The Psychology of Video Game Avatars Part 2

This kind of “first behavior, then attitude” effect has been widely replicated in other studies. In one, researchers hooked male participants up to a monitor that beeped in time with their heart rates while they perused centerfolds from Playboy magazine.4 When the researchers used their control over the machine to fake an accelerated heartbeat, subjects decided that they must have a thing for the particular model they were viewing. The effect was even still there two months later when subjects were invited back.

So first we perceive what we look like or what we’re doing, and then we draw conclusions about our attitudes and identity. And it turns out that we may continue to act in line with that presumed identity. In fact, Yee started his career by taking the precepts of social identity theory and using them to understand how people behave depending on the virtual avatars they assume. In one of his earliest experiments,5 Yee had subjects don a head-mounted display that let them perceive and move around in a simple virtual environment. There

The Psychology of Video Game Avatars Part 1

When each of us gets up in the morning, we start messing with what might as well be avatar customization tools to change our appearance. We decide what clothes and jewelry to wear. We decide which hairs to shave and which hairs to style. Some of us occasionally make more radical alterations, such as getting tattoos, piercing various dangly bits with metal, or even going in for cosmetic surgery. In real life, though, we’re often limited in the changes we can make to appear taller or more prosperous. Videogames and virtual realities, on the other hand, are more flexible.

Researchers have been studying the effects our appearance has on how other people react to us for a long time, but they’ve also started to seriously study the psychology of our video game avatars. At first they used models of human behaviour relevant to appearances in real space, but they have gradually built up new concepts to understand how people behave when they adopt different types of in-game form. Why do we choose the avatars that we do? How do different

Social Dancing – Art or Sport?

Recognizing that true objectivity for one’s passion and profession is impossible. I offer here my admittedly biased views on the status of social dancing. The status I refer to is not the amount, quality or style of dancing, but the valuation and classification of dancing in the minds of the public and the establishment.

Social dancing (Ballroom, Latin or Country & Western) is variously classified by its proponents as a hobby or pastime, leisure recreation or entertainment, an art form, or a sport. Dancers generally accept that “pastime” (def – any activity that makes time pass agreeably) or “recreation” (def – a means or activity to refresh one’s body or mind) are apt descriptions, but hold firm in the belief that “art” and/or “sport” are more comprehensive and accurate descriptors.

“Art” is defined as “the quality, production, expression or realm of what is beautiful – a field, genre, or category of this realm – a branch of study, especially one of the fine arts”. The last phrase introduces the crux of the difficulties for social dancing. I

Book Recommendations for all Types of Readers

If you’re looking for some books to put on your Christmas list, I’m here to help.

If you’re looking for books with some diversity to sink your teeth into, check out this list of 12 books that you probably didn’t know featured LGBQTA characters, from the Barnes & Noble Teen Blog.

The blog also presented a list of five suggestions for people who love books about boarding schools, as well as this list of seven characters having terrible school experiences.  Going Geek by Charlotte Huang makes an appearance on both lists, but the other selections are all unique.  And none of the books from these lists appear in the blog’s post about sixteen books that people should read before they start high school.

The Barnes & Noble Teen blog also attempted to match YA books with a readers’ favourite classic kids’ book.  I might end up reversing the concept, since I’ve read a number of the recommended YA books but none of the kids’ classic books.

Penguin Teen offers up a couple of lists for

Free Ways to Entertain Yourself During a Flight Delay

My waiting periods at the airport, any airport, are always longer than average. Apparently, I look like I’m from one of those bomb-making countries. As a result, I always have to get to the airport extra early so I have ample time for all my belongings to be swabbed for explosive residue, get sniffed by the drug dog, and receive a sexy, stand-up massage from gate security. I have spent, conservatively, four months of my life waiting in airports.

Thankfully, airports now provide a host of activities to help passengers enjoy their wait. For example, at the Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport in Mumbai, passengers can get a Yellow Fever vaccination. Traveling science buffs can watch a planetarium show at Tokyo’s Haneda Airport. Incheon Airport outside Seoul boasts, amongst other things, teeth whitening services, a synthetic ice skating rink, and a movie theater.

Airports can be super fun if you are super rich. Alas, I am not. Fortunately, with a little courage and creativity, airports can also be super fun if you are super poor. There are a number of totally free activities that can be done in any airport.

1. Have a Conversation


Best New Songs to Listen to in January

2017 is coming, bringing with it a bunch of new tunes to add to your playlist. New albums are on the way from The xx, psych rockers The Flaming Lips, and former America’s Got Talent finalist Kehlani.

In addition to those heavy hitters, there are plenty of new albums from music-makers who deserve to be in heavy rotation. Among these are Tift Merritt, High Up, and The Modern Savage—all of whom are premiering brand new songs with us today.

