More Than Just A Game

Panel Discussion

59 minutes, 27.2mb, recorded 2006-06-22
Amy Jo Kim, Michael Zyda, Philip Rosedale, Charles Moore, Dan Hunter

More Than Just A Game panelists discuss the value of games beyond traditional entertainment. A representative of the Department of Defense who holds the title of "Chief Gamer" explains how the Joint Futures Lab invests millions of dollars to develop complex simulations. These simulations are used in test scenarios to produce results in a lab that can later be transferred to strategic and tactical decision making in the field. A representative of Reuters, a 150 year old traditional media company, comments on how they are investing significant resources to understanding the value of game simulation. They believe it will be useful in developing new applications for their financial customers dealing with increasingly large volumes of data sets.

These organizations believe that advanced gaming technology can be utilized to provide value to business, both in the preparation of tools and training of personnel, as well as in modeling complex scenarios to better understand situational dynamics and probable outcomes. Sophisticated historical, futuristic, educational, and financial simulations place participants in virtual situations where they are required to demonstrate skills, observe patterns of behavior, anticipate consequences, and overcome obstacles to achieve success. Theoretically, the experience and knowledge gained through simulated environments translates into higher skill levels, advanced situational knowledge, and improved preparedness that result in better outcomes in the real world.

Dan Hunter (BS LLB (Hons) LLM PhD) is the Robert F. Irwin IV Term Assistant Professor of Legal Studies at the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, where he teaches electronic commerce law and cyberlaw. He studies issues dealing with the intersection of computers and law, including work on the regulation of the Internet, the use of artificial intelligence in law, and high technology aspects of intellectual property. He is a founder of Terra Nova, the preeminent collaborative blog for the serious study of virtual worlds.

Amy Jo Kim of Shufflebrain is an internationally-known designer of social games and online communities. Her clients include AOL, BBC, Digital Chocolate, Disney, Electronic Arts, eBay, Limelife, MTV, Square/Enix and Yahoo! She's the author of Community Building on the Web, a design handbook for networked communities. AJ holds a PhD in Behavioral Neuroscience from the University of Washington, and a BS in Experimental Psych from UCSD, and teaches Game Design at USC

Doug Failor works for the Joint Futures Lab (JFL) of the US Joint Forces Command, where he explores the technology in commercial entertainment software for potential use by the US military. JFL has the mission of seeking out and experimenting with new technologies that could help transform the US military's training, organizational, and operational activities.

Charles Moore is Head of Innovation at Reuters focused on facilitating step out new business opportunities for Reuters financial and media customers. Charles looks at the longer term impact of emerging trends in parallel markets and applies those learning to identify new products, services and business models for the Reuters group. Ideas are translated into early stage businesses through a corporate venture program, with a strong emphasis on customer centered design. Charles previously led marketing and strategy functions for e-commerce and new business initiatives at Barclays Bank and Lloyds of London. Based in New York, but originally from London, he is a qualified marketer with an MBA from University of Surrey.

Michael Zyda is Director of USC Viterbi School of Engineering's GamePipe Laboratory, a USC Professor of Engineering Practice, and a staff member of USC's Information Sciences Institute. Professor Zyda's research interests include computer graphics, networked 3D virtual environments, agent-based simulation, modeling human and organizational behavior, interactive computer- generated story, modeling and simulation, and interactive games. He is a pioneer in the fields of computer graphics, networked virtual environments, modeling and simulation, and serious games. From 2000 to 2004, he was the Founding Director of The MOVES Institute and a Computer Science Professor at the Naval Postgraduate School. Prior to the MOVES Institute, he was Director of the NPSNET Research Group. He currently holds a lifetime appointment as a National Associate of the National Academies.

Philip Rosedale is Founder and CEO of Linden Lab, the makers of Second Life. He has an extensive background in the development and pioneering of streaming technology, having built his first computer in 4th grade, and started his first computer software company while still in high school. In 1995 he developed FreeVue, a low-bitrate video conferencing system for Internet-connected PC's, resulting in the acquisition of his company in early 1996 by RealNetworks. Rosedale previously served at RealNetworks as Vice President and CTO, where he was responsible for the development and launch of RealVideo, RealSystem 5.0, and RealSystem G2. In 1999 Rosedale, joined Accel Partners as an Entrepreneur-in-Residence, and began the basic research that would become the technology behind Linden Lab. Rosedale holds a BS degree in Physics from the University of California at San Diego.


This free podcast is from our Supernova series.

For The Conversations Network: