Geek Therapy
Follow
Find
10.3K views | +0 today
Geek Therapy
How Geek Culture is saving the world. Can geeky, nerdy, and techy things help heal the world? Absolutely. | For the Geek Therapy Podcast and more, visit http://www.geektherapy.com.
Curated by Josué Cardona
Your new post is loading...
Your new post is loading...
Scooped by Josué Cardona
Scoop.it!

Stroke recovery made fun with computer games

Stroke recovery made fun with computer games | Geek Therapy | Scoop.it
From the UK, Limbs Alive is a new therapy service for hemiplegia patients that uses games to improve motor skills in a fun way.

 

Limbs Alive works with games developer Pitbull Studio to create titles which focus on spatial orientation, hand-eye coordination, visual attention, depth perception and quick reaction times. Each game uses motion sensor controllers and has a large number of difficulty levels to cater for the wide range of abilities of those recovering from hemiplegia, one of the common results of a stroke. The company’s main product is the Circus Challenge series, which requires players to act out various movements to control the characters and successfully complete particular activities, whether juggling, plate spinning or tiger training. The nature of the games means that patients are encouraged to play regularly, which translates into improved motor performance in everyday routines.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Josué Cardona
Scoop.it!

Mom's wrong! Video games could help you

Mom's wrong! Video games could help you | Geek Therapy | Scoop.it

An estimate of $100 million has been spent on global research and development of “serious” games, ones that focus on health, education, scientific exploration, engineering or something other than pure entertainment, said Ben Sawyer, co-founder of Games for Health and the Serious Games Initiative, a project of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars.He expects the field to grow significantly during the next two to three years.

 

“We are going to find many ways to improve our health through the delivery of treatment or diagnosis with games and (the) training of medical people,” said Debra Lieberman, director of Heath Games Research. Even as researchers and developers try to figure out what ailments to solve, Lieberman said that even the simplest video game can help cut down on trips to the doctor’s office by providing helpful medical information. Or, perhaps, performance on a game can be shared with a doctor who can then recommend treatment.

 

“I do think the day is coming when games (will be) prescribed to patients and it will be part of the medical record to track how much you play,” she said. “It can be shared with medical providers so they could find out how you are doing.” Maybe there will be a new healthy games section added to the local video store.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Josué Cardona
Scoop.it!

Using Video Sports Games to Engage Students with Disabilities

For special needs students, opportunities for participating in physical activity lessen as they get older. This is related to the highly structured nature of competitive sports as well as the complex motor and social skills needed to navigate team sports.

 

While the use of dance, aquatics and even yoga are becoming more prevalent at special needs schools, some forward-thinking institutions are also looking at off-the-shelf technology applications.

 

Does it work? In a recently published article, Dan Stachelski of the Lakeside Center for Autism in Issaquah, Washington, noted that researchers have found multiple cases where students with developmental disabilities easily interact with an onscreen character that mimics their motions because the game world is more predictable and less threatening (to them) than "the real world."

 

Students can benefit from a video sports game curriculum via increased body fitness, improved self-esteem, improved ability to manage stress, healthy body composition, flexibility, strength and endurance, as well as developing the social skills necessary to participate in team sports. By using a video sports curriculum, students also set the stage for life-long physical improvements because this activity helps reduce barriers to access, whether those barriers are physical, emotional or psychological.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Josué Cardona
Scoop.it!

Northeastern professor talks video games at White House

Northeastern professor talks video games at White House | Geek Therapy | Scoop.it
In a White House con­fer­ence last week, Magy Seif El-Nasr, an asso­ciate pro­fessor of game design and inter­ac­tive media at North­eastern Uni­ver­sity, dis­cussed the impor­tance of cre­ating edu­ca­tional video games through inter­dis­ci­pli­nary collaboration.

 

The meeting, which included industry leaders, pol­i­cy­makers and about 20 aca­d­e­mics from insti­tu­tions nation­wide, was part of the Aca­d­emic Con­sor­tium on Games for Impact and orga­nized by the White House Office of Sci­ence and Tech­nology Policy. The experts exam­ined ways to leverage their indi­vidual areas of exper­tise, share resources and build net­works aimed at sparking inter­dis­ci­pli­nary col­lab­o­ra­tion among acad­emia and industry in the area of “games for impact” — video games that yield sig­nif­i­cant soci­etal ben­e­fits in areas such as as edu­ca­tion and health.

