Archive for the Toys & Games Category

Funny Farm

Posted in Deep And Profound Brain Things, Gaming, Toys & Games with tags , , on March 18, 2008 by weirleader

Came across this puzzle via the Freakonomics blog (as usual), and it’s really quite interesting. It’s basically a word-association puzzle, but it’s designed to use cookies so it will automatically save your game. AND there’s a feature that let’s people share their solutions to collaborate.

Try it out!

If you want to collaborate, let me show you how: click on the ‘save game’ button and it will provide you with a link to your saved content. Paste that content into a comment here for us to share our results.

My progress so far (only use it if you want to – you can start on your own by using the link above). My recommendation is to begin it on your own and only use my progress if you’re getting stuck. To add my progress to yours, again click the ‘save game’ button and there’s a field where you can paste in somebody else’s progress (just paste in the above link).

Laptops for the third world

Posted in Deep And Profound Brain Things, Education, Technology, Toys & Games with tags , , on November 20, 2007 by weirleader

XO laptopJamie came across an ad for One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) and it intrigued us enough for me to look into it. I have to say, this article in the N.Y. Times was compelling. It’s basically a low-cost laptop with rugged design and some pretty cool features – we’re tempted to pick one up ourselves. It doesn’t hurt that for a very reasonable price you get a laptop for your own child, the pleasure of a gift for the less-fortunate, and a tax write-off as well. My only dilemma is that this computer seems well-designed to be used as part of a network of XO machines (a special network, called a mesh) and it seems a shame to buy only one when I have two kids that could get good use out of it. The sad thing is that, while $400 sounds like we could work it into our budget, the $800 for two just sails right past *ooo-kay* and right on up to *boing-zowie*!

Now the warning – this is not your typical laptop in that it doesn’t load software (as we know it), doesn’t have a hard drive (it makes use of 1GB of flash memory), and has no CD- or DVD-drives. Still, what it does have it seems to excel at… great power management, slimmed-down open-source code (as opposed to corporate bloatware), neat extras like sound editing, picture-taking/movie-making, sharing of documents, and an e-book reader all wrapped in a durable, dirt-proof shell.

I just don’t know – very tempting… what would Dave say?

I always knew I liked Lego

Posted in Education, Toys & Games on November 1, 2006 by weirleader

where was Andrew Lipson when I was a young lego-holic?  If only I knew they could be turned to such fabulous uses!  Of course, AutoCAD wasn’t around back then (at least, I don’t think it was) and I wasn’t exactly primed for complex theoretical shapes, but this guy is pretty awesome!  Makes me wish I had some actual free time on my hands! (as if that’ll ever happen)

This could even make up the substance of a pretty interesting hands-on college course.

A good catalog of his creations can be found here – and I especially like this one.