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+ - Computer game designed to treat depression as effective as traditional treatment->

Submitted by sirlark
sirlark (1676276) writes "Researchers at the University of Auckland tested an interactive 3D fantasy game called Sparx on a 94 youngsters diagnosed with depression whose average age was 15 and a half. Sparx invites a user to take on a series of seven challenges over four to seven weeks in which an avatar has to learn to deal with anger and hurt feelings and swap negative thoughts for helpful ones. Used for three months, Sparx was at least as effective as face-to-face conventional counselling, according to several depression rating scales. In addition, 44% of the Sparx group who carried out at least four of the seven challenges recovered completely. In the conventional treatment group, only 26% recovered fully.

One has to wonder if it Sparx specifically, or gaming in general that provides the most benefit. Given that most of the symptoms of depression relate to a feeling of being unable to influence one's environment (powerlessness, helplessness, ennui, etc) and games are specifically designed to make one feel powerful but challenged (if they hit the sweet spot)."
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Cleaners Paint Over Priceless Art 69

Posted by samzenpus
from the eye-of-the-beholder dept.
The Melbourne city council learned the hard way that one man's art is another man's crap on a wall that needs to be painted over. The council hired a cleanup crew to get rid of graffiti on Hosier Lane, a street renowned for its street art. While there, the crew got rid of the graffiti, as well as a piece by Banksy, who is regarded as one of the world's greatest street artists. From the article: "The reclusive Banksy ... painted several stencils in Melbourne during a 2003 visit. His satirical and distinctive art is often directed at anti-war, cultural, and anti-capitalist themes. Banksy in 2005 painted nine images on Israel's West Bank barrier, including a ladder going over the wall and an image of children breaking through to a tropical island. In 2008, a London wall bearing one of his stencils was said to have sold on eBay for almost $500,000."

...this is an awesome sight. The entire rebel resistance buried under six million hardbound copies of "The Naked Lunch." - The Firesign Theater

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