 

We’re trying to advance basic research in game design and advance the cur­rent appli­ca­tion of games in areas like edu­ca­tion, health and sus­tain­ability,” said Seif El-Nasr, whose research focuses on enhancing game designs by devel­oping tools and methods for eval­u­ating and adapting game experiences.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Josué Cardona
Scoop.it!

"Hacked" Virtual-Reality Goggles Helps Visually Impaired Navigate Obstacles

"Hacked" Virtual-Reality Goggles Helps Visually Impaired Navigate Obstacles | Geek Therapy | Scoop.it

A nondescript head-mounted display could soon spell fewer bumps and bruises for people with moderate visual impairment, thanks to researchers from the Universidad Carlos III in Madrid. Using a special algorithm, a team from the department of electronics technology adapted a pair of virtual-reality goggles into a device for navigating one’s surroundings. Equipped with a pair of micro-monitors, the headgear communicates the outlines of oncoming objects to its user in real time, using color to denote distance.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Josué Cardona
Scoop.it!

Here's How You'll Get Smarter By Playing Video Games

Here's How You'll Get Smarter By Playing Video Games | Geek Therapy | Scoop.it

It turns out that playing video games can actually make you smarter and help you to develop important skills that are necessary to succeed in a 21st century labor market.


Here's what the experts are saying.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Josué Cardona
Scoop.it!

Middle School Student Wins National Contest Promoting Eating Right in Video Game

Middle School Student Wins National Contest Promoting Eating Right in Video Game | Geek Therapy | Scoop.it

A fan of video games, the 14-year-old decided to take the project seriously and spent several hours over two weeks at school and home to come up with the game’s components. 

 

Brightly said he enjoys video games with heroes saving the world. Those games inspired his storyline of “Vege-Wars,” in which a middle school student is recruited to fight a war against “fast foodies” — unhealthy fast foods — and teach others about better eating options.


“It’s supposed to teach about how you should become active and healthy. Eating fast food is not something to do, because it just makes you more unhealthy,” Brightly said.

 

The Henry Middle School student won the best overall, or “Bestivore,” award out of nearly 400 entries from 42 schools across the country for his game.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Josué Cardona
Scoop.it!

Games Can Improve Employee Health

Games Can Improve Employee Health | Geek Therapy | Scoop.it
New research finds that employee wellness programs are using a new approach to educate employees about health and wellness.

 

“The most successful wellness programs incorporate video games that present themselves as in the service of the player,” Ferguson said. “These activities enable individuals to engage in things they have personally desired, but were unable to prioritize and accomplish before wellness games.

 

“The result is healthier, happier, and more productive employees — a win-win for employers and their people.”

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Josué Cardona
Scoop.it!

Medical Comics are the basis for future learning

Medical Comics are the basis for future learning | Geek Therapy | Scoop.it

The Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation of America and the Children’s Hospital in Boston have each produced comicbooks targeted for young children who suffer from ailments that adversely affect their lives, but which the child might not be able to understand when presented in a “typical” fashion. These two comic books Pete learns all about Crohn’s and Colitis and Amy Goes Gluten-Free A young person’s Guide to Geliag Disease. Each of these comics deals with their specific issues in a fashion that is easily understood and digestible for younger readers. Both comics are written by Hilarie Staton and illustrated by Joe Staton, and both combine both traditional comicbook storytelling as well as through text, checklists, crossword puzzles and other kid-friendly methods.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Josué Cardona
Scoop.it!

What’s Your Game Prescription?

What’s Your Game Prescription? | Geek Therapy | Scoop.it

Today we want to pursue a thought exercise inspired by Mr. Hilleman’s 2009 interview. We call this “What’s Your Game Prescription?” It’s your chance to envision a moment in the future, when some health professional writes you or someone you care for a prescription to play a video game to improve a specific component of your health.

 

A prescription is much more than just an endorsement. It’s the assessment of a need and the placement of a solution in a situated context relevant to the target of the prescription. It’s about why to play them, when to play them, dosage levels, and more. Prescribing a video game isn’t just “go play some DDR.” It’s more like, “DDR three times a week on level 3, for 30 minutes a time, for 20 weeks, to help improve bone density.”

