Episode 69 – Award Nominated Podcast

We are at 75% this week, with Sandy, Phaedra, and Michael R. giving a few updates on the C.A.V.E. at Villanova which we have all found out now means Computer Aided Visual and Virtual Environment. When you get your C.A.V.E. at home will you be fully immersive with rubber bullets? If you are near Villanova, stop by and visit Dr. Klassner to the C.A.V.E. being built in the library!

We also dig a bit deeper on Alternate Reality Games talking about Cisco’s global sales meeting games. Phaedra also tells us about the three letter acronym’s spy conference game, that was discussed at the serious games summit. This gets Michael thinking about the game Assassin from his days in high school. As we think thru this we start comparing story driven ARG’s and very open world games. How they differ in the amount of engagement each has? What is the difference between alternate reality games, and an alternate reality in a game? How do games like Ingress compare with augmented reality games? Do you need a good storyline to make your ARG valid? Or can the story unfold on it’s own, if your ARG’s world is engaging enough? Do you need competitive play or collaborative play?

Show Links:
CAVE Update
The Wolverine
The HoloDeck
Dr. Klassner
Thor
Frozen
Tron Light Cycles – 1st Gen and 5th Gen
Assassin Game
Ingress
Tapscott
New Media Expo

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Episode 68 – Hipster CEO

This week’s show include two Michaels and one Phaedra, we miss you Sandy! We also will be taking a week off to spend time with our friends and families, playing games of course! Oh yeah, and it’s Thanksgiving in the United States, so we will also be thankful that we can spend time playing games at work!

Thank you to listener Kirk for providing a great link to follow up from last week’s show about bitcoin mining within games. We also thank Apple’s App Store for providing us with another story on apps being pulled from the app store related to bitcoins. We then do a quick left turn to talk about Candy Crush, luckily your co-hosts will NOT be spamming you with Candy Crush invites.

level-up
We then follow a rabbit hole on a website and find a new game to play – Hipster CEO! What fun lies in store for us all as we try our hands at a virtual startup. Let us know if you pick it up, who can go public first! And to our U.S. listeners, Happy Thanksgiving!

Show Links:
Bitcoin Box at Airport
BitCoin app pulled from App Store
Candy Crush
Same-old-Same-Old story where we found our Rabbit Hole!
Play Hipster CEO
Audi’s ARG

Show correction:
Well the app pulled was a bitcoin exchange app, not a bit coin mining app. Oh well… Sometimes you just have to admit your mistake.

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Episode 67 – Free BitCoins!

This week Michael and Michael find a new way to help monazite your game. We discuss the recent plugin for Unity gaming development environment which allows a developer to monazite their app via Bit coin mining! Can this be the way that you actually can monazite the attention economy?

Is it right to do so?

Show Links:
New Plugin Allows Developers to mine bitcoins in app.
Get it here
How much are they worth?
Daily Averages
Transcription of BitCoin episode of Security Now!
Episode 287 – Security Now
Hacking Your Car with Music
One Card to rule them all
Real-time Ray Tracing
Southpark Black Friday Episode
MAVEN Mission

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Episode 66 – Hash Tags

We being our show with the two Michaels, but are quickly joined by Sandy to kick off our discussion of Tiny Death Star (a game we’ve been looking forward to for a few weeks). We also do a quick shout out to JetBlue on their quickly uptake on our prior episode ideas on new things to do during take off and landing. We then do a quick review of movies we’ve seen and are looking forward to. Sandy provides a quick update on the CAVE status from Villanova and wonders how many of us know what CAVE actually stand for? Michael R. thinks it means – Collaborative Audiovisual Virtual Environment, Sandy believes it means – Computer Aided Visual Environment, and Michael M has always thought it was Collaborative Audio Visual Environment.

A quick discussion ensues about the news on Instagram’s “hashtags” and if we are seeing a break down on human decency. Do we need to gamify self-monitoring? What level of monitoring and censorship is appropriate for a website? Do we need “likes” and “dislikes”? Can we teach digital citizenship?

What do you think, is it appropriate for public sites to censor or should the community censor itself?

Show Links:
Strangers With Candy
The Croods
Episode VII
Gravity
Ender’s Game
Instagram’s Hashtags
Present Shock
Accelerando by Charles Stross

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Episode 65 – Planes, Games, and Automobiles

We welcome our forth co-host – Sandy Kearney to the show. Sandy comes to use with a background in alternative futures analysis and gaming business, processes, and conferences! Please reach out and welcome Sandy to the show!

While Google purchased Waze earlier this year, it seems that the monetization of Waze is starting to be obvious, as Michael R. observes ads popping up at stop signs and red lights. We all think back to the fun we’ve had on Waze early on where we munched up roads and worked on leaderboards. We also miss the holiday special items to run over while playing Waze. We think that critical mass of Waze usage must have occurred and that most of the roads have been munched. We then riff on the driving experience for a bit, with lots of ideas on how driving habits are changing and what it means for today’s drivers.

As we move up thru the troposphere we jump on planes and enjoy the fact that we can start playing games during takeoff and landing. What games are you going to play or are you just gonna use this time to read your e-books and listen to music? We also try and figure out what kind of games you could make on your mobile device that could leverage this narrow window of take off and landing. Can we start improving the gaming experience by playing against each other while on board? We also figure that gaming the Safety briefing could be gamified for some really cool effects. Which airline will be first to offer a bonus for you if you run their app during take off and landing? What about the luggage game? What about free wifi if you download their app? Come on airlines let’s game this opportunity.

We then go to Infinity and Beyond, as Sandy talks about the movie “Gravity” and how they simulate space walks. Real games at work can help NASA and others learn much quickly – and with tools like the Oculus Rift we can start experiencing much of this at home ourselves. Michael R. get’s his Launch invite. And we all get ready to watch Ender’s Game!

Show Links:
Waze
ARTBASummit
Kids just don’t care – About Cars!
FAA Ruling
Delta already games training
Haptic heart surgery
MAVEN Mission Launch!!!
Ender’s Game!!

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Episode 64 – Nimble Games – AKA A tiny show

We do another short show, catching up on Google Glass and the latest game from Nimble BIT Games. Michael M. has decided that 8-bit trains are a great way to understand logistics; while Michael R. enjoys meeting all the google-ites who hung out in Durham last week at the American Tobacco Campus. After last week’s show were we thought how you could use Google Glass for remote learning, Michael R. decides that it is not only possible, but that it makes a lot of sense with how it actually worked. The only disappointment about the Google Event was that he couldn’t give them lots of cash and actually buy a pair! We also talk about our Favorite Co-Host, who is still on vacation – We miss you Phaedra!!

Show Links
Escapist Expo
Google Glass
American Tobacco Campus
Nimble Bits
Disney – Star Wars Rumor

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Episode 63 – The Real Neuromancer

Phaedra is out on a well deserved vacation, and the Michael’s spend time thinking about cyber punk novels and current technology. We fight thru a few audio hiccups, but still come in with some deep thoughts. Hanging out and talking about how William Gibson’s Neuormancer is starting to be a reality with some of today’s tech, including Oculus Rift, Google Glass, and smart phones.

But first we have to ask:

Can you teach yourself Kung Fu with augmented reality?


Are you ready for the Tree house of Horror!!!???!!!

Show Links:
Michael R’s iPhone5s Love
William Gibon’s Neuromancer
Game play based on Neuromancer
Bionic Contact Lenses

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Episode 62 – Gamification Carrots & Sticks

Phaedra and Michael M hold down the fort for the podcast, discussing the treatment of video games in the media in the wake of the tragic Navy Yard shootings and drawing some interesting thoughts on the nature of serious games to assist with mental health.

Gamifying Travel
They continue with a discussion on gamifying travel, and explore an idea where the game is to crowdsource the best travel options & prices between city pairs, setting up a competition to find the best solution using humans instead of algorithms.  The suggestion for how to monetize this game brings up the experiment in Sweden with the speed camera lottery, where abiders (those who observe the posted speed limit) are entered into a lottery to win the fines of those that speed.  As is their nature, Phaedra and Michael explore ways to game the game, and come up with some interesting solutions, including having an option in Waze to optimize travel routing to maximize entry into such contests and methods to avoid creating situations such as in Benson NC where people might cruise up and down the road in hopes of getting more entries in the lottery.

Gamifying work processes
Strava is a geolocation-based exercise game for runners and bikers that reward the fastest times on a stretch of road with a crown to be defended and won back, should someone best your time.  Strava is used as a base to consider whether there’s a way to find a process that we want people to comply with, want them to execute as quickly as possible, minimize escapes by reinforcing abiders are put into a lottery to win something of value to them.  The additional randomness of the reward – the carrot – may get more people to opt in and play.  Figuring out what is meaningful to the player is key.  How can gamification and serious games help people to adopt a new process with carrots and sticks?   There is a game in there, we just need to tease it out.  We would love to hear your ideas!

upcoming conferences 
Michael M will be speaking at IBM Business Connect ( http://www-01.ibm.com/software/de/events/businessconnect/agenda.html ) on the theme of Smarter Supply Chain on the 15th of October in Mannheim, Germany.  His other speaking engagements may be found on Lanyrd – http://lanyrd.com/profile/carolinabigblue/

Phaedra will be a panelist on October 28th, at TransOvation (http://www.transovation.org) in San Jose, California, focusing on the theme of “New Technologies and Workplace Practices That Can Help Organizations Become More Innovative”

Selected show links:
Huffington Post article “House Set To Examine Link Between Video Games, Culture Of Violence In Wake Of Navy Yard Shooting”  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/09/20/video-game-lobby_n_3957441.html
Sweden’s speed camera lottery — http://www.thefuntheory.com/speed-camera-lottery-0
Strava – http://www.strava.com/mobile

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Episode 60 – Bubbly Bubblers in Gamified Buildings

Happy Water CoolerPhaedra, Michael and Michael were delighted to be accompanied by Ross Smith, Director of Test in the Skype division of Microsoft for this show, centered around games for employee engagement.

Ross described the recent work that he and his team have done with giving personality to buildings and using the building itself as the ‘game master’, to orchestrate and facilitate employee engagement.

Games for health
One of the intriguing examples (also discussed in Episode 58, but without the benefit of Ross’s first hand experience) uses a water cooler with personality as the mechanism for gamifying health.  While drinking eight glasses of water a day is a pretty well known health tip (I’m drinking my 4th big glass as I’m writing this!), it is easily forgotten in the hectic business day.  The team at Microsoft gave their water cooler a bubbly user interface and 4 emotional modes (sad, happy, attract/flirt and party) to experiment with increasing the amount of water consumed by the building’s people.  The results:  more water for more people, and a wealth of data, feedback and ideas to continue the innovation.  The picture above was inspired by Ross’ story and is my low-tech example of giving the water cooler in my apartment some personality as well!
Another example is classifying the food choices in the cafeteria as green, yellow and red, and then using that data to guide behavior.  If less healthy food choices are selected, the building might suggest using the stairs or a longer route for a meeting later in the day.  This has helped the team learn more about what people are willing to share, and what they are not, and inform future game design on what should have individual vs team collective goals to maximize participation while respecting privacy.

Games for social / business interaction
The game ISHI was used as the buildings were being opened to help the team come together in an open office, connected community.  Ross described how people may respond to some survey questions indicating preference between skiing and snowboarding, or cat / dog fandom, and then how that kind of data can be used to create groups and teams with common interests and help people to get to know one another even better.  The building invited people to come to a central space, then you have met a number of people with common interest across job roles and functions, with the goal of beating the clock to figure out what do they have in common.  This method of dynamic team creation could be leveraged to bring a creative team together to brainstorm how to solve a client’s problem just as easily.
Windows Language Quality Game was another game with similar tremendous results, this game wound up attracting more than 4,000 people play and review over half a million screens, separating actionable feedback from non-actionable feedback received from public beta testers of Windows software.  Ross noted that rigorous data collection is key, and his experience of 4x – 16x increased participation and results because of the game mechanics can demonstrate even to the skeptics the business impact and win them over.

We were delighted to have Ross on the show with us today, and if you would like to learn more about him and the projects he’s involved in, you can find him on the following links:

Web www.42projects.org
Twitter   @42projects
Facebook  www.facebook.com/42projects
blog  http://42projects.blogspot.com/

We are happy to have had you dialed our way.  You can find us on G+, Tumblr, Facebook, Twitter and more.  Please comment, friend, tweet and send us topics you would like to hear more about!

Selected show links
ISHI game for the Skype team at Microsoft — http://research.microsoft.com/apps/video/default.aspx?id=200275
ISHI game documentary rough cut — http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l0W431tP6SM&feature=youtu.be
Water Cooler — http://www.businessinsider.com/like-to-flirt-at-the-office-water-cooler-a-microsoft-intern-built-a-water-cooler-that-flirts-back-2013-8
Vote for Sentient Buildings for SXSW — http://panelpicker.sxsw.com/vote/21393
Microsoft Interns — http://research.microsoft.com/en-us/news/features/interns13-082613.aspx
Magic Circle of Play — http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Magic_Circle_(virtual_worlds)
Everymove.org — https://everymove.org
Chore Wars — http://www.chorewars.com
uTest — http://www.utest.com

Games we’re playing (or thinking about)
Madden 25 — http://www.easports.com/madden-nfl
Assassin’s Creed — http://assassinscreed.ubi.com/en-us/home/index.aspx
SimCity — http://www.simcity.com
Bioshock 2 — http://www.bioshock2game.com/en/
Call of Duty Black Ops 2 — http://www.callofduty.com/blackops/
iPad games for toddlers?  Phaedra would like your suggestions!
Dragon Box — http://research.microsoft.com/apps/video/default.aspx?id=200275
Motor World — https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/motor-world-car-factory/id580666714?mt=8
Plants vs Zombies 2 – https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/plants-vs.-zombies-2/id597986893?mt=8

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