Stranger In An Even Stranger Land - blog by Gurdur


A blog of random jottings on events, science, renfairs, travel, reading, music, humanism, religion, atheism, and even the odd spot of gardening.


The gamification of human society and control: Modelling markets, protest, regulation, cooperation, planning and freedom

Posted 11-Dec-2014 at 03:06 PM (15:06) by Gurdur (Stranger In An Even Stranger Land)
Updated 11-Dec-2014 at 05:28 PM (17:28) by Gurdur

Gamification of human society has gone on a lot longer than you might think. There is the ancient game of chess, which came to to the West via Persia (checkmate, IIRC, comes from shah-mak, meaning death of the Shah). Chess, which has Chinese (象棋, XiÓngqÝ) and Japanese (将棋, shōgi) forms as well, models both human society and ritualized warfare. Much more ancient is the game of Go ( 囲碁, igo). The game of course models conflict, though not with as much...
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Upcoming meet-ups and possibilities for such

Posted 25-Sep-2012 at 06:50 PM (18:50) by Gurdur (Stranger In An Even Stranger Land)
Updated 25-Sep-2012 at 07:39 PM (19:39) by Gurdur

Taking things in chronological order:

There looks to be a good chance for a tweet-up in Berlin, say Thursday 11 October or Friday 12. Would anyone in Berlin like a meet-up on one of those days?

There seems to be a chance for a meet-up on Saturday or Sunday, 13 or 14 October, at the Weinlesefest in Neustadt an der Weinstra▀e (Germany). I'm not sure if this is happening, but it may.

Then I will make a real effort to get down south to the Erlangen/Nuernberg...
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Rating: 3 votes, 5.00 average.

"No more Love-Parades": the Duisburg tragedy, Germany

Posted 01-Aug-2010 at 07:34 PM (19:34) by Gurdur (Stranger In An Even Stranger Land)
Updated 02-Aug-2010 at 12:02 PM (12:02) by Gurdur

By now, most will know about the tragedy in Duisburg, Germany, where 21 people died at the Love-Parade as a result of a crush in one ramp and the overpass tunnel to which it led, on the evening of Saturday last week, 24 July 2008. The Wikipedia link for Love Parade Love Parade (German: Loveparade) is a techno-dance street festival/parade that happened first in 1989 in Berlin, Germany, and then held in Germany annually, from 1989 to 2003 in Berlin, and then from 2006 to 2010 in the Ruhr Valley area. In 2004 and 2005 the planned...
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Views 4039 Comments 5 Gurdur is offline
Rating: 3 votes, 5.00 average.

A loosely translated summary of the German Jesuit sexual child-abuse report

Posted 15-Jun-2010 at 02:53 PM (14:53) by Gurdur (Stranger In An Even Stranger Land)
Updated 17-Jun-2010 at 07:37 AM (07:37) by Gurdur

With thanks to Ruth Gledhill and The Times for making its existence publicised initially, and full credit to the German branch of the Jesuits for being proactive in uncovering such sexual child-abuse, but I cannot find any in-depth translation into English in any of the English-speaking media of the now completed and released report by Ursula Raue, so I am going to do a partial translation of the actual findings of that report released 27th May 2010 here myself, of which I have blogged in very short note beforehand....
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Cleaning out the cesspool: the Jesuits in Germany determined to make a clean sweep, report coming out tomorrow on sexual abuse of children in Germany by Jesuit priests and teachers

Posted 27-May-2010 at 10:18 PM (22:18) by Gurdur (Stranger In An Even Stranger Land)
Updated 15-Jun-2010 at 03:00 PM (15:00) by Gurdur

Earlier this year, in response to the child-abuse scandals in the Roman Catholic church begging to surface, the Jesuits in Germany at least started to make a clean sweep -- while others in the Catholic church hierarchy still tried and try the usual evasions and powerplays. For example, Cardinal Brady refuses to step down from his postion in Ireland, even though he was directly part of a cover-up of child-abuse, a cover-up in 1975 forcing children to sign vows of silence over cases of abuse by paedophile priest Father Brendan Smyth,...
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