[games_access] language thread, was The Human Controller

Eelke Folmer eelke.folmer at gmail.com
Fri Jun 13 12:39:24 EDT 2008


Hi Thomas,

I never really thought about the difference but your taxonomy seems
intuitive and straightforward.

Cheers Eelke


On 12/06/2008, Thomas Westin <thomas at pininteractive.com> wrote:

> Hi,

>

> The World Health Organization has a definition which makes a difference

> between disability and handicap, where disability is related to the

> individual, while handicap is related to the environment. In other words, if

> you're in a wheel chair, you are handicapped in a building with high

> thresholds. By removing the thresholds (read: making it accessible) you

> remove the handicap, but you are still disabled.

>

> I think that is a good distinction

>

> Kind regards

> Thomas

>

>

> On 11 jun 2008, at 18.59, Barrie Ellis wrote:

>

> Language is a contentious issue and I respect that you have a different

> opinion, Matthias. I just personally feel that certain phrases don't

> particularly tie up with disability rights - which is what the Game

> Accessibility movement is all about to my mind. I still feel that you are

> approaching this field from a Medical standpoint - rather that a Social

> rights stand point.

>

> Barrie

> www.OneSwitch.org.uk

>

>

>

> ----- Original Message -----

> From: Matthias Troup

> To: IGDA Games Accessibility SIG Mailing List

> Sent: Wednesday, June 11, 2008 5:28 PM

> Subject: Re: [games_access] language thread, was The Human Controller

>

> Kestrel, Perhaps I (and others) read it as this: If these are people

> without disabilities in the offensive sense... who aren't suffering in their

> environment... what would they need help with, and why would anyone be

> helping? I think Eitans choice of words is fine since his cause was a

> constructive effort for accessibility. At least, I feel hints of emotion

> help make any thesis a little less dry.

>

>

>

>

>

>

>

> > From: kestrell at panix.com

> > To: games_access at igda.org

> > Date: Wed, 11 Jun 2008 11:57:14 -0400

> > Subject: [games_access] language thread, was The Human Controller

> >

> > Regarding appropriate language, I'm not sure I see where you are

> disagreeing

> > with my original post. I used the word "disability," and the site you

> linked

> > to, which the wonderful BBC online disability magazine, Ouch!, also uses

> the

> > word "disability." I totally agree with the list provided in the article

> as

> > being offensive words, including the word "special."

> >

> > Granted the fifth day of ninety degree weather here in Boston is melting

> my

> > brain, but what did I miss?

> >

> > Kes

> >

> > ----- Original Message -----

> > From: "Barrie Ellis" <barrie.ellis at oneswitch.org.uk>

> > To: "IGDA Games Accessibility SIG Mailing List" <games_access at igda.org>

> > Sent: Wednesday, June 11, 2008 2:54 AM

> > Subject: Re: [games_access] The Human Controller

> >

> >

> > > Hi Eitan,

> > >

> > > I actually disagree with Kestrell's "people first stand point" with

> > > "people with disabilities" (although I did used to use it myself). I've

> > > long since prefered "disabled people" linking to people being disabled

> by

> > > society / the inaccessibility of their environment.

> > >

> > > Take a look through this item:

> > > http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/magazine/3708576.stm.

> > > Plus this on the Social Model and Medical Model of diability:

> > >

> http://inclusion.uwe.ac.uk/inclusionweek/articles/socmod.htm

> > >

> > > Barrie

> > > www.OneSwitch.org.uk

> > >

> > >

> > >

> > >

> > >

> > >

> > >

> > >

> > > ----- Original Message -----

> > > From: "Kestrell" <kestrell at panix.com>

> > > To: "IGDA Games Accessibility SIG Mailing List" <games_access at igda.org>

> > > Sent: Tuesday, June 10, 2008 11:42 PM

> > > Subject: Re: [games_access] The Human Controller

> > >

> > >

> > >> Eitan,

> > >>

> > >> I seem to have missed your original post in which you posted the link,

> > >> but here are some thoughts on language and disability:

> > >>

> > >> Certain words and phrases tend to really be button words, as in they

> will

> > >> typically hit many readers' buttons, and the phrase "suffering from" is

> > >> definitely one of those phrases. Often the phrase can be deleted

> > >> altogether, leaving the phrase "people with disabilities" or "people

> with

> > >> visual impairments" or "visually-impaired gamers," etc. The informal

> rule

> > >> is that the individuals you are discussing are "people first," as

> > >> mentioned in this online article

> > >> http://iod.unh.edu/press.html

> > >>

> > >> and here is a link which includes links to writing about disability,

> > >> language to use in interviewing people with disabilities, and more

> > >> resources

> > >> http://ncdj.org/links.html

> > >>

> > >> Kes

> > >>

> > >> ---- Original Message -----

> > >> From: "Eitan Glinert" <glinert at mit.edu>

> > >> To: "IGDA Games Accessibility SIG Mailing List" <games_access at igda.org>

> > >> Sent: Tuesday, June 10, 2008 4:29 PM

> > >> Subject: Re: [games_access] The Human Controller

> > >>

> > >>

> > >>> Wow, awesome! Thanks for the feedback, I think you are the only person

> > >>> outside of MIT to have actually read this. Comments below.

