Monday, October 24, 2011

Crater Lake, 24° STUDIO, Kobe Japan, 2011

Like all biennale installations, Crater Lake by 24° STUDIO for the Kobe, Japan event is only temporary.  And though meant mostly for grown-up art fair attendees, it incorporates space for climbing, sliding, hiding, performance, quiet play, and even flexibility (the seating stools are movable) in a compelling visual form that can be enjoyed by all ages.  Very, very well done.

Quick, somebody, hire these guys to make a permanent playscape!

[via the contemporist]

Friday, October 21, 2011

Advice On Kids Toys For 2011

Even though the economic situation is on the blink, Christmas is approaching and everyone is gearing up for doing commerce in kids toys for 2011. Each year, Christmas brings the most thrills of shopping in the retail business. Considering the amount of retailers that'll be offering their own products, shopping for just about any toy will probably become harder.
Choosing The Right Kind Of Kids Toy
Selecting a toy for a kid is entirely based on the age of the child. Each age group has its own complexity that has to be addressed. The products have to be physically harmless and should not contain dangerous paints or chemicals. Products that stimulate the mind and provide unlimited fun are the best to go for. Children should be able to use them in diverse imaginative ways.

Some Popular Kids Toy Ideas
One of the most popular toy for this year is the Xbox Kinect. This is a virtual machine game which entices children of different age groups. This is a motion based and voice activated system. Players are able to interact with their friends and control the video at the same time. This makes it perfect for both young as well as old players.

Among other computerized games, Fisher Price IxL is one of the most popular toys. This is good for somewhat younger children who are still learning their reading and number skills. It helps with writing, phonics, number skills, reading comprehension and more. However, the whole process is done in a fun way, so it will surely appeal to both the kids as well as their parents.

LEGO Board Games is another popular choice. Although LEGO Games have been available for decades, this is different since it has been modernized with the use of Toy Story, Harry Potter and Star Wars. Different combinations from these will amaze any child and keep them engrossed for hours on end.

If your child is really advanced, then you could even choose the LEGO Mindstorms robotics kit. This allows them to put together their own programmable robot, and the different options are only really limited by your child's imagination (just make sure it's not too difficult for them to put together).
Options are usually endless in terms of choosing toys and games. However, it is vital to commence early and also make your option. It will be advisable to be able to book early in order to avoid any letdown in kids toys for 2011.

Article Source:

Backyard 8-Track

Typographically beautiful, endless fun.

[this one has been in my files for a long time; source unknown.  If you know where it came from, please tell me!]

UPDATE:  thanks to reader grégory for providing the credit for this photo; it is from
Informal Meetings
Photography and design: Radim Pesko
A collection of photographs, first volume of small image novelas, published by Bedford Press.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

The Park for Playing and Thinking, Contrafile and Basurama, Sao Paulo Brasil

The ever-playful Basurama (whose Ghost Train Park in Lima has been previously featured on the blog) collaborated with Brazilian collective Contrafilé and other partners to create a park in which to both play AND think in a Sao Paulo favela.  The community, and especially its children, were deeply engaged in both planning and construction. 

They used old tires to retain a refuse-ridden slope, as well as for stair-paths and climbing structures. There's a gigantic blackboard and an electricity generating bike, as well as a radio station, a sound toy, and a community stage, plus a tight rope and is that a turning bar in the community space?  Aldo van Eyck would be SO proud. 


I'm really glad to see that they didn't neglect the designed landscape; in addition to garden beds and composting bins there are dedicated areas reserved for plantings of trees and grass, wise choices that far more expensive (and supposedly well-designed) playgrounds consistently ignore.  And a elevated community playpen for the bebes.  One small participant said 'we're making a garden out of garbage!'

Check out the blog that chronicles Parque para Brincar e Pensar...the community love and labor on display there is inspiring.

Thanks to friend of Playscapes Ángela León,who participated in the project, for submitting it.  I really like the idea of considering both playing and thinking...does your playground think?

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

The future of online games virtual world

While some say that virtual worlds are just a fad that will disappear over time, others think otherwise. So what does the future of these virtual communities and how it will be done through technological advances and new times?

While current trade with real money (RMT) exercise and the use of avatars to project real-world identification to show the boundary between the virtual and real life has been quite blurred, this border will be further reduced more time.

Of high trade expansion of virtual resources for better use of virtual worlds as teams to meet people in the future of virtual worlds may evolve well beyond their own game backgrounds. If it be a blessing or a curse, these worlds can increasingly serve as centers of commerce, industry and business.

Only in the world of Second Life, relations have hit a rate of $ 2.7 million a month. Goods companies using the product online worlds to prototype, promote and sell products. Brands that have already made their appearance in the virtual worlds consist of some of the most famous in the world.

