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Government is strangely nonplussed when World of Warcraft gold is used for IRL drugs

Early in the morning of January 19, 2015, shoppers on bankofwow.com could buy 10,000 units of World of Warcraft gold for as little as $4.22. In addition to being traded within WoW, this virtual gold could theoretically be used to barter for (possibly illicit) physical goods or, as Bank of WoW proves, converted into American dollars. Thus, WoW gold is both a commodity and an actual currency. WoW gold is not unique in this regard. Videogame currencies occupy a strange position; they are not widely thought of as real but can fulfill most of the roles of a currency both…

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What sort of art would the enemies from Zelda make? A serious question.

In the darkest recesses of literary nonfiction graveyards there exist half-crumpled manuscripts musing, to the night sky, what sort of art the mindless automaton antagonists of Legend of Zelda might make. Muse no longer, undergrads: here is the exact manifestation of your dreams. The cabal of “computer programs, robots, ‘smart objects,’ and beyond” at nonhumans.net have used an HP 7475A Pen Plotter to trace the X & Y coordinates of Legend of Zelda enemies as they hop about the screen. The result is a sort of digital, AI-created spirograph, with slight shadows in the image on places where, for whatever reason, the Moblins and…

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How bitcoin makes online players lucrative targets

Tuesday, bitcoin—the online currency whose had a recent date with Congress—reached an all-time high, hitting a value of $900. Of course there are risks associated with the boom. It’s so volatile that it’s foolish to list its current asking price, which can swing by fifty percent in an afternoon. Another danger: bitcoin make those of us who play online games, like CounterStrike, potential victims of bitcoin mining.  That’s what happened when a rouge employee at the E-Sports Entertainment Association schemed to place on players’ computers malware that would mine for the precious currency. In case you’re unfamiliar with the intricacies…