Musik machen mit Touch Geräten – Android?

Theoretisch kann man Audio Interfaces und professionelle Mikrofone mit Android Verbinden. Praktisch ergeben sich dabei aber viele Probleme.

Theoretisch kann man Audio Interfaces und professionelle Mikrofone mit Android Verbinden. Praktisch ergeben sich dabei aber viele Probleme.

Kürzlich wurde ich von zwei Medieneinrichtungen gefragt, ob sie bei neuen Touch Geräten eher auf Android oder iOS setzen sollen. Dass kommt natürlich ganz auf die Anwendungszwecke an. Und leider ist hier die günstigere Wahl nicht für jeden Fall die bessere. Heute ist mein zweiter Artikel zur Musikproduktion auf Touch Geräten im Medienpädagogik Praxis Blog erschienen. Diesmal habe ich mich mit Android beschäftigt. Dies bietet durch die gute Konnektivität  über USB theoretisch tolle Möglichkeiten. So kann ich zum Beispiel sogar Audio Interfaces und darüber professionelle Mikrofone an mein Motorola Xoom 2 Media Edition anschließen. Leider steht der praktischen Nutzung aber die starke Verzögerung des Android Systems entgegen. Daher bleibt mittelfristig iOS (iPad/iPod/iPhone) bei Audioproduktion die erste Wahl.

Den ganzen Artikel zu gibt es im Medienpädagogik Praxis Blog. Beide Artikel in einem habe ich auf meinem Blog veröffentlicht und werde diese Version auch weiterhin Updaten. Und finefin hat schon über den Artikel berichtet und ihn für gut befunden.

„Spielfieber – der Countdown läuft“ ist online

Letztes Jahr habe ich auf dem Forum Medienpädagogik vor den Rundfunk und Medienräten Bayerns gesprochen. Nach meinem Vortrag wurde ich von einer Dame der Aktion Jugendschutz gefragt, wie man mit einem Computerspiel Jugendliche bezüglich des Themas „Glücksspielsucht“ sensibilisieren könnte.Gestern ging das Online Spiel „Spielfieber – der Countdown läuft…“ online. Es soll auf spielerische Weise über Glücksspiele informieren. Leider ist problematische Nutzung von Glücksspielen insbesondere bei Jugendlichen auf dem Vormarsch. Oft sind die Gefahren nicht ausreichend bekannt. Danke an die Aktion Jugendschutz Bayern, die den Mut gehabt hat zu diesem schwierigen Thema ein Serious Game zu finanzieren. Das Ergebnis ist nicht für Pädagogen sondern Glücksspielinteressierte gedacht und versucht auf einen „pädagogischen Zeigefinger“ weitestgehend zu verzichten und gerade so auf spielerische Weise zu informieren. Weiterlesen

Vortrag „Echte Serious GAMES“ und Fortbildung auf der gamescom

Donnerstag 16. bis Sonntag 19.08.2012 bin ich auf der gamescom in Köln. Dort halte ich einen Vortrag und gebe eine Fortbildung und treffe bestimmt wieder viele alte und neue Kontakte. Na wer ist bei der weltgrößten Spielemesse?

Vortrag: „Echte Serious GAMES“

Spielend lernen und/oder Werte vermitteln? Serious Games sind in aller Munde. Doch oft werden Programme als Serious Games bezeichnet die eigentlich keine Spiele sind sondern eher interaktiven Filmen oder die einem Quiz ähneln. In anderen Fällen nutzt man bestehende Spielmechaniken, die man als Belohnung in ein Lernprogramm integriert.

Doch damit ein Serious Game wirklich funktioniert muß der Lerninhalt zentral in der Spielmechanik verankert werden.
Bei meinem Vortrag an der Speakers Corner (Halle 10.1 Stand E051 F050) der gamescom am Freitag 17.8.2012 17:30 – 18:00 auf wird dieser Ansatz anhand von praktischen Beispielen verdeutlicht.

Programm der Speakers Corner.

Fortbildung „Games & Movies“

Am Samstag gebe ich ebenfalls auf der gamescom mit meinen Kollegen von Creative Gaming eine Fortbildung zum Einsatzes von Computerspielen in der pädagogischen Praxis.
Mehr Informationen und Anmeldung zum Seminar „Games & Movies“ finden sich hier. Die Fortbildung ist kostenlos, die Anfahrt wird übernommen.

Die Fortbildung wird veranstaltet von der Initiative Creative Gaming e.V. in Kooperation mit der bpb – Bundeszentrale für politische Bildung, dem Deutschen Multimediapreis – MB21 und dem Kinder- und Jugendfilmzentrum in Deutschland (KJF).

Remote Control here we go!

Since beginning of May I am working for remote control productions running their research department.

remote control productions is an independent, internationally active production house, with an emphasis on mediation, development and production of entertainment software and research services. With its extensive experience and far-reaching contacts, remote control productions acts as an important interface between developers, publishers, distributors and investors.

It feels great to be here. The general focus of the company is very interesting with projects which try to do something new and/or have an positive impact on society or the video games business in mind. On top of that the company is very much involved in education, the local IGDA chapter, contacts to political institutions and the Verein für Videospielekultur (club for video games culture) on which I blogged here.

One of my main projects is our weekly newsletter which goes like this:

Up-to-Date in 30 minutes
Keeping an eye on current trends and affairs is an imperative for anyone concerned with the video games industry.

With the RCP-Newsletter, remote control productions are offering a compact overview on the latest trends and news as well as concise figures. Whilst we are tracking the international market very closely, our special focus lies on Germany. This not only provides our readers with detailed information about international happenings but also with insights into the German industry and current political developments.