A series of worlds

A number of metaverse exceed the very concept of a virtual world designed for writers in science fiction, because as we see an endless variety of websites in the last ten or fifteen years, we once again observe an increase the number of online worlds.

You can visit a world to do the job that earns a real wage, a different world to consider a college program, another to the gaming experience with your friends who are registered worldwide, but to talk to members family who live both near and far.

As technical advances, for example, increased mobile broadband Internet and entry easier access to areas of the virtual world on a daily basis, regardless of location, appointments to these worlds may end up increasing part of the structure of everyday life.

Virtual worlds are not places of a "voucher" for. In contrast, online and offline fine mesh to become a part of your daily routine. So, is your avatar ready for the virtual future?

Key features of these worlds

Six features that come with the virtual world games online at present and which are the main features that could ensure not only survival but prosperity:

1. Sharing space. The world allows many users to sign up again.
2. Graphical user interface. The world is visually room.
3. Immediacy. The interaction that occurs in real time.
4. Interactivity. The world allows users to change, develop, develop or publish personalized content.
5. Persistence. Lifestyle of the world is whether or not individual clients are steeped in.
6. Of the community. The world allows and promotes the formation of the world social organizations and groups, unions, clubs, gangs, roommates, or neighborhoods.

Barbie Girls Virtual World Review

There are two very positive about Barbie Girls, which will appeal to most parents.

First, while a premium account known as the Barbie Girls VIP membership there, there are plenty of girls who do on this site, which costs nothing. Membership fee is not required for hours and hours of fun.

Second, there is a feature in the virtual world known as the place of parents. It is a good way for parents to keep up with the site, and also to participate actively in the world with their young. You can have your own account with the function of place of parents.

Graphics and BG colors are designed with girls in mind. Pre-adolescent girls, especially, is this place is absolutely charming. They are quite bold and brilliant, like his little girl.

Another important feature of the virtual world is that it focuses on safety. The site was designed with clear priority Barbie Girls make a safe online environment for girls of all ages. In addition to encouraging the participation of parents, Barbie Girls emphasizes that participating children learn and follow sensible rules of the site.

Girls playing in online virtual world for children are encouraged to ask their friends to join, and also to observe basic safety rules when using the chat site. Everything is explained clearly, so your child will understand the rules and be comfortable with them. It is a virtual online community that any girl will enjoy.

While there are numerous online virtual worlds targeted at girls, Barbie Girls is one of the best.

Offers opportunities for fun, the safest available. There is nothing negative to be found on this site, and more to enrich your child's free time. Although the premium membership is offered, it is not necessary. If you are looking for a virtual world where you have a good time with your child, or simply one where you can spend hours playing with confidence, Barbie Girls is one of the best places to consider.

The business presence in virtual worlds

In an interview with ZDNet Asia, Mary Ellen Gordon of the United States based on the truths virtual worlds market research firm noted that companies interested in virtual worlds and free trade must take into account the spending habits of the new generation in order to fully realize their mark on these online communities.

This expert opinion only strengthens the likes of VW and full communities with their own nuances and sensitivities. Outsiders not only on the barge and send commercial messages and hope for the greatest possible success. Gordon notes that "some companies do not seem to take the time to really understand virtual worlds or to think about how to use them to contribute to their overall business objectives." For best results, companies would be better do to immerse yourself in the culture of the VW.

Although there has been a difference in the way businesses approached their goals within their virtual worlds, there seems to be the unanimous perception that these virtual worlds are of immense potential of advertising due to the large number of Internet users enter this VW. As described by Gordon:

"VW people the opportunity to meet more people through these barriers, and are not forced by circumstances [such as] physical location, family responsibilities, lack of financial resources and disability."

These problems are solved by Gordon noted virtual worlds allow access to a wide variety of Internet users are potential consumers of the business entities. This is why understanding how the new web-savvy generation is crucial. Most members of these target markets are used to process information quickly. It can not be easily fooled and know when certain messages are spam site.

An example of how a business can be adapted to the habits of Internet users information on commercial and free virtual worlds would be the focus of information technology (IT) firm IBM. Identified as one of the most visible brands in virtual worlds, IBM found a way to integrate the flow of certain virtual worlds in which

Ari Fishkind, public affairs manager of IBM Research, IBM describes changing virtual world participation will increase publicity to the utilization of these online communities as an informal meeting. In the past, IBM has used virtual worlds to organize a festival of art and as a meeting place to meet and greet new visitors. IBM has recently used the popular life of the virtual world Second Life to conduct meetings. This does not only apply to small-time meetings. IBM once held their annual conference of computer scientists - the IBM Academy of Technology - in a virtual world environment. Fishkind that this measure helped to save "hundreds of thousands of dollars in travel expenses [and] helped participants get a real sense of community, collaboration and partnership -. And bring them back to their normal activities much faster"

Enjoying the benefits of virtual worlds, IBM is also able to join all the other virtual world users are also enjoying the same privileges. This one-of-us-one of them is also used to the mentality of the trademark, because it establishes credibility within VW.

