Episode 167 – Robotic Physics

 

Michael and Michael start this episode with big robots.  As in extra huge robots.  Like Mecha-sized robots.  The articulation of the robot Jeff Bezos piloted was reminiscent of the one that the character Eileen Ripley piloted in the Aliens movies (see video above).  Michael R was also reminded of the NASA Valkyrie robot, and it’s mission to go to Mars ahead of humans to set up the environment for human habitation.  Walking on two legs, and being roughly human-sized, the form factor is well suited to ensuring that the habitat structure such robots would build would be on the appropriate scale and work for the humans to follow.

The team also looks at a few learning games, starting with Big Bang Legends, which teaches the players about particle physics, and uses a SaaS subscription method the game company Lightneer calls “Learn to Play” that replaces video ads with a monthly fee.  This game reminded Michael M of DragonBox, a game that his kids really enjoyed that taught them algebraic skills while they weren’t really looking.

Michael R gave a shot at compiling the ported Pokemon Yellow Game Boy game to Apple Watch, but did not succeed during the recording session — will be interesting to see how it goes!

Rounding out the show, and just as Michael R predicted in the last episode, Michael M has been playing the new Nimblebit Bit City game, and, again, just as Michael R predicted, has been crushing it.

selected links 

PC Mag article: Jeff Bezos Pilots a Giant Robot — http://www.pcmag.com/news/352476/jeff-bezos-pilots-a-giant-robot

TechCrunch article: In a Massachusetts warehouse, NASA’s Valkyrie robot helps lay the groundwork for Mars settlements — https://techcrunch.com/2017/03/18/nasa-valkyrie-robot/

NASA’s Valkyrie robot — https://www.nasa.gov/feature/valkyrie/

Mecha — https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mecha

Robotech — https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Macross

Mashable article: This game is teaching particle physics to five-year-olds — http://mashable.com/2017/03/23/big-bang-legends/

Big Bang Legends — http://www.bigbanglegends.com

DragonBox — http://dragonboxapp.com

Making Giovanni, a Game Boy Emulator for the Apple Watch — http://gabrieloc.com/2017/03/21/GIOVANNI.html

Nimblebit’s Bit City — https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/bit-city/id914343148?mt=8

Play

Episode 109 – Phone Floppers

Michael and Michael get together this week to muse over how students can address college debt via gaming, thanks to a link from co-host Phaedra. We also look at how the Internet Archive is saving games from digital extinction, while reminiscing about some of our favorite old-school games. This brings us to a deeper discussion on how newer games with server components and digital rights management, may be disabling this preservation to continue. We end-up musing about use cases for Apple’s upcoming Watch announcement and how the smart-watch ecosystem may become yet another lock in play for the mobile ecosystem. What do you think? Are you excited for this brave new world?

Show Links:
Pay off Student Debt with gaming
Ken Jennings
Saving old games at the Internet Archive
Old MSDOS Games
Archon – 1984
SimCity DRM Disaster
Every thing is awesome on the Mac – Lego Game
Haptic tap for Apple Watch

Play

Episode 74 – 4K Gaming

George Bernard Shaw quote

Episode 74, 4K Gaming was recorded on Friday, September 27th, 2013.

In this almost-lost episode, Michael M introduces Sandy Kearney as a Game At Work.biz co-host. Since Sandy used the term “HD of Gaming” during the recording of the podcast, it seemed a small editorial liberty to upgrade to 4K. Game on!

Sandy’s core work is with e426.org — assisting small businesses, IEEE and universities on the use of emerging and innovative technology. She is also a professor at Villanova University teaching leadership, business and emerging technology. Furthermore, she also teaches emerging technology and runs the emergency planning and professional studies programs at Immaculata University.

Wargaming and Peacegaming
Emergency planning lends itself very well to running board exercises to plan what would Hurricane Sandy look like, and how it would play out. Using new technology to explore the logical path forward through games helps to position first responders as well as create a better emergency preparedness plan for the university.

HD of Gaming
We can see instant results through visuals and dashboards that would not have been understandable ten years ago. This instant feedback allows for faster process awareness, both the detailed documented processes as well as the undocumented ones. Sandy noted that the best university responses to crises, both natural disasters and man-made ones, have been social media, noting “the best university responses have been social media, better than arming police officers”. Whereas the younger generations have quickly adopted and embraced these social new technologies, others are slower to make full use, and these emergency preparedness simulations can open the eyes and speed adoption.

