I talk the business of toys and pop culture, and what goes into making a documentary series about their history, with The Toys That Made Us producer/director Brian Volk-Weiss. Brian has lots to say about the hidden world behind toys and popular
An experimental piece on a travel experience of mine last year. I went to Singapore for a week with my fiancée in July and was surprised to find lots of playful touches, despite — or maybe because of — the reputation it has for law and order. A
I'm back! Well, partly. New episodes are on the way, and in the meantime I thought you might enjoy this excerpt from an interview I conducted a couple of years ago about professional Minecraft building (i.e., people getting paid to build elabor
Geographer Chris Perkins, co-author of the book Playful Mapping in the Digital Age, shares his love of maps and helps me explore the deep connection between mapping and play.
Thanks to my awesome Patreon backers for covering my running costs a
In celebration of the release of a Mac version of the award-winning app Earth Primer — a science book for playful people — I thought it'd be nice to dig out the segment I did with its creator, Chaim Gingold, back in episode 1, and clean it up f
On the Nascondino World Championship, a yearly hide and seek tournament that attracts teams from all around the globe. I talked to Alan Jones, the co-captain of the Australian team, the Nascondingos, and Giorgio Moratti, one of the organisers o
Life after If Monks Had Macs aka What Brian Thomas did next; ruminations on photography and the politics of art and play. (Based on an interview conducted in early January 2017.)
If Monks Had Macs
It all started with a Macintosh ad: 'You too can be a knowledge worker.' This is the story of Brian Thomas' 15-year odyssey at the helm of one of the strangest pieces of multimedia software ever created — If Monks Had Macs.
You can learn more
I know I said I'd have a new episode out in February, and now we're in the second half of March. There's a reason for that.
The short version is that I'm waiting to publish the new episode until after I sort out a problem with iTunes. Because
We're back! So sorry it took so long. Regular service (new episodes every 4-6 weeks) will now resume.
On the eve of the Industrial Revolution and the morn of the English Civil War, one man reinvented educational thought.
Special thanks to my
When Alex Boz dug his Commodore 64 out of storage, he was transported instantly back to his childhood, and that set him on the path to rediscover a lost passion and find a community he could call home.
Thank you to everyone who's donated via P
How brothers Rand and Robyn Miller built worlds from a manhole. This is the story of the beginning of Cyan, the company that went on to develop Myst — the all-time top-selling adventure game and one of the most influential videogames ever made.
I love SimCity. It's a wonderful simulation of the urban machinery around us, and a playground for messing with our cities. But it turns out the original game, at least, doesn't actually work the way it seems.
Music by Three Chain Links, Jesse
On Portuguese writer Fernando Pessoa and the playful freedom of creating as someone else — someone distinct, and unique, but non-existent. (Pessoa wrote under hundreds of names, all of which belonged to people he called "heteronyms," or "non-ex
Sometimes we don't realise that we need saving. Sometimes it's fun to pretend we do. For one woman, pretending made all the difference. This is the story of how one middle-aged woman relearned to play while residing in Second Life, and of the S
[Audio levels should be fixed now. Sorry about that.]
A devoted wrestling fan hacks and modifies an old Nintendo 64 game called WWF No Mercy to help deal with the pain of his shattered dream, and gets more out of it than he'd bargained for
For the first episode of Ludiphilia I've gathered two stories about learning by playing systems-driven games. One is about the educational value of Minecraft, and the other is about a guy who studies something he calls play design and who devel
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