Last Thursday I attended the Technoraty Party in their swank new location close to the ballpark. Swank only in comparison to their old funky office that was warm in the summer cold in the night and loud during the day because of the construction going on at third street. I met Tantek Celik their and told him about the Accelerating Change 2004 and that Will Wright will talk about how he approached the design of landscapes in The Sims 2.
By the way Will is nominated for the Visionary of the Year prize by the Billboard Magazine for his work on the game. Rightly so, they have chartered new ground in integrating Artificial Intelligence in the design of the game. The Not so simple Life article in the Mercury News the other day wrote:
What's remarkable about this computer game, being released worldwide Tuesday , is that the domestic drama is not scripted. The characters act the way they do because that is what naturally unfolds. It's a quality dubbed ``emergence,'' based on the history of the characters' relationships and their own artificial, or preprogrammed, intelligence.
Electronic Arts, which is publishing the sequel to the bestselling ``The Sims,'' believes this leap forward in artificial intelligence is what will keep gamers by the millions entranced with their virtual Sims. ...
``It brings the game into a more dramatic space,'' says Will Wright
Tantek remarked something interesting. At the moment all this MMOG are living on their own little islands. Tools are needed to build your own Online World. API and standards should be defined for interoperability, so I can visit yours and you mine.. The one who figures that out will eat the other's lunches and Technorati tools would help with the finding and connecting of these do it yourself online worlds. If you look at evolution regarding finding and creating connections we are only at the stage of may be amoebas soon there will be multi-cell organisms and off we go. For sure these standards and interoperability are no trivial problems and currently not in the interest of the game designers.
I am curious what the experts will say to that suggestion at AC2004. For example Cory Ondrejka VP of product development from Linden Labs the creators of Second Life. The great thing with that game is that it gives the player the tools to create their own world. Don't know how sophisticated these tools are, but in principle the limit of Second Life's growth is only the imagination of their players and the size of their servers.