Learning to LambdaMoo

I found LambdaMoo to be extremely frustrating at times. It was really hard to navigate through without someones else’s entry ruining your response or your own entries not being a route. But once I started to understand what the space was about I really enjoyed the freedom of it all.

I appreciate the exclusivity of it and the space being a kind of escape for many people on the Internet. I could definitely see myself going there just to free my mind or blow off steam because it is almost soothing to be able to navigate your way through a digital space.

I think what I loved most about LambdaMoo was the fact that there were no visuals. LambdaMoo opened my eyes to how limiting visuals can be, because you are given a description and then the photo paints a specific description that doesn’t allow your mind or imagination to perceive anything else. Because LambdaMoo was so open for interpretation i enjoyed reading the imagery or the different spaces and the unknown of it all. You are able to paint a vivid picture in your mind of what you think the scenery would look like based of of the detailed description they give you. I also really liked the whole aspect of being in charge of you own destiny. Which ever route you decided to go would then effect the rest of your journey, and so on. So you as the player has limitless options that could even take you to Paris or on an air balloon.

There’s something ironic about the old-school system with a innovative and creative concept that I don’t think new technology and games have today. I also think it’s funny that so many of us, who consider ourselves to be tech-savvy millennial’s who grew up with technology, were lost when it came to LambdaMoo because we are so used to modern technology and easy access. We aren’t used to the difficulty of navigating through a digital space because it comes so easy to us now– the computer does it for us.

The one thing I wasn’t so keen on was the anonymity of it all. I grew up watching my dad play final fantasy where he was able to communicate to different Xbox users with anonymous gamer names. Some of the peoples responses and interactions with my dad were inappropriate or just plain odd. I think spaces like these attract people who can be cruel and hateful using their anonymous persona to spite and express their cruelty to a larger group. Mentioned in Solove’s article “The Virtues of Anonymity,” this can create dangerous spaces of unwanted “hate mail” and can take away from the freedom and community aspect of spaces like LambdaMoo.


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