Sunday, July 12, 2009

Addressing World-Scale Challenges : Computer Games and Learning

Microsoft Research Faculty Summit

Addressing World-Scale Challenges
Computational approaches provide a powerful means for addressing previously unsolvable problems. Increasingly, computing technologies are what makes the difference in enabling new approaches applied to world-scale challenges in such diverse disciplines as medicine and healthcare, energy and the environment, and educational and social progress.
In response to these significant global challenges, the Microsoft Research Faculty Summit 2009 investigates how computing technologies can best help scientists make progress in these important areas. Attendees will have the opportunity to participate in creative, open discourse on research topics.
Identifying computational enablers for solving critical social and scientific problems is a main theme for this year’s faculty summit:
• Energy Sustainability.
• Addressing climate change.
• Transformational improvement in healthcare.

Computer Games and Learning: Best Practices Using Games to Teach—in Academia and at Microsoft
Chris Franz, Microsoft; Jennifer Michelstein, Microsoft; Ken Perlin, New York University; Ross Smith, Microsoft
The Games for Learning Institute is a joint venture with Microsoft Research, New York University, and affiliated New York regional schools. Nine months into its efforts, it has prematurely published its annual report discussing the latest research about how to make great games and how to make great game vehicles for teaching. This talk is complemented by three efforts at Microsoft where product groups are using games to teach the esoteric features of Microsoft software, facilitate learning, and improve software development. See some very cool stuff and learn how to get your kids to love math (as does Ken Perlin) or find out how to use a feature in Microsoft Office Word you have not yet discovered.