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Reminder: Trainer-training workshops for next year that are
confirmed with Roger Greenaway before December 15th will be at
the old price. For the latest details see: http://reviewing.co.uk

''When you find yourself playing and laughing with other people,
you find yourself feeling healthy and safe: good, about yourself,
about other people.'' (Deep Fun home page)

<>  S I T E F I N D E R <> Vol 2 Issue 11 <> ISSN 1465-8224

SiteFinder Adventure and Experiential Education Directory Ezine

This is your free monthly newsletter associated with the
SiteFinder Directory: http://reviewing.co.uk/sitefinder/index.htm
edited by Roger Greenaway roger@reviewing.co.uk

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This month's sister ezine 'Active Reviewing Tips' describes
reviewing tools and strategies for DEVELOPING POTENTIAL.
sign up for this free monthly pubication, or view the ARCHIVES

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CONTENTS (TOP)

<> 1 <> About this issue

After the 'heaviness' of the last issue (which gave you lots of
tips about doing outdoor research on the internet), here's an
issue dedicated to 'fun'. Maybe there are some seasonal
influences around too. The site I have reviewed below will give
you plenty of ideas about how to celebrate over the next few
weeks (and years).

But Deep Fun is far more than a site for activity ideas. It is a
site that fits perfectly with the original purpose of this ezine:

SiteFinder arose from my own frustrations while searching the net
for inspirational web sites about 'adventure-based learning'.

I wanted to know ... 'HOW and WHY are people using
outdoor adventure for learning, growth, development,
empowerment, education, training, therapy, reflection,
inspiration, etc.?'

At www.deepfun.com you (and I) will find many ways of exploring
the above question, and even finding some answers!

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CONTENTS (TOP)

<> 2 <> THE FUN PORTAL

Review of www.deepfun.com by Roger Greenaway
''A virtual play community hosted by Bernie DeKoven''
(where 'oaqui' is pronounced 'wacky')

This is not a whole review of the whole site.
It is just about the bits I happened to explore.

The DeepFun home page has an extensive index and links to many
other fun sites. Which is why I think of it as a 'fun portal':

Fun and Self
Fun and Health
Fun and Society
Fun and Family
Fun and Work
Fun and Games
Fun book, tapes and articles
Fun resources
Fun connections

I looked at one or more pages in each of these 9 sections.

The trouble with large sites (including my own site) is that you
can quickly find yourself in some obscure backwater. You can too
easily bypass the best bits without knowing it. I first found
myself looking through the 1995 email archives of Questions and
Answers to (and from) Dr. Fun. It took some patience to find the
'gems'. [see later]

I formed a very different impression of Dr. Fun when I later
discovered the '20th Anniversary On-Line Edition of The
Well-Played Game: a Player's Philosophy' by Bernard DeKoven (aka
Dr. Fun) at
http://www.deepfun.com/WPG.htm
The carefully written introduction is in a very different style
to Dr. Fun's chatty emails.

I was expecting 'The Well-Played Game' to be a collection of 'new
games' activities, but it was something far better. It is full of
practical insights into game playing. If you see yourself as an
'exercise designer' rather than a 'game-player' you will still
find plenty of useful tips in this on-line (and off-line) book.
The whole book is on one VERY long page - so its easy to search
for keywords (using CTRL + F) and to do some selective reading.

''The Purpose of Purposelessness'' was a subtitle that caught my
eye - and is a good place to get to grips with some of the
creative contradictions and puzzling paradoxes that populate this
site.

The first thing that puzzled me was how Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi's
FLOW THEORY is presented as the theory for fun. According to this
view the art (or science?) of fun is to get the balance between
challenge and boredom 'exactly' right. What's happened to the
carefree and unpredictable nature of fun? I have seen the exact
same diagram used as the theoretical underpinning for 'adventure
programming' - a lot of which isn't 'play' at all. In fact, I am
not at all convinced that flow theory has much to do with either
'play' or 'adventure programming'. My understanding of flow is
that it comes with activity that a person has become proficient
at with practice until it becomes a part of who they are. One of
Csikszentmihalyi's examples (I seem to recall) is of a
grandmother reading to her grandchild. Grandmother will surely
not have experienced flow in the early stages of *learning* her
ABC as a child? Elsewhere Dr. Fun describes a young girl acting
as a natural play leader amongst her friends. This might serve as
an ideal example of a young person 'in flow' (but she was clearly
well practised in this art).

My understanding of flow is that it is unlikely to be experienced
by people when they are faced with activities that they have
never done before - which is precisely what DOES happen in
'adventure programming' and 'new games workshops'.

But such issues about 'flow' are NOT a problem about the site -
because you will have found yourself on a site that is the best
place to explore this conundrum - and any others you might find.
There is a very active delphi forum (called the DeepFun
Community) attached (seamlessly!) to the site (hmm that's a good
idea). There's also a very useful link to the 'flow network' at:
http://www.flownetwork.com/biosktch.htm [URL may have changed]
where you will quickly learn how to pronounce Mihaly
Csikszentmihalyi ("ME-high CHICK-sent-me-high-ee") - or 'Mike'
for short.

