Watson Fellowship

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Watson Fellowship

Post  narky on Wed Sep 22, 2010 12:24 am

I just decided to apply for this awesome fellowship at my school. An accepted fellow receives 25,000 dollars to do anything of their choosing for a year. Some requirements are that you are not in the US at all and that you go to 3 of more countries. One of my friends went to South America and Australia to play frisbee and traveled/partied the whole time, spending the bulk of the money on doing awesome shit and living like a king. Another one I know of is a cheese/wine tasting tour of Europe which sounds pretty sweet as well.
Here are a few that I considered but hope to come up with better options.
-videogame cultures in developed nations
-skiing different mountains around the world
-become a soccer hooligan
The app is due this friday so any great ideas would be much appreciated. I'll give legitimately give 500 dollars to the person who comes up with the idea that gets me the Watson.

Also exaggeration and tweaking the application to make it sound way more watsony is almost required. The following quote sums up what they are looking for nicely.
"The Thomas J. Watson Fellowship offers college graduates a year of independent, purposeful exploration and travel -- in international settings new to them -- to enhance their capacity for resourcefulness, imagination, openness, and leadership and to foster their humane and effective participation in the world community."
http://www.watsonfellowship.org/site/index.html
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Re: Watson Fellowship

Post  sam on Wed Sep 22, 2010 10:49 am

You should explore beaches in the Mediterranean. Or do something about food.
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Re: Watson Fellowship

Post  The Original Pegasus on Wed Sep 22, 2010 12:17 pm

Go to Australia!
But being in Tokyo or Korea for a big game release would be really cool, sucks you missed starcraft.

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Video Games Abroad

Post  ellis on Wed Sep 22, 2010 3:52 pm

Video Game Regulations and How They Affect Gaming Cultures Abroad
(I was just talking to Markham about this a second ago, so I figured I'd regroup my ideas and pop em in here to see what people think/be able to get an overall view of the concept for myself.)

Potential Countries:
Australia, Germany (Other EU countries?), Japan, Korea

Information:
Countries like Australia and Germany have strict regulations on violence in games (not only just video games but board games like Warhammer as well which is just goofy) that often force people in these countries who want these games to import them from the US. However, the US is also often trying to impose similar regulations or age limits a la Jack Thompson/The state of California.

In contrast, countries like Japan and Korea are absolutely littered with gaming venues and have very little regulation on many types of games (Except Japan seems to have a distaste for violence in video games, but I think this is just a cultural quip, not a governmental intervention on the issue) such as RapeLay (rape game), Boon-Ga Boon-Ga (an arcade game in which you stick your finger up some guy's ass [game was actually developed in Korea so that'd play in here as well]), and Doki Doki Majo Shinpan (probing little girls. This one is actually really popular and oddly on the DS.) I'm not too sure about Korea, but I bet you'd see some similarities. Another thing I find really interesting is how countries that disapprove of violence are generally okay with graphic sexual content (Japan, maybe Korea), and countries that okay gratuitous violence are incredibly quick to ban or disallow the selling of games with anything beyond topless women (The US).

Potential Topic:
-A very basic topic would be how regulations on games affect the gaming culture in each country. Does the regulation on games in Australia/Germany hinder the market in these areas? Clearly they can't sell as many games because of the regulations, which would hurt game stores. However, places like Yahtzee's Mana Bar (Bar + Gaming = I need to go here) exist in Australia and one of the biggest gaming conventions in the world, GamesCon, is in Germany. Now that's not to say that Germany and Australia don't have good gaming markets. Germany has a huge love for gaming, just specific kinds. However, in Japan and Korea, this lack of regulations and social stigmas has created gaming utopias. The only thing hindering a game from selling is its quality and cultural boundaries (violence, platform [the xbox just doesn't sell in Japan for instance]). The US, being the middle of these two poles, provides a great leaping point to compare the different ends of the gaming spectrum worldwide.

Comments/Suggestions:
I realize this isn't the best writing/wording and it has to be fairly short, but I just cranked it out in about ten minutes. I'd be curious to hear your comments/suggestions on how it'd be received by the fellowship foundation (probably negatively, but that'd just be another incentive to show how different gaming is perceived in other countries which could definitely be included in the application). I'd also be interested to see how you guys feel about the idea/wording in general. Do you think there's any weight to it? Does it need some tweaking in it's general focus? Other countries to suggest? Did I just get something completely wrong?

Either way, I'd be curious because it's something I'm interested in and mostly just wrote up based on my general knowledge of different gaming cultures and would like to pursue the subject a bit.

TL;DR: Gaming cultures in other countries vary widely based on their regulations, stigmas, and industries (Sony and Nintendo are based in Japan. Guess who has the largest percentage of gamers?). How does this affect gamers and their social circle for countries at different ends of the spectrum in these areas?

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Re: Watson Fellowship

Post  narky on Wed Sep 22, 2010 5:23 pm

dude andrew, sweetness.

right now im also considering studying the effects of climate change on ski culture
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Re: Watson Fellowship

Post  The Original Pegasus on Sun Oct 03, 2010 8:54 pm

whatd you end up doing or are you still in the process of picking a topic?

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andrews idea

Post  jaingo on Mon Oct 04, 2010 6:45 am

i think it would help if you said you were also going to study the vg regulations as part of a broader cultural perspective - so like for example - the regulations can be a litmus test of a sort for the country's issues/ambiguities with things like violence/sexuality and the debates about vgs can be viewed in the spectrum of how the country deals with teh subjects. seemed like you were heading that direction - also would be interesting to see how different countries do or don't support video game development, for example Canada finances a lot of the small presses/publishing companies to promote a solid literary scene which they believe is valuable but not profitable - do any countries finance video game things in any ways for example - helping indie developers or possibly incentivizing developers to start studios in their countries or financing educational games or something. Or taxing/de-incentivizing certain games. How do they deal with people who play the games that aren't authorized - what are the penalties? etc. etc.
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Re: Watson Fellowship

Post  specialjack on Sun Oct 10, 2010 10:57 pm

what'd you end up doing?

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Re: Watson Fellowship

Post  narky on Mon Oct 11, 2010 2:06 pm

ended up deciding not to apply. after i wrote the essays i just considered how constricting not being able to be in the united states is for an entire year. i want to go abroad, but on my own terms.
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