IF, the ecodigital, and abstraction

Friday, February 18th, 2005

One of the things inching around my head these days is how to generate an environment where student writers can practice writing value claims and evaluative approaches in argument in a concrete ways. A problem in serious games concerning writing is that much of the apparatus of composition is abstract. Consider the complexities of standard ethical, aesthetic, and utilitarian judgments. Value claims sometimes aren’t as simple as text books make them sound. It’s one thing to generate criteria to judge a movie, but even in such an enterprise value systems come into play audience to audience. Criteria for measuring art can be quite contentious. In value claims, definitions are of supreme importance. Thus a space in a digital environment would have to be immense, non-linear, and intensely mnemonic.

Let’s say the concrete company wants to start up a plant in town. Such an enterprise would generate jobs, taxes, and but would also potentially hurt quality of life and property values. The company has a right to exersize the use of its property, but what is the balance of equal protection? Which values do we pledge to define in context?

To write about this is fine but what should be learned here through the writing? So we create a game where the big box store is about to come into town. The place is populated with people with good intentions all around. The scene plays out. Does the writing come “after” the experience; is this research; what can or should be measured as an outcome? Does such an environment become a muticredit, mutidisciplinary operation?

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