> > >>> Eitan

> > >>>

> > >>> On Mon, Jun 9, 2008 at 6:48 PM, Barrie Ellis

> > >>> <barrie.ellis at oneswitch.org.uk> wrote:

> > >>>> Hi Eitan,

> > >>>>

> > >>>> I've read through your thesis "The Human Controller"...

> > >>>>

> > >>>> Had these thoughts...

> > >>>>

> > >>>> Didn't like some of the language used. "Suffering from - impaired

> > >>>> people -

> > >>>> handicapped". All pretty crusty old terms with negative connotations.

> > >>>

> > >>>>>>EG: Point taken. Any suggestions for better terms?<<<

> > >>>

> > >>>>

> > >>>> Not sure about the controller analysis in Chapter 1 - there's been

> > >>>> Driving

> > >>>> controllers and light guns since the 70's for many games consoles -

> > >>>> which

> > >>>> are fairly natural feeling interfaces and have been popular in the

> > >>>> past.

> > >>>>

> > >>>

> > >>>>>>EG: I guess in chapter one I'm trying to draw general strokes about

> > >>>>>>UIs, saying that they generally weren't adopted by a mainstream

> > >>>>>>audience. Perhaps I should make this more explicit, though<<<

> > >>>

> > >>>> "Even if it is possible to remap controls it is not always advisable

> to

> > >>>> do

> > >>>> so. Frequently part of the fun of a game is the interface, and

> changing

> > >>>> it

> > >>>> without forethought is potentially detrimental. In the pervious

> example

> > >>>> of

> > >>>> Wii Sports tennis part of the fun is actually swinging the controller

> > >>>> as if

> > >>>> it were a racket. If this functionality were changed to pressing a

> > >>>> button

> > >>>> then much of the game's charm and fun would be lost.". I'm not happy

> > >>>> with

> > >>>> this statement personally - I'd like to see multiple-layers of

> > >>>> accessibility

> > >>>> (much like Dimitris "Parallel Universes" theory). Why can't a four

> > >>>> player

> > >>>> game of Wii Sports allow player 1 to use the Wii-remote - player 2 to

> > >>>> use a

> > >>>> standard JoyPad - player 3 to use a single button and player 4 to use

> > >>>> an

> > >>>> adapted Wii-remote with blue-tooth stereo head-set to relay

> > >>>> personalised

> > >>>> timing sounds (think of live singers having a click track that only

> > >>>> they can

> > >>>> hear) in an ideal world? You mention this type of thing later as if

> > >>>> it's a

> > >>>> good thing - so I find this early statement a bit overly negative.

> > >>>>

> > >>>

> > >>>>>>EG: I agree with what you say, which is why I discuss such themes in

> > >>>>>>chapter 2. I guess the reason I have that negative statement early

> on

> > >>>>>>is because I wanted to acknowledge the tradeoff early on, even

> before

> > >>>>>>I get to the sections on tradeoffs. I also wanted to make it clear

> > >>>>>>that I don't feel accessibility is a magic bullet, even if it is

> > >>>>>>almost always applicable.<<<

> > >>>

> > >>>> "Games have evolved tremendously over the past few decades, as

> > >>>> advancements

> > >>>> in technology have led to amazingly realistic and engaging offerings,

> > >>>> while

> > >>>> shifts in player demographics indicate the widespread popularity of

> > >>>> video

> > >>>> games. Despite these changes many different disabled groups are still

> > >>>> unable

> > >>>> to play most titles due to inaccessible UIs.." - Would argue that

> too.

> > >>>> I'd

> > >>>> agree that most Blind gamers would be in that boat (those with very

> > >>>> little

> > >>>> usable sight) - but a better statement might have been "many

> different

> > >>>> disabled groups are faced with deeply frustrating barriers with many

> > >>>> main-stream games". I know Deaf gamers might struggle at certain

> points

> > >>>> of

> > >>>> certain games - and gamers using a single button frequently have to

> > >>>> rely

> > >>>> upon a friend/helper to take on extra controls and so on - but they

> can

> > >>>> still play.

> > >>>>

> > >>>

> > >>>>>>EG: Good suggestion, thanks! I might make a change to the argument

> on

> > >>>>>>the online version.<<<

> > >>>

> > >>>>

> > >>>> Chaper 2

> > >>>>

> > >>>> "Game controls should be as simple as possible, but no simpler." -

> Not

> > >>>> really sure what you're saying here.

