Video Game Technology – To State-of-the-Art and Beyond
For those who haven’t followed the video game industry, it’s now bigger than the movie industry. The video game industry generates $30B per year and grows at 20% per year compared to the $20B that movies make. By 2008 it will be a $55B industry. This industry is not lost on the big players in the computer industry. Aside from the Xbox initiative, Microsoft is plowing funding research into the technologies behind programming games. Microsoft recently awarded $480k in awards as part of their Computing Gaming Curriculum program.
Speech recognition is one area that video games now drive. Speech recognition has been under research for many years but has seen acceptance in only a few niche applications. IBM came out with a speech recognition tool a few years back that found some adopters, but mostly yawns. Several healthcare startups tried to implement speech recognition for doctors transcribing patient information most of which failed because a substantial number of doctors speak with an accent that throws off the software. With the video gamers adopting speech recognition tools we’ll see a jump in the performance and functionality of those tools.
The Graphical User Interface is another example of state of the art technology driven by the video game world that can be adapted to other means such as medical and industrial applications.
The gaming industry is pushing the boundaries of the processor as well. Please review my post on the Cell Processor, where I outline the features of the next generation processor.
Cellphones can record not only your calls but also your location both past and present. Without going into the social implications of someone having access to your whereabouts, technology for tracking the location of things has many uses.
While the mobile gaming industry gears up to use this technology to improve the gaming experience, virtual instrumentation can adopt this technology for wireless sensor networks which seeks to identify the position of sensors which may be in a mobile state.
While I don’t play video games myself, I certainly enjoy the benefits they are bringing to virtual instrumentation in the form of better, faster, and cheaper computational tools.
If you are working with video game technology, I would like to hear from you. Please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Hall T. Martin