Michael Dallas

From Hst250
Jump to: navigation, search

Mike Dallas

Wiki Post # 1:

1)SimCity was a city-building simulation video game and was introduced to the market on February 2, 1989. The game is developed by video game designer, Will Wright who got the inspiration from a feature on another game titled, Raid on Bungeling Bay. The primary focus of the game was for the player to build and maintain their own city, keeping the morale of the people up, be an eye in the sky in a way. SimCity became popular because of its layout and what you could actually do, in terms of running your own city. It went on to sell one million copies by 1992 and since has spawned one of the most popular computer games in, The Sims.

2)The author’s main argument was games like SimCity while it was coveted in the media as being a popular game that can serve some educational purposes isn’t always one hundred percent right. The author, Rob MacDougall, feels there is a certain level of danger in using simulations to teach or shape history. He questions the accuracy of simulated games and whether or not they’re a good teaching mechanism for kids. I also believe he’s just concerned about history as a whole and it being forgotten which I feel drums up his problem with simulations.

3)Socially, MacDougall wants us to be more aware, especially the children who play simulated games. He feels that simulated games are not the best teachers and that we should be cautious when electing to do so. From a political standpoint, MacDougall says that “if you open up a simulation, hack it, tweak it, and then recompile it with your own assumptions and algorithms inside, you still end up with a simulation. You’re still engaged in top-down system thinking, turning history into code.”

4)A few of the comments brought about some interesting debates. One idea that was raised was “do we consume the model or does the model consume us.” Another topic that was interesting was the comparison to the board games. This commenter is saying the “black box” and its values and ideology of video game designer are laid out for the public to see. He’s saying board games essentially do the same thing by adjusting rules and finding a way, acceptable to them to adjust history. Another comment I found interesting was different people interpret gameplay different ways. The commenter remembered playing the Detroit simulation as a kid because he was from the area and was excited probably because he was raised in the area. The game may have given him a small assumption or two about how a city is supposed to be built and ran but it did not seem like the game had any real effect on him or history. Also, it seemed like this commenter was playing the game because he was a kid and that’s what kids do. Overall, there weren’t any major disagreements in the comment section. Instead there were people either agreeing with the author or another person who posted a comment. Or they were giving their opinion and bouncing off what the person above them had to say.

I agree with some of the author’s opinions he brings up and how history is important. Designers do alter historical things in video games that can “ruin” the history and simulated games because they can be altered to fit the designer’s assumptions. But I also think he may be over doing it at times and just has some sort of issue with simulations that he’ll never come to terms with. That doesn’t make the article bad, it makes it more interesting because his opinion differs from mines.

Wiki article 2

In Jason Havey’s A technical examination of SOPA and PROTECT IP he first defined SOPA as a domestic site. He tells us that PROTECT IP is an acronym that stands for Preventing Real Online Threats to Economic Creativity and Theft of Intellectual Property Act of 2011. And SOPA is also an acronym that means, Stop Online Piracy Act (House). Harvey goes on to describe SOPA as a “domestic domain name” OR A DOMESTIC IP address. The domain names being sites that end in “.com, .org and .us” Protect IP is the opposite of SOPA, it is sites that are not domain, like “.ly or .cr”.

Since things like piracy is at an all-time high in part because of groups like Anonymous, the government tries to police the internet and decrease, if not eliminate online piracy. Anonymous is an international network of activists and hackers who follow a different set of rules when it comes to the internet. A better way to describe Anonymous would be internet extremist. An example comes from 2010 in Norton Quinn’s 2012 article The Year Anonymous Took On Cops, Dictators and Existential Dread. Quinn gave an example of a man, Mohamed Bouazizi whose produce cart was taken by the police and he was beaten. Shortly after that Bouazizi stood on a street corner, covered in paint thinner, lit himself on fire after shouting “How do you expect me to make a living?” Bouazizi wild tactics sparked Anonymous to a revolution. A series of hacks in what was dubbed #optunisia grew like wildfire, police shot protesters and the government were policing social networking sites. The revolution lasted about a month before things settled down.

Groups like Anonymous and regular hackers relate a lot to the protecting online privacy. Depending on who you ask these people are making information a lot easier to find. Or people can look at these types of people as bad and making the internet worse. In a twisted way they also keep different governments on their toes in terms of monitoring internet security to keep hackers out. These hackers allow governments to see what areas they are lacking and how they should improve. Granted, hackers shouldn’t be doing what they do in the first place but they do and there’s nothing anybody can do about it. Another reason hackers relate to the movement is they’re essentially doing the same thing the government already does, which is have a lot (if not everybody’s) private information in the palms of their hands.

An example would be in the T.C. Scotek article, The Cyber Intelligence Sharing Protection Act: CISPA explained. As T.C. Sottek described in her CISPA article, this “gives broad powers and immunity to the government and military agencies to collect and share the private date of individuals from companies without the use of warrants.” The bill passed but not everyone was on board with some of the specifics the bill entailed.

The actions sort of mirror those of Edward Snowden. Groups like Anonymous can get high profile information and sell it to the highest bidder or than can keep it for themselves as leverage. Snowden leaking classified information from the U.S. is no different than a hacker stealing or leaking high profile information for himself. The only difference is Snowden worked for the government and therefore it’s seen as ten times worse. These also relate because Snowden got called the same thing most hackers do, everything from a hero to a traitor. It just illuminates the fact that you can’t trust anybody with important information. The readings relate to Snowden because it’s what the government is trying to stop from happening, leaking information and trying to protect privacy online.