A Gamer Parent’s Opinion on Violence in Video Games

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Similar to how we refer to younger generations as Digital Natives, I suppose you should refer to me as a Video Game Native. Video games have existed throughout my life, though in my earliest years, they very rudimentary, by today’s standards.

I grew up hearing opinions that video games cause violence and that they desensitize people to it. Before you start firing up your comments, hold on a moment and let me express my full opinion.

Video games, by themselves, do not cause people to be violent.*

Yes, there’s an asterisk. The major studies have not found a correlation between playing video games and violence. And many have tried, very hard.

There may be an argument to be made that games, just like books, guns, movies and poverty encourage people to be violent, but that’s a depth I’m not going into detail here. Encouragement requires many conditions, and often tragedies, to already have occurred. The difference between “cause” and “encourage” is significant. What encourages one person, may not encourage another. Perhaps “entice” is a more appropriate word? None of these things “cause” a person to do anything.

Alas, you didn’t come here for my opinion on everything.

I’d caution any parent to not interpret any study as a free pass to expose their children to just any video game, regardless of the published age ratings. Nor would I suggest interpreting any as advising you against allowing your children to play games. As any parent knows, the maturity of a child can vary greatly from one child to the next.

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Xbox 360 Wireless Network Adapter Won’t Connect to Xbox Live

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The Short Version: I can make it work by selecting “Connect to Xbox Live”, letting it fail the test, and then choosing the option to test the connection to Xbox Live. After it completes successfully I can then connect to Xbox Live. I never found a solution to this problem.

Rather than deal with this problem indefinitely I removed the Microsoft adapter and now I’m using an ethernet to wifi bridge device, which works perfectly.

Several months ago I moved the Xbox 360 into a different room. Rather than run another network device for the only console that doesn’t have built-in wireless (I have an older model) I decided to purchase an Xbox 360 Wireless Network Adapter.

It works, but not perfectly. I haven’t identified the cause yet. It could be a compatibility issue with my Apple Airport Extreme Base Station though it may be something very obscure. It doesn’t receive a very strong WiFi signal but I wouldn’t rate as being weak.

Whenever I start the Xbox 360 up it no longer automatically logs into Xbox Live (despite being configured to do so). In addition, it won’t connect to Xbox Live just by clicking the appropriate tile.

The only way I can make it connect using the WiFi adapter is to select the option to test the connection to Xbox Live, after it fails to connect.

After the test successfully completes I can then back up to the main menu and sign into Xbox Live without problems.

Updated 06/25/2012: I still haven’t found a permanent fix for this issue. It’s as though the USB wifi adapter simply doesn’t wake up when I turn on the Xbox 360. I have to run a connection test every time to get it working. The issue isn’t caused by the Airport Extreme Base Station. It took a hit to some ethernet ports recently and is no longer in line. I’m still experiencing the same problem with my ASUS wireless router.

Updated 12/10/2012: I sold it to a friend recently and he reports that he doesn’t have this same issue. I suspect that the wifi signal where my Xbox system is located is rather weak, which creates problems for the Xbox adapter. I’m currently using an IOGear device with the Xbox and it seems to be able to connect to Xbox Live automatically at start-up.