Week 715

What’s this? I’m blogging about my work on a weekly basis – a simple way to track and archive whatever it is I spend my time on.

Two big projects wrapped up last week.

The first was the one-off magazine I translated and edited for TNO, about crisis communication, learning, social media and serious gaming. I slammed almost 20.000 words into shape for this and learned a lot about TNO’s research. Win!

The second was The Spiral. On Friday I visited the end event of this pan-European TV show meets Alternate Reality Game in the Van Abbe Museum in Eindhoven, where one of six paintings was returned. Snippets of such ‘return events’ around Europe were shown in the last TV episode on Sunday.

Last week my blog posts on episode 3 and episode 4 were published, as well as an interview I did with creator Peter de Maegd. Also, on Tuesday I did a Spiral podcast with Piet Dijkstra, and on Wednesday I did a 5-minute, 20-slide Spiral presentation at Ignite.

The Spiral is not entirely over for me yet, as I want to write a last blog post to wrap everything up and give some final thoughts and recommendations.

During the week, I worked on two articles for nrc.next, which appeared on Friday’s Tech spread.

The first was a sneak preview of Indigo, the showcase of Dutch games held last weekend. I picked six games that show off the broadness of the selection, including pillow, sweater and cello games. The article will be syndicated in NRC Handelsblad today as a retrospective, with a new introduction I wrote after attending the event.

The second was a Next Level column about the (destructive) play element of riots, induced by the party turned chaos in the normally quiet town of Haren a week before. This was one of those pieces where I was writing slightly above my level, that ultimately make me a better writer and thinker. It took a lot of work, as well as advice from Kars Alfrink, Alper Çuğun, Arjen de Jong and David Nieborg, but it turned out quite well. I published the column on Bashers.nl, too.

It seems like big changes may be coming to nrc.next: editor-in-chief Rob Wijnberg was replaced and big NRC chief Peter Vandermeersch announced a ‘newsier’ course for the paper. We’ll see what this means for the games coverage. For now, I’m just sad about the end of Wijnberg’s tenure: I like that guy, as well as his writing and ideas for the 21st century newspaper.

There’s one good aspect to his exit: quite a few people, including some I didn’t even know read nrc.next, let alone have an opinion about its editorial choices, came up to tell me they loved Wijnberg’s direction and are angry/puzzled/sad to see him leave.

Oh! On Friday I got my iPhone 5. It’s nice: fast, bright, light, thin. However, it’s ludicrous how many random strangers harrassed me about it. “Hey, is that the new one? Did you stand in line? Did the aluminium back scratch yet? Did you get lost in the new Maps?” I felt a little bit embarrassed. And no, I didn’t stand in line, I got it delivered at my doorstep. They don’t let cranky people like me stand in line.