Books: Danger

Danger: Our Quest for Excitement
by Michael J. Apter.

Why do people enjoy dangerous sports like mountaineering or running with the bulls? Why do civillians enjoy playing soldiers and why do ex-soldiers sometimes talk about the dangers and even the suffering of war with nostalgia? Why do we enjoy other’s suffering in stories or movies or the evening news?

Published in: on July 18, 2012 at 7:09 am  Leave a Comment  
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Why is sex fun?

Ian Schreiber writes on the question of “what is fun”:

When a game designer (or student) first starts trying to define why games are “fun” they have trouble even conceptualizing it beyond “I know it when I see it.” Then they encounter Csikszentmihalyi’s Flow and/or Koster’s Theory of Fun and have this huge epiphany: Eureka, all fun comes from learning a new skill! Then after awhile, they enter another stage of questioning this: wait a minute, if all fun comes from skill mastery, why aren’t students driven by the promise of fun to get straight A’s in all their classes (even the poorly taught ones), since that involves mastery of the material? Why is sex fun (by some standards), and yet doesn’t involve mastery (ahem, again by some standards)? At any rate, you could think of this as three stages of evolution of a game designer, and different designers are going to be in different stages, and when they encounter one another there will be chaos when they start discussing the nature of “fun.”

I find that Marc LeBlanc’s 8 kinds of fun is a much more comprehensive answer than Koster’s or Csikszentmihalyi’s. He categorises eight different features of an activity that can make it fun. So to answer the question of “Why is sex fun?”:

Published in: on October 9, 2008 at 2:14 am  Comments (7)  
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