Back at deepfun.com ... you will find that Bernie and 'Mike' have
met and you will find out what they think about each other. Mike
reveals the difficulties he has had getting funding for studying
something as unserious as happiness: ''When I write for a grant,
you think I can mention the word "flow" or "fun" or "happiness?"
Not if I want the grant I can't." Mike's glowing testimonial for
Bernie reads:

    ''Bernie DeKoven is the only person I know who not only knows
    about play, but knows how to teach it. May his efforts prosper,
    for they help us all.''

Dr. (BDeK) Fun is certainly a big player. I would love to have
learned more about the game he played with a quarter of a million
people. And how loud he had to blow his whistle!

I have probably said enough for you to judge whether this site is
worth a visit (or printing out), and whether you want to check
out the internet facilities of the DeepFun community.

It is certainly a great place to LEARN about fun. On my next
visit to this site I might be able to find answers to these
nagging questions...

Fun is a world of paradox and unseriousness. So how far can you
probe into 'fun' before being told you are off-limits? For
example, the word 'therapy' looks like a no-no for this site. But
what is 'deepfun' if it isn't 'therapy' of some kind? Is this
just market positioning or is there a real difference?

A final recommendation has got to be that not only is this a free
and generous website, but also the face to face training that is
offered is also free and generous. Check the site to see if you
are 'charitable' enough to qualify for this offer!

I promised to tell about some of the gems I found.

In addition to the DeepFun Community, The Flow Network and The
Well-Played Game I especially liked 'The Interplay Experiment'
http://www.deepfun.com/intrplay.htm - a neat, if predictable, way
of demonstrating the value of fun - for all ages.

Another gem for me was Dr. Fun's advice to an event organiser:
''The first thing you want to do when you find yourself in charge
of a fun event is to make everybody else responsible... Make each
team responsible for making something. Only, instead of having
them create a THING, have them PLAN THE REST OF THE EVENT for
each other!''

I was also pleased to find advice about allowing and supporting
opting out, and allowing anyone to stop the whole game.
''When someone, anyone for any reason, calls 'TIME OUT' you have
to stop playing.''
Compulsory fun is not a paradox but an impossiblility.
Only desperate comedians TELL you to laugh.

Please let me know what gems YOU find at deepfun.com or at any
other interesting 'experiential learning' web sites that you
visit. Write to: mailto:sitefindergems@reviewing.co.uk

Let's continue with the topic of fun and games next year!

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CONTENTS (TOP)

<> 3 <> TRACKERS' TIPS

zzzzzz SEARCH WHILE YOU SLEEP! zzzzzzzzzzzz

Regular readers will know about these two handy robots:

TracerLock
http://www.tracerlock.com

The Informant


They will send you emails when new results appear for your
favourite search terms.

A new facility from the northernlight search engine promises to
do a more comprehensive and professional job. To try it out go
to:
http://www.northernlight.com
and choose the yellowish 'alerts' box in the left hand margin.

If you already know of sites that you want to keep an eye on,
make use of this robot to do the job for you:
http://www.changedetection.com

Let these robots do your searching and get a few more zzzzzzzzs!

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CONTENTS (TOP)

<> 4 <> NEW VIRTUAL VENUES
FOR ADVENTURE PROGRAMMING AND OUTDOOR TRAINING

INTERCOM NOW HOSTS A DISCUSSION GROUP

'interCOM' now hosts a discussion group as well as providing a
newsletter. The breakdown of this 300+ international 'list' is:
Africa 7%, North America 7%, Asia 14%, Latin America 14%,
Australia/NZ 29%, Europe 29%. Anyone can join this list to
discuss Experiential Learning and Adventure Programming.
Approximately one-third of current list members are also members
of AEE - the Association for Experiential Education.



BULLETIN BOARDS, BARS and E-CONFERENCES

One thing I have noticed about discussion lists is that they are
becoming more and more focused on specific topics.
But the interests of the outdoor adventure community overlap with
many other fields. So how can the internet best support
networking ACROSS these special interest communities - without
producing information overload?

The solution seems to be creating a 'discussion' facility that
(a) has high visibility on the web
(b) allows users access via email or the web or both
(c) allows users to easily adjust the flow of information they
receive (and the groups or 'threads' they belong to).

In the last issue I recommended the Freepint Bar at
http://www.freepint.co.uk/bar/ The 'bar' now has all of the above
facilities, and is a great place to ask questions to information
professionals. After asking your question you simply click a box
if you want to receive (by email) any messages that appear in the
thread that you have just begun. Your question (or message title)
will be seen by thousands of information professionals, but all
YOU will receive is responses to your particular question. This
is a neat application of technology for reducing information
overload - exactly what we should expect from information
professionals!

This clever combination of services (that is easily configured
and controlled by individual users) makes it a breeze to access
other networks in a very selective and focused way.