In this era of new media, where information is one of the fundamental values ​​of Internet users in virtual worlds, persuasion does not work at times. All commercial entities can do is establish a presence in these online communities and be firm in their offers and services for people who consider them on their list of options. However, even with advanced technologies found in VW, business entities must not forget their ethical obligations and not to confuse the line between marketing softsell with deception.

Virtual worlds for children

Virtual worlds have proven to be great places, web safe for kids to have fun and interact with others. Attractive security features that virtual worlds are offering are very popular among parents looking for web security for their children. However, these security features are not the only reasons that membership of virtual worlds continue to grow and the new guys are virtual sites pop up.
Virtual worlds children really appeal to children with 3D animation, colorful worlds to explore, and the ability of children to create their own avatar. Unlike television, in a virtual world of a child can interact.

Not only are virtual sites a fun place for children, but parents can be sure that the sites are made to be education that allows children to learn and grow, while still having fun. They develop keyboard skills, practice reading, mathematics, commerce, and participate in creative role playing. The cooperative nature of virtual worlds helps children develop important social skills while gaining a deeper understanding of their role as members of a community.

Virtual worlds offer children several security features. Parents should be involved and in many cases are asked to give their permission in the different stages of the child's participation in the virtual world. Permission is normally given to the action of a child by a parent to confirm a request by e-mail in the virtual world. Kids love to network with their friends and virtual sites allowing text chat among avatars, virtual worlds for children the message of most filtering tasks to avoid the use of inappropriate words and phrases, and block attempts to communicate phone numbers, email addresses or other personally identifiable information.

It is important for virtual web sites provide a safe environment for children to encourage a greater number of members. Yet parents should encourage the following behavior: -

• Never give out personal information online. Personal information includes things like your real name, address, telephone number, email or in school.

• If someone says or does something that makes you feel uncomfortable, or if they ask for your personal information, tell your parents immediately.

· Never give out your password to anyone, even if they say they work for the virtual site.

For parents who worry about their children spending too much time in a virtual world for children, some sites have a timer to help parents control their children's use.

Each virtual world is unique and some children will be more attracted to each instead of the other based on their own personality, age and interests. The security features in virtual worlds children may also be different. We encourage you to look through different virtual sites and explore their features before your child jumps in. A great place to start is cold for children to provide a list of virtual worlds for children.

Business is good for online video games and virtual worlds

Its shelves are filled with items that a lot of people really want, though it will never be able to touch them. Services are provided by the characters that were created on a computer. With the recent surge in popularity of online games and virtual worlds has been a whole new cottage industry created that sells virtual goods and services to players who spend a lot of time and money in cyberspace.

They are called massively multiplayer online role playing games, or MMORPGs, which are an online video game genre that more than 15 million people worldwide are now playing. Participants pay a subscription fee and a flat rate for the game software and then connect to a server and interact in a 3D environment with the software. Players seem to have no ultimate goal of winning, but rather are encouraged to continue living in the only virtual world time and spending money there. Victory is not as important as the development of his character in one who has fame, fortune or social position. A large amount of money can be spent in this pursuit of things like shopping dot character and improving the monthly subscription fees.

The cost to design, develop and create a IMMORPG is about 10 million dollars. It takes many people with different skills in game design, 3D animation, computer engineering and database architecture to name a few. It can be expensive to get an online game or virtual world and goes, but the profit margin is very high and this helps to ensure that investors make their money back for a big profit in a relatively short time. In 2006, this particular genre of video games grossed over one billion dollars and is growing bigger every day.

In the world of interactive video games and virtual worlds, it is not uncommon for a player to spend hundreds or even thousands of dollars on products that enhance your gaming experience or to build their state. A person may spend much money on buying things like clothing, vehicles, weapons and real estate as well as a range of services and experiences. For example, a virtual apartment can cost anywhere from a few hundred to several thousand dollars. Participants spend real money on these elements in 3D, which are considered as real monetary assets.

A new economy has created all because of online games like World of Warcraft, Everquest and Second Life. With more than 7 million subscribers to World of Warcraft is the most popular of these games. This is a classic of fantasy battle game in the tradition of Dungeons and Dragons.

World of Warcraft has a full menu of items you can buy to increase or improve your online gaming experience. Players have the option to purchase a variety of different types of armor, weapons, costumes and equipment. Up to each player to decide what kind of elements that help your chances of winning in this contest online video game battles. Some people buy their equipment based on function and some buy to present an imposing appearance for his role in the battle that you can build a reputation and status. As you achieve higher levels of play and player status more products and services available to enhance your experience.

