Little did we know about sport from the human computer interaction field. Actually, we know very little.
Genevieve Bell, Director of the User Experience Group at Intel and keynote speaker at CHI 2010, points out the lack of research about sports and technology.
It seems that it’s a really good timing to be doing work in game user experience on sports game :)
Excerpts from her talk:
“Sports is a huge money maker, it’s a huge driver of new technology adoption.
40% of Americans when asked why they upgraded to HD, the answer was that sports look better on it.
Sports drive new technologies of production in video capture, in dealing with multiple streams of content, and now is one of the drivers of 3D.
Yet there are less than 40 papers written over the last 20 years in HCI about sports. And most of them are written about things that are not really sports, they are written about roller coasters, about going on around on motocross in Scandinavia and there is one about going to a Canadian stadium, and that’s it.
[Sports] is a critical domain of human activity, it schedules time and space and we are not writing about it.”
I attended Fourth International Conference on the Foundations of Digital Games (FDG’09). In a nutshell, it was great, and it fulfilled the crossover between academics and industry, covering topics from both social and computer sciences.
FGD’09 had a nice variety of type of session and topics. There were panels on game curriculum and grant opportunities, stressing how important is to create archives of successful and unsuccessful applications. There were tutorials for programming. There were presentations on both technical aspects and social aspects. It’s definitely a conference that worth going.
One of the features of this conference that I’d like to highlight was the fact that the conference happened on a cruise. Yes, one of those massive boats soaring the ocean. It departed from Port Canaveral and one of the ports of call was Nassau (Bahamas).
Beside how exotic this could sound, I have to emphasize the convenience of having a conference on a cruise: you don’t have the hassle of having to find a hotel near the venue (but not out of budget) because your room it’s at the venue! You don’t have the problems of ‘where-to-eat’ or not having time to eat because it’s all inclusive! This also simplifies numbers if you have a per diem arrangement with your organization. You won’t be late, you won’t mind staying late, your room is just on the other floor! It provides more chances to comingle with other attendees, helping to establish a camaraderie spirit for the conference. You can have breakfast, dinner, coffee or a drink with your network really easily!
After all these reason, I strongly advocate for having more conference on cruises.
Two months ago was GDC’08. The media covering of the event has been huge but anyway I’d like to highlight one presentation: Game Studies Download 3.0
This presentation was lead by Ian Bogost, Mia Consalvo and Jane McGonigal. They found and went over the “best” 10 papers of 2007. Its neatness relies on the close attention they pay to present academic content and deliver it for industry content.
They were able to kept the diverse audience attracted by speaking both “languages”, they could summary the papers into nice ‘research questions’, explain what was done and then the big insights that were the practical conclusions. What else can you ask?! :)
The reference papers can be found at their site http://www.avantgame.com/top10.htm
Slides of this and previous versions are available as well.