AlphaGo (BetaGo?) Returns

Rumors over the summer suggested that AlphaGo had some serious problems that needed to be fixed — i.e., whole lines of play that it pursued poorly, despite its thrashing of one of the world’s top players in a highly publicized match. But tuning a neural net is trickier than tuning, for example, an expert system …

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Saginaw Chippewa v. NLRB Cert Petition

Here: Saginaw Cert Petition and Appendix- Filed Questions presented: For more than sixty years, the National Labor Relations Board correctly declined to exercise jurisdiction over tribal operations on tribal lands. But in recent years, the Board has belatedly asserted the extraordinary power to regulate the on-reservation activities of sovereign Indian tribes, precipitating a three-way circuit split in the process. Nothing in …

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Little River Band v. NLRB Cert Petition

Here: Little River Petition and Appendix COMBINED Question presented: Whether the National Labor Relations Board exceeded its authority by ordering an Indian tribe not to enforce a tribal labor law that governs the organizing and collective bargaining activities of tribal government employees working on tribal trust lands. Lower court materials here. Tweet

House Subcommittee on Indian Affairs Memo on Fee-to-Trust and Important Context

Today, the House Subcommittee on Indian, Insular, and Alaska Native Affairs is conducting a hearing entitled: “Inadequate Standards for Trust Land Acquisition in the Indian Reorganization Act of 1934.” In advance of the hearing, the Majority Staff circulated a memo calling the fee-to-trust provisions of the Indian Reorganization Act into question. Felix Cohen has described …

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Sparks of Eternity at FDG

We recently showed the prototype of Sparks of Eternity at the Foundation of Digital Games conference. Sparks of Eternity: Episode 1 – Breakthrough is a custom, collaboratively designed game between the Games for Entertainment and Learning (GEL) Lab at Michigan State University and the Frankel Jewish Academy. The goal of the collaboration is to create …

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Reflections on a Decade of GDC Fieldnotes

Ah, the Game Developers Conference (GDC)… I started my field research in 2004 at a relatively small but growing game studio: Vicarious Visions. Since that time I’ve been researching game development and game developers. That’s a long time to study such an amorphous, variable and shifting thing/community/world/culture. I’ve ranged from AAA developers to hobbyists to …

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Rise of the GameDev Hobbyist

Flappy Bird prompted game developers to think about a lot of things. Lots of important things. It prompted me to think about hobbyist game developers again. The first time I thought about hobbyists was through the lens of an opportunity lost with Mario Factory back in the 90s. The second time was thinking about Nintendo …

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Institutional Alzheimers: A Culture of Secrecy and the Opacity of #GAMEDEV Work

[Cross Posted at Culture Digitally] Yesterday, Todd Harper (@laevantine) tweeted a reflection on several other blog posts responding to recent news that Irrational Games was closing. I like that both @leighalexander and @BRKeogh‘s pieces on Irrational highlight the intense opacity of the game dev process… — Todd Harper (@laevantine) February 19, 2014 Both Leigh Alexander …

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Mixed Messages: Policing the Public/Private Boundaries of Cultural Production on the Nintendo DS

I’ll be speaking as part of a panel at the upcoming Association of Internet Researchers IR14 Conference in Denver, Colorado. That panel, Strategies and Tactics for Promoting Indie Game Design will be Saturday, October 26, 2013 from 9AM to 10:30AM. I’ll be trying to historicize “Indie” a bit, talking about homebrew game development and hobbyist …

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Playing a Broken Game: Digital Publics at Play in US Classrooms

In addition to my panel presentation, I’ll be speaking as part of a roundtable at the upcoming Association of Internet Researchers IR14 Conference in Denver, Colorado. That roundtable, titled, Producing Digital Publics from Gaming to Crowdsourcing, will have me discussing briefly recent ethnographic work surrounding serious games in US classrooms. ABSTRACT From the multiplayer classroom …

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