Monday, November 23, 2009

Back in the Saddle and Paper Out the Door

Finally made it back to Elon University after a whirlwind couple of days in sunny San Diego at the 2009 ACTFL conference. I had many excellent opportunities to share ideas about 3D digital game-based learning with interested colleagues. Many thanks to all I met at the San Diego Conference Center and who visited my poster presentation!

I was also able to send off a paper draft to The Modern Language Journal. I'm making a PDF of it available here on this blog in case somebody out there would be interested in reading it. In any case, I would appreciate any feedback or ideas that you may have.

Now that I have the paper out the door, I will be getting to know Blender and Unity3D more in-depth. The idea is to have a playable level prototype done within the year. Perhaps fodder for more research articles or a possible book in the future? With more time to focus on the development of the game, I will be able to post more images and movies in the coming weeks. Should be fun!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Going to California

I have not been blogging for a few weeks now as I have been busy with other things, such as getting ready for the upcoming ACTFL Conference in San Diego, teaching my German language courses this semester, and finishing a research paper on the pedagogical applications of narrative in first-person 3D gaming interfaces of the single-player computer role playing game (CRPG) genre. Lots of stuff to do and, unfortunately, some of my 3D development work with Blender and (now, probably) Unity3D has had to take a place on the back-burner. I just purchased the Unity Game Development Essentials book and am eager to spend some more time with it (click here for a review of the book).

Since I will be leaving in a few days for California, I've been busy getting my presentation materials ready. I finally finished them today and am posting them here on my blog in the off chance that somebody, somewhere might find them interesting:
  1. Poster Presentation: Poster
  2. Poster Presentation: Handout
  3. Session Presentation: Power Point
  4. Session Presentation: Handout
Now that I got the preparations for the ACTFL conference out of the way, I will be putting the finishing touches on the research article, a link to which I will post here later. I've been thinking about submitting the essay to The Modern Language Journal instead of L2 Journal as the latter has a 8,000 word limit (including references) and I am now sitting at. . . let me check. . . 9,844 words. And I still have not written a conclusion. The Modern Language Journal has an upper limit of 12,000 words (excluding bibliography), and recent article have looked at digital games in second language acquisition, so perhaps this would be a better forum for me.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Unity Available for Free!

Just cruising around the recent postings on BlenderNation and came across the news item that the Unity 3D game engine and editor are now being released under a free indie license. Apparently there is tight integration between Blender (and other 3D applications) and Unity, which will allow all development in the DigiBahn Project up to this point to be brought into Unity without a bump. After reading the article on Gamasutra and checking out all of Unity's features myself, I am definitely going to download this package tomorrow at the office and begin playing with it on my own. Or, as soon as the article is out the door. More on this topic at a later date...