A similar facility now exists at TrainingZone - where the 'bar'
is called a 'conference'. See:
http://www.trainingzone.co.uk

TrainingZone's 'Web Board' technology allows a number of
different conferences to happen simultaneously. You simply select
which ones you want to join. It's the virtual equivalent of Open
Space Technology.

This TrainingZone conference facility is a great place to catch
up on training issues. For example, a recent ''unflattering''
summary of over 100 research studies about NLP by Gary Platt is
something you must read before being tempted by the
trainer-training opportunities advertised at:
www.inlpta.com/trainers.htm [since disappeared]

I have just posted 3 questions to kick off a new OUTDOOR TRAINING
CONFERENCE that is now running in the TrainingZone Discussion
Area. Go along, take a look, try it out, ask a question, give an
answer .... My questions look a bit lonely! This self-running
service should provide an ideal venue for 'outdoor training' as
more people get to know about it. You can reach it and contribute
anytime at: http://www.trainingzone.co.uk

Here are some user-friendly INSTRUCTIONS from TrainingZone's Tim
Pickles to help you on your first visit to this virtual OUTDOOR
TRAINING CONFERENCE:

''You can READ the postings anonymously; to POST a contribution,
you need enter your name and email address on the site unless you
area already a TrainingZone user. You will be prompted to choose
your own login name and password which are then stored and
remembered, so you only have to do this the first time. The
Discussion takes place on the Web-based conferencing
software.  There are several training-related discussions active
at any one time, so just click on the Outdoor Training one to
join in there. If you would like to receive new postings by
email, click on the Help area and set up the personal options
accordingly.''

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CONTENTS (TOP)

<> 5 <> SITEOWNERS' TIPS

''How to get listed in Yahoo and the other major indexes''
http://selfpromotion.com/yahootips.t
I thought reviewing.co.uk was listed in Yahoo because it showed
up when I searched Yahoo. How wrong could I be! From this article
I realised that my site was not listed in Yahoo at all. So I, for
one, will be following Robert Woodhead advice in this article and
having another go at getting a Yahoo listing ;-) Just how popular
does a site have to be before Yahoo takes notice? The chicken and
the egg are both laughing!

''How to prepare your site for the search engines''
http://selfpromotion.com/pageprep.t
It's never too late to do this job. People either seem to get
obsessed by search engine optimisation or give it very little
attention. It's certainly worth getting yout title tags and meta
tags sorted out and submitting your site to the major search
engines every few months. This article tells you how to do this -
and lots more!

Also take a look at the SPECIAL OFFER for siteowners in readers'
comments below.

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CONTENTS (TOP)

<> 6 <> NEW SITEFINDER DIRECTORY ENTRIES

Bernie DeKoven
Deep Fun
IAF, TASP
bernie@dekoven.com
http://www.deepfun.com
People who want to bring more fun into the world, who play and
like to bring others into play
To learn new games, to find words to help you explain the value
and importance of fun
New games and old. Articles about the theory and practice, the
psychology and sociology of fun.
Opportunity to join a community via our Delphi.com website.

Innes Jones
Shropshire LEA
http://www.punjab-express.com
Teachers School children and those interested in India
It looks and sounds good
Great pics+downloads, sounds and maps
Teachers School children and those interested in India

Cindy Faucher
Pathfinder Outdoor Education, Inc.
AEE
pathouted@aol.com
http://www.pathfinder-ed.org
People interested in experiential education.
For information about our programs as well as a visit to the
educator's corner
Over 50 curriculum choices plus a new classroom activity or
items of interest for educators.
Posting letters and pictures sent in from program participants.

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CONTENTS (TOP)

<> 7 <> READERS COMMENTS

No comments from readers in this issue, but things can change ...

HAVE YOU FOUND A GOOD SITE LATELY?

Would you like to review a site - or just send in a brief
recommendation?

I will be pleased to receive site reviews of ANY length (or
shortness).

There is NO standard format required (as you may have noticed!)
I will not be able to review all of the sites in the directory -
so I'm looking for some co-operation and community here - whether
or not you are a siteowner. But if you are, here's ...

A SPECIAL OFFER TO SITE-OWNERS: If you have a site in the
SiteFinder Directory that you would like to be reviewed (in
SiteFinder Ezine) then I will GUARANTEE a review of your site if
you submit a review of another site in the SiteFinder Directory.
Choose any site listed at: http://reviewing.co.uk/sitefinder/index.htm

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CONTENTS (TOP)

<> 8 <> DID YOU KNOW THAT ...?

protecting your computer from the latest VIRUSES and year 2000
problems is quite easy!

Step 1: [if you use Windows] Go to this site and download all the
'critical' updates. These updates (or patches) will install
themselves automatically and protect your system from some of the
latest viruses.
http://windowsupdate.microsoft.com

Step Step 2: Check that you have the latest updates for you anti-virus
software. For example take a look at:
http://www.symantec.com or
http://www.drsolomons.com or
http://www.macafee.com

If you take these 2 steps there's an excellent chance (but no
guarantee!) that you will be able to continue receiving
SiteFinder ezine well into the next Millenium!

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