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InfoMinister Donating Member (546 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 10:51 PM
Original message
Do Videogames Make You Mindless?
This topic kind of emerged out of the one that have started a huge debate over the merits of videogames. Anyway, I wanted to post some studies showing that videogames appear to have more merit than the original poster gives then credit. I've been looking around the net to check out some articles. Here are several that I've found. Several of them have information from the same researchers, though. I'm also trying to find another article I read awhile back where they had a class at one college that taught videogame culture. I'm not able to find it as of right now. Anyway, here are some links to the articles.

"The best example of brain-boosting media may be videogames. Mastering visual puzzles is the whole point of the exercise - whether it's the spatial geometry of Tetris, the engineering riddles of Myst, or the urban mapping of Grand Theft Auto.

The ultimate test of the "cognitively demanding leisure" hypothesis may come in the next few years, as the generation raised on hypertext and massively complex game worlds starts taking adult IQ tests. This is a generation of kids who, in many cases, learned to puzzle through the visual patterns of graphic interfaces before they learned to read. Their fundamental intellectual powers weren't shaped only by coping with words on a page. They acquired an intuitive understanding of shapes and environments, all of them laced with patterns that can be detected if you think hard enough. Their parents may have enhanced their fluid intelligence by playing Tetris or learning the visual grammar of TV advertising. But that's child's play compared with Pokmon."

- http://www.wired.com/wired/archive/13.05/flynn_pr.html

"A group of researchers from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and MIT believe that video games are an effective platform for learning, and have launched the Education Arcade, an initiative to increase awareness in teachers of the effectiveness of video games in learning, and to encourage developers to create educational games. The program began last fall, and was featured in Technology and Learning magazine as one of the top 10 innovative projects of 2003."

- http://www.xboxsolution.com/article1228.html

"She and fellow UW professors James Gee and Kurt Squire argued that these types of games are much more than mindless entertainment, and derivatives of them could be used in schools or for corporate training. They work with the Academic Advanced Distributed Learning Co-Laboratory at UW-Madison, a testing ground for learning games.

Video games let their players step into new personas and explore alternatives. Not only that, but people can try to solve problems theyre not good at yet, get immediate feedback on the consequences and try again immediately.

Gee said the ability to explore right away makes games more engaging than textbooks or lectures. In schools, you have to read 500 pages of biology and then you get to do biology, he said. Of course you only actually read 200. game allows you to perform before youre competent.

-
http://wistechnology.com/article.php?id=1504

"Art museums in both the United States and United Kingdom have developed or are planning substantial game exhibits in 2000-2002 (See Barbican, 2002). Panels at conferences are almost ready to give up on the "Are games art?" question and begin asking "What kinds of art are they?" or exploring how and why they work (Jenkins, in press; Jenkins & Squire, 2002). Other humanities researchers are examining games to see what they might teach us about the future of interactive narrative (Murray, 1997)."

- http://www.gamestudies.org/0102/squire /

"Colleges around the country are responding to the gaming industry's need to create new products and fill jobs by offering game-related courses for credit. According to Mary Clarke-Miller, academic director for Game Art & Design at The Art Institute of California - San Francisco, "The growth in college programs related to game design reflects a growing need for trained talent in the interactive entertainment field. Educators are working together with the game industry to develop relevant programs to fill this need."

- http://www.linkgrinder.com/information/Video_Games_no_L...


"The findings, published in the journal Acta Psychologica, suggest that the vigilant watchfulness video games require makes for quicker visual processing.

Gamers' brains don't appear to have any specialized search strategy, they're just faster, explained lead study author Dr. Alan Castel, a post-doctorate fellow in psychology at Washington University in St. Louis.

Specifically, both groups of students were similar when it came to the search principle of "inhibition of return." According to Castel, this means that when people look for their keys, they look in one place, and if the keys aren't there, they will look in a number of other spots before giving the original location a second go-around.

In the experiments, he told Reuters Health, video gamers used the same search strategy as non-gamers did. "They just executed it faster," he said."

- http://news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&u=/nm/20050701/tc...


