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Reader opinion requested: Should these campus games be banned?

When I was in high school, my life was wanting for espionage. I was too restless to devote much time to online RPGs--the only really popular one was Quake, and although it was scored by NIN, I was too recently out of nerddom to take part in virtual death matches. But by my junior year in high school, the pendulum of cool was nudging back over to the subversive, kinda nerdy side. MTV's "Daria" was in and my gentlemen friends who'd fared puberty intact could pregame for QuakeCon and still reasonably get a perky, generally symmetrical date to Homecoming. The social climate that fall was ripe for a new kind of forum, and suddenly I was signing up to play some new game called "Assassin."

If you've ever played it--especially if during the more formative, hierarchical years of your life--you could probably understand the terror that slowly overtook my life: stake-outs at tennis practice, the anxious skulk through the parking lot, eyes glued to rear view mirrors all the way home. My life was superseded by the gaunt, afflicted senior who'd "killed" my original, quite harmless female perp & inherited me as the next obstacle in the path to live-action RPG glory. Ultimately (and once I could no longer answer the phone at night while babysitting, completely a la Scream), I bowed out of the game before I had any traction...Of course, after the real life terror of the horrible VTU shootings, school officials are urging students to put an end to "Assassin" and its target-based derivatives. What do you think? Did you ever participate in any of these live-action campus RPGs and do you think they're appropriate?

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New AI-Driven Music System Analyzes Tracks for Perfect Playlists
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Whether you're planning a bachelorette party or recovering from a breakup, a well-curated playlist makes all the difference. If you don't have time to pick the perfect songs manually, services that use the AI-driven system Sonic Style may be able to figure out exactly what you have in mind based on your request.

According to Fast Company, Sonic Style is the new music-categorizing service from the media and entertainment data provider Gracenote. There are plenty of music algorithms out there already, but Sonic Style works a little differently. Rather than listing the entire discography of a certain artist under a single genre, the AI analyzes individual tracks. It considers factors like the artist's typical genre and the era the song was recorded in, as well as qualities it can only learn through listening, like tempo and mood. Based on nearly 450 descriptors, it creates a super-accurate "style profile" of the track that makes it easier for listeners to find it when searching for the perfect song to fit an occasion.

Playlists that use data from Sonic Style feel like they were made by a person with a deep knowledge of music rather than a machine. That's thanks to the system's advanced neural network. It also recognizes artists that don't fit neatly into one genre, or that have evolved into a completely different music style over their careers. Any service—including music-streaming platforms and voice-activated assistants—that uses Gracenote's data will be able to take advantage of the new technology.

With AI at your disposal, all you have to do as the listener is decide on a style of music. Here are some ideas to get you started if you want a playlist for productivity.

[h/t Fast Company]

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