Children look at wrapped gifts on the ground as a man dressed as Santa Claus (not pictured) climbs a building to hang them during a ceremony in the northern Italian ski resort of Selva Di Val Gardena December 8, 2007.   REUTERS/Alessandro Bianchi   (ITALY) - RTX4J9A

The Deeper Meaning of Black Friday

Giving a gift is an act of competition as much as generosity.

Get $100 off the iPad Air 2 at Best Buy. Save $50 on the Xbox One Gears of War Bundle plus get a $60 Target Gift Card. At Walmart, one can buy a Samsung Smart HDTV for under $200. Under $200! These are the marks of Black Friday, the annual bacchanal for consumer excess. And excess, it is normally thought,… read more

PlayStation 4: A Videogame Console

Today, the most novel feature of new technology is ordinariness.

The logo for the Dutch videogame studio Guerrilla Games is an object lesson in mixed metaphor: an orange “G” contorted into the chevron shape of a military rank insignia. Guerrilla insurgencies are often organized and sometimes even state-based, but they are hardly represented by the formal emblem of command and control military structure. Guerrilla warfare is irregular, asymmetrical, and lithe.… read more

“Hundreds” Is the Haute Couture of Video Games

A new multi-touch puzzle game for the iPad and iPhone is about form, not function—and it's about to become a status symbol.

Some media exists for you to “consume”: to read, to watch, to play. Even though a book, television show, or video game isn’t destroyed by this encounter like a cheesesteak or a firework might be, the creative work is meant to be made a part of ourselves. To transform us in some way. But other forms of media don’t aspire… read more



A game art installation at MOCA Jacksonville and on the Apple App Store

Is glory and achievement something you earn, or something you buy? Is it more right (or more righteous) to ascend to a rank or office on the merits of your actions than on the influence of your connections, or the sway of your bank account? For that matter, which offices are worth earning (or buying) in the first place? Read… read more

Coming Soon: Simony

A teaser for my latest game

I’ve been quiet lately because I’ve been working like a madman to complete my latest game, a commission in the Museum of Contemporary Art Jacksonville’s Project Atrium series. The game takes the form of an installation that will run at the MOCA from November 17, 2012 through March 10, 2013. But don’t worry if you can’t get to Florida—a version… read more

The Bulldog and the Pegasus

Originally published as an opinion piece at Gamasutra In Greek mythology, Bellerophon is the hero who tamed the Pegasus. He used the winged horse as a mount to defeat the Chimaera, a monster with the heads of a lion, goat, and snake that breathed fire and devoured villagers. Bellerophon’s many heroic deeds were widely praised, and his subjects adored him.… read more

Review of Bone’s Restaurant

By my nine year-old

It’s been a while since my daughter has offered her opinion in writing on matters of contemporary culture. No doubt you remember her reviews of TRON: Legacy, recording artist Madeline’s album White Flag, and Werner Herzog’s Cave of Forgotten Dreams. And if you do, you may have noticed a pattern of, well, mild contempt. Thus I am happy to publish… read more

If the reader clicks the word “cow” then the cows will come.

Wired's online cow clicking game about Cow Clicker

As promised, I’m now linking the iPad and web versions of Wired‘s story on Cow Clicker. There are some interesting features of each. The iPad edition features clickable cows that moo, but the online version of the story really, uhm, sets the moood… it includes a complete Cow Clicker-themed cow clicking game with Facebook integration. So, go try that out.… read more

The Curse of Cow Clicker

In this month's Wired Magazine

Jason Tanz wrote a fantastic feature for the January 2012 issue of Wired about me and Cow Clicker. The feature includes, to use Levi‘s words, a centerfold of me, on a fence, in a pasture, with a cow (see below). The print issue is on newsstands now, with a web and iPad version coming soon. Look out for those, as… read more

The Imperative

A strange review of Alphonso Lingis's 1998 book

Jean Georges is one of four Michelin Three Star restaurants in New York city. It’s very French, so French that you’re just as likely to hear the language spoken as English. That and the environment in the main dining room—a single, enormous, plush chamber on the ground floor of the Trump International Hotel—make the place feel monarchal and exotic. The… read more