Games and Health

Games and Health

By Wanda Gregory When I tell people that I work in the video game industry and teach game design, what immediately comes to mind for those folks is the dark or negative side of games— images of young men or women thumbing away at a remote control that manipulates digital bloodshed, ultimately causing players to become desensitized to violent content. Others immediately think of the addictive nature of games, and envision pale players spending hours indoors, disconnected from what’s real. However these perceptions are beginning to change. Like other forms of media, games elicit different emotions in their players. It…

A Journey of Innovation

A Journey of Innovation

 Passage we love: From Wade Davis’ The Clouded Leopard. He is referring to George Mallory’s attempt to summit Mount Everest in the 1920s, and in a larger part, the human spirit that results in following one’s heart. It’s about passion and drive, never settling for what things are and how things are done. This defines innovation.

The Hub

The Hub

By Susan E. Williams The Hub is central to the Affordable Care Act. It’s a data collection effort by the government that will be used for insurance exchanges to determine things like eligibility for benefits, whether you’re exempt from the federal mandate, or how much subsidy you should be granted.  It will interact with seven other government agencies and feed state Medicaid databases. Stephen Parente, University of Minnesota finance professor, says: “The federal government is planning to quietly enact what could be the largest consolidation of personalized data in the history of the republic.” (quoted from John Merline of Investors Business Daily). The Obama Administration…

A New Everyday Fabric

A New Everyday Fabric

By Susan E. Williams Ontario based TVO, an educational media broadcaster has produced a new series: TVOpull (@TheAgenda) which concentrates on how technology is changing human interactions in various fields, including health care. In part of the series, Scott Stropkay talks about the interplay between design and health care. Integrating good design with innovative technologies to encourage behavior change is trickier than it seems. Like Apple’s stealth, the design and functionality needed for a technology to effortlessly integrate into one’s everyday world must be exquisite. Bulky shapes, sticky screens, and overly complex user experience will get as far as it takes to get frustrated –…

The Lives of A Cell

The Lives of A Cell

By Susan E. Williams Lewis Thomas slices the cell’s membrane open to reveal a vast ecosystem of interconnectedness, where mitochondria and other organelles that are descendent from other organisms co-exist and are co-dependent on our body’s native parts (see The Lives of a Cell: Notes of a Biology Watcher.) He uses the cell as a metaphor for the earth and the interdependent connections that exist within. With that same microscopic technique of looking at a cell to help describe our social and political landscape, new health and fitness technologies are enabling us to get a closer look at our bodies, our emotions,…

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