ExPlay 2012: What can games offer science and society?

Axon

The ExPlay festival in Bath this morning played host to a panel that explored the role videogames can play in science and society, looking specifically at how gameplay – whether full game mechanics or simply gamification – can help players learn about, and understand, difficult or obscure topics. A spoonful of sugar, as it were.

Students win $100,000 with Kinect

A pair of US high school students were yesterday awarded a $100,000 college scholarship for using Kinect to analyse human walking patterns in a project that could ultimately be used in the design of prosthetics for amputees.Ziyuan Liu and Cassee Cain, seniors at Oak Ridge High School in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, won the Team Prize at the Siemens Competition, an annual awards ceremony designed to promote the study of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).

Study claims to prove effect of violent games on brain function

US radiologists claim to have shown for the first time that playing violent videogames has an effect on parts of the brain that control emotion.The study, carried out by the department of radiology and imaging sciences at Indiana University School Of Medicine, split a group of 22 men aged 18 to 29, none of whom were regular gamers, into two. The first group played a shooter for 10 hours in a week, then refrained from playing at all in the second week. The other group played no violent games at all.

Tate Liverpool uses games to bridge art and science

Tate Liverpool is using videogames alongside its Alice In Wonderland exhibition to help teach children aged 8-12 about developmental neuroscience.The project, dubbed Wondermind, consists of online games and interactive films which will be playable within the exhibition itself as well as through the Tate Kids website.

Foldit players solve AIDS puzzle

Foldit players solve AIDS puzzle

Players of the online game Foldit have helped discover the structure of an enzyme that had the scientific community stumped for a decade, representing a significant step forward in attempts to cure retroviral diseases like AIDS.

GDC 2011: Videogame Play As Nightmare Protection

GDC 2011: Videogame Play As Nightmare Protection

At GDC’s Serious Games Summit, Jayne Gackenback, Ph.D explained how videogames have been reducing nightmares in soldiers suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) nightmares.

GDC 2011: Disease Modelling In World Of Warcraft

GDC 2011: Disease Modelling In World Of Warcraft

As part of the Serious Games Summit, Rutgers University epedemiologist Nina H. Fefferman tells how the World Of Warcraft plague, Hakkar, was a useful case study for real-world disease modelling.The Hakkar’s Corrupted Blood plague was inserted into World Of Warcraft in 2005 by developer Blizzard, she said, “to challenge high-level players”. Hakkar was the end boss of the Zul’Gurub dungeon who, when attacked, cast a hit-point draining spell which was supposed to last for just ten seconds and only apply within Zul’Gurub.