The refreshing part of getting software requirements from a child is there's no tedious debate about implementation details, timelines, and business value. "The cowboy is only on level 2 and level 4 because his friend is the mosquitto." OK, whatever, nonsense but perhaps no more ridiculous than Pac Man.
Love it. Break down Super Mario Bros. sometime. "So there's this guy, he's a plumber and has a huge mustache, he runs left to right and jumps on enemy mushrooms, but if he eats different ones (which he gets by hitting floating blocks with question marks on them) he gets bigger. Eating flowers lets him shoot fireballs, which kills anything that doesn't have a shell, except for the hammer brothers and Bowser. When he eats stars (that he's extracted out of the more floating question mark blocks) he becomes invincible for a short period of time. At the end of every level he sees how high up a flag pole he can jump. Oh and there's a princess you are saving or something who's always in a different castle then the one you are in. Every living thing in the world is pretty much made of poison since you die as soon as you touch pretty much anything. Oh, and some turtles can fly."
Goombas are actually chestnuts.
Edit: Kinda obvious, but here's the link http://www.humblebundle.com/ (only 4 hours to go!)
That would be fun! :)
Anyone into distributed systems research?
http://www.modrobotics.com/ is the one that I could find quickish.
Such a fantastic present. And it makes you wonder if there is some untapped potential in there.
At least that's a lot of why I like indie games. They often do awesome things. They usually don't just develop games to make money, but to make people happy. I think that's a lot about why they are more creative and not just another implementation of the same boring game with better graphics.
This issue wouldn't occur if they coded his map for him as an independent modder's map - but a big part of the coolness of this gift is that it's part of the official game. (I mean, when I was 7, such a gift would be like becoming a god - legal issues, even money, would only diminish that).
/sick of negotiating licenses for my code
But I could not stop thinking about how many extraordinary coincidences would be required for this to happen to a little girl.
Would her parents have encouraged her relationship with video games?
Would her friends support it?
Is it even physically possible to make an "Edge" level with the new "girl" Legos?
These are the tiny little experiences that turn little boys from future Biologists into future Computer Scientists.
By the time those differences matter more, I hope to have her self-confidence to the point where she'll kick those boys' butts.
Especially if you are concerned about the image.
However, come xmas and birthdays, the family continues to shower them with traditional girl toys (dolls, stuffed animals, kitchen sets, pink toys, pink blocks, pink legos). Whenever she opens a present, and it's pink, my stomach churns. It's almost to the point where you feel like giving in. I certainly wouldn't take away their girl toys that they enjoy, simply for the sake of gender. They should be free to play with what they choose. I just wish society (the older generation and especially marketers), would be less insistent on specific gender toys.
Certainly, as she grows, the overriding influence of her parents declines, but for a long time parents can be the primary driver in what a child determines to be appropriate.
Saying that "many extraordinary coincidences" are required for a little girl to like a puzzle game or legos or whatever else is entirely hyperbolic. All it takes is parents who encourage that behavior.
Or just allow for her parents to allow it?
Our 2yo wanted a tea-set for christmas. The most non-barbified one we could find (ie no latent advertising and as non-pink as possible, I really hate lurid pink ... except that one shirt ...) so we got him the cherry red set with the pink bows.
Am I encouraging him to develop a liking for picnics and fancy tea-ware? Not particularly. That's just what he wanted.
Oh there I go wittering again ...
It's all in neutral colours too.
Above that, it will really spark this young man's creative mind. For his eighth birthday get him a laptop, and get him programming.
Sounds like a really awesome kid. You are one lucky Dad.
(disclaimer: I'm not at all insinuating that they did it for the press. I just like that a good action is being rewarded.)