more prominent as the main supplier of all our digital needs (as they are pretty much already) and this will require digital media producers to be aware of how best to tailor development for handhelds. There’s been a steady rise in the popularity of games too, and this will continue to spread from consoles, to web-based multiplayer experiences, for entertainment, marketing and training. Above all though, I think what will be most interesting will be how all the multitude of features now available on the web will be combined to add even richer experiences for consumers. We are only just beginning to scratch the surface of what we can do with everything out there.

So it’s a cliché I know, but business communications will need to be particularly flexible, adaptable and sensitive to what’s going on in the Net, as one moment something might be the next-big-thing, while the next it might be old-hat. People are increasingly media-savvy and are now looking for authentic experiences that they can actually get involved in, feel a part of and not just observe quietly from the fringes. We’re all now drawn to experimentation, new ways of interacting and fresh ways of using the technology at our fingertips. So ultimately businesses will need to be creative in their approach if they are to appeal to the digital generation. But then that’s half the fun.

Saturday, 25 August 2007

Sad day for digital learning innovation

I was deeply saddened to read of the BBC's decision to cancel the BBC Jam project (see this article), which in my view was at the forefront of web-based learning. I've yet to find a learning tool that was as well-designed and interactive. The reason for its early abandonment is less that clear - I just hope that other production companies will pick up from where they left off.

ARGs made clear (er)

Many thanks to Kyle Stallone for doing a great service to the ARG community with this site: whatisthisgameabout. It's a site that anyone who's struggled with piecing together a storyline from thousands of forum posts will welcome with open arms, as it provides synopses of current ARGs and ways in for newcomers. Should make games a little more accessible for the confused masses.
Now why didn't I think of that_

Sunday, 5 August 2007

Tomorrow Calling goes public

Many thanks to Nicko Demeter for posting this article on Looks like the launch is now official!

It's Tomorrow Calling. Do You Accept the Charges?
by Nicko Demeter
If a relative from the future asked for your help to protect the Earth, what would you do?

This is the first line of the teaser email leading to a new alternate reality game aimed to bring environmental awareness to the ARG community. The game offers the usual (such as hidden clues on the sites, YouTube videos, and cryptic blogs) while the flavorful text speaks of an uncertain tomorrow, and an Earth that we must protect now for future generations.

While ARGNet could find no indication that there is any overlap in puppetmasters, characters in Tomorrow Calling link to sites from another environmentally sensitive ARG, World Without Oil, and refer to it not as a game, but as a "reality."

The message is sent loud and clear within the text as much as within the actual clues. Do you need to find the next website? Then you must read the blog of a woman that muses about her fears for the earth as we know it. Do you want to know why the evil organization is... evil? Check out a Google Earth file with important dates and sites for the environmental movement.

According to its creators, the game so far has welcomed only a few players, in order to work out the kinks for a larger scale launch. With its beta launch back in May, the sites definitely look professional and the blog posts are well thought out. However, it appears to me to be an immersive, but mostly static narrative without a great deal of direct interaction.

The game has garnered some critical acclaim, as its (apparent) creators Jim Wolff and Andrea Sides have won the Grant Challenge Award at the 5th International Symposium on Digital Earth, held this past June in San Francisco. With its aspirations to educate as well as entertain, we are certainly looking forward to more from Tomorrow Calling in the near future.

Tuesday, 8 May 2007

Alternate reality gets real

Mark Heggen has just posted a fascinating article on the ´non-casual` uses of ARGs on his blog Aside from some great interviews and views from big-hitters in ARG and media circles, there´s also a short interview with myself covering some of the ideas posted throughout this blog. Am honoured to be in such illustrious company!

Aside from this, World Without Oil has launched and has already collected a massive amount of input from people´s video, pictures and blogs, not to mention some well conceived missions. It´s a fantastic concept, and is probably the best example currently out there of how ARGs might be used for social purpose. Brilliant design overall - looking fwd to seeing where it all goes.

And as a final piece of good news, the ARG that Andrew Sides and I designed has been selected as a winner for the International Digital Earth Conference ( We´ll be heading out to San Francisco in June to pick up our award. And will be sure to wear a flower in our hair.