Two recent findings that highlight different futures for gaming, and what it means for education and communication.
This first is a fun flash game (light bot). The objective is give your bot a sequence of instructions that lead it from the start position to a designated end point, and it gets more interesting when you start to build in a couple of functions (so you don't rewrite repetitive instructions), although it would be interesting if it also incorporated other programming building blocks (arrays, classes, etc.) -- version 2?
The second is a TED talk by game designer David Perry, who starts by asking the question Will video games become better than life? And he comes up with some interesting examples pointing to what he imagines will happen with games, not just in terms of visuals, but in terms of richness of emotional experiences.
Also, I just found another TED talk by Sugata Mitra. Mitra explains some experiments where a computer was left in different remote rural areas of northern India, and see how children taught themselves how to use it, teaching themselves the fundamentals of interaction, and even basic English. But the key was that the children worked in groups and by sharing learned much faster. Indeed. So what does this experiment inform us about the work of OLPC -- where it will succeed and possibly fail?