"All right action flows from the breath"
- Hajakujo

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Sunday, January 10, 2010


Greetings, blog lovers!

Well its been a long time since I blogged regularly here, practically a year - and so it is fitting to kick-off again at the dawn of not just a new year, but a new decade.
Although there was an abortive attempt at a restart last summer, it ended rapidly as the final leg of the PhD reared its ugly head: preparing and sitting the defence, followed by minor corrections made extensive by my own perfectionism. That sounds odd saying it, since I'd far from claim the thesis to have been perfect, even in its own small domain. The other words I tried simply fit less well :)

So where are we?
The new year should herald a good deal of closure as I wrap up the writing from my PhD - after Pacman conf. paper III must come journals 2, 3, 4, etc! Yet there are more opportunities for investigation there in the original data and methods, so that could open new lines of work (all extra-curricular, that is, outside working time :).
The personal projects also include running a Helsinki site for the Global Game Jam, which I proposed last October (or August?) in work. A few hardy souls ventured to row in with me and it looks like it's going to pay off. We've teamed up with two other loactions, Tampere and Kajaani, and possibly also a site in Turku still to be confirmed, to create the subset jam: Finnish Game Jam! Last year there were no jam sites in Finland (ironically since the whole concept started off as the Nordic Game Jam in Copenhagen, practically on our doorstep). Anyway, keep track of us on the site and through our twitter HelsinkiGameJam.

Meanwhile, the work projects opened last year, TARGET and SAVE ENERGY, will complete first phase by March & June, so phase shift will mean a new (hopefully more contemplative, less stressful) mode of working.
Right now I'm running a pretty large data gathering phase for my 'psycho-physiological correlates of learning in serious games' experiment (Raph Koster notwithstanding, it's a topic still needs some work).
On the SAVE ENERGY serious game, development is about to hit a new phase, as we commit to implementation of a complete visual/conceptual design for the meta-game, what we are now gonna call 'Green My Place', and begin the work of iterating our mini-games to beta. I did manage some blogging relating to the game, on the project's weblog, in the last few months. That was another reason not to ressurect this blog earlier. The final one had something to do with letting my old domain name lapse, so zenben.net was poached by some Californican cowboys and is gone from the world of (semi-)respectability forever...

Outside the head-space, I really want to get my nidan grade in karate sometime after August. That pretty much means training somewhere between 5 times a week and every day.

That's my diary for today, more cogent thoughts of interest-worthy content to follow!
I may do a cross-posting thing between this blog and the Green My Place blog, make myself seem a little busier that way :)
Eyes peeled!