This is another entry in the Boss Fight Books series that is as much personal memoir as exploration of the game itself. Knorr interrogates gamer nostalgia through a thorough analysis of the game mechanics and level design of Super Mario Bros. 3 in the context of the widely held consensus that is a great, if not the greatest, platform game ever made. Along the way, her own nostalgia for childhood family interactions around the game adds an additional layer to the contingent nature of media experience.
Jeong has done a great job making the case both for the importance of community moderation online and in explaining how that work is much more nuanced than blocking, deleting, and banning.
In this readable account, Brynjolfsson and McAfee outline some of the tensions between conventional economic wisdom and new realities of labor and markets in an age of computational abundance. While not discounting the looming hardships for many workers, they are generally sanguine about the continued need for human labor provided that training is geared to maximizing those human strengths for which machines can serve only as complements, rather than substitutes. As with so many business books, the historical foundations of some of their arguments make their shallow approach to historiography a bit disappointing. The work’s strength comes from the pair’s clear explication of policy prescriptions from their analysis.
Having never done more than hacked together limited rough-and-ready custom one-off changes to WordPress themes, I felt like I need a good A-Z overview of the world of WordPress development as a foundation for a project I’m working on. Spending a week or so with this book following a single path orchestrated by a constant and consistent author saved me a lot of the time and confusion I’ve been wasting on abortive strolls through developer blogs and howtos over the last few months.