Apr 20, 2009 | 16
Are video games as addictive and damaging to children as gambling is to adults? In a word—yes, according to a new study of nearly 1,200 children aged eight to 18 in the U.S.
This is the first study, according to study lead author Douglas Gentile, a director of research for the Minneapolis-based National Institute on Media and the Family, to quantify ways in which gaming may damage kids' ability to function socially. Gentile, an assistant psychology professor at Iowa State University, analyzed data collected in a January 2007 Harris Poll survey and compared respondents' video game play habits to the symptoms established in The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders for pathological gambling.
Apr 18, 2009 | 14
Tobacco use among active-duty military personnel is almost double what it is in the civilian population, and while smoking has decreased overall in the U.S., it's been on the rise in the military since 2002. To change that, the Department of Defense (DoD) is looking to…videogames?
The government agency has awarded researchers at M. D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston a $3.7 million grant create a video game that will deter soldiers from smoking and help those who already do to quit.
"The video game in general is becoming more popular among researchers who want to deliver a health message to a target audience," says Alexander Prokhorov, a professor of behavioral science at the University of Texas M. D. Anderson, who will lead the work. Video games are also being used to teach people about nutrition, asthma and other health-related issues, he notes.
Mar 29, 2009 | 3
People who have difficulty seeing traffic lights or cars at night, facial gestures, or when a flame is burning on a stove often suffer from poor contrast sensitivity, a condition thought to be correctable, if at all, only by eyeglasses, contact lenses or surgery. Researchers now say they may have found a way to improve contrast sensitivity naturally with the help of an unlikely source—video games.
In a study published today online in the journal Nature Neuroscience a team of researchers led by University of Rochester in New York State professor of brain and cognitive sciences Daphne Bavelier describe a specific video game training regimen that could improve contrast sensitivity, helping those afflicted with the problem notice even very small changes in shades of grey against a uniform background. Poor contrast sensitivity affects thousands of people worldwide, including the elderly and those suffering from amblyopia, also known as "lazy eye," Bavelier says.
Jan 1, 2009 | 14
Researchers are beginning to wonder whether video games, long seen as a top time waster for kids and a roadblock to their educational development, might actually be a solution to what ails today's schools rather than a problem.
Several educators suggest in the newest issue of Science that schools use video games to simulate the real-world situations in the classroom to help students develop critical-thinking skills and enhance their understanding of science and math and, perhaps, even encourage them to pursue careers in those and related fields such as technology and engineering.
Clearly, video games will only grow more popular with time, as graphics and user interfaces (such as wireless controllers) become more sophisticated. The video game industry is expected to rake in more than $68 billion in sales in 2012 (up from $42 billion in 2007), according to a PricewaterhouseCoopers study released in June.
Nov 28, 2008 | 51
If you're planning this holiday season (perhaps even today) to become one of the tens of millions of people in the U.S. to buy a video game system, you may want to consider how the purchase of a Nintendo Wii, Sony PlayStation or Microsoft Xbox will impact your carbon footprint (or, at very least, your electric bill).
Nov 18, 2008 | 15
It's been in stores for only one week, but Mirror's Edge (a first-person video game developed by Electronic Arts, Inc.) is apparently causing quite a stir. Literally. People playing the game have reported feeling dizzy and, in some cases, so nauseous that they vomit, writes Clive Thompson in his Wired.com blog, "Games without Frontiers."
Mirror's Edge, available for Sony PlayStation 3 and Microsoft's Xbox 360 (a PC version of Mirror’s Edge will ship in North America in January 2009), is set in a police state in the near future. The game has its players assume the persona of Faith, a courier whose mission is to deliver sensitive information, which requires a lot of leaping between rooftops to elude agents of the totalitarian government. Whereas many other first-person shooter games stabilize a player's vision as their characters perform, in Mirror's Edge, players can see their arms and legs pumping as they run, and their perspective is jostled when they jump, slide, fight or climb over obstacles. The action is reminiscent of Parkour, which involves a lot of running, hopping fences, climbing parking garages—anything to get from Point A to Point B as efficiently as possible. (Several examples are can be seen at the Parkour.tv Web site.)
Oct 16, 2008
Does Joe the Plumber play video games? We're not sure what hobbies the invisible star of last night's presidential debate indulges in, but as far as Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama is concerned, if you want to register young, eligible voters, you need to go to online gaming sites.
The Illinois senator is touting his online voter registration and early balloting drives in ads on Microsoft's Xbox Live service, Reuters is reporting. For Obama, who is more popular among youth than his older Republican opponent, Arizona Sen. John McCain, the ads are an opportunity to reach 18- to 34-year-old male voters.
Aug 27, 2008 | 2
Computer viruses—the scourge of technology on Earth—have now become a problem in space, too. NASA has confirmed that the malevolent programs have also posed problems in computers astronauts bring with them on missions, the latest occurring when laptops infected with the Gammima.AG virus were ferried to the International Space Station (ISS) last month. The possible source, according to SpaceRef.com: a software download, a personal flash card or USB storage device. The site also reports that some laptops used in the ISS lack virus protection and detection software.
Deadline: Jun 29 2013
Reward: $7,000 USD
The Seeker for this Challenge desires proposals for chemical methods that could rapidly degrade a dilute aqueous solution
Deadline: Aug 31 2013
Reward: $100,000 USD
The Geoffrey Beene Foundation Alzheimer’s Initiative (GBFAI) is launching the 2013 Geoffrey Beene Global NeuroDiscovery Challenge whose
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