September 24, 2009
Russia shows interest in global gaming industry; Creates Gaming Commission
After decades of insular PC only game development, Russia is looking to expands is influence on the gaming industry. The first step seems to be the creation of the National Gaming Commission. The new agency will begin operations on October.
Read the article at Kotaku: http://kotaku.com/5361224/russia-creates-national-games-commission
September 8, 2009
UC Irvine Establishes Games Research Center
The "Center for Computer Games & Virtual Worlds" will be an interdisciplinary effort led by the School of Information and Computer Science, and featuring an initial 20 faculty from across disciplines. The goals of the Center, according to Senior Research Scientist Walter Scacchi, are:
"“We now realize that scientific and cultural achievements go beyond the current concepts of what games and virtual worlds are good for, or how they may be developed or applied,” Scacchi said. “The center will support our research in demonstrating the sustained ability to invent and reinvent the future of computer games and virtual worlds.”"
More details on the UC Irvine News Release page: http://www.today.uci.edu/news/nr_gamecenter_090901.php
September 1, 2009
New research on how games change your brain
MSNBC reports on a just-published study (http://cosmiclog.msnbc.msn.com/archive/2009/09/01/2049186.aspx) of the physical changes on brains resulting from playing video games, specifically Tetris.
"The researchers analyzed the brain changes in the game-playing group compared with the control group, and they found that the Tetris players' brain function became more efficient in areas linked to critical thinking, reasoning, language and information processing..." which duplicated results from a 1992 study. They measured changes in cortical thickness in a variety of brain areas to assess the effects.
The researcher "...had hoped that he and his colleagues would come up with a mechanism to explain in physiological terms how the brain became more efficient through game-playing." While this didn't happen, the research results do form an important starting point for investigating and discovering these mechanisms.
The full research article is published here: