Games in Science and Technology

Speech-Controlled Game Demoed at GDC 2009

A Scene from Bot ColonyMontreal-based North Side Inc. introduced a prototype for an innovative speech-controlled adventure game at GDC 2009. Titled Bot Colony, the web-based PC game features real-time Natural Language Processing (NLP) and AI technologies from North Side Inc., making it the first game ever where players can converse freely in English with in-game characters.

The Bot Colony characters, made up of different types of robots, speak using a complex AI program that actively parses a player’s spoken or typed questions in order to respond. In development for six years, the NLP technology works to fully recognize English speech. Simply speaking will result in game characters answering naturally and speaking back to a player in order to ask questions, get clarifications or make comments. Read More...

Video Game Technology Stepping Into Warehousing and Heavy Industry

The Immersive Virtual Reality ProcessA growing number of companies are actively integrating video game technology for training and collaborative purposes. As this trend grows, virtual reality technology is now set to become an integral tool in heavy industry and warehousing.

Three companies, Next View Software, Consafe Logistics and Accellos, are expected to fight for their share of the virtual warehouse management systems market, with products being released within a few months of each other. These management solutions are being developed to give users the ability to visualize the layout of their warehouse in 3D. Read More...

Researchers Use Guitar Hero Game to Aid Prosthetic Arm Development

A Man with a Prosthetic ArmA pair of engineers at the Applied Physics Laboratory’s (APL) National Security Technology Department at John Hopkins University are using Activision's Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock for Nintendo Wii as part of their work in developing an innovative prosthetic arm. Bobby Armiger and Jacob Vogelstein have rewired the game’s controller giving amputees a chance to rock out while testing out their latest prosthetic prototypes.

Their research falls within the APL-led Revolutionizing Prosthetics 2009 project, funded by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency. The project’s mission is to develop a prosthetic arm that will be controlled and also feel, look and perform like a natural limb.

Their work has led to the creation of two prototypes and a surgical technique that reroutes nerves that once controlled a patient’s arm to the muscles that remain. The signals sent from the reattached nerves are picked up through the skin to control the prosthetic arm. But for those signals to be recognized, they must first be identified properly. Read More...

Zeemote Previews the Future of Mobile Gaming

Zeemote JS1 ControllerPresenting at the 2009 Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Zeemote Inc. previewed what it calls “the next significant step in Mobile-Console Gaming (MGC).” MGC will add new depth to the platform by taking advantage of new mobile headsets with TV-out and projection capabilities, introducing single and multiplayer content and through the use of Bluetooth gaming controllers such as the Zeemote JS1 Controller.

“The Zeemote JS1 Controller, equipped with a thumbstick and four assignable action buttons, plays an integral part of the MCG ecosystem by enabling a mobile user to unleash their game anytime, anywhere and on any size screen to experience home-console style gaming up to 10 meters away from the handset connected to the TV or when projecting from a micro-projector equipped handset,” explains a Zeemote news release. Read More...