"People ought to use Grand Theft Auto in the classroom to think about values and ideology," he says. "There are lots of things people could learn from games."

This isn't the talk of a hobbyist or an eccentric, but of a serious scholar who is taking a lead in an emerging field. Mr. Gee thinks that video games -- even those like Return to Castle Wolfenstein, in which players run around and blast Nazis -- hold the key to salvaging American education. His argument was recently delivered in a compact book: What Video Games Have to Teach Us About Learning and Literacy (Palgrave Macmillan).

Although Mr. Gee's colleagues suggested that he was wasting his time when he started looking into video games, in the past two years he has found that he is part of a new and growing academic field. "In the time that I was writing my book, the interest in games in academe went way up," Mr. Gee says. "It's clear that by accident, I had entered an area where a wave of interest was coming up -- and is still coming up."

- http://chronicle.com/free/v49/i49/49a03101.htm

I also wanted to point out some interesting sites that are showcasing some of the art that has emerged because of the inspiration of videogames.

http://msnbc.msn.com/id/3131157 /
http://qotile.net /
http://www.trash80.net/mp3s /
http://www.micromusic.net/
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babylonsister Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 10:52 PM
Response to Original message
1. I've never even played one, so I don't know, But
I'd be surprised if I was alone.
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Ready4Change Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 10:53 PM
Response to Original message
2. Baa, ba, booo? Ba?
:P
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Coexist Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 10:54 PM
Response to Original message
3. Well, Reagan said they were good hand/eye coordination for future pilots
so they must be all good!
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InfoMinister Donating Member (546 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 10:56 PM
Response to Reply #3
4. They Use Microsoft Flight Simulator
I remember they even tried to blame it for 9/11 a few weeks after it happened.
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Ladyhawk Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 10:56 PM
Response to Original message
5. I play them and I don't think they've turned me into a mindless retard.
:shrug:

It's just something I do for fun sometimes, like going to a movie. People get all upset about the contents of movies, too, but people:

VIDEO GAMES AND MOVIES AREN'T REAL.

And of course we all know there was never violence before violent video games and movies. Wars never happened. There was no genocide. Everybody got along in happy la-la land until those accursed movies and video games came on the scene. Burn them! BURN THEM!!! :sarcasm:
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alarimer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 11:40 PM
Response to Reply #5
22. Absolutely right
They blame video games and movies instead of attacking the real problems which are much more complicated. We could, for example, fully fund after school programs for latchkey kids to keep them out of trouble if that is a concern. Or make sure there are plenty of adequately paying jobs. But I guess that makes too much sense.

I play games too but I tend to avoid really violent ones except that I was noticing on Prince of Persia 2 there is an awful lot of blood when you kill someone. But I know difference between killing what is bascially a cartoon character and a real person. I presume most people do. Blaming games is like blaming heavy metal music. People who do terrible things would likely do them regardless of the inspiration.

Although I have noticed a tendency in myself to dream about being a character in a videogame, where I have to jump on a block to open a door or something. Pretty strange.
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Warren DeMontague Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 10:57 PM
Response to Original message
6. That's between me and my XBOX.
But I must say, the graphics on HALO 2 are pretty cool.
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Mythsaje Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 10:57 PM
Response to Original message
7. RPGs
Edited on Wed Jul-20-05 10:57 PM by Mythsaje
in particular, both table-top and video/computer versions, are excellent tools for teaching trouble-shooting techniques. When one combines this with hand-eye coordination and quick reflex conditioning, there are a lot of good things that can be said about video/computer games in general.

edited for a minor change in wording
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InfoMinister Donating Member (546 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 11:09 PM
Response to Reply #7
12. I've Been Addicted To Those Games Since Dragon Warrior
They had some deal years ago where you could get a free copy of Dragon Warrior if you paid for a subscription to Nintendo Power. I've been playing those games ever since. I actually learned how to read by playing those games(They require a lot of reading) and reading the magazines to figure things out. My success in school almost directly correlated to when I became an avid gamer. Before I started to play videogames they actually considered me to be one of the "special students". Withing a few years they considered me "gifted".
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RoyGBiv Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 11:12 PM
Response to Reply #7
13. Social skills ...
Edited on Wed Jul-20-05 11:12 PM by RoyGBiv
RPGs in particular, well-constructed ones anyway, can teach social skills and how to interact effectively with individuals in varied situations.