 

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Josué Cardona
Scoop.it!

Fitter, Happier: an eight week exercise in using technology to help lose weight

Fitter, Happier: an eight week exercise in using technology to help lose weight | Geek Therapy | Scoop.it

Did technology make me fitter? Happier?
Yes. Yes it did. I'm as shocked as anyone.

 

Of course, you want to know the results, so here goes: Eight weeks ago I weighed 239 pounds (108.4 kg) and now I weigh 219 pounds (99.6 kg). I've lost around four inches from my hipline, having swapped a pair of size 42 jeans for a pair of size 38s that I'm wearing as I write this. I've gone from having a shirt size of 17.5 inches to 16.5 inches and when worn, they no longer bulge at the midriff (or worse, pop open when I'm eating) . I've also started to think more seriously about my eating -- after all, I've still got nearly 25 kg to lose before I'm a healthy weight, but that no longer seems like an impossible goal. 

 

For me, there are three broad categories of exercise gadget: those which didn't work, those which relied upon self-motivation and those which did the hard work of coaxing me out of my chair. Of course, no talking watch can force you to get up, and if it could, you'd soon "forget" to charge it, but as soon as you find that spark of inspiration, you'll find things much easier with one of these at your side.

 

 

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Josué Cardona
Scoop.it!

Single Switch PS3 Controller for Person with Muscular Dystrophy

Single Switch PS3 Controller for Person with Muscular Dystrophy | Geek Therapy | Scoop.it

Steven lives in NYC and has duchenne muscular dystrophy. Steven can move his index finger to trigger a switch that controls driving his wheelchair and other assistive technology devices. For computer access he has a reflective sticker on his baseball cap that is tracked by a infrared capturing webcam and moves the mouse cursor around the screen, his index finger 'clicks' the cursor. He asked Holly, his occupational therapist, if there were any options for him to play the PS3 again, unfortunately at the time there were hacks but nothing for a single switch access.

 

In NY's Interactive Telecommunications Program (ITP) "Designing for One" class Steven participated as a client, his project extended over the semester and was finished late in Spring 2009.

 

Steven uses his laptop in front of his TV with PS3 connected. He is using his head mouse and finger switch to operate the software. After several iterations of software Steven asked if there was anyway to get the software interface to be displayed on the TV, I asked for an old video mixer from a friend. Now the laptop's screen was chroma-keyed over the PS3 screen and Steven can toggle the display of PS3 buttons as needed and looks only at the TV when playing the PS3.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Josué Cardona
Scoop.it!

12 Ways Technology Is Saving Endangered Species

12 Ways Technology Is Saving Endangered Species | Geek Therapy | Scoop.it

Our human tendency toward innovation and ingenuity, coupled with our advancing technology, is helping to come up with solutions for saving some of the other species on Earth from becoming endangered, or even extinct. From low-tech ideas used in novel ways, to altogether new technology used in place of older versions, there’s a wide variety of concepts for using science and tech and gadgetry to preserve endangered species.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Josué Cardona
Scoop.it!

Study finds asking kids 'What would Batman eat?' improves their food choices

Study finds asking kids 'What would Batman eat?' improves their food choices | Geek Therapy | Scoop.it

In the ongoing battle to get children to eat healthfully, parents may do well invoking the names of superheroes to come to their rescue, say Cornell researchers.

 

Just as Popeye inspired a generation to eat spinach, such role models as Spiderman or Batman could help children make healthy choices, according to Brian Wansink, the John S. Dyson Professor of Marketing and director of the Cornell Food and Brand Lab.

 

Wansink, with postdoctoral researcher Mitsuru Shimizu and visiting graduate student Guido Camps of Utrecht University in the Netherlands, conducted a study in which 22 children, ages 6-12, at a summer camp were asked if they wanted "apple fries" (thinly sliced raw apples) or French fries during several consecutive Wednesday lunches.

 

During one of those lunches, the children were first presented with 12 photos of real and fictional role models and asked, "Would this person order apple fries or French fries?"

Josué Cardona's insight:

The oringal link seems to have changed. You can find the article at: http://news.cornell.edu/stories/2012/05/considering-what-batman-would-eat-helps-kids-diets

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Josué Cardona
Scoop.it!

