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8:12pm on Monday, 11th February, 2019:

Bad Cop


I went to Brunel University today to be external examiner for a thesis. Overhead line problems and a couple of broken-down trains delayed my journey to London somewhat, but I arrived at Brunel in plenty of time for the event.

The thesis in question can be summarised thus: "Question: Can this bonkers literature theory be applied meaningully to MMORPGs? Answer: Voila.".

For a thesis to be defended, someone has to attack it. There was quite a lot of use of my Player Types theory, so in this instance I got to play bad cop. The candidate suffered something of a shock when I was able to score what to me was an open goal at the end of his viva, but what he didn't know is that he'd already scored two or three goals himself in his defence so was going to win anyway. He duly passed with minor corrections (they should take a couple of weeks, tops). He really did acquit himself well, especially as I'm the one expert opinion on player types with whom he can't really argue.

On the way back home, I picked up a newspaper and did the Sudoku on the underground from Uxbridge to Liverpool Street. It was quite tricky, but I made a number of conceptual leaps that I was really pleased with and finished it in maybe 25 minutes.

On the train back from Liverpool Street to Colchester, the woman sitting next to me got out the same newspaper and started the same Sudoku. I was curious to see how long she would take to finish it.

She was like a machine. She took no more than ten seconds to put in any number and had the whole lot done in five minutes.

I may be an expert in some things, but in others I'm an amateur.

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Copyright © 2019 Richard Bartle (richard@mud.co.uk).