I've seen examples of this while, of all things, participating in a gaming forum I've frequented for years. I play what is now a classic RPG, and it's recently been released again, inspiring a new round of players and fans. A lot of these people have never played anything but FPS games like Doom and tend to react to every situation with the "kill it as soon as you see it" strategy. Doing that in this game ensures that completing it is nearly impossible, at least completing it with any degree of satisfaction. A lot of these newbies are having a great deal of trouble grasping the concepts of patience, negotiation, etc., but those that are have a vastly improved gaming experience and let others know it. It has a building effect.

Whether this translates into the real world, I can only guess. I know my personal experiences with P-n-P RPGs pretty much taught me to talk in public and helped refine a bit of acting ability as well.

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Hippo_Tron Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 11:21 PM
Response to Reply #13
17. Out of curiosity, what game?
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RoyGBiv Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 11:30 PM
Response to Reply #17
18. Baldur's Gate ...

I have a somewhat bizarre affection for this game based on a personal story way too long to get into. (In a roundabout way, playing it saved my life. No, not because I learned how to cast magic missile at the right time. :-)

But anyway, one reason I find it different from many of the RPGs that came before it, and most of what's come since, is that it had scripted party interactions and interactions with NPC's that had, in many cases, multiple possible outcomes. Depending on your choices, the game experience becomes different, and if you go around acting like a spoiled brat all the time, killing everything in sight and not taking into account the effects to "innocent bystanders, it has consequences that linger. It's not truly "open ended," but it wasn't bad for the state of the art at the time.

Some of the fan-based mods that have come since are even better at adding this element to the game, and mmany argue it's the reason the game is still popular.

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Hippo_Tron Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 11:45 PM
Response to Reply #18
26. I've never played the original Baldur's gate
Just the X-box versions, which I found pretty good. I don't really have the patience for RPGs anymore. I actually played Everquest for quite a while and the social interaction in the game fascinated me. Of course, I later realized that some of the people on there don't socially interact off of the internet, which makes it difficult for people who don't play 24/7 to actually get anywhere in the game.

Like Baldur's gate, though, in Everquest your actions have consequences. You could attempt to kill certain people, but if you do succeed, your standing with that group of people goes down. If a certain group doesn't like you, they won't help you later on when you may need them for a quest. If they REALLY don't like you, they will attack you whenever they see you.
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RoyGBiv Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 11:55 PM
Response to Reply #26
33. Console vs PC ...

The console version of the game was nothing compared to the PC version. Among most PC fans, the console version is considered some other game with the same name.

BG does require a lot of patience and a time investment to play properly, which is to say, doing everything you possibly can do. I haven't had the time in quite awhile. I spent a good solid three weeks during a period of unemployment several years ago playing it, and that's pretty much all I did ... completely lost track of time.

There are some things in this that teach a lesson. If you walk up to a peasant on the street and just kill him or her, if anyone sees you do it, every time you walk into that town from then on out, the entire town is hostile toward you. If any have weapons, they immediately try to kill you. What's more, it doesn't matter if you're currently "fighting evil." If you accidentally kill a bystander (collateral damage) the town still goes hostile.

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Maple Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 10:58 PM
Response to Original message
8. There is the Flynn Effect
IQs have been rising steadily for a century now, and we don't know why.

But it could be that an increasingly complicated life and the need to use new technology affects it.

I would think that videogames would help, rather than hurt, the process.
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InfoMinister Donating Member (546 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 11:02 PM
Response to Reply #8
9. Yeah, The First Article Goes Into Detail About It
A lot of researchers think that games such as Tetris can enhance learning for a certain section of the IQ tests. If I remember correctly from the IQ test I took there were sections of the test where you had to identify the best shapes that represented the original object. I guess that's the section they're talking about.
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Maple Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-21-05 12:33 AM
Response to Reply #9
42. Ahhh sorry
I picked a couple at random to read, and of course missed that one. :D

I read the other day that "The connections in our brain compute at 200 transactions per second, which might have served the human race well over the years, but is millions of times slower than the electronic circuits that power our computers."

Maybe video games are a way of picking up the pace...we certainly need to.
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jsamuel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 11:05 PM
Response to Original message
10. well, I would bet that most video game players are Dems
So, what follows?
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OrlandoGator Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 11:06 PM
Response to Original message
11. Thanks to Grand Theft Auto, my drive-by has improved dramatically.
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InfoMinister Donating Member (546 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 11:14 PM
Response to Reply #11
14. Seriously, Do The People That Commit Those Crimes
actually play videogames? I'd be willing to bet in a lot of areas where there is a lot of crime the majority of people commiting those crimes probably can't afford videogames in the first place.

Yeah, I know you're joking and all but from what they used to say in our college psychology class there is a direct correlation between violent crime and poverty.
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Hippo_Tron Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 11:20 PM
Response to Reply #14
15. It's the Marilyn Manson and Doom are responsible for columbine philosophy
Edited on Wed Jul-20-05 11:20 PM by Hippo_Tron
I prefer it's the fucked up kids with no parental supervision philosophy.
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RoyGBiv Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 11:33 PM
Response to Reply #15
19. Agreed ...

I am personally all but certain that playing Doom has *prevented* me from enacting a violent revenge on some people.
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Hippo_Tron Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 11:52 PM
Response to Reply #19
30. For me it's, "Oh wait, I have no fucking clue how to shoot a gun"
My friend and I walk into Academy Sports sometimes to kill time and look at the assault weapons that they sell there. They have the same glocks (well not the exact same ones) that they use in Counter Strike. Then I always joke to my friend... hey why don't I buy one of those, it's just like Counter Strike. OH WAIT I know why, because I would probably accidentally blow several of my own limbs off because I have no fucking clue how to shoot a gun.
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RoyGBiv Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-21-05 12:25 AM
Response to Reply #30
40. LOL! Yeah, that too ...

I'm sure if someone placed a plasma gun or BFG9000 in my hands, I'd kill myself and everyone else near me before I had a chance to breathe once.

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babylonsister Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 11:20 PM
Response to Reply #14
16. I wasn't joking; I've never played one. Having said that, I will
bet they encourage people who have the mindset and ability to commit crimes to do so, especially if they think they're either invulnerable or have nothing to lose.
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InfoMinister Donating Member (546 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 11:37 PM
Response to Reply #16
20. If They Already Have The Mindset
they'll probably do it anyway with something else setting them off such as a tv show, movie, the bible or any other book, or a song. Charles Manson tried to start a race war because of a Beatles song. The guy who actually killed John Lennon did it because he was inspiredy by Catcher In the Rye.

Somebody else posted a study showing how many people play these violent games and don't commit crimes. There's even an article I posted that shows some flaws in studies about videogames. The level of aggression while playing Doom was basically the same when someone played Myst. The aggression level was based entirely on frustration with the game. Not on the actual content of the game. In Doom you shoot demons with machine guns. In Myst games you walk around and solve puzzles that are in the environment.
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OrlandoGator Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-21-05 07:50 AM
Response to Reply #14
44. Well, I was joking...actually I love the GTA games.
I grew up as a kid on violent R-rated movies (but incidentally, my parents didn't like me seeing sex scenes). And I've been playing video games since about five years after they were first invented.

I'd like to think that I'm reasonably well-adjusted. Hell, my 54-year-old dad plays Halo all the time...he thinks it's the coolest thing since sliced bread.
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nookiemonster Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-21-05 08:50 AM
Response to Reply #11
49. Me too!
And I'm getting pretty handy with the flamethrower! Watch out peds!!

