Friday, February 22, 2008

The Addictiveness of Systemic Thought, Part Deux

I never arrived at the conclusion of the previous post, which was the reason I felt inspired to write in the first place. That happens a lot here.

A video game appeals to the "metaphysics of presence." What this means is that a video game presupposes that "presences" are better, always and everywhere, than "absences" - time exists only to be filled with doing, with making, with achieving, with sights, sounds, objects, light (not darkness), music (not silence), and so on. And we are willing to participate in this myth because it elevates our passions and tickles the appetite for energy, vibration, stimulation, "hyper-reality." Indeed, video games are not unique in this; the same could be said of any activity involving an electronic screen. But games are especially filled with "presences": not only the presences of audio-visual stimulation available through televsion, nor only the "presences" of the self-determined, self-customized reality of the Internet, but a finely structured drama and play of both kinds of presences against each other. It is a dialectic between My presence and the Other presence; presence squared.

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