Not just games

    Simple games are now very popular, if not stupid. The criterion for dullness (for me) is that a simple bot could play such a game much better than a person. However, we spend a terrifying amount of time playing such games. But there are tasks that are still too tough for computer programs. But at the same time, people solve them with ease. Is it possible to make games out of such tasks? And is it possible to receive both benefit and fun at the same time?

    It turns out that many are asking a similar question. Everyone knows the story of how spammers used visitors to porn sites as living computers (forcing them to solve captcha). But the matter was not limited to this. Inquisitive minds began to come up with new tasks for "meat robots" (c) Krank. One of these tasks, still not solved algorithmically,

    it is recognition and indexing of pictures. Of course, computer vision has progressed significantly in recent years, but researchers are trite enough statistics for the training of "iron boobs" (c) Goblin.

    But this is wonderful material for the game. People really like to recognize pictures and they are even willing to pay money so that they are only given such an opportunity (see the Big Fish top and games in the Hidden Object genre or “I'm looking for”).

    The guys at Carnegie Mellon University made a very simple but addictive multiplayer game. The rules are pretty simple. There are two roles in the game: Describer and Seeker. “Describing” shows a picture and he should tell about it as much as possible. His descriptions are shown to several "seekers." The seeker has a search bar. Based on the descriptions, the seeker forms a search query and receives a set of pictures. His task is to choose among all the pictures exactly the one that is described. And do it faster than others. For the correct answer, the points are obtained by the descriptor and the finder. Then everyone changes roles, and so on. All this is time limited.

    It turned out surprisingly addictive. It is not known whether the results of this game will bring the benefits that the creators are talking about (indexing pictures on the Internet). But in any case, the process itself is already a pleasure, which means it makes sense.

    Play Phetch .

    PS The game runs in a browser and requires Java (jre) .

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