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Below are the 6 most recent journal entries recorded in Scientist Gamers' LiveJournal:

Tuesday, November 2nd, 2004
2:10 pm
Weekend of Geekdom
I hosted a three day weekend of gaming, as we do every year, inviting some of our gamer friends to eat, drink and play for three days. Attending scientist list included:

two chemists
one geneticist
two computer scientists
one mathematician (and paid game designer)
one radiologist

non-scientists included:

one japanese art history grad student
one banker
one game store manager
one military intelligence specialist
one FBI agent (employment responsibilities unknown)
one fine arts undergraduate student
one high school senior (with aspirations leaning towards law enforcement)
one political science (pre-law) adult student

7 scientists to eight non scientists. The games were mostly card (collectible and non-) and board games. Scientist accounted for about 55-60% of the wins, only a slight edge over their numbers. On the non scientist side, many of the wins were concentrated in the game store manager, and the military and law enforcement types. There's probably some good info here about the relative value of critical v. strategic thinking skills. If I weren't so tired from three consecutive nights of four hours sleep, I might be able to express it better...
Sunday, September 5th, 2004
2:02 am
Things people learn about science from gaming....
(1)Poison and biohazards are green... always. Also, most of them hurt you if you touch them and cease to hurt when you stop. Radioactive stuff ALWAYS glows green. No exceptions.
(2)The space-time is a lot more flexible than physicists admit. Its flow is easily interrupted and cheated. Portals and time machines are common. Most evil government groups have at least one, and many have several. (Half Life, Quake I&II).
(3)All apparently empty rooms have hidden monster spawns. No exceptions. (Survival Games)
(4)Medical kits will cure everything from radiation poisoning to leukemia, to poisoning, to missing limbs and head wounds instantly, upon contact. (Every game)
(5)Most evil people and beings are fond of zombies. (Doom I,II,III, System Shock series, and more)
(6)Electricity prefers to shoot out in lightining bolts through the air rather than taking the shorter paths. (Half life, etc)
(7)If you shoot up, the bullet WILL NOT come down. (Any shooter game)
(8)Backwards recoil does not apply when aiming up or down. (Half Life)
(9)Rare earth elements are THE key component of research into alien life (System shock 2).
(10)Newton's laws don't apply in space. When engines die, you slow down, and you cannot accellerate beyond your top speed. Also, explosions are louder in a vacuum. (Space combat games)
(11)Protagonists have special abilities that cause bullets to miss them automatically (applies to James Bond and Action movies too).
(12)There's no such thing as gravity in space. Once you stop, nothing will move you, no matter how close you are to a star or planet. (space combat games)
Tuesday, August 17th, 2004
9:42 am
Growing the Community
Any of you know some appropriate places where I could place an invitation to this community?
9:30 am
A friend posted this


A statistical treatment of the way cards are drawn and played in a combination.  Derek wrote a simulation which assessed how different card draw advantage-gaining resources affect the liklihood of obtaining a particular combo.  While this was made for VTES (Vampire: The Eternal Struggle CCG) I'm sure it could be adapted to any number of card games


If you don't know VTES, then here is what you need to know in order to follow the math;

Your hand size is seven.  Every time you play a card, you draw a card.  You may discard and replace one card at the end of your turn.

'The Barrens' allows you to discard one extra card per turn, and draw to replace it.

'Elder Library' increases your hand size by one.

'Fragment of the Book of Nod' allows you to draw two cards and then immediately discard two cards, once per turn, but it may be taken away from you by another player.

'Dreams of the Sphinx' increases your hand size by two for the duration of one turn, but may only be used three times before it is discarded.

So if you want to make a four card combination (1, 2, 3, 4) as often as possible during your turn, which is the most effective tool to use?

A fun thread.  Well, fun like math, anyways...


Sunday, August 15th, 2004
2:38 pm
Dyson Sphere Revisited.
Many years ago, I came up with an idea for a variation on a Dyson Sphere which would have the advantage of

a) Internal gravity without gravitic generators
b) Instability on only 1 axis rather than 3 (and possibly correctable to passive stability)

I've always wanted to use this in a Role-playing game, but I've never been able to do the math to solve for the outer shape of the thing (which isn't spherical).

Now that I have mathematica, I may one day take another shot at it (but I'll have to go and restudy my vector calculus, as I haven't needed it in the 20 years since I left College).

In the meantime, if anyone else want to try and do the math, there is a write-up here in my journal.
Friday, August 13th, 2004
1:22 pm
My first livejournal community. Please be patient as I learn the settings.

Well, greetings, anyways! As you join, please let us all know what games you play, and what science is of interest to you...
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