Our newsletter summarises news items from more than 40 different sources, relevant to the games industry, in a short and clearly arranged way, thus giving you the advantage of having all relevant news at hand in only 30 minutes a week.
The sections of the newsletter are covering the following areas:

  1. Current Market Data: Software-Charts with sales figures, global hardware sales and company reports
  2. PC and Videogames: announcements of new titles worldwide on all platforms
  3. Online: news about digital distribution, social networking platforms and online games
  4. Companies: fusions, takeovers, openings, closings and partnerships
  5. Technology and Hardware: firmware updates, new middleware versions, technical innovations, licensing of engines
  6. Politics, Culture, Events and Education: political decisions and amendments, cultural events, changes in education, conferences and events
  7. Feature Recommendations: articles and blogs concerning current topics and trends
  8. Event-Calendar: the most important conferences and events of the next three months

The RCP newsletter is released once per week (48 times per year) in English and German language.

What do you think about it? And if you are interested, please request a free sample copy at my new email address: utausend [) r-control.com 😉

Searching new opportunities

2008 was a very busy but also very successful year for me.

  • In January I sold my online gaming company Neodelight.com to 7Seas Technologies (press release).
  • I also did some consulting e.g. for www.fettspielen.de (more).
  • In August I completed my master’s thesis titled: „Explanatory Models of Computer Gaming Consumption“ an empirical survey focusing on the differentiation of casual and hardcore games (more).
  • In December I wrote my final exams for my Master in Sociology, Political Science and Psychology and now am officially a „DiplomSoziologe Univ“, hooray!

With my company successfully sold and my diploma certificate in the pocket I now have my head cleared for new challenges.

So if you

  • know of any interesting jobs (preferably near Munich)
  • or are in need of a consultant with 8 years of experience in the social, online and casual games market (and an additional year shooting documentaries 🙂
  • or you need a researcher who does not only know the business side of computer games but has also researched them from a scientific angle,

then I am at your disposal.

If you want more information on what I did, can do and want to do in the future then check out my LinkedIn or Xing profiles or go back to the main page of my website at www.ulrichtausend.com.

As I am travelling North America until 14th of march reaching me though email might be easier than calling my cell (you find the contact info here).

Why is the console games development in Germany relatively weak?

During the last days I was thinking about why in Germany the console games development is relatively week compared with other European countries. May it be a reflection of the Germany’s sub-strength (given its population size) retail console games market? Why are Germans relatively fond of PC games in comparison to console games.

To be honest I did not reach a conclusive answer on that. Below are couple of thoughts about it but the main idea of this post is to hopefully get some better ideas on the matter from you guys.

Generally I see two underlying factors:

1. Many Germans grew up not paying for games
The the PC scene has been pretty strong in Germany since the C64, Atari ST and Amiga days. It was very easy on these platforms to copy games. So many people from my age group (around 30) grew up without paying much for games. And I think these people mostly moved to the PC as it is also pretty easy on the PC to copy the games (again games for free), while it is more complicated on the console (especially as you basically also need a PC for that).
Therefore you have more people on PCs and less on consoles which could also explain why Germany is (from what I know) very strong in the open source or demo scene areas (both work without payment) as well as in the browser (mog) business.

2. Violence in games is seen more critical in Germany
Another factor could be, that in Germany negative effects of PC and Console Games (especially violence) are emphasised more strongly than in other countries (more on that in an WIRED article connecting this to the pacifistic ’never again‘ education style in Germany).
So on a individual level on average it is (or was) probably harder to get some money for a ‚only games‘ console games console from your parents than for a PC which can also be used for working.
On a company level the German state was pretty reluctant to sponsor PC games as well as console games development, probably again because of the relatively negative image of games being violent or addictive. Ego shooters are often called „Killerspiele (Killergames)“ in the media and some politicians not only want to ban the sale but also the production of these games. You probably heard that Crytec (Crysis) was openly stating in 2007 that they are thinking to relocate to another country (more). So some investors were probably scared away from founding AAA studios in Germany which often focus on console market. This may also explain why Germany is strong in the browser (mog) games marked as more clever coders tried to go in this direction as you don’t need much initial funding for developing these.

But times are changing
In recent times the discussion on violent computer games has died down a bit and currently the media is discussing games in a much friendlier light. And this development is not limited to casual games. For example also GTA4 was discussed repeatedly in German main stream (not video games) media as being a culturally interesting game for adults. Also December 2007 the German minister for culture announced that computer games are now considered to be a ‚Kulturgut‘ – a ‚cultural asset‘ – which can and should be sponsored by the state. The G.A.M.E. association (pretty much the same as the British TIGA) was lobbying for that since couple of years.
It is also interesting that Germany hosts the biggest European convention on console and pc games.

So it seems there is a lot of potential for catching up („Hello investors“).

Play FETT!

While working on my diploma thesis I am also doing some consulting. One of my clients www.fettspielen.de, a German online gaming website, went live April 2008. I was involved with the project since November 2007 while the strategic direction of the website was not yet decided.
I really like the graphical style of the website as well as how quickly you can browse through the different games. Using the site is very easy. For example every registered user automatically has a personal profile-site (check out mine). Please write me if you have any comments on the website. David An, the founder of Fettspielen, has many nice ideas for the future development of the site. And he got backing from Holtzbrinck, who also own StudiVZ the German Facebook. So Fettspielen is a name to remember.

Fett is German slang for cool, spielen means to play.