Ian Bogost has an article up describing work done by some of his students at Georgia Tech to try to modify Stella, an emulator for the Atari 2600 platform, so that it would accurately reproduce the visual appearance of a game being played on a CRT when the game is in fact being displayed on a modern LCD screen. They actually did a remarkably good job of reproducing after image effects, color blurring and noise. This provides yet another case where hardware can have a subtle but profound impact on how someone might interpret the game.
Following on the all intellectual property/all the time Play Machinima Law conference, here’s an excellent article by Waheedan Jariwalla (via Peter Brantley) on determining the copyright status of works in the United States. Kind of frightening in its implications for the amount of work involved in determining exactly when something goes out of copyright and when it doesn’t, but it is nice to know that works published before 1978 (within the precise legal definition of published) without a copyright notice fall into the public domain. So, early games which were made available to the public without restriction and without a copyright notice attached qualify as public domain.
This chart by the eminent Peter Hirtle at Cornell provides a useful summary of the same information.
What better way to advertise a conference on machinima and intellectual property law than with machinima? Kudos to Joshua Diltz for creating this ad for the upcoming Play Machinima Law conference.
More details on the conference can be found at the Stanford Center for Internet and Society website