LOL

Fuckers can blame anything, can't they??
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Tux Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 11:37 PM
Response to Original message
21. OK
I have a psych degree and did do research via Google Scholar on this. Right now, it's a mixed bag. Mant in the American Psychological Association want to ban most games while other promote censorship. Their "research" is mostly political and uses the same games Ms. Clinton bitches about. And their methology blows ass. All in all, if parents supervise their kids, it can benefit them in many ways. I learned about computers through playing games and reading gaming magazines like Nintendo Power and PC Gaming.

More research is needed but not by APA. APA's research standards (based on some papers I read from their journals) have dropped thanks to clinical psych's need to babysit people and icky research should be avoided.
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InfoMinister Donating Member (546 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 11:43 PM
Response to Reply #21
25. Here's Part of An Article That Talks About Some of These Studies
"It is difficult for many to make sense of this contentious and politicized cultural debate because to date, there has been very little disciplined study of gaming. Some social science researchers have compared "violent" games like Doom to "non-violent" games like Myst or compared the rates of aggressive and violent behavior between gamers and non-gamers. Unfortunately, this research suffers from many problematic conceptualizations: violent acts are removed from the narratives contexts in which they are situated (Jenkins, 1998); researchers used invalid comparison techniques, studying games from different genres that differ along multiple variables -- such as comparing Myst, a slow-paced puzzle adventure game to Castle Wolfenstein, a fast-paced 3D action shooter (Anderson & Dill, 2000). These studies generally lack any real-world evidence linking game-playing to acts of violence; they ignore broad trends that that show inverse correlations between game-playing and violent behavior; finally, they make wild logical leaps in linking very constrained behaviors in laboratories to violent acts where people really get hurt. Anderson and Dill (2000) found that players who lost a round of Wolfenstein 3D "punished" opposing players with a noise blast that lasted 6.81 seconds, compared to Myst players, who blasted opponents for 6.65 seconds - a .16 second difference (there was no difference between players who won their round of Castle Wolfenstein and Myst players)."

- http://www.gamestudies.org/0102/squire


The only problem with this article is that as far as I know Myst was a single player game so they had to be mad about one of the puzzles instead of at an opponent.
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Tux Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-21-05 12:27 AM
Response to Reply #25
41. Most important factor
And all good agression research does this is they will look at the police and schools records for agressive or violent behavior. Standard procedure however none do that. So, a violent kid can play a game, say Tetris, throw a chair during an agression test and thus, Tetris causes violence. Not one I read did that. Nor are the baselines decent. A baseline should be records for a month, not a week. It's lame methodology. My old profs would laugh those ass monkeys out of the labs but alas! decent research is not as important as impressive "research" to sell crappy books, appear on Oprah, and slack throughout a "career" for political gain.

Yes, I now hate psych now that clinical will dominate it forever or at least a century or 2. Wish it burns!
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Baclava Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 11:41 PM
Response to Original message
23. We are being conditioned, desensitized and manipulated
...to kill aliens on-sight, so when the REAL invasion begins in 2012...we will be ready for them.

Sheesh - I thought everybody knew that...
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gulliver Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 11:43 PM
Response to Original message
24. Yes.
I find the argument that simple graphical puzzles and the ability to navigate a user interface will make you smarter ridiculous. Video games are stunted, warped life. The body's whole range of motion is condensed to a few finger movements. Serious study of anything is not needed in video games, so it is not done.

Done to excess, most video games make you superficial, impatient, easily frustrated by reality, and emotionally dead to the feelings of others. They are just another drug, like TV. Only worse.

Some of the most chilling parts of F9/11 for me are the scenes where the soldiers talk about killing people like it was a video game. They piped music into their helmets...something like "Burn Motherf*ckers. Burn. Burn MotherF*ckers."
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Hippo_Tron Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 11:49 PM
Response to Reply #24
27. I don't think that's what Moore was implying in F-9/11
In Bowling for Columbine, he points out that video games aren't the reason that kids do violent things. I think that he was implying that the military and through them the administration, had brainwashed our soldiers into thinking that it was like a video game by whatever means necessary.
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InfoMinister Donating Member (546 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 11:52 PM
Response to Reply #24
28. So Do You Think The Many Members of DU Have A Warped Sense of Reality?
Edited on Wed Jul-20-05 11:57 PM by InfoMinister
because it appears that a lot of them play videogames and for some odd reason still manage to keep up with current events. Also, it's kind of strange that you are pointing out a real war situation where those soldiers were ordered to kill enemies and comparing it to videogames. Soldiers had those same reactions to the death and destruction going on around them during just about every other war ever fought. Check out some of the commentary from soldiers during World War II or Vietnam.
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GodHelpUsAll2 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 11:52 PM
Response to Reply #24
31. Do you have
any scientific research to back up your calim or is this your personal opinion?

