Old gods and new – superstition on the Dark Continent

“Why are you even thinking about this? Get your arse on a plane already!” She was perhaps the most direct tarot reader that I had met. Odd that I was even there, since I had long ago given up any belief that there was anything in the divinitive arts other than applied psychology. Yet there […]

How to play your life

How Gamification can change your life Life is a game. Simple, straightforward, with a goal, obstacles, and resources to overcome them. It seems complex because there are so many games all overlapping and continuous. What makes life so interesting and confusing in game terms is that just when we think we know what the goals […]


Gamification 4: How to motivate fat bastards

So, in our attempts to lose weight, my brother and I found that permission to abuse the loser of the week was not much incentive. It didn’t work. Adding group dynamics – the pressure to not fail the team – helped to some degree, but was still lacking drive. This essay is the exploration of […]


Gamification 2 – How to win at social life

Chapter 2: How to win at social life. We tend to regard examining our approach to other people as calculating, as if anything other than one’s own ‘natural’ approach is cold and calculating. Talking of game skills is unfortunately associated with pick-up artists and manipulators. But those most genuine and likeable learned those skills at […]


Gamification – How to play your life better

Introduction to Gamification Life is a stack of games. Looked at individually, each is simple. Unexamined, it can seem complex and confusing. Looking at each part as a simple game can provide understanding and mastery of so many areas. In this series I will introduce you to Gamification, where we look at parts of life, and break them down […]


Training the monkey: Why feelings don’t matter.

  Good feelings will not help you achieve what you want to do. Motivation, confidence and happiness will not generate action. If the good feelings come, it is because you took action, not the other way around. We do not need the right combination of feelings before action can take place, and if we wait for motivation, confidence […]


Helpfulness is leadership

So, you’ve made your way onto a team. A board, a panel, a committee. You bustle with ideas, and can’t wait to contribute. Now what do you do? Others in the group have been in the company longer, are more senior, and hold more authority than you. You wait your turn and you contribute to […]


Why Colt Express is good for science.

Such a straightforward game, such simple rules. Yet Colt Express teases out of you mental faculties you never knew you had.   The board is a miniature Wild West train where you can move between carriages, climb onto the roof, lead the marshal, rob, punch, and shoot each other. And that’s it. Those are your […]