Old Tech Powers New Opportunities

February 11, 2010 -

A new project co-founded by a Carnegie Mellon University graduate student is creating educational games for extremely affordable computers that are gaining popularity in developing nations.

PlayPower grew from an idea Derek Lomas had while attending a conference in India, where he noticed that families were snatching up $12 computer systems right and left. The 8-bit computers are not very powerful, but the processor that powers the PC (the MOS 6502, which powered the Apple II and Nintendo NES) is in the public domain, meaning that development is relatively easy and inexpensive.

Lomas told the Post Gazette, “It doesn't require a $50 million development budget to make a great game.”

The PlayPower team is currently at work on three games, two of which feature the Hindu deity Hanuman. One Hanuman-starring title will teach users how to type, with the hopes that such a skill could translate into better job opportunities, while the second is a multiple-choice quiz-type game. The third title in development will try to raise awareness of malaria.

Lomas added, “I think that many of the more powerful educational effects of the system can be in the way it changes a kid's interest and ambitions.”

Lomas anticipates that all three games can be finished this year. He also hopes to build a relationship with those selling the computers so that PlayPower’s software can be bundled in.

Over 1,000 volunteers from around the world are already on-board to assist in game development. PlayPower also hopes to harness the growing 8-bit retro community for assistance in future releases.


Comments

Re: Old Tech Powers New Opportunities

anyone else recall the C.O.P.S. from Sam & Max right now?

岩「…Where do masochists go when they die?」

岩「…I can see why Hasselbeck's worried about fake guns killing fake people. afterall, she's a fake journalist on a fake news channel」

Re: Old Tech Powers New Opportunities

Sorta, but it's losing out to my memory of the cartoon show.

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I LIKE the fence. I get 2 groups to laugh at then.

-------------------------------------------------- I LIKE the fence. I get 2 groups to laugh at then.

Re: Old Tech Powers New Opportunities

"The PlayPower team is currently at work on three games, two of which feature the Hindu deity Hanuman."

I know they got the idea from India, but why exactly do you think a Hindu deity will work well in the US?

Also, I look forward to that self-appoited spokesman of Hindus everywhere sounding off again.

--------------------------------------------------

I LIKE the fence. I get 2 groups to laugh at then.

-------------------------------------------------- I LIKE the fence. I get 2 groups to laugh at then.

Re: Old Tech Powers New Opportunities

Its not clear, but I don't think they are targeting US audiences with these games. I would suspect that they would target the Indian market in which they witnessed the mass purchasing of 8bit computers.

E. Zachary Knight
Oklahoma City Chapter of the ECA
http://www.theeca.com/chapters_oklahoma

Re: Old Tech Powers New Opportunities

Yeah, that would make more sense. But I still look forward to that "I speak for the whole of Hinduism" douche maybe starting up again over this :-P

--------------------------------------------------

I LIKE the fence. I get 2 groups to laugh at then.

-------------------------------------------------- I LIKE the fence. I get 2 groups to laugh at then.

Re: Old Tech Powers New Opportunities

If people are buying the $12 computers left and right then it shoul be a no brainer to make software for it.

http://www.magicinkgaming.com/

 
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NeenekoI have met some real jerks and slimeballs in gender activism, but when I hear the idea that there are many 'not nice' people it comes across as code for 'uppity people who do not know their place'.09/19/2014 - 12:10pm
Andrew EisenKrono - Many of the people pushing gender issues aren't nice people? I'm sure not everyone's a sweatheart but so far, everyone I've seen with such a critique had absolutely nothing to back them up.09/19/2014 - 10:46am
InfophileI think there's a qualitative difference between a site and a hashtag though. GP can ban anyone from commenting, so they can have the image they want. But anyone can use any hashtag and try to poison it. Granted, that hasn't happened to the other one yet09/19/2014 - 10:13am
E. Zachary KnightKrono, your comparison to GP does not work. We do not need to get rid of GP, because no one associates GP with trolls and abuse. The same can't be said for gamergate.09/19/2014 - 10:09am
Krono@Michael You don't remember the "other hashtag" because no one actually uses it. We're talking 836,983 uses of #gamergate over it's lifetime, and 8,119 for the "alternative". 47,129 uses on the 18th vs 41. With #notyourshield at 140,133 uses & 5,209 uses09/19/2014 - 9:48am
Kronoresearch it. Changing tags to get away from trolls would be like wiping GamePolitics and restarting under a new name to get away from people calling Jack Thompson a filthy names in the comments section.09/19/2014 - 9:35am
Sleaker@quiknkold - seems like all that page is is a bunch of random developer opinions and rumors that we're supposedto do what with?09/19/2014 - 9:31am
Kronoas an opportunity to push back against them. It's one of the things muddling the issue. @conster A new hashtag would do nothing to improve anything. Trolls will simply follow to the new hashtag, and it will confuse the issue for anyone attempting to09/19/2014 - 9:25am
Krono@Andrew aaah. Yes, I'm sure there's some of that. Part of the problem is many of the people pushing gender issues are not very nice people. Basically the latest incarnation of moralists we've seen in the past couple decades. Naturually some will take this09/19/2014 - 9:23am
quiknkoldhttp://www.nichegamer.net/2014/09/real-gamedevs-sound-off-regarding-the-gamergate-controversy/09/19/2014 - 8:35am
MaskedPixelanteMeanwhile, in news that actually DOES matter, Scotland voted "NO" to Scottish independance.09/19/2014 - 8:20am
ConsterSeriously? "We shouldn't make a new hashtag - it's better to associate ourselves with psychos than to decrease our visibility"?09/19/2014 - 7:54am
Michael ChandraI forget what it is exactly, but there already is another hashtag that some use, exactly to separate themselves from the abusive behaviour. So don't bother lying to me.09/19/2014 - 7:06am
quiknkold2 to 3 or more09/19/2014 - 6:53am
quiknkoldMichael Chandra : I'll say this. The only reason they havent used another hashtag is because it would look like a form of dividing the arguement. Using another Hashtag has come up, and they feel like if they made a new hashtag, it'll split the debate from09/19/2014 - 6:53am
Michael ChandraYou want a debate? Build a wall between you and the poisoned well. Make clear you despise it, despise the behaviour. Then get into the other issues you are troubled with, and don't say a single word again about the poisoned well.09/19/2014 - 3:46am
Michael ChandraAnd someone claiming #notyourshield was to be taken serious, when chatlogs show they wanted it going to hide even more harassment behind? Yeah, not buying a word you're saying. You poisoned your own well.09/19/2014 - 3:45am
Michael Chandraallegedly fired over giving a game a mediocre review and the company threatened to pull ads? Sorry but I ain't buying this.09/19/2014 - 3:45am
Michael ChandraBut people arguing this is horrible and just about ethics, even though there's very little support that journalistic integrity was actually violated here, while they never spoke up when a journalist was09/19/2014 - 3:43am
Michael ChandraIf people start with condemning the way GamersGate was used as a misdirection, then use a better hashtag, that would work in convincing me they mean it.09/19/2014 - 3:43am
 

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