Addiction by Design

Machine Gambling in Las Vegas

Author: Natasha Dow Schüll

Publisher: Princeton University Press

ISBN: 0691160880

Category: Social Science

Page: 456

View: 8701

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Recent decades have seen a dramatic shift away from social forms of gambling played around roulette wheels and card tables to solitary gambling at electronic terminals. Slot machines, revamped by ever more compelling digital and video technology, have unseated traditional casino games as the gambling industry's revenue mainstay. Addiction by Design takes readers into the intriguing world of machine gambling, an increasingly popular and absorbing form of play that blurs the line between human and machine, compulsion and control, risk and reward. Drawing on fifteen years of field research in Las Vegas, anthropologist Natasha Dow Schüll shows how the mechanical rhythm of electronic gambling pulls players into a trancelike state they call the "machine zone," in which daily worries, social demands, and even bodily awareness fade away. Once in the zone, gambling addicts play not to win but simply to keep playing, for as long as possible--even at the cost of physical and economic exhaustion. In continuous machine play, gamblers seek to lose themselves while the gambling industry seeks profit. Schüll describes the strategic calculations behind game algorithms and machine ergonomics, casino architecture and "ambience management," player tracking and cash access systems--all designed to meet the market's desire for maximum "time on device." Her account moves from casino floors into gamblers' everyday lives, from gambling industry conventions and Gamblers Anonymous meetings to regulatory debates over whether addiction to gambling machines stems from the consumer, the product, or the interplay between the two. Addiction by Design is a compelling inquiry into the intensifying traffic between people and machines of chance, offering clues to some of the broader anxieties and predicaments of contemporary life. At stake in Schüll's account of the intensifying traffic between people and machines of chance is a blurring of the line between design and experience, profit and loss, control and compulsion.
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The Twittering Machine

Author: Richard Seymour

Publisher: The Indigo Press

ISBN: 1911648039

Category: Social Science

Page: 256

View: 2580

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'If you really want to set yourself free, you should read a book – preferably this one.' Observer In surrealist artist Paul Klee's The Twittering Machine, the bird-song of a diabolical machine acts as bait to lure humankind into a pit of damnation. Leading political writer and broadcaster Richard Seymour argues that this is a chilling metaphor for relationship with social media. Former social media executives tell us that the system is an addiction-machine. Like drug addicts, we are users, waiting for our next hit as we like, comment and share. We write to the machine as individuals, but it responds by aggregating our fantasies, desires and frailties into data, and returning them to us as a commodity experience.Through journalism, psychoanalytic reflection and interviews with users, developers, security experts and others, Seymour probes the human side of this machine, asking what we're getting out of it, and what we're getting into.
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The Age of Addiction

How Bad Habits Became Big Business

Author: David T. Courtwright

Publisher: Harvard University Press

ISBN: 0674737377

Category: History

Page: 336

View: 9994

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We live in an age of addiction, from compulsive gaming and shopping to binge eating and opioid abuse. What can we do to resist temptations that insidiously and deliberately rewire our brains? Nothing, David Courtwright says, unless we understand the global enterprises whose “limbic capitalism” creates and caters to our bad habits.
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The World Beyond Your Head

On Becoming an Individual in an Age of Distraction

Author: Matthew B. Crawford

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

ISBN: 0374708444

Category: Philosophy

Page: 320

View: 8192

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A groundbreaking new book from the bestselling author of Shop Class as Soulcraft In his bestselling book Shop Class as Soulcraft, Matthew B. Crawford explored the ethical and practical importance of manual competence, as expressed through mastery of our physical environment. In his brilliant follow-up, The World Beyond Your Head, Crawford investigates the challenge of mastering one's own mind. We often complain about our fractured mental lives and feel beset by outside forces that destroy our focus and disrupt our peace of mind. Any defense against this, Crawford argues, requires that we reckon with the way attention sculpts the self. Crawford investigates the intense focus of ice hockey players and short-order chefs, the quasi-autistic behavior of gambling addicts, the familiar hassles of daily life, and the deep, slow craft of building pipe organs. He shows that our current crisis of attention is only superficially the result of digital technology, and becomes more comprehensible when understood as the coming to fruition of certain assumptions at the root of Western culture that are profoundly at odds with human nature. The World Beyond Your Head makes sense of an astonishing array of common experience, from the frustrations of airport security to the rise of the hipster. With implications for the way we raise our children, the design of public spaces, and democracy itself, this is a book of urgent relevance to contemporary life.
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High Stakes

The Rising Cost of America's Gambling Addiction

Author: Sam Skolnik

Publisher: Beacon Press

ISBN: 0807006300

Category: Games & Activities

Page: 256

View: 5201

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What the explosive growth of legalized gambling means socially, politically, and economically for America. Forty years ago, casinos were legal in just one state. Today, legalized gambling has morphed into a $119 billion industry established in all but two states. As elected officials are urging voters to expand gambling’s reach, the industry’s supporters and their impassioned detractors are squaring off in prolonged state-by-state battles. Millions of Americans are being asked to decide: are the benefits worth the costs? With a blend of investigative journalism and poignant narratives of gambling addiction, award-winning journalist Sam Skolnik provides an in-depth exploration of the consequences of this national phenomenon. In High Stakes, we meet politicians eager to promote legalized gambling as an economic cure-all, scientists wrestling with the meaning of gambling addiction, and players so caught up in the chase that they’ve lost their livelihoods and their minds.
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The Interface Envelope

