Tuesday, December 20

SimWord of the Day: The Third Paradox of Educational Simulations

You can't even begin to understand a sim by watching someone else play it, you have to play it yourself.


Mark Wagner, Ph.D. said...


Sorry for the delayed feedback on my end. Wrapping up work for the holidays, and a much larger than usual dose of personal (and serious) "and Life" issues have been keeping me from the more fun intellectual work (including my phd studies). I pulled up the December archives of the Learning Circuits Blog and reviewed the SimWords just now, though. I appreciate the vocabulary you're sharing and explicating.

I find the most valuable thing to be the way you relate each concept to work in corporate management. (These entries could be used in support of the "games (even commercial games created for entertainment) can help teach students difficult-to-teach 'soft skills' which are helpful in management (or executive) positions" argument. At the Games Learning and Society conference earlier this year I saw a young vp at yahoo discuss the ways in which his experience as a guild leader in MMORPGs prepared him for his executive responsibilities.

I also appreciated the links, such as those to visuals of tech trees offered in the December 19th entry.

And I see there are some comments on the "Second Paradox" entry. (Isn't there a Will Wright quote to the effect of creating a perfect simulation of his business... and it's taken 25 years to run... couldn't find it with a quick google search, but it came to mind.) In general though, I'd say no comments is not necessarily a bad thing if the content itself is available and useful to others.

I can see how doing a word a day could be taxing to you, but I think these are valuable to continue. Releasing them individually as blog entries is a great format, but it would also be nice if they were all collected on one page somewhere for reference after the fact.

I hope this feedback is helpful, and I look forward to more posts in the new year...


PS. There is still something weird going on with the learning circuits blog RSS feed... the most recent entry doesn't yet appear. Any thoughts on this?

Clark Aldrich said...

Thanks, Mark.

And the quote "I made the perfect simualtion about running a business. The only problem is that it takes 25 years to play," is mine, one of the joke quotes from Learning By Doing.

The trick/challenge/opportunity is that there are thousands of SimWords that eventually need to be aired. It is a complete new language we are idenifyiing.

Mark Wagner, Ph.D. said...

That's funny. Thanks for pointing out my error, Clark... I just found the quote on page 79 of Learning by Doing, offered with apologies to Steven Wright. I should've known something was wrong when I could follow neither the blogger ethic of "link to the information if its out there" nor the academic ethic of "cite your sources."

In fact, in the spirit of these ethics, let me set my recollection of the GLS conference to right: Guild Master Stephen Gillett was a Senior Director of Engineering Operations at Yahoo. http://www.glsconference.org/pop/gillett.htm