Fah Who Foraze, Ludum Dare!

For years, I’ve been hearing about the Ludum Dare, a long-running make-a-game-in-48-hours competition. I’ve created some computer games in a month or less, and some interesting software in about a weekend. But a complete, playable, fun game in 48 hours is an intriguing challenge – plausible, but not easy.

The current Ludum Dare starts in half an hour, and hey, I’ve got some free time this weekend….

Nothing motivates like an arbitrary, voluntarily-adopted deadline shared by a bunch of strangers, so this year I’m in.

(As for the name, I knew “Ludum” referred to games, like “ludic”, a word ludologists throw around these days. But I thought the Ludum Dare was, you know, a dare!  And it is, but apparently the name is all latin, a motto: “to give a game”. So it really should be pronounced…um…I’m no latin expert, but my understanding is that it’s more like Darla without the L.)

Executive Summaries Are Great

Executive summaries are great!

  • Most good ideas can be summarized in twenty-five words or less.
  • Many non-fiction books are padded with excess verbiage. Reading a good summary or in-depth review of a book can be as useful as reading the book itself.
  • There are periodicals that review and/or summarize popular books – a valuable resource worth exploring.
  • Can’t find a summary of a book? Try reading the last paragraph of each chapter. Make your own summary for later reference – try to express each chapter as one paragraph, or one sentence.
  • Summaries aren’t a good replacement for fiction, which is about the journey, not just the destination. But they can deepen your understanding of a work after reading it.