By Richard Banks
Published October 2011 List Price:$24.99, Your Amazon.com Price: $24.99
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What will we leave behind in this new digital age? As digital technology takes an ever-increasing role in our lives, one question is how we'''ll manage our collections after we'''re gone. What takes the place of shoeboxes full of pictures and dog-eared record albums? Get an inside look at Microsoft researcher -Richard Banks'''s thinking about how we might manage the digital artifacts and content we'''re creating now - and how we might pass on or inherit these kinds of items in the future.
GDNet Staff Review: When I heard that Microsoft was releasing a new technical book series, I was enthused. After all, CodeComplete and its contemporaries have become minor classics in their time. And this wasn't exactly what I expected. While previous offerings have been phonebook-sized affairs, TheFutureofLooking Back is positively puny. It's small and almost devoid of tech-speak. Actually, if not for the prominent mention of Microsoft on the cover and the occasional mention of research projects going on in Redmond, you wouldn't even know Microsoft is involved at all.
TheFutureofLookingBack is a quick-reading description of how the explosion in digital storage has changed the very nature of our memories and how this change will be taken into the future. And much of it is told in terms of the author's family. While his grandfather's past was encapsulated into a small box containing a few envelopes of well cared-for photos, we can snap hundreds of pictures a day and store them indefinitely for almost no cost at all. And this book details how the author thinks that this will change the very nature of our memories.
But this is a review for a game development website. And the question is "how can this help writing games". And my answer is "I don't know, but it will". I would never have predicted that camera-equipped smartphones would usher in giant-scale role-playing games where you snap pictures of people to see if they are demons. And I did not predict how cheap and plentiful GPS would usher in a physical-reality-based games based on geotagging and geocaching and the like.
This book is entirely conceptual and simply exists to muse about how the storage capacity explosion will change how you in the future will view you in the past. How you will be able to leverage such technology is for you to decide.