Ice9

From Matters of Play
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Mads

  • "Not all “toys” are created as toys. One of the most fascinating capacities humans have is being able to toy around with almost any object they can find. From pebbles to tree branches, to more complex technological objects, humans seem to enjoy playing with things, using them in ways other than those expected, intended, or recommended."

I feel like this phrase is what best sums up the concept of human play phenomenon, or human play at its most basic form. Humans play with things in unintended ways because we are curious: play is a learning tool. In puppies, play fighting is used to learn what is and is not okay, as puppies will yip if their litter mates get too rough. For humans, it's very similar. From playing with rocks, we discover tools. From a child spinning recklessly, they learn what it is to be dizzy and, often, the consequences of it. The more "graduate" play becomes, the thing you gain from each "play" may vary, but curiosity and education still remain.


Taylor

  • "The manifestation dimensions of a toy focus on its physical materiality: the material it is made of, its technical platform, how it feels when we grasp it, how it becomes part of our mem- ory. Toys are embodiments of play, and that embodiment can be analyzed by looking at the manifestation dimensions. It’s not the same to play with a leather ball as it is with a synthetic one,25 and it’s not the same to interact with a software toy on a mobile platform as it is on a computer." (46).
  • Something i've always noticed is how different the play situation is when a toy is more specific or if it is more general, and how the "rules" of play can be suggested by the toy's design. If you only have a ball, there's not very much to do unless you have other people willing to organize a game with. Legos come with instructions, so it could be a one-person game due to the increased structure of the intended play experience. Most children's toys are of specific franchises and involve those characters, which predetermine their contexts. I guess it would depend on the player to determine how to follow those "rules."


Duncan

Play matters.

“ The more ambiguous a toy is the better aproperitve value, and interpretation can be put in to it.” (Pg. 50) “ Most importantly toys are the materialization of play, and what play is made for… Toys are the matters of play” (56) “Playfulness makes the world a toy.” (41) “ My idea of play is that of an activity full of romantic potential” (60)

What I found very captivating about all of the arguments around play, playfulness, and the appropriation of each in to the world, and how such is made from metrication of things in to play (balls, sticks games) and grounds of play ( play grounds, sports venues, electronic venues) is how play is made by the person and not the thing that is to become play. That play happens when there are things that make it, playable. As well as the poetic language used in illustrating play, it was a play of play, from matters that are about play. Play on words and a real wonder of the effects that play dose, and how the things, simple things, everyday items- can be made into matters of play.