Gaming, Technology, Power

Author: James Ash

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing USA

ISBN: 162356557X

Category: Social Science

Page: 184

View: 6217

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In The Interface Envelope, James Ash develops a series of concepts to understand how digital interfaces work to shape the spatial and temporal perception of players. Drawing upon examples from videogame design and work from post-phenomenology, speculative realism, new materialism and media theory, Ash argues that interfaces create envelopes, or localised foldings of space time, around which bodily and perceptual capacities are organised for the explicit production of economic profit. Modifying and developing Bernard Stiegler's account of psychopower and Warren Neidich's account of neuropower, Ash argues the aim of interface designers and publishers is the production of envelope power. Envelope power refers to the ways that interfaces in games are designed to increase users perceptual and habitual capacities to sense difference. Examining a range of examples from specific videogames, Ash identities a series of logics that are key to producing envelope power and shows how these logics have intensified over the last thirty years. In turn, Ash suggests that the logics of interface envelopes in videogames are spreading to other types of interface. In doing so life becomes enveloped as the environments people inhabit becoming increasingly loaded with digital interfaces. Rather than simply negative, Ash develops a series of responses to the potential problematics of interface envelopes and envelope power and emphasizes their pharmacological nature.
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Digital Anthropology

Author: Heather A. Horst,Daniel Miller

Publisher: A&C Black

ISBN: 0857852930

Category: Social Science

Page: 328

View: 8303

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Anthropology has two main tasks: to understand what it is to be human and to examine how humanity is manifested differently in the diversity of culture. These tasks have gained new impetus from the extraordinary rise of the digital. This book brings together several key anthropologists working with digital culture to demonstrate just how productive an anthropological approach to the digital has already become. Through a range of case studies from Facebook to Second Life to Google Earth, Digital Anthropology explores how human and digital can be defined in relation to one another, from avatars and disability; cultural differences in how we use social networking sites or practise religion; the practical consequences of the digital for politics, museums, design, space and development to new online world and gaming communities. The book also explores the moral universe of the digital, from new anxieties to open-source ideals. Digital Anthropology reveals how only the intense scrutiny of ethnography can overturn assumptions about the impact of digital culture and reveal its profound consequences for everyday life. Combining the clarity of a textbook with an engaging style which conveys a passion for these new frontiers of enquiry, this book is essential reading for students and scholars of anthropology, media studies, communication studies, cultural studies and sociology.
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The Invisible Brand: Marketing in the Age of Automation, Big Data, and Machine Learning

Author: William Ammerman

Publisher: McGraw Hill Professional

ISBN: 1260441261

Category: Business & Economics

Page: 320

View: 2307

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Marketers are harnessing the enormous power of AI to drive unprecedented results The world of marketing is undergoing major change. Sophisticated algorithms can test billions of marketing messages and measure results, and shift the weight of campaigns—all in real time. What’s next? A complete transformation of marketing as we know it, where machines themselves design and implement customized advertising tactics at virtually every point of digital contact. The Invisible Brand provides an in-depth exploration of the risks and rewards of this epochal shift—while delivering the information and insight you need to stay ahead of the game. Renowned technologist William Ammerman draws from his decades of experience at the forefront of digital marketing to provide a roadmap to our data-driven future. You’ll learn how data and AI will forge a new level of persuasiveness and influence for reshaping consumers’ buying decisions. You’ll understand the technology behind these changes and see how it is already at work in digital assistants, recommendation engines and digital advertising. And you’ll find unmatched insight into how to harness the power of artificial intelligence for maximum results. As we enter the age of mass customization of messaging, power and influence will go to those who know the consumer best. Whether you are a marketing executive or concerned citizen, The Invisible Brand provides everything you need to understand how brands are harnessing the extraordinary amounts of data at their disposal—and capitalizing on it with AI.
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The Gamblers Paradox

Author: P.N."Harry" Harish

Publisher: Partridge Publishing

ISBN: 1482814730

Category: Fiction

Page: 228

View: 3460

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Professor Dennis of Stanford University is shot to death in his study. Detectives quickly learn that he was actively involved in Las Vegas casino industry. They must find if his work there led to his murder or the fact that he had amassed a fortune in gambling. Was he manipulating the gaming machines? What was special about the design of the gaming controller? The detectives turn to Stanford University for help and find that he had incorporated a nanocarbon structure in the gaming controller, but how does it work? Was the professor using a paradox only known to him? Who wanted him dead, and who would profit from his death? Why was the manager of a casino in Las Vegas killed? The detectives find that gambling to be a deadly addiction. They find that gambling pays, but sometimes you pay with your life.
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