The latest procrastination-tool-of-choice on college campuses is called “Wikiracing,” reports the Philadelphia Inquirer—and like the “Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon” game, albeit modified for the internet age, it challenges players to connect the dots. The rules are simple: Pick a starting page—”Helen Keller,” for example. Then pick a second target page, the more disparate, the better—”lucky bamboo,” say—and see who can get from the first to the final page fastest, solely by clicking on links embedded within the pages. It turns out, you can get from the deaf and blind author to the popular houseplant in six clicks: According to Keller’s Wikipedia page, the Japanese were especially fond of Keller. The “Japanese people” page leads to the “Japan” page, which contains a reference to the oldest known Japanese folktale, “The Tale of the Bamboo Cutter.” And from there it’s quick clicking to “bamboo” and finally “Dracaena sanderiana“—the “lucky” variety. Winners are determined by the number of pages visited on the way to the final destination (fewest clicks wins), or players can race against the clock. Other variations require players to begin on different, randomly selected pages and race toward the “Jesus” page…

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About the Author:

Denny Carter

Dennis has covered higher education technology since April 2008, having interviewed some of the most recognized IT pros in U.S. colleges and universities. He is always updating eCampus News with the latest in pressing ed-tech issues, such as the growing i


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