Friday, July 25, 2008


Yesterday we received our first item purchased (as opposed to donated) for the gaming archive: A Nintendo Wii. Spent about 30 minutes this afternoon hooking it up to make sure that it all works—it's a rough job, but somebody has to do it!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Progress Update

I've been pretty busy working on the game archive over the past week. Some highlights:

  • Got the collection fund set up and started ordering games. I've ordered over 40 games so far, including games for PS3, Wii, Xbox 360, and Windows. Hopefully we'll have stuff through the acquisitions-cataloging-labeling pipeline in time for fall semester.
  • Found a source for a Wii so sent in that order as well.
  • Also ordered a handful of all-in-one retro game systems, such as the Atari Flashback 2.
  • Set up some budgeting spreadsheets using Apple's Numbers program (I've used Excel many times but have never quite grokked it; where as Numbers seems to grok me!) and am keeping track of donations and purchases using Gamepedia.
  • Had a very productive meeting with a faculty member from the Screen Arts department who is their 'video game person,' along with their departmental librarian. We hope to be able to support the needs of her course on gaming culture and are starting to think about bigger plans.
  • Met with Eli Neiburger from Ann Arbor District Library and had a very fruitful discussion and brainstormed possible joint programming ideas.
  • Met with library IT support to talk about equipment needs.

Still on track to soft open in late August, assuming everything goes well (knock on wood!)

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Game Controller History

Interface design librarian extraordinaire Suz sent me a link to this awesome Game Console Controller Family Tree, where you can see how controlelrs for game consoles have evolved over the years.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008


Managed to accomplish a few things for the game archive over the past couple of days:
  • Got the budget approved, so I can start spending money on games, equipment, etc.
  • Delivered the first batch of games (from those donated) to cataloging, so that process can get started.
  • Got a dongle from Radio Shack so that we can hook up the old game systems to a modern television. Hooked up the Atari 2600 Jr. and had one of our grad students test the donated games to make sure they worked (most did).
  • Ordered chairs for the game room.
Now that the budget is in place, things should start happening at a faster pace. We're still on target for opening sometime in August (though at this point it's looking to be more like late August...)

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Even More Donation Photos

A few more things we've had donated recently:

TurboGrafx 16

A TurboGrafx 16.

Tandy Color Computer 3

A Tandy Color Computer 3.

Tetris Game

A dedicated Tetris game (just plug it into your tv and go!)

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Flat Panel Displays

Not much to report this week. Electrical work has started again in the game room. I should soon have an actual budget account so I can start ordering things.

One of the things I have to make a decision on is a large flat panel display. We'll be wall-mounting it so that people can play the latest generation games in a group setting.

I've read that for gaming purposes, plasma screens are preferable to LCDs, due to the potential of greater lag time with LCD. Anyone know if there's any truth to that assessment?