Hopefully you remember FoldIt, the protein manipulating game that instantly solved years-old biological puzzles. It’s probably the most well known example of a crowd-sourced citizen science project that had immediately remarkable success. It’s in this same field that Phylo exists – a game designed to sequence genomes, while the player is enjoying some fairly familiar match-3-style colour matching. I spoke to designer Jerome Waldispuhl, Assistant Professor at the School of Computer Science McGill University, Montreal, to find out how it is that fun can be recycled into progress. This is gaming literally changing the world, perhaps even saving lives.
Posts Tagged ‘research’
By John Walker on March 7th, 2012.
By Craig Pearson on February 6th, 2012.
The battle of Uncanny Valley is where CGI finally triumphed over reality: pixels stood proudly over humans showing off their parametrization maps and tone mapping that accurately depicted the imperfection of human skin and declared victory over reality. The first shot in the war fired when researcher Jorge Jimenez released this work on real-time realistic skin rendering, showing off the difference SSSS (Sexy Separable Subsurface Scattering – okay, I added that first ‘S’) makes.
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By John Walker on September 21st, 2011.
Did you know that you can’t tell reality from fantasy? No, I’m not a twenty-foot dragon from Saturn, silly! I’m a human. But you can’t tell. I know this because the Metro told me so. According to the free rag, Nottingham Trent university researchers have revealed that gamers get so immersed in fantasy that they are unable to distinguish the real world. So this must be based on a broad, far-reaching study for the paper to make such a statement, right? No of course not. It’s an interview study of 42 people. Which I’ve now read. And has nothing to do with the Metro’s conclusions. So obviously I’m going to take issue with the Metro’s coverage, but then get a little bit deeper when taking issue with the paper itself.
By John Walker on September 19th, 2011.
Perhaps you’re not familiar with the search for the molecular structure of a protein-cutting enzyme from an AIDS-like virus found in rhesus monkeys. But groups of scientists have been trying to fathom this mystery for years. And it’s just been cracked by PC gamers.
Why is this exciting? Because it’s believed that this information could be crucial to better figuring out how the AIDS virus works, and how it can be tackled. The findings, discovered via the game Foldit, are published online ahead of the next issue of Nature: Structural & Molecular Biology, with the authorship listing both scientists and gamers.
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