> > >>>>

> > >>>

> > >>>>>>EG: Simplicity is good, but you don't want to go overboard. You

> don't

> > >>>>>>want to cut out critical game elements or features in the name of a

> > >>>>>>"cleaner" UI. Maybe that's not clear? <<<

> > >>>

> > >>>>

> > >>>> 2.5 "a rhythm title like Guitar Hero which focuses on music will not

> > >>>> work

> > >>>> for the hearing impaired, and it is probably not possible to make an

> > >>>> accessible version." - I don't agree with this. Deaf gamers as a

> whole

> > >>>> covers a very broad range of hearing ability. There will be many deaf

> > >>>> gamers

> > >>>> perfectly able to play Guitar Hero. Even those unable to hear at all

> > >>>> might

> > >>>> enjoy such a game - did you see Deaf Gamers 8.5/10 review score:

> > >>>> http://www.deafgamers.com/07reviews_a/gh3_x360.html

> > >>>>

> > >>>

> > >>>>>>EG: Wow, I flubbed this one. I'm going to have to change the

> language

> > >>>>>>on this. Good catch, thanks!<<<

> > >>>

> > >>>> But aside from this, I frequently found myself in full agreement with

> > >>>> the

> > >>>> majority of your thesis - and did enjoy reading it. Thanks for making

> > >>>> it

> > >>>> publicly available.

> > >>>>

> > >>>

> > >>>>>>Great, thanks so much!<<<

> > >>>

> > >>>> Barrie

> > >>>>

> > >>>>

> > >>>> ----- Original Message ----- From: "Eitan Glinert" <glinert at mit.edu>

> > >>>> To: "IGDA Games Accessibility SIG Mailing List"

> <games_access at igda.org>

> > >>>> Sent: Thursday, June 05, 2008 10:50 PM

> > >>>> Subject: [games_access] The Human Controller

> > >>>>

> > >>>>

> > >>>>> Good news, everyone! In a surprise twist, I'm graduating! I know a

> lot

> > >>>>> of you are interested in my thesis, so you can check it out at

> > >>>>> web.mit.edu/glinert/www/thesis . I'm happy to answer questions about

> > >>>>> it, and I welcome feedback (both positive and negative). Special

> > >>>>> thanks to Dimitris, Eelke, Michelle, and Reid for all their help

> > >>>>> answering my questions over the months.

> > >>>>>

> > >>>>> In case you're not sure whether it is worth reading, here's some

> more

> > >>>>> info:

> > >>>>>

> > >>>>> TITLE: The Human Controller: Usability and Accessibility in Video

> Game

> > >>>>> Interfaces

> > >>>>>

> > >>>>> ABSTRACT:

> > >>>>> Despite the advances in user interfaces and the new gaming genres,

> not

> > >>>>> all people can play all games - disabled people are frequently

> > >>>>> excluded from game play experiences. On the one hand this adds to

> the

> > >>>>> list of discriminations disabled people face in our society, while

> on

> > >>>>> the other hand actively including them potentially results in games

> > >>>>> that are better for everyone. The largest hurdle to involvement is

> the

> > >>>>> user interface, or how a player interacts with the game. Analyzing

> > >>>>> usability and adhering to accessibility design principles makes it

> > >>>>> both possible and practical to develop fun and engaging game user

> > >>>>> interfaces that a broader range of the population can play. To

> > >>>>> demonstrate these principles we created AudiOdyssey, a PC rhythm

> game

> > >>>>> that is accessible to both sighted and non-sighted audiences. By

> > >>>>> following accessibility guidelines we incorporated a novel

> combination

> > >>>>> of features resulting in a similar play experience for both groups.

> > >>>>> Testing AudiOdyssey yielded useful insights into which interface

> > >>>>> elements work and which don't work for all users. Finally a case is

> > >>>>> made for considering accessibility when designing future versions of

> > >>>>> gaming user interfaces, and speculative scenarios are presented for

> > >>>>> what such interfaces might look like.

> > >>>>>

> > >>>>> Eitan

> > >>>>> _______________________________________________

> > >>>>> games_access mailing list

> > >>>>> games_access at igda.org

> > >>>>>

> http://seven.pairlist.net/mailman/listinfo/games_access

> > >>>>

> > >>>>

> > >>>> _______________________________________________

> > >>>> games_access mailing list

> > >>>> games_access at igda.org

> > >>>>

> http://seven.pairlist.net/mailman/listinfo/games_access

> > >>>>

> > >>> _______________________________________________

> > >>> games_access mailing list

> > >>> games_access at igda.org

> > >>>

> http://seven.pairlist.net/mailman/listinfo/games_access

> > >>

> > >> _______________________________________________

> > >> games_access mailing list

> > >> games_access at igda.org

> > >>

> http://seven.pairlist.net/mailman/listinfo/games_access

> > >

> > >

> > > _______________________________________________

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> >

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Eelke Folmer Assistant Professor
Department of CS&E/171
University of Nevada Reno, Nevada 89557
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