10 online games … with a social purpose

10 online games … with a social purpose | Geek Therapy | Scoop.it

In her classic TEDTalk “Gaming can make a better world” Jane McGonigal pointed out that online games like World of Warcraft inspire people to think like heroes. But are there other games out there like SuperBetter, which are created for a specific social good? Here, many more examples.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Josué Cardona
Scoop.it!

Science Confirms Reading Fiction Is Making You A Better Person

Science Confirms Reading Fiction Is Making You A Better Person | Geek Therapy | Scoop.it

A Stanford professor, Joshua Landy, has some new research that calls into question the common assumption that reading fiction does something to strengthen our emotional, moral or empathic muscles, but argues that instead reading fiction is great exercise for our mental skills. And not just in the sense that reading teaches us new words and what characters who live in faraway parts of the world eat for breakfast, but actually stretching our brain cells to be better at things like logic, reaching better understanding through metaphor and comparison, and even "achieving peace of mind," according to Landy.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Josué Cardona
Scoop.it!

5 Ways to Instantly Connect With Doctors

5 Ways to Instantly Connect With Doctors | Geek Therapy | Scoop.it

New mobile health apps are springing up to save the day — connecting doctors on standby with patients who need them the most.

 

We’ve rounded up five medical apps and websites that connect users directly to doctors. With tele-health apps, patients can call, text or privately message licensed physicians online for immediate help. Patients have an instant connection to knowledgable specialists. This industry won’t replace primary care physicians, but it will come in handy when sudden sickness strikes.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Josué Cardona
Scoop.it!

Seven assistive technologies born from science fiction

Seven assistive technologies born from science fiction | Geek Therapy | Scoop.it

Oscar Wilde wrote “Life imitates Art far more than Art imitates Life”. One area Wilde’s comments may be disproportionately inverse is the current technological evolution. Whether it is prognostication or just very well developed details for the storyline, comics and science fiction in general have invented or showcased assistive technologies well before their time.

 

Here are a few assistive technologies that were utilized on the page and silver screen way ahead of their actual introduction to real life.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Josué Cardona
Scoop.it!

How Video Games Can Solve The World's Biggest Problems

How Video Games Can Solve The World's Biggest Problems | Geek Therapy | Scoop.it

The 21st century global community faces unprecedented challenges; human-induced climate change, dangerous food and water shortages, widespread poverty, and deadly diseases are realities in today's complex world.


But game developer Jane McGonigal, who we recently heard as a keynote speaker at the World Innovation Forum, thinks she knows the solution: posing these dilemmas to the world's enormous gaming community, and using their creativity and ideas to save the planet.

 

Here's why McGonigal thinks gamers are up to the challenge of saving the world...

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Josué Cardona
Scoop.it!

Self-Adjustable Glasses Designed for the Developing World

Self-Adjustable Glasses Designed for the Developing World | Geek Therapy | Scoop.it
Eyejusters are self-adjustable glasses which enable the prescription of each eye to be changed by the simple turning of an adjustment tool.

 

In developing nations, many people aren't afforded the opportunity to see a professional in this field. Thankfully there are alternatives, one of which are the self-adjustable glasses from Eyejusters. The British company is aiming to take low-cost, self-adjustable glasses to developing nations. In order to do so, the team of four have developed an adjustable lens technology called SlideLens. This consists of a pair of lenses which act together to correct an individual's eyesight. By sliding one of the lenses over the other from left to right, the prescription changes until the world comes into focus.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Josué Cardona
Scoop.it!

Lego Fans Helping Kids with Autism

Lego Fans Helping Kids with Autism | Geek Therapy | Scoop.it
Lego fans have formed an international advocacy organization to champion an innovative group-based social development program.

 

Called ASD Aid, the organization has grown into the global focus point for Adult Fans of Lego (AFOLs) who are dedicated to increasing awareness and understanding of Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) in our communities and improving access to services. Many fans have witnessed firsthand the power of Lego play to help children with Autism Spectrum Disorders communicate and grow.
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Josué Cardona
Scoop.it!

