Kate Compton

June 5th,  PhD student (completing her second year at UCSC), game maker and crafter, Kate Compton came on the radio to talk about her research and practice.

LaserValentine-YouAreMyFreedomKate was in the game industry for five years working on such games as Spore and SimCity, gaining mastery of procedural content generation and simulation techniques, before returning to school.  She is also an enthusiastic game jammer, prototyper, and inventor of novel physical interfaces for computing. She does a lot of crafting, sewing, art, and baking, traditionally women’s activities, as well as a bit of carpentry.  A lot of her research at UCSC is driven by synthesizing crafting with game technologies. She does a lot of work with the laser cutter and 3D printing. For instance, Kate made this pendant-maker iApp.

To hear our interview, please click on the grey button below: [haiku url=”http://s3-us-west-2.amazonaws.com/miljkovicaudio/old_public_html/nada/katec.mp3″ title=”Kate Compton” graphical=”true”]

MIke Treanor

2013 PhD graduates Mike Treanor and Chris Lewis

2013 PhD graduates Mike Treanor and Chris Lewis

On June 3, 2013, brand spanking new PhD graduate at UCSC’s Games and Playable Media Center, Mike Treanor came into the KZSC studio to talk with Nada Miljkovic on Artist on Art.

Mike will begin his teaching this fall at the American University in Washington DC and developing a game department.

Mike is a developer and theorist.  He was researching in the Expressive Intelligence Studio which is dedicated to exploring the intersection of artificial intelligence, art and design.  A major thrust of this work is advanced AI for video games.

To hear our interview, please click on the grey button below: [haiku url=”http://s3-us-west-2.amazonaws.com/miljkovicaudio/old_public_html/nada/miket.mp3″ title=”Mike Treanor” graphical=”true”]

Chris Lewis

On May 5, 2013, Graduating PhD candidate in Computer Science at UCSC, Chris Lewis came onto Artist on Art to talk about his studies & research of “Motivational Design” and the intersection between computer science and psychology.

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Chris’ research delves into the psychology literature of motivation theory, to try and find the answers to these questions, and help software designers to make more engaging software. In the process, he’s learning about   psychology, motivational behavioral and pattern in design in popular applications to create a software where getting a task done is less important than ensuring that the user comes back tomorrow.

Chris‘s thesis, Motivational Design, presents his understanding into a framework and library of twenty-seven {motivational design patterns}, under the categories of gameful, social, interface and information. Theories and experimental results from motivational psychology, behavioral psychology and behavioral economics are used to explain the power of different design patterns and suggest optimal implementations. Additionally, a set of eight dark patterns are presented. These patterns promise short-term gains, but at the expense of long-term motivational harm, and strategies to avoid their use are proposed.

To hear our interview, please click on the grey button below: [haiku url=”http://s3-us-west-2.amazonaws.com/miljkovicaudio/old_public_html/nada/chris.mp3″ title=”Chris Lewis” graphical=”true”]

 

Steve Whittaker

On March 11, 2013, UCSC Professor, Steve Whittaker spoke with Nada Miljkovic about his work and collaborations at the cross-section between psychology & computer science.

Screen shot 2013-03-18 at 5.16.51 PMWe talked about the concept of Technology Meditated Reflection, and how digital tools may be used for psychological well-being by helping us understand ourselves and change our emotions. Steve c0-created an android app entitled Echo: a mobile system that helps you remember and record your past to regulate your emotions.

Steve discussed negotiating/managing our online personality and personal information, the challenges of online platforms that allow us to document our lives online, and the digital breakup. For instance, Steve explained that studies show that many people make multiple mistakes when they dispose of digital possessions: some immediately delete too impulsively but later regret not keeping stuff. What are the ethics of trolling?

To hear our Artist on Art broadcast in entirety, please click the gray ‘play’ button below. [haiku url=”http://s3-us-west-2.amazonaws.com/miljkovicaudio/old_public_html/nada/31113_2.mp3″ title=”Steve Whittaker” graphical=”true”]

Chris Lewis on Gamers on Game

On May 14, 2012, PhD candidate in Computer Science at UCSC, database developer and gamification expert, Chris Lewis came onto Gamers on Game to talk about his studies in the Software Introspection Group and his thesis on “Retention Engineering”.

“Retention Engineering” the software designs that motivate users to return to software again and again. This is a concept invented by Chris and his PhD adviser, Jim Whitehead. Chris researches what it is about certain pieces of software that cause you to return to them over and over, using video games as the prototypical example. Why is it so easy to put off work — which pays you real, tangible money — to head off to a virtual world and spend hours making fake money, instead? Why can we not avoid checking our email incessantly, or popping on to Facebook “just for five minutes”, instead of writing that essay due tomorrow? Why do we keep playing Farmville, even though it doesn’t seem all that fun?

Chris’ research delves into the psychology literature of motivation theory, to try and find the answers to these questions, and help software designers to make more engaging software. In the process, he’s learning about when “gamification” works and when it doesn’t, and what it means to create software where getting a task done is less important than ensuring that the user comes back tomorrow.

Previously, Chris has interned at Google, and worked as a database developer in New Zealand.

If you missed any part of our Gamers on Game broadcast, please click the gray ‘play’ button below: [haiku url=”http://s3-us-west-2.amazonaws.com/miljkovicaudio/old_public_html/nada/gog51412.mp3″ title=”Chris Lewis” graphical=”true”]

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