The Building Blocks of Life: A Minecraft Colloquium
February 13th, 2015, Concordia University
This one-day colloquium is geared towards researchers studying the video game Minecraft (Mojang, 2009). Because of its open-ended format, multiple play styles, creative possibilities, and even its practical uses in education and architectural planning, Minecraft has attracted a huge and diverse audience. The game has also has proven to be an extremely rich source of scholarly engagement, and its possibilities for research are only in the first stages.
This colloquium seeks to bring together ideas for papers, presentations and panels as diverse as the possibilities within Minecraft itself. We invite proposals from a range of disciplines and perspectives, including game studies, research/creation, fine arts, education and pedagogy, computer science, and digital humanities, and encourage submissions that approach the game from uncommon and unexpected angles.
Concordia University, EV building 11.705
1515 St. Catherine St. West
Friday, February 13th, Concordia University
8:30 – coffee
9:00-10:30 Measuring Reality: Minecraft and the Materiality of Code
Nic Watson, “Source vs. Science! How players decode Minecraft”
Bart Simon, “Close To The Code, Down By The River”
David Murphy, “Tenuous Freedom: Decoding Minecraft’s Open Development”
10:45-12:15 Summoning Elementals: Mods, Magic and Breaking Space-time
Darren Wershler “Minecraft and the Management of Light”
Natalie Zina Walschots, “Dungeon Building: Minecraft and the Construction of Horror”
Isaac Lenhart, “Thaumcraft: Minecraft and the System of Magic”
12:30-1:30 – Lunch
1:30-3:00 Crafting Pedagogies and Practices
Rainforest Scully-Blaker, “Mobile Methods in Virtual Space”
Josef Nguyen, “Crafting Islands and Creativity”
Kathryn E. Ringland, “Autcraft: Minecraft and Its Many Uses: Minecraft as an Assistive Technology”
Saeed Afzal, Sean Gallagher, Gersande La Flèche, & Marie-Christine Lavoie, “Big Fried Chicken: Close Examinations of the Mundane in Multiplayer Minecraft”
3:30-4:30 Your Place or Minecraft?
Screening of Gina Haraszti’s documentary on the mLab Minecraft server, followed by discussion.
4:30-5:00 – Lab visit. Tours of Concordia Minecraft servers and final meetings
5:00 – adjourned
This colloquium is a collaboration between the IMMERSe Research Network, the Concordia Research Centre for Technoculture Art and Games (TAG), Hexagram and The Ampersand lab of the Concordia Media History Research Centre (MHRC).