As for the soldiers in Iraq, do you think maybe the conditioning the military provides you with has anything to do with that mentality or do you think only the video game players enlisted?
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InfoMinister Donating Member (546 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 11:54 PM
Response to Reply #31
32. The Military Is Using A FPS As a Recruiting Tool
Problem is the game is popular but the number of people enlisting has gone down.
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Spider Jerusalem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 11:56 PM
Response to Reply #24
34. Visuo-spatial ability is a component of intelligence;
most intelligence tests measure for it. Solving problems in real-time 3d using visuo-spatial cues, as one does in many video games, may actually enhance that component of intelligence; I don't think your argument really holds much water.

Also, I've been gaming for twenty years now; I'm not superficial, nor easily frustrated by reality, nor dead to the feelings of others...nice generalisations there. :eyes:
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GodHelpUsAll2 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-21-05 12:06 AM
Response to Reply #34
36. sigh
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Spider Jerusalem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-21-05 12:19 AM
Response to Reply #36
38. ?
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RoyGBiv Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-21-05 12:04 AM
Response to Reply #24
35. Serious study ...
Edited on Thu Jul-21-05 12:08 AM by RoyGBiv
So-called "serious study" does not lead to intelligence. You've heard of the archetypal "educated idiot" who seems to know everything but has absolutely no clue how to apply his or her knowledge to any task or situation? These are people who have studied seriously and are severely lacking communication and logical skills.

Logical puzzles are generally very simple in form, require no "range of motion" at all (I really don't know why that would be a part of a discussion of intelligence), and can be constructed in such a way within video games as to make them both instructive and entertaining, the latter being the primary benefit of the video game format. I've played games in which one needed not just to know basic algebra to complete a puzzle but needed to be able to realize algebra was required and then had to construct the equation from a situation. Give a kid a word problem from a text book, and she or he groans. Give a kid a chance to finally defeat the Dark Lord of Poobah Land, and that same kid is moving mountains to figure it out.

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InfoMinister Donating Member (546 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-21-05 12:09 AM
Response to Reply #35
37. Reminds Me of The Silent Hill Games
There were some puzzles on there that were basically algebra puzzles. Here was one of them.

"The first is larger than the second.
The second is twice the third.
The third is smaller than the fourth.
The fourth is half the first.

Four of the numbers are not repeated,
Three are not in the top row,
Two are not in the right row,
One of the numbers is the final key."


I'm terrible at math so that one took awhile :)

Actually, there were some pretty interesting puzzles in that game series. One was a keypad and you had to figure out the combinations. The way you figured out which buttons to push was that about 4 of them didn't have grime all over them because someone had pushed them.
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RoyGBiv Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-21-05 12:21 AM
Response to Reply #37
39. Puzzles ...
I need to play Silent Hill. I never have for some reason. I actually didn't realize it had puzzles to it. (DOOM3 has been a severe disappointment in that regard. The original ones actually had puzzles.)

My favorite puzzles of all time were in an old Infocom text adventure called _Bureaucracy_, with contributions from Douglas Adams of _Hitchhikers_ fame. Naturally, the whole game is a comic farce, and the puzzles are meant to show the absurdity of bureaucracy in general, which means they were sort stupid in the way government tends to be stupid, but still based on an identifiable logic. They drove me nuts, but when I figured them out, it was truly a sense of accomplishment.

