threedognice wrote:Maybe, but your position is not that clear. There is a definition of the word “game,” and it is not defined in some kind of imaginary way — no, it is very real, and exists. Just like my position, there is no need to repeat it … but I will, anyway. It says: “a form of play or sport, esp. a competitive one played according to rules and decided by skill, strength, or luck.”
Perfect. Now how about a definition of "play" (which is a part of the definition you quoted)? "Engage in activity for enjoyment and recreation rather than a serious or practical purpose."
Edit: Anyway, the conflict here comes from the fact that I consider the goal of recreation to be the essence of games, why you give more weight to the formal appearance, competitiveness and such. It's not like either of us is wrong, we just both have different definitions, even though they both fall under the general one you quoted.
Just to clarify this. In the thread of discussion I was following, MostlyNormal posted that chess can't really be solved because what computers do isn't the same as what we do when we play games; a couple of posters including me responded that the ability to play a game like chess is essentially to be able to play by the rules. Klear then came in to say that a game isn't a game really unless its played for fun.
So effectively Klear is saying that because computers don't play chess in the same way as humans, they don't play it at all - they're not aware of what they're doing and they don't have fun. I agree there is a conceptual distinction between the way we play and the way computers play: as long as this is understood (by those who accept it) it doesn't matter what words we use. Any semantic disagreement doesn't affect the discussion - either side can rephrase things as necessary.
But I was saying the comic was partly about computers vs. humans ability, and how far computers have gone in "solving" various games. Because "solved" is just a computer science term, all that's required to talk about computers' skill level at chess is that computers follow the same rules as humans, albeit mechanically, and that they are the rules of chess. This is true whatever you call what computers do when they appear to play chess. To say "playing a game" doesn't apply to this doesn't make the phenomenon go away. It might just make it harder to discuss. (On the other hand it might make the discussion more precise.)
As for games, in Philosophical Investigations Wittgenstein uses the word to illustrate the way "language" has no single essence, maybe helpful?
"66. Consider for example the proceedings that we call 'games'. I mean board-games, card-games, ball-games, Olympic games, and so on. What is common to them all? -- Don't say: 'There must be something common, or they would not be called "games" '-but look and see whether there is anything common to all. -- For if you look at them you will not see something that is common to all, but similarities, relationships, and a whole series of them at that. To repeat: don't think, but look! --"