Here are songs you’ll be listening to all January long.

Kehlani ft. Little Simz, “Table”

There’s a lot of buzz surrounding R&B up-and-comer Kehlani thanks to her mixtapes, Cloud 19 and You Should Be Herewhich featured a collaboration with Chance the Rapper, searing track “CRZY,” and her contribution to the Suicide Squad soundtrack, “Gangsta.” She is set to finally release her debut album, SweetSexySavage, on January 27 and fans can hardly wait—the first single, “Distraction,” racked up two million views on YouTube in its first day online. On “Table,” she teams up with Little Simz to issue a manifesto on self-worth, an important milestone for

Smart Home Entertainment Gadgets For Making Your TV Hours More Fun

The average American watches more than five hours of live television every day. When you spend that many hours in something, it’s necessary to make that side of your life more entertaining. In this case, how about going for smart home entertainment gadgets instead of the television screens you have been using for years. Take a look:

Raumfeld Wireless Streaming Sounddeck

Accompany your 4K movies and shows with incredible sound with the Raumfeld Wireless Streaming Sounddeck. The all-in-one Wi-Fi soundbase easily connects to and supports your TVto give you instant access to mind-blowing content. Equipped with six high-end drivers, two down fire subwoofers, and an integrated 280-Watt class D amplifier, the Raumfeld Wireless Streaming Sounddeck produces powerful and clear audio like you’ve never heard before with nuanced sound even in your favorite shows, movies, and music.

LeEco 85-inch 4K TV

The LeEco uMax85 is awe-inspiring both regarding its staggering 7+ foot screen size and its lineup of class-leading technologies including Dolby Vision, quad-core CPU and GPU, Harman Kardon audio, and much more. Even with a total screen

10 Movies Worth the Haul to the Multiplex in January 2017

Most moviegoers will spend January catching up on the numerous high-profile releases that came out in December. Nonetheless, if the first month of 2017 will afford moviegoers a chance to see some award-season hopefuls before the Oscars arrive in February, genre aficionados will also be satisfied with the latest installments in two action-heavy sci-fi/horror franchises starring ass-kicking heroines.

Underworld: Blood Wars (January 6)

Kate Beckinsale continues to prove that no one looks better slaying monsters while decked out in a black latex suit in this, the fifth chapter in the long-running franchise (and fourth starring the actress) about the war between vampires and werewolves.

Patriots Day (January 13 in wide release)

Mark Wahlberg finds himself at the center of the hunt for the Boston Marathon Bombing culprits in this based-on-recent-events thriller from director Peter Berg (who just teamed up with Wahlberg on Deepwater Horizon).

Live by Night (January 13 in wide release)

For his directorial follow-up to Best Picture winner Argo, Ben Affleck assumes the guise of a gangster

How To Protect Yourself (And Your Gadgets) From A Thunderstorm

A huge electrical storm is currently raging across Sydney and other parts of NSW. If you’re in the thick of it, here are some tips to ensure you and your valuable electronics survive unscathed.

Severe thunderstorms are brewing on the weather radar across much of Sydney and surrounding districts. Even if you’re safely ensconced indoors, an unlucky lightning strike could still destroy parts of your property, including any gadgets you have plugged into a wall outlet. So what to do?

Some of the simplest tips are the most important: when an electrical storm starts brewing, you’re at higher risk for power surges and power outages, so make sure your electronics are plugged into a good surge protector. If it starts to get really bad, you may consider unplugging your devices altogether.

You can also take the process a step further and install a house-wide surge protector at your electric service panel. It’s the single point where your power enters your home, so it’s a great place for a surge protector that will protect all of the circuits and devices in your home. Granted you’ll have to check on it after the storm to make sure

Cheap Ways to Entertain Yourself At Home

Sometimes we find ourselves trapped in our homes, completely at a loss for how to use our time. Maybe we feel that we have too many options to even begin to pin one down, or maybe we feel that we have too few due to a lack of time or resources. The fact of the matter is there are a great many number of ways we can entertain ourselves at home for free or on a budget. Having fun does not necessarily mean forking over tons of money. Here are is a creative list of ideas for you  have a good time without leaving your house.

  1. Watch a program on Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, etc.
  2. Read a new book. Half of the fun of reading a new book is finding it. eReaders are a great resource for browsing scores of contemporary titles, as well as free classics, such as Tales of the Brothers Grimm.
  3. Reread an old book.
  4. Watch YouTube animal videos.
  5. Exercise (It’s free and it’s good for you).
  6. Turn to Pinterest for D.I.Y. and inspired upcycling ideas.
  7. Play your favorite music and get up and dance. Tom Cruise did it in Risky Business.
  8. Write reviews for your Amazon purchases. It’s oddly addictive

Playing Games for Entertain Yourself

Is your internet down? Are you grounded? Maybe you just want to detox from your computer and learn to live life in the real world. Don’t be afraid; people lived for thousands of years without the internet. Go back to the basics to have a good time.

