I work in games for a living, but I just read a really great article in New Scientist about games which are being used in several different fields of research to take advantage of our human intuition. Even with all the increased power of computing power and distributed processing, there are several places where computers fall flat, including visual analysis and spatial tasks.
There were several games listed in the article but the most interesting is
. In this game you fold proteins which involves a hosts of problems to be solved in Biology. Here’s what they say on the site :
Figuring out which of the many, many possible structures is the best one is regarded as one of the hardest problems in biology today and current methods take a lot of money and time, even for computers. Foldit attempts to predict the structure of a protein by taking advantage of humans’ puzzle-solving intuitions and having people play competitively to fold the best proteins.
So if you want to play some games during the holiday season, try this one out so that you can save the universe with science instead of a chainsaw gun.