Author Archives: Benjamin Tarsa

About Benjamin Tarsa

In addition to my work as a student I also work part-time at The Saylor Foundation, a local 501(c)(3) non-profit foundation which aims to provide high-quality educational materials online free of charge to the public. Currently I am working to coordinate the production of high-quality A/V materials to further augment our courses in areas where there currently exists no high-quality openly-licensed material. I am also working to develop the social portion of the website, with a focus on taking elements of game design and using them to make the site fun and interactive.

I’m Crying – The Existential Crisis


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Its just too much for me sometimes. The closing of virtual communities is such a terrible and sad occurrence. I just finished another chapter of Celia Pearce and Artemisia’s book where she describes the return of Uru by Cyan through … Continue reading

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The Problem of Time


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Time. A mysterious concept in general, but economically its one of the most equally distributed resources (Castronova, 2005). It presents a particular challenge to the researcher of online games and communities. Anyone with familiarity with the MMORPG genre can tell … Continue reading

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Intersubjective Flow


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Digital Archeology: How to preserve online cultures?


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There are at least 150 active MMORPGs in existence today. Add to this number other virtual worlds that aren’t strictly part of that genre such as Second Life and other social worlds as well as the many non-commercial worlds either … Continue reading

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Why Do I Love It?


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(Adapted from my autoethnographic project Shooting The Breeze) I’m just trying to figure out what it is that I have always found so captivating about this online world. I mean, it took hold of me more than 11 years ago … Continue reading

Posted in Synthetic Worlds, Thoughts | Tagged , , , , , , | 15 Comments

What in the (real) world is a ‘synthetic’ world?


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Synthetic worlds are digital worlds designed to facilitate interactions between users. They come in many different forms, the most familiar of course being large-scale 3D games like World of Warcraft and Linage, which together boast more than 13 million active … Continue reading

Posted in CCTP505 | 19 Comments