My name is danah boyd and I'm a Principal Researcher at Microsoft Research and the founder/president of Data & Society. Buzzwords in my world include: privacy, context, youth culture, social media, big data. I use this blog to express random thoughts about whatever I'm thinking.

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Street Talk and Jane McGonigal

It only took three years of hearing about Jane McGonigal before we were finally in the same room together at Intel’s Street Talk: An Urban Computing Happening. The conference was most magnificent because it was a gathering of some of my favorite researchers, all talking about what urban life meant, how pervasive technologies were evolving, gaming and other constructions of sociability in a digital world. Fun fun fun.

Yet, meeting Jane was just such a pleasure – it took far too long and too many misses. Everyone out there who was determined that we should meet was right-on. She’s got immense amounts of spunk and she puts together creative public games; she studies performance and bridges the digital/physical divide in a total complementary way to me. Even better: she has a pet word that is awfully similar to my own. Pareidolia is “a type of illusion or misperception involving a vague or obscure stimulus being perceived as something clear and distinct.” [My favorite word is apophenia: “the spontaneous perception of connections and meaningfulness of unrelated phenomena.”]

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5 comments to Street Talk and Jane McGonigal

  • Logan

    Would you agree that “the spontaneous perception of connections and meaningfulness” is one way of defining a religious experience?

    -Logan

  • street talk — intro

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  • street talk — city as open source

    Howard Rheingold — Institute for the Future talking about Smart Mobs crystallize community collected action urban emergence user appropriation a small-seeming technology can turn into big changes in collective action lowering a threshold does a lot. “…