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3:32pm on Friday, 4th April, 2014:

Developing Player Types


In among the old talks I found that I'd delivered from transparencies, I found one that wasn't even printed — it was handwritten in Lumocolor water-soluble ink. I won't show you all 10 slides, as the printed ones I showed earlier in the week from another talk didn't exactly excite anyone, and my handwriting is so bad that mere sight of it will put people off trying to read it. However, I will show this one part of a slide as it's a little interesting:

It's the Player Types graph, but an early version. I have the player suits, but the labels on the y-axis are different: active/passive rather than active/interactive. The latter didn't come about until the peer review of the 1996 paper.

I gave the talk to the Cambridge University Computer Society in November 1992. I know the date because the town centre was crowded with gaggles of teenage girls attending a Take That concert at the Corn Exchange, and a quick trip to Google told me the date. By this time, I was using the Player Types model in my own analysis of virtual worlds, but knew I had more to do. I almost didn't try to get the original paper published as I was aware of its inadequacies (which were addressed by the 8-type model).

Some things never change, though:

No, we didn't call the MUGs then either, that was rather the point. Oh, and the "one chap in Japan" was Joi Ito, now head of MIT's Media Laboratory.

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Copyright © 2014 Richard Bartle (richard@mud.co.uk).