One of the most bizarre involved how to get money. You needed some cash to get somewhere, and you had a bank account, but it only had a couple bucks in it. If I remember correctly, you even find a check, but you can't cash it because it's form more than your account can cover in case it bounces, and you can't deposit it because they're out of deposit slips. (There was some twist like that, but I may have the details off a bit.) To make a very long story shorter, what you had to do was take a withdrawal slip and withdraw a negative amount. This so confused the teller, because of how rigid he was, that you wound up with a positive balance in your account that you could then withdraw from another teller. You also had to make sure not to make it an excessive sum that caused the teller to go get the manager.

Anyway ... I probably screwed up some details with that, but I've never forgotten the general puzzle.

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skids Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-21-05 12:47 AM
Response to Reply #24
43. Simple Graphical Puzzles?

I'm sorry, but zipping down the highway at 100mph with three stars of heat on your tail and trying to plot a passable course, by memory, through 25 square miles of maze-like offramps, alleyways, building roofs and parks to one of about 100 police bribe stars (whose location you have to memorize) before your Cheetah catches fire and explodes is not a "simple graphical puzzle." It's quite a mental workout, actually, and I'm no slacker in that department.

Even much simpler videogames can cause sleep deprivation if played before bedtime, because they stimulate the brain. If you don't get a mental jog from playing games, you aren't playing them right (or you aren't playing the right ones.) That's what they are for as far as I'm concerned.



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SheepyMcSheepster Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-21-05 08:14 AM
Response to Reply #24
45. what do you base your claims on?
Edited on Thu Jul-21-05 08:18 AM by SheepyMcSheepster
just curious.

I, like many others here, have grown up on video games. i don't feel that your generalizations hold water, i would like to know how you came up with your assertions.

here is a book you might find interesting: http://www.penguinputnam.com/nf/Book/BookDisplay/0,,0_1...

also, you have the lyrics to the song incorrect. by stating "motherfuckers" with an "s" you make it seem as if the song is about burning people. it is not. the song they were playing is by a group called Bloodhound Gang but the phrase is borrowed from rap/hip hop.

The roof, the roof, the roof is on fire,
We don't need no water let the motherfucker burn,
Burn motherfucker burn.

http://www.sing365.com/music/lyric.nsf/The-Roof-is-on-F...

i agree, it is unsettling that troops would play thematic music while invading iraq, but they are in a ridiculous situation required to do ridiculous things ordered by ridiculous people.

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Spider Jerusalem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-20-05 11:52 PM
Response to Original message
29. Doesn't seem to have done anything to me...
except for improving the hell out of my hand-eye coordination, that is.
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Zech Marquis Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-21-05 08:18 AM
Response to Original message
46. last night
I played NCAA 2006 on Xbox live. Some repule chose Oklahoma, and I chose Southern Cal..I was beating the shit of him 21 -0 when he quit on me, so I kept playing the cpu and won 49-14 :evilgrin: mindless? oh no! only thing missing was Ashlee Simpson "screamin" at halftime :rofl:
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sweetheart Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-21-05 08:27 AM
Response to Original message
47. I really like a good computer game
My current fave is command and conquor generals.

It is like what chess would be, if they had computers when it was
invented. The pieces are dynamic and the gameboards are infinite in
complexity. It is engaging and totally fun to play, much more than
a chess computer or an old-style board game (unless i'm playing the
game for the good crack of the company).

I would recommend good comptuter games to anyone, as they teach you
about software engineering, user interface design and ways that an
interface can interact with a human mind for decision support processes.

Video games are the cutting edge of user interface technology far
exceeding anything that windows or java provides today... and in exploring
this cutting edge, the next generation of mainstream technology will
borrow to evolve.

I would recommend getting a few games of different genre's... after
mastering a few of them, i've become bored with first person shootemups..
and prefer large scale strategy simulations... but each genre has some
thing to teach about perspective and rendering a complex object
oriented data environment to simulate an interactive reality.

As much as people are down on games for some content, i see them
as a graduate school course on interactive systems design.
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ObaMania Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-21-05 08:46 AM
Response to Original message
48. No, they make you sharper..
.. more alert. Also teach you how to fly a plane and pop a cap into someone.
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