Sunday, April 01, 2007

Lack of Looping and its Effect on our Everyday Lives

In Lev Manovich's text, "The New Temporality: The Loop as a Narrative Engine,
Manovich states that our society's media development is largely characterized by "loops". These loops define how certain things like video games develop their programming. However, Manovich points out that our society is moving farther and farther away from this looping and repetitive aspect to gaming. Variety and lack of repetition are now the keys to success in the gaming world. Cutting edge graphics and virtual reality settings allow the gamer to appear to actually be in the game defining his or her own future. We know longer get pleasure from simple repetitions of code within video game programing and we now prefer more complex code within the programing to make the game more "real".
In making the game more "real", Manovich makes the argument that we are striving towards individualism. I would have to say that I agree with Manovich's statement. Based on my own personal experience, video gamers these days need the cutting edge graphics and lack of looping to make the game interesting. We are no longer content with the simple games like Mario or Sonic the Hedgehog from the early 90's. Now games like Halo and virtual reality sports games like FIFA Soccer are letting kids feel like they are in the game. People can act in their own way within the gaming system and are no longer bound to the same simple codes of the game. An argument can be made as to whether or no this movement towards individualism is transcending to our lives everyday. Are our actions within video games defining the way we act in life? I believe in some cases this is true. The growth of video games has grown enough to fact that some kids spend so much time within the gaming world that they dont know how to act in real life so they act like they do in video games in an individualistic way. A question for the future is whether or not the lack of looping within every kind of media will have a serious effect on the social characteristics of civilization.



Blogger Felix Wong said...

Continuing with the idea of video games, I do remember a time when much of the game was "looped" like what Manovich had said in his article. But nowadays, games are being "rendered" real time. The level of technology has increased SO much in the past few years. Now, we have quad core processors that allow us to process 4x as much data, video cards with insane amount of memory and gpu speeds, PCI cards dedicated alone to rendering the physics in a game. Everything now has become "interactive" and things are no longer needed to be looped.

4/02/2007 10:17 AM  
Blogger Alex K said...

Although games seem to rely less and less on looping in order to intrigue people and make them interested in the game - they still heavily use looping while creating such an illusion. I think Manovich was arguing that although looping is no longer used in traditional sense, the old problems it solved evolved and changed as we created new technology - which created a new need for the same fundamental usage of looping. As you say, gaming no longer presents itself as being repetitive, but the code itself relies heavily on looping in order to solve, for example, a problem with the memory contraint. But appending together different segments of loops in various orders, we don't detect the repetition.

4/07/2007 11:10 PM  

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