Not just process modeling — process mining!
Following on the idea of emergency preparedness, Sandy and Michael explored the importance of collecting the data to analyze at a later time as an important capability. Because of the data capture, it is now possible to better understand how the data is joined to the process, determine behavior when people play, how the play, and look at the larger scenarios, the geopolitical framework, local crisis response and better understand the full ecosystem. This concept is not foreign in the space of business process modeling, where business people (as opposed to technologists) can make changes to the business models and have the underlying technology change the process to match the business reality. Professor Will van der Aalst’s research on process mining allows for this kind of analysis, on steroids. Every process step could be captured with a time & date stamp and the fuller analysis of the complete set of transactional events could create a process model that is much more like reality than a model created from scratch. Professor van der Aalst’s work surfaces the “elephant paths” — the way that people actually execute a process, rather than the proscribed steps that the desk procedures say that a process should execute.

Institutional Protocols
These elephant paths — very similar to the way that university students cut across a lawn to get from point A to point B in a more efficient way — demonstrate the inherent challenges with institutional protocols, and the efforts of people to circumvent them when they become a hinderance. Sandy uses the example of IT wireless network security, describing a situation where the difficulty in getting connected to a wireless network bogs down the the user to the point where they seek out a wired ethernet connection, which is much simpler to plug in and get to the Internet. Circling back to emergency planning, these kinds of data collection about what people actually do when confronted with a challenge, coupled with location based data could surface some very interesting insight needed to tighten controls as well as provide for more rapid communication, done in unconventional ways.

Selected show links:
e426.org the Innovation Corps for America — http://e426.org/
Villanova University Department of Computing Sciences — http://csc.villanova.edu
Immaculata University — http://www.immaculata.edu
IEEE — http://www.ieee.org/index.html
IBM BPM Symposium 2013 — http://www-05.ibm.com/de/events/bpm-symposium/index.html
Process Mining — http://www.processmining.org
BPM Symposium 2013 interview with Prof. Wil van der Aalst (auf Deutsch / German) — http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PW16JqxftKw&feature=youtu.be
Technische Universiteit Eindhoven — http://www.tue.nl
Professor Wil van der Aalst — http://wwwis.win.tue.nl/~wvdaalst/

We are just delighted 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!

Play

Episode 73 – 3D Printing

The Michaels take a quick diversion to talk about how 3D Printing can change work and gaming. Is this just an excuse for Michael R. to talk about all the fun he’s had playing with his new MakerBot? We propose that it is not the case. For those of you who check out our website we have a great pic of a before and after view of a 3d Scan/Print.
Scanned Dragon Print
We also discuss the WoW Model Viewer and how it allows you to play with models from within the game World of Warcraft.WoW Model

Michael M. tells us about TwinKind and an innovative company in Germany doing cool things with 3d Printing of yourself. Can we say Mini-Me?

3D Printing is going to be an incredibly disruptive force in supply chain, we will no longer need to move atoms around the world to create what people need. What’s next – turning 3D printing to gold? Perhaps the guys over at MadeSolid in material science can help us advance that.

We then look at how the Smart Phone has been realized as old technology, loads of funny. Makes us all want to go out and pick up a new Fanny Pack.

Show Links:
Michael’s 3d Printer/Scanner
WoW Model Viewer
Makerbot and NASA
TwinKind
Made Solid – build custom 3d printing Filament
Meet The Brick – the best phone ever!!
You need a Fanny Pack!!
Possible iWatch Design
The Shine by Misfit Wearables

Play

Episode 9 – Reality is Broken

Michael and Michael get back together for another exciting episode. This episode we start our periodic review and analysis of the book “Reality is Broken” by Jane McGonigal, PhD. We focus on the first three chapters this episode in order to get us all a good foundation of why we play games, and what value you can get out of them.

We learn that most senior executives are actually playing games at work almost every day! Check it out –

From the book - Reality is Broken

Tell your boss you are emulating your Senior Executives

.

We also talk about two really cool examples of music, learning and fun:
Bobby McFerrin – World Science Festival 2009: Bobby McFerrin Demonstrates the Power of the Pentatonic Scale
Ben Zander – “Ode to Joy”

Play