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Games

Submission + - Gabriel Knight creator's new game project gains traction! (kotaku.com)

joseph_austin writes: This article explains newly divulged information about the new project by Jane Jensen, creator of the Gabriel Knight series. The Kickstarter behind this is well on the way to being funded, but if it doubles its mark then Jane Jensen has promised a second game. (Note: I'm not affiliated with Pinkerton Road, but I am a backer. Hope this peaks some interest if anyone hasn't heard of the project.)

Submission + - Computer game designed to treat depression as effective as traditional treatment (news24.com)

sirlark 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).

Google

Submission + - New Google Translate Tool (activepolitic.com) 3

bs0d3 writes: If you use google translate to translate webpages, you're in luck. Instead of simply posting a url into google translate, you now have to use buttons to drag into the browser's toolbar. For those who prefer the old way of using google translate where you simply post a url into a text box.. this seems to work. Just replace the http://www.something.com/ with the urls you want to translate, it even gives you the old drop boxes you need to change the language. Since google has removed the language tools button from their front page, many people have chosen to book mark a link anyways.

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