Second Life is a virtual world where people can go to live another life in cyberspace. This is a subscription-based website which has 5,887,280 members around the world. Once the participant enters this virtual world there are a variety of articles, and real estate experience at your disposal. They are encouraged to explore this dimensional landscape and find a good place to buy real estate. The strategy is the creation of a home or business and establish relationships with other participants who can help you succeed. U.S. $ million spent each month on the transactions that take place within this virtual world.

Auctions, the mail service banking is a fast growing industry that is performing a restoration of life to those who really like to play online video games or spend time in a virtual world. These games offer a different experience from Xbox 360, Playstation 3, PSP and Nintendo Wii, because they are less predictable, with more interactivity. Furthermore, the content is free from government regulation because they operate in the wild world of Internet.

Since 2004, worldwide revenue for the genre of massively multiplayer online role Playing Games has doubled every year. 500 million dollars in 2005 to 1 billion dollars in 2006 this industry is expected to continue thriving and gross more than 2 billion dollars in 2007. As more and more people around the world looks at online games and virtual worlds for recreation and escapism the future looks brighter every day for those who sell virtual products and services.

Habbo Hotel and Online Virtual Worlds

Habbo Hotel

No longer is the internet the enclave of academic and commercial users, recreational users now probably outnumber both the popularity of online worlds like Habbo reflect this trend.

What are 3D virtual worlds?

3D Virtual worlds are online websites created to visually represent a real environment where users can interact with each other and chat, as an online virtual world Habbo Hotel is located.

More on Habbo

Habbo Hotel is a world where anything goes, users have access to a virtual world that can be customized and invite others to join them in. As Habbo is a virtual 3D world in its constitution and visual users can see them anyway like. Habbo users each get a room that is why the starting point in the world, they can invite others to his room to chat and interact with everyone in the room. Many users of Habbo decorate their basic rooms to encourage visitors to spend time with them, furniture and other products you can buy Habbo Habbo credits and coins can be bought with money or won in competitions, there are even opportunities to buy these credits and products on sites like and

Habbo Activities

The main activities in online virtual worlds and chat Identification of trade with other users with endless chat categories represented by rooms there is never a shortage of places to visit and chat or trade. Endless competitions are available, some that involve the provision of a room for best effect and wildly impressive, offering Habbo based prizes to allow users to enhance their virtual world at no cost.

Habbo Credits

Habbo coins and credits can also be used to purchase collectibles, specialty items offer virtual offered as limited editions, and can be sold in - like all Habbo items to other users, to make money with products virtual. Buying and selling collectibles on Habbo is as addictive as is contained in the real world, and can also be lucrative. A range of accessories available products, is surprised that can be used to decorate rooms or traded among users, with some free and some paid for Habbo coins. Habbo Club is a premium paid for a service that allows club members access to the virtual objects is only available for members and also access to exclusive rooms without queuing ..

Fun and Games

There are many games and activities available to the Habbo community, ranging from multiplayer games for one player, compete against friends or strangers, and possibly win fabulous prizes. Interest in Habbo is wide of people looking for a social network for those who just want to relax in a virtual online environment, the individuality of Habbo compared with other social networks is represented by the possibility of creating their own individual room and avatar . The main users of Habbo are teenagers, there are over 100 million registered users worldwide, with users from around the world join new calls every day from all countries in the expanding world of Habbo community continually.

10 facts about Virtual World Direct online and their unions in Lotto

If you are one of the many people thinking of joining an e-lottery syndicate here are 10 great things you may not know about Virtual World Direct Ltd and is in line lottery syndicates.

* The E-Lotto lottery, million-and the fat you can play from any country in the world and players can come from anywhere in the world.
* It greatly increases your chances of winning a prize, up to 3600 percent in the draw for Euro-millions.
* It is supported by the Lotteries Council works closely with the Gambling Commission UK. Taking the interests of various companies and other organizations involved in legitimate activities relating to the lottery.
* Now is composed of three unions Lotto. These are both Lotto Wednesday and Saturday Draws, million-and the new monthly lottery El Gordo Spanish.
* E-lottery was established in 2002 by Virtual World Direct Limited.
* Offers players the opportunity to earn a second income by promoting the E-lottery free of charge to family and friends.
* The results and email notifications wins the prize for the players after each draw.
Players can enter one without prize draw 1000 pounds each week correctly matching the winning numbers.
* Virtual World Direct Ltd website uses industry standard encryption by Thawte certificates secured transactions, a leading global Certification Authority.
* E-lottery is in no way connected with the national lottery, Virtual World Direct Ltd is a privately owned independent management consortium. Euro million is the trademark of Lottery Ancillary services in Europe. The National Lottery and Lotto are trademarks of the National Lottery Commission.

This article will hopefully help in the decision to join a union of line with the virtual world Direct E-lottery.