Friday, August 6, 2010

Five Interviews Conducted!

I have conducted five interviews so far! The results have been very interesting since I am interviewing a much younger demographic than I had intended when I began the project.

Regardless, the results are not just interesting, but I think they will lead to innovative design recommendations for builders of, what I argue, are "narrative systems" like Gmail.

I still need another participant or two, so if you are interested, please let me know!

Plus you get $20 for your time! 

All interviews are conducted via instant messenger. You should be a daily user of Gmail with at least 5,000 messages in your archive. Also, in keeping with my younger demographic, you should be around 18-22-ish. Send me an email at Thanks!

Monday, July 19, 2010

First Interviews!

I am very excited to have our first interviews this week. On Friday, I will report a few interesting findings--I hope!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Gmail What Are You Doing?

Gmail seems to be doing some strange things, so Jeremy is focusing on doing the final in-game fixes. Hopefully, he will get a chance to look at the larger code issues before he leaves for his new job in California!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Still Fixing Bugs

We are still working on bug fixes. Soon, we also hope to have our female sprites in the game! They are already made, but they need a few adjustments.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Bug Fixes

Jeremy fixed some new bugs that are popping up. We think Gmail is messing with how they do IMAP, and this is causing some very annoying issues. Still, the game is relatively stable, and I hope to begin some interviews soon!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Last Meeting Before Thanksgiving

Our Team had a great meeting last night.
We made progress on a number of fronts.
Jeremy is going to re-visit and probably re-write much of the parsing code he did in the summer in order to try and speed up the downloading of Gmail. Also, we have made a decision to limit the number of emails downloaded. So, the user will download only their first Gmail to number 1,000. This will allow for faster downloads, and it will give users a chance to actually "beat" the game.

Dave has been creating some great music. He's working on a few more seasonal, ambient songs and an intro song.

Eric is finishing his amazing art and animation. We should have a testable beta by the end of the semester.

After Thanksgiving, I am going to begin work on getting IRB approval for interviewing participants. By the end of spring semester, we hope to have a publishable paper with, hopefully, very rich empirical data.

Monday, November 2, 2009


It's been a while since I have updated our progress, but fear not, we are doing great!
  1. We had a great meeting the other night with the team. Eric has made wonderful progress with the art and animations. It is really starting to look better and better.
  2. We our proud to announce that fellow PhD student David Bello is now creating original music for our game! Dave is going for an ambient, seasonal sound, and his first audio file sounded amazing. I would post it here, but I will wait until he has tweaked it some more.
  3. Jeremy is continuing his work on speeding up the downloading of Gmail. He has found a new python library that will make use of IMAP, so we are hoping this will work better than our current technique.
We are going to have another meeting before Thanksgiving break and keep pushing forward. We anticipate being--hopefully--completely finished at the end of the semester, and I will start informal testing asap.

We are close!