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TEDxBloomington -- Edward Castronova -- "Be A Gamer"
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Added Jul 5, 2011
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Edward Castronova, Professor of Telecommunications at Indiana University, is a founder of scholarly online game studies and an expert on the societies of virtual worlds. Castronova teaches graduate and undergraduate courses on the design of games, the game industry, and the management of virtual societies. Outside his academic work, Professor Castronova makes regular appearances in mainstream media (60 Minutes, The New York Times, and The Economist), gives keynotes at major conferences (Austin Game Conference, Digital Games Research Association Conference, Interactive Software Federation of Europe), and consults for business (McKinsey, Vivendi, Forrester). In the longer run, Professor Castronova aims to develop online games for studying human society. In 2001 Castronova, a self-proclaimed "failed economist," decided to devote his life to playing video games. He started playing EverQuest, an online role-playing game with 400000 players, and noticed that it had an economy in it. As a joke, he decided to "analyze" this economy as if it were real. Carefully (if in full irony) collecting statistics from the EverQuest economy, Castronova found to his astonishment that it was worth several hundred million dollars a year in terms of gross production value. He set the joke aside and started studying online economies for real. Castronova's presentation at TEDxBloomington, and his work as a whole, is strongly motivated by Tolkien's idea that myths are used to express true things ...