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Re: How to best collaborate with games and junior tasks

On 19.08.2014 23:44, Per Andersson wrote:
> On Tue, Aug 19, 2014 at 1:52 PM, Markus Koschany <apo@gambaru.de> wrote:
>> I'm well aware of debian-junior. Thanks for bringing this topic up for
>> discussion. Actually I have already tried to avoid duplicating your
>> effort and left out a few games on purpose because I thought that people
>> who are looking for games for children will most likely find debian-junior.
> If one of the purposes of the games blend is to collect all games in
> Debian I think they should be listed in games metapackages as well.
> Maybe just include junior-* for completeness? 

I dropped some educational games for children because including them in
games seemed at least doubtful at that time because the educational
component outweighed the gaming part in my opinion. However now I think
creating »games-education« might be useful for your project and maybe
for others too.

I also removed »games-toys« because I wasn't really satisfied with the
result. I will tinker a little with this one again and then you have the
choice to make it depend on your »junior-toys« metapackage, if you feel
that it will be more convenient.

>> 2.
>> We could concentrate on debian-junior and overhaul the games tasks.
>> Personally I think that debian-junior should contain tasks like
>> junior-games-teenager or junior-games-small-children. Then you could
>> create metapackages with games from different categories dedicated to
>> certain peer groups. Probably I would drop -net, -gl or arcade in favor
>> of those tasks.
> This is very thin ice IMHO. Firstly, all kids are different and age is only a
> number; recommending software based on age is naive and to figure out
> another measure to put kids in is probably a scientific fields on its own.

I just want to point out that rating of movies and games is a common
task of various official institutions around the world. In Germany the
FSK [1] and the Federal Department for Media Harmful to Young People [2]
are two examples that youth protection laws can have a huge impact on
the availability of certain media for different age groups.

Of course there are differences in maturity between children of the same
peer group but there is definitely a significant gap between small
children aged 4 and young teenagers aged 12+.

> Secondly, I think this imposes way too much guidance or control or what
> you want to call it; Who shall decide what is suitable for other kids? Based
> on what?

I believe, in the absence of such official authorities and tests, it is
the responsibility of each maintainer and developer to recommend
appropriate software. Personally, I think this would be an interesting
and fun task if more people were involved and if you were really
misguided in your decision I'm quite sure some bug reporters or fellow
maintainers would point it out.

> I think it is a lot better describing the actual games (technically, game
> mechanics, content wise) and to let parents or other care takers to explore
> and help find suitable software for their kids.

But here you assume that parents have enough time to figure out what
kind of game might be appropriate for their children. Even if they
understood all the technical aspects (net, opengl, text mode), which
can't be taken for granted, they would need to have a deeper knowledge
of the game itself before they could make a sensible decision what is
good for their children or not. I believe the package maintainers should
relieve them from this kind of work by choosing appropriate defaults
categorized into different age groups, suitable for very young children
or teenagers.

>> To sum up my trail of thought here: I believe debian-games should focus
>> on game types and technical aspects of game development whereas
>> debian-junior should consider social aspects as well. I'm happy to help
>> you with creating such packages be it for debian-games or debian-junior.
> Recommending software based on social aspects is hard. I don't think
> that will happen any time soon.
> Help is still very welcome! An easy way is to keep a look on the commits
> to the debian-junior packaging repository, reviewing those if there is
> anything to comment.

I will try to improve games-education and games-toys again, perhaps
those tasks can be helpful for debian-junior too. I'm still convinced
that debian-junior would benefit from some additional social or
educational points of view.




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