Practice juggling. Get three apples, pears, balls or anything that you can toss around. Once you mastered juggling three of them, try going onto four. Mix in new patterns by throwing from behind your back or under your leg.

Play board games. Board games can be a great way to bond with other people. People who are successful in games like Chess and Go are typically considered highly intelligent. Mastery of these games can be a useful skill. There is a huge market in new board games, so you can always find something new.

Play card games. A deck of cards can be turned to a nearly infinite number of games. Consider games like Slapjack, Crazy Eights, and Play or Pay. Don’t forget classics like Blackjack or Poker.
Play Solitaire. Solitaire is unique in that it is one of

Staying Entertained at Home without a Computer

Is your internet down? Are you grounded? Maybe you just want to detox from your computer and learn to live life in the real world. Don’t be afraid; people lived for thousands of years without the internet. Go back to the basics to have a good time.

Listen to music. Novelty is an excellent cure for boredom, so try to listen to new things. Borrow someone else’s music. Turn on the radio. Use online streaming services to listen to random music that you have never heard before

Read a book. Find a book, a newspaper, or a magazine. Take the time to learn something more about the world or familiarize yourself with some famous literary characters. It might take you some time to get interested in the story, but often by the middle of the book you won’t be able to put it down.[2]

  • Consider bringing a book with you wherever you go.
  • Keep a list of books you want to read.
  • If you can get to the library, there should be enough choices for you to find something decent. If you don’t know what to read, ask the librarian for suggestions!

Ryan Adams – Prisoner

Ryan Adams is the heartbreak kid. With his 16th studio album, Prisoner, Adams outlines heartbreak and the confusing and frustrating roller coaster of divorce. Prisoner is a country, alt-rock lament for lost love. Adams combines both acoustic and electric guitar, but with softer electric intrusions than his other metal, punk rock tendencies. In 2015, Adams covered the entirety of 1989 by Taylor Swift, and has seemingly taken to her approach: Use an entire album to process one heartbreak and one person. It’s a depressing release, but Prisoner is a vulnerable, 12-track personal depiction of Adams’ real heartbreak.

The album opens with “Do You Still Love Me?” an energetic display, with drawn-out electric notes and sudden, low and enthusiastic notes on the drums and guitar, representing an attempt to rally and mend the relationship. Adams repeats “Do you still love me, babe” over and over, seeking to salvage the relationship, alluding to the denial stages in a breakup. A heavy electric solo in the latter half of the song may represent Adams’ realization that the love is broken beyond repair.

Adams instrumentally portrays the break-up process in “Haunted House”: simultaneously fast and slow-paced instruments express how sometimes

Various Artists – Archive Recordings 2016 Collection

Various Artists = Tiger’s Jaw + Eternal Summers + Joyce Manor

In what promises to be a tradition to look forward to every year, Archive Recordings has pulled together songs from 12 of the local bands and artists they have worked with in 2016 and complied them into an eclectic yet somehow cohesive sampler. There are a lot of genres represented here: ’00s emo á la Brand New represented by Westing, American Mouth and The Wasatch Front; an acoustic, borderline country sound represented by Vincent Draper, Dan Fletcher and Charles Ellsworth; and a pop-punk, Joyce Manor feel represented by Wicked Bears. Hell, there’s even a hip-hop track courtesy of Theta and a hardcore track from Communionist.

The common thread here is that all of the tracks sound exceptionally clean and well mixed, and all have a melancholic undertone that seems to mirror the changing of the seasons. Standout tracks for me personally include Dan Fletcher’s “Earth’s Most Beautiful Liars,” with Fletcher’s hauntingly beautiful lyricism. In a simple male/female duet with a hint of country, he sings, “Waking up the desert surrounded by fire / You and me, Earth’s most beautiful liars.” Noise track “Videodrome” from Brain

15 Movies to Watch in November 2016

November is upon us and in case you don’t believe us, just peep the leaves on the ground. Summer is now a faint memory and before we know it, the jingle bells of Christmas will be ringing. As we get into the swing of yet another blissful holiday season, we’re reminded of all the countless memories associated with this time of year. Family memories spent by the fire, kitchen extravaganzas preparing feasts, and of course, time spent enjoying our favorite movies with our loved ones.

This month’s batch of new movies will definitely be worthy of storage in your mental locker of fond memories. From emotional true stories of love, determination, and triumph, to feel-good animated fare that will wow the kids and make us grown-ups smile, there’s truly something for everyone this month.