Oxygen-Monitoring Glasses Could Let You Read People's Moods Right Through Their Skin

Oxygen-Monitoring Glasses Could Let You Read People's Moods Right Through Their Skin | Geek Therapy | Scoop.it

Changizi sees huge potential for his glasses in the mass market, but in particular he sees lots of room to apply them in specific fields like medicine, security, and gaming. O2Amps are reportedly already in testing at two hospitals, where the lenses make a patient’s veins appear to glow, revealing the vasculature beneath the skin. The glasses could also help medical personnel detect trauma via hemoglobin concentrations beneath the skin--simply by looking a patient over a nurse or doctor could quickly see where trauma has occurred and where it is heaviest.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Josué Cardona
Scoop.it!

How Technology Is Speeding Up Humanitarian Response

How Technology Is Speeding Up Humanitarian Response | Geek Therapy | Scoop.it
Amid discussions Tuesday of ways social media can be used to ensure a sustainable future for the planet, one Rio+Social conversation emphasized how technology is accelerating and improving humanitarian relief.

 

“We need to use technology to deliver because we are overwhelmed by the humanitarian problems in the world,” Guterres said. “If you have solar lamps you can allow young people to study at night in refugee camps. If you have solar lamps in the streets, you can have less women being raped at night in refugee camps.”

 

For Cousin, whose response to humanitarian crises comes from the lens of food security, technology can have a different affect on sustainable development.

 

“Technology will ensure we can create a more sustainable world that’s less damaging to our environments and will move us all forward together,” she said. “Technology gives us the ability to create more resistant seeds, which will lead to more nutrient-rich diets.”

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Josué Cardona
Scoop.it!

Beyond Entertainment: How Video Games Can Help You Stay Healthy and Sharp

Beyond Entertainment: How Video Games Can Help You Stay Healthy and Sharp | Geek Therapy | Scoop.it

Video gaming has transcended into a new plane of thought – gaming beyond entertainment. Games for Health is a fast spreading organization that essentially aims to develop gaming as a form of health care. In fact, doctors are beginning to give out game prescriptions to patients suffering from certain types of mental health problems. Plus, a study conducted by McGill University in Quebec states that online gaming can actively reduce Cortisol (stress hormones) levels by up to 17%. In other words, video games can effectively reduce stress levels (oh, we know all about that) and now, it even has scientific proof! (that, we didn’t know).

 

The involvement of gaming in the process of health care revolutionizes the doctor-patient relationship as the patient has now the opportunity to become engaged in his own health care program. In addition, the patient can enjoy the treatment through a “fun, monitored, and managed, technology-enabled and corrective and preventive intervention.” Game prescriptions comprise of a detailed duration of how many times a patient should play in a week and for how long depending on the patient’s medical condition. Aside from stress-related conditions, health games also include a number of other fields as enumerated by Ferguson:
1.) Nutrition, weight management, and obesity
2.) Disease prevention, self-management, and adherence
3.) Cognitive behavior and mental and emotional health
4.) Clinical training, simulation, diagnosis, and treatment
5.) Rehabilitation and therapy
6.) The psychology of game design
7.) Social influence and peer groups in health games
8.) Health game sensors
9.) Mobile health games
10.) Games in home-to-clinic telehealth systems

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Josué Cardona
Scoop.it!

Studies use technology to help African-American women commit to healthy lifestyle

Studies use technology to help African-American women commit to healthy lifestyle | Geek Therapy | Scoop.it

The trials, known as Commit2fit and Love Your Heart, enroll African-American women UAB students ages 19-30 into six- and three-month programs respectively. The programs are focused on promotion of physical activity using technology as the foundation for communication.

 

Nefertiti Durant, M.D., has spent the past six months coordinating two trials that were born from pilots funded by a joint 2009 Center for Clinical and Translational Science (CCTS)/Charles Barkley Health Disparities Research Award pilot grant and a 2008 Nutrition Obesity Research Center award.

 

Durant wanted to use technology to help, with the idea that she can one day use it to her advantage in the clinical setting. “Technology is promising, efficient and a platform people are using right now,” Durant says. “It’s also something you can provide to a diverse population of people at a low cost.”

 

Commit2fit and Love Your Heart focus on three areas of support — motivational health coaching via the study’s website, nutrition sessions with a registered dietician and promotion of supervised physical activity.

more...
No comment yet.