Paul Smith

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== Wiki Article #1: Colonization ==


Sid Meier's Colonization is a computer game by Brian Reynolds and Sid Meier released by MicroProse in 1994. It is a turn-based strategy game themed on the early European colonization of the New World, starting in 1492 and lasting until 1850. Instead of forging a nation from nothing, the player manages the cross-Atlantic expansion of an established one in the service of the Crown. As the colonies become more self-sufficient their subservience shifts from boon towards bane, and to win the player must ultimately declare independence and defeat the Royal Expeditionary Force in battle. It was originally released for DOS, and later ported to Windows 3.1 (1995), the Amiga (1995), and Macintosh (1995). The DOS version ran at 320x200 resolution, the others in 640x480, but were otherwise identical and added no new features. Being one of the first D&D type games for the computer and it was liked so much that it was ranked for years as one of the top ten games, if not in the top five. The reason for that is the off shoot from the game civilization. Sid Meier’s was known for his roll play games and many including myself would buy the game because his name was associated with it. Also the graphics were amazing for that time frame.

Rebecca Mir argument.

There several points the author identifies that are issues with this game and why she felt the title of the game itself was wrong and I quote “These features are actually in keeping with the idea that a game called Colonization should be offensive.” The main issues Rebecca had with this game are as follows. • What happens when you make Native peoples playable in the game • Trading supplies and technology isn’t always quick and easy in Colonization • Cultural cross-dressing, education, and assimilation on the frontier • No diseases in the game • Avoids the slave trade

Importance of the game.

Looking at Rebecca’s article she seems to attack the way that the native people are portrayed in the game from the initial start of the game when you start to trade with Native American with horses and guns where there doesn’t seem to be any other type of trade except that, making it historically incorrect. Next cultural cross-dressing, education, and assimilation on the frontier from being a shirtless tribesman with no formal euro-education to a well-educated fully dressed like a settler. Once again the multiple transformation pictures shown as the Native American goes to through what the game calls education could be considered offensive, but it showed the transformation from one end of the spectrum to the other. The feel I get from her is that of discrimination because of the variations in the game. I quote “While Free and Indentured Colonist units can be educated in Native settlements and learn master trades (e.g. farmer, tobacconist, cotton planter, etc.), they emerge from those settlements in colonial clothing, their cultural identity unaltered by their contact with Natives. The Converted Native, in contrast, will change into a Free Colonist unit if he graduates from a school within one of your settlements.” this statement alone backs that. Another major factor she brought up was the lack of diseases that were in the game, was it a needed part of the game, no that was not the point of the game. The last part, which is the most obvious missing link, is the slave trade in this time frame which is left out. Rebecca feels that this is a very important fact that was missing, why is it missing, well good question; I assume that it just wasn’t in the programming.


Although there are no posts for this article, I feel that the “game” is what it is a “GAME” not a historical interactive program it is a game. Unfortunately compared to the historical, social, cultural, or political structure of games today the games of yesterday were not that detailed as they are today. Rebecca’s need for different illnesses in the game seem to be a little ridiculous, this is a game not a history lesson. The games back then had a limited size due to the amount of space a 5 ¼ or 3 ½ floppy disk could hold and to understand the turn off of the switching the disks around for the game play is a huge inconvenience. So the lack of fine details that the programmer didn’t find necessary still made the game an excellent play.

Works Cited:

Mir, Rebecca. (2012) Guns, Germs and Horses: Cultural Exchange in Sid Meier’s Colonization. Playthepast

WIki #2 Final'

Anonymous, SOPA, and PIPA (Protect IP)

The group Anonymous is a loosely associated international network of activist and hacktivist entities. A website nominally associated with the group describes it as "an internet gathering" with "a very loose and decentralized command structure that operates on ideas rather than directives". The group became known for a series of well-publicized publicity stunts and distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks on government, religious, and corporate websites.

The Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) was a United States bill to expand the ability of U.S. law enforcement to combat online copyright infringement and online trafficking in counterfeit goods. Provisions included the requesting of court orders to bar advertising networks and payment facilities from conducting business with infringing websites, and search engines from linking to the websites, and court orders requiring Internet service providers to block access to the websites.

The PROTECT IP Act (Preventing Real Online Threats to Economic Creativity and Theft of Intellectual Property Act, or PIPA) was a proposed law with the stated goal of giving the US government and copyright holders additional tools to curb access to "rogue websites dedicated to the sale of infringing or counterfeit goods", especially those registered outside the U.S.

How do groups of hackers, like Anonymous, relate to movements to protect online privacy

Online hackers like anonymous set out to do what others in the computer world feel is right as far as it see it to the means of protecting online privacy from big business and mostly government entities. Unfortunately without having the big picture these hackers who started out doing the right thing have sometimes gone to the wrong side and helped and unknowingly aided criminal organizations and terrorism for something that was sold to these hackers as a positive and not realizing it was a negative. The loss in dollar amounts for those different government agencies and businesses do to the hacks of their systems is an amount that many will never know. The needs of the few compared to the needs of the many is one that many don’t understand. Sometimes the choice has to be the lesser of the two evils and there is no neutral ground for either side.

On the side of the hackers, yes government and big business do seem to want to know it all for one reason or another for our so called protection. Also the feeling that big brother can see what I am doing does give many the feeling of uncomfortableness, but at least when the government does it there is some type of purpose and not a malicious one like so many are doing right now as we speak. I do believe that we need the freedom of privacy online and off, but I am willing to give a little to have a lot.

How do these readings relate to and illuminate the recent events surrounding Edward Snowden?

In relation to Edward Snowden and the recent events that revolve around him I would like to point out the facts about him that many obviously misquote when asked who is Snowden. Edward Snowden is a former National Security Agency subcontractor who made headlines in 2013 when he leaked top secret information about NSA surveillance activities. What information are we talking about well while working at the NSA's Oahu office, Snowden began noticing government programs involving the NSA spying on American citizens via phone calls and internet use. Snowden began copying top-secret NSA documents while at work, building a dossier on practices that he found invasive and disturbing. The documents contained vast and damning information on the NSA's domestic surveillance practices, including spying on millions of American citizens under the umbrella of programs such as PRISM. With this comes big responsibility, but Snowden has shown little to the sharing of the information that he has already done with news agencies like the New York Times, I quote from an interview he had with John Oliver.

Oliver, “So The New York Times took a slide, didn’t redact it properly, and in the end it was possible for people to see that something was being used in Mosul on al Qaeda.”

“That is a problem,” Snowden replied.

“Well, that’s a fuckup,” said Oliver.

“It is a fuckup, and those things do happen in reporting. In journalism, we have to accept that some mistakes will be made. This is a fundamental concept of liberty,” Snowden said.

So with lives lost the remorse Snowden shows is summed up in a perfect little statement. I quote “fundamental concept of liberty” so the lives lost because he felt information was being misused by a federal agency and he then gave it to a non-governmental agency who published it.

Do I feel that the programs that are run in the USA against its citizens are extreme, YES, but somewhere a panel or committee has decided that , very rarely does a single man make these decisions due to the ill-gotten consequences, so what Snowden did was wrong….end of discussion.

Looking at this week’s readings no one looked at this angle; they looked at the positives and slanted these topics to be a good thing. Seeing the big picture and understanding the deadly effects of hacking needs to be brought to light.