1. Doctor Strange

Fall’s first Marvel Comic event won’t disappoint! Benedict Cumberbatch plays Stephen Strange, a famous neurosurgeon whose hands are destroyed in a tragic accident. He then sets out on a global quest to repair his most cherished tools, and discovers greater powers than he ever could have imagined. Tilda Swinton, Rachel McAdams, and

Tango Dancing in Paris

Oh, what a city!

I recently had the pleasure to revisit Paris, and the city is as splendid as you can imagine. The hustle and bustle of the people on the street, in the outdoor cafes, and on the metro, lends a vibrancy and variety that is approached in Calgary only during the Stampede.

As I rode the metro, suddenly the sound of an accordion filled the train, playing that familiar French melody, you know the one. I forget the name. Glancing around, there is some young guy by the door, tugging on the instrument, fingering the buttons. Welcome to France!

Also, I went out dancing, naturellement, and my experience was gratifying. They do it all over the world.

The purpose of my sojourn was work, but play is something you mustn’t miss here. Fortunately, I was able to minimize work to a few hours per day, and do the tourist thing. You know, the Eiffel Tower (excellence in structural engineering for the 1889 World’s Fair), and the Seine River cruise. Did you know that there is a miniature Statue of Liberty in front of one of the pillars on a bridge crossing the

Dance Music

There are many different kinds of dance music from Viennese waltzes to country two step, and everything in-between – fox trots, jive, swing, Latin, rock ‘n roll, polkas, line dancing – even different kinds of “dirty dancing”!

Different strokes for different folks! Most people enjoy dancing to different kinds of music during an evening, not just one type of music.

When choosing music for a dance evening, two things must be taken into consideration:

Age: Older dancers generally enjoy waltzes, fox trots, swing – with a few polkas, Latin, and rock ‘n roll thrown in. Young people generally enjoy rock ‘n roll and the newest dance crazes, with a few “slow tunes” so they can cuddle! The late 20’s, 30’s, and 40’s have variable likes and the “type of crowd” would have to be assessed.

Type of Crowd: A “country crowd” will enjoy two step, line dancing, country rock and a few polkas and waltzes/fox trots. Some groups would prefer jive, swing and Latin with a few changes thrown in. Some, like wedding crowds, require a little bit of everything so that all types and ages can enjoy some dancing. If you don’t know

Different Types of Entertainment

Before we consider various kinds of entertainment, first let’s define what entertainment is. Entertainment is any kind of activity that gives amusement for individuals in a passive way, other entertaining activities that involve participating are believed recreation or hobbies.

There are various kinds of entertainment for particular tastes, as an example we’ve cinema, theatre, sports, games, social dance, concert, comedy shows, animations, impressionists, clowns and the list continues on and on.

These type of entertainment can than be divided into groups in line with the age and interest of individuals being entertained. For instance we’ve child , adult , live action , public and corporate entertainment. In this short article we’ll offer a brief explanation to some of those forms.

Child Entertainment

Kids must be entertained and some times the entertainer or the entertainment agency needs to locate a balance between mental and physical activities. Clowns, puppets, pantomimes and cartoons often attract children, though adult will find it enjoyable too.

Adult Entertainment

Adult Entertainment many times relates to the sex industry, but this type of entertainment can not be related only with the sex industry and its branches. Adult Entertainment involves things

Reasons Why Entertainment is Important

We face a lot of hardships, frustrations, and disappointments every single day. With this blazingly fast pace, taking time out for yourself seems impossible or not as important compared to deadlines or projects. Add to that the fact that technology has made it easier for us to connect or keep in touch with other people within our own home, and you’ve got the perfect recipe for a shut-in.

After work, you simply plug in your headphones, and then head over home so that you can simply browse the net or watch TV. You won’t find the need to go out so you might skip out on physical contact or socializing totally. If you need to check-up on a friend, you can simply call them or send them a message. You can even have a video call if you’re up to it. This replaces a lot of social interactions for many people out there. However, man is still a social being whether he’s comfortable with it or not. To further motivate you, here are some of the reasons why you should go outside and socialize once in a while.

Mix Things Up

During workdays, your

How to be Successful in the Entertainment Industry

If you’re trying to get in the entertainment business and make it a career, you know that it is very difficult. There are also hundreds or thousands of other people aspiring to break in the same way as you. With the thousands of other people auditioning, it can be difficult to stand out from the rest, ensuring you get the role you’re auditioning for. A lot of people have it easy, using family connections or if their parents or friends recommend them personally. They’ll get more favorable responses, and that’s that. If you have to try it the hard way, don’t fret. Here are some things that you can do to be successful in the entertainment industry.

Be a “People” Person

To be an entertainer, you have to “sell” your skills in auditions. This is almost too similar to sales persons trying to get you to buy that toaster. In this case, you’re trying to get the message across that you’re fit for the job, you have the right skills, and you’re willing to go the extra mile for it. For you to convey that message, you need to make a connection to the casting