minecraft

An online Java course for kids, taught via Minecraft

ydsd4

At the beginning of the summer my son Ronan, age 12, and I built him his first high-powered gaming PC. Me being a dad and all, I did so happily, but with one proviso -- he’d have to dedicate time every day to learning a programming language. He was slightly sceptical of this, having taken a few less-than-interesting intro to programming classes in the past. Prepared for this, I recommended that we enroll him in Youth Digital’s comprehensive Java course called Minecraft Server Desgin 1. This got his full attention, as he had dreams of creating his own custom servers and gameplay modes to host Minecraft sessions with his friends.

We signed him up and dove in. Our immediate impression was that site and course are smartly designed and easy to navigate. All material is introduced through clear, well-produced, often funny videos that didn’t talk down him, but instead did a great job of walking him through new concepts, then pausing while he took pop quizzes and did hands-on coding exercises.  

The course includes a year of server hosting, 24-hour tech support (that was fast and helpful the few times he’s needed it), and perhaps best of all, a browser-based integrated development environment (IDE) for editing the game, player, and team Java files. Within this Codenvy IDE (Windows and OSX only), you can launch the updated server with one button, which makes it fast to test code and correlate newly learned concepts with the “real world” Minecraft results.

He chose one of the four pre-built maps, learned to modify the default server file description text, whitelisted a few friend, and launched his Minecraft server within the first hour of instruction. Read the rest

Father builds glowing life-sized Minecraft block for son's birthday

HHNn31N

Nathan Pryor (HaHaBird) made this fantastic life-sized illuminated Minecraft block for his son's birthday. It's lit with RGB LEDs so the color can be changed via remote control. Read the rest

Parenting and the Internet: the smarter, missing third way

My new Guardian column, What is missing from the kids’ internet? discusses three different approaches to teaching kids information literacy: firewall-based abstinence education; trust/relationship-based education, and a third way, which is the proven champion of the offline world. Read the rest

Dispatch from Planet Comic-Con

comic-con-1
A lapsed nerd comes home.

Kids in the Hall Minecraft tees

Tavie sez, "There's a tee shirt from the Kids in the Hall's recent tour that shows 5 KITH characters as Minecraft avatars. The Chicken Lady one kills me." Read the rest

7 games you can play with Google Maps

large-geoguns
Explore the many trivia, hidden object, shooting and driving games created around Google Maps, from Streetview Zombie Apocalypse to Google Sheep View.

Making a stone axe from scratch

It took this guy over week a to make a stone axe from scratch. I can do it in much faster in Minecraft.

The manufacture of a stone ax including the handle from using only primitive tools and materials. It is a celt (pronounced "selt") a type of ax with a polished stone head wedged into a hole or mortise at the end of a wooden handle. The head took about a week and a day to make as I chose to make it from a particularly large piece of basalt. This involved hammering, pecking, grinding and polishing the head into the final shape. The handle took a day and a morning to make. A chisel was made from stone and a mallet made from a log. These were used to cut the tree for the handle and shape it once down. Fire was used to harden the wood and also to help shape the mortise. The ax was then used to cut down a tree the day after the handle was a tree itself. It is a more efficient tool for felling trees than the hand ax I made and at the time of uploading this video has cut down 4 trees which I will use later.

Read the rest

Read Chris Ware's perfect description of Minecraft's appeal

(via)
The artist's 10 year-old daughter builds worlds and expresses her attitude to possibility in the infinitely-playful Minecraft universe.

Watch Minecraft become holographic in Microsoft Hololens E3 demo

ya20zd

Amazing gameplay footage: Minecraft through the Hololens. The VR demo from Microsoft executive Sax Persson today at the annual E3 games convention completely transforms the experience of Minecraft.

Microsoft acquired Minecraft Maker Mojang for $2.5 billion last year.

From PopSci:

“This is a live demo, with real working code,” Persson said, before donning the HoloLens and projecting a Minecraft map onto a wall, and then a table onstage. Microsoft announced Minecraft would be a main attraction of the HoloLens earlier in the year, but this is the first working demo the company has shown to the public.

Viewers were able to see Persson’s augmented reality through a “special camera” outfitted to show the HoloLens display in real time, as he played the game on the wall with an Xbox controller.

Persson then walked over to the table, said, “create world,” and watched as the Minecraft world poured onto the table. This was met with perhaps the loudest applause of Microsoft’s presentation, as he continued to use voice commands and gestures to manipulate the world. The virtual projection constrained itself to the edges of the table well, and the camera was able to look inside of structures by moving through the virtual walls.

No HoloLens release date yet.

More at Boing Boing's OFFWORLD: “The only things you really need to know about Microsoft's E3 press event

[Kotaku on YouTube]

Read the rest

The only things you really need to know about Microsoft's E3 press event

yN25xe
Annual video game press conferences are often an assault on the senses, and on taste. We found the cool stuff for you.

Chris Ware's "Minecraft Playdate" cover on New Yorker

minecraft

Did Chris Ware sneak into our house to draw this? That's my daughter on the beanbag. Read the rest

Program a strange, corrupted computer and discover its secrets

tis-100
It's the assembly language puzzle game that nobody asked for!

Why Minecraft Rewrites the Playbook for Learning

bg
One of the world's leading experts in online education sings the praises of Minecraft as a tool for helping kids find and realize a passion for learning

Cube-shaped dogs were all the rage at the Tokyo dog show in Japan

o-DOG-CUBE-570

Like dogs stepping right out of a Minecraft realm, these boxy canine cube cuts were the trend this year at a Tokyo dog show. Grooming has never been so fashion-forward!

 

Click here for more photos. Read the rest

Just released: Lego's own version of Minecraft

ss_0a2ed62dfd5d220f2b8a8ad28b8e7a0d690845d4.600x338

If the endless galaxy of Minecraft just isn't big enough, we've now got another virtual world to make our own (with bricks, of course): Lego Worlds.  Today Lego announced its "early access" release of its video game on Steam, currently available as a beta program for $14.99.

Just like Minecraft, the game features procedurally generated worlds where players can modify their surroundings to create whatever they like. Only this time, those worlds are made of Lego bricks. "Lego Worlds enables you to populate your worlds with many weird and wonderful characters, creatures, models, and driveable vehicles, and then play out your own unique adventures," the game's Steam page explains.

 Unfortunately for Mac users, the game is only available on Windows... for now. Read the rest

How big is the Minecraft universe?

0

Very big. Huge. MASSIVE. Read the rest

Tell the Copyright Office not to criminalize using unapproved goop in a 3D printer

3D printing giant Stratasys has asked the US Copyright Office to deny a proposal that would legalize jailbreaking your 3D printer in order to use your own feedstock. Read the rest

Previous PageNext page