Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Games Science

Predicting Color Blindness, ADD, or Learning Disorders From Game Data 65

Posted by Soulskill
from the playing-alliance-correlates-with-small-braincases dept.
An anonymous reader tips a story at VentureBeat about a company that helps game developers analyze data gathered from their games to detect cheaters. But now, the company says this data can also be used to determine other traits of the players, like whether they're minors, or whether they like to gamble. Their CEO, Lukasz Twardowski, expects such analysis will soon be able to reveal even more traits, like whether a player is color blind, has a developmental disorder, or has Alzheimer's disease. "'Games are the richest and the most meaningful form of human-computer interaction. ...By tracking how they play games, we can learn a lot about people,' Twardowski explained. Hesitatingly, he added: 'That will be a huge responsibility for us later on.' ... Academics have begun to take games more seriously, as a window into the human psyche. Games are addictive and immersive and are built to command hours of our time and attention. What better testbed for myriad psychological and medical conditions? A good game pushes us to our limits, challenging us to use both the analytical and intuitive sides of our brain.
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Predicting Color Blindness, ADD, or Learning Disorders From Game Data

Comments Filter:
  • by fragMasterFlash (989911) on Friday July 27, 2012 @10:05PM (#40798433)
    By Philip K. Dick?
  • Ender's Game (Score:5, Interesting)

    by dracocat (554744) on Friday July 27, 2012 @10:07PM (#40798447)

    Am I the only one whose first thought was of Ender's Game? In reality, I think the idea has been around for a while, and seems quite practical AND useful. To me the only surprising thing is that it hasn't been implemented yet. It seems like we should have had the technology to do something like this for a long time.

    Detecting some of the problems early on can significantly help the child.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      >Child has games and the internet and can Google or otherwise deduce that his yuppie helicopter parents are collecting data about him through his games.

      >Male child because girls don't play video games until they're old enough to use video game playing to whore for boys' attention

      >Child gets edgy and rebels and goes outside, away from supervision, and acquires a bicycle on the black market

      >Comes back home a half-hour late for dinner with a scrape on his knee, yuppie parents flail their arms and

      • by Anonymous Coward

        Dude! You're not supposed to sign it when you post AC.

      • >Child has games and the internet and can Google or otherwise deduce that his yuppie helicopter parents are collecting data about him through his games.

        >Male child because girls don't play video games until they're old enough to use video game playing to whore for boys' attention

        Yellow Card: Inappropriate use of the word whoring . Whoring means the use of sex to get something other than attention, sex social power or babies. Those are the normal and legitimate uses of sex.

        Carry on!

        >Child gets edgy and rebels and goes outside, away from supervision, and acquires a bicycle on the black market

        Editorial note: black market bicycles are the best.

        >Comes back home a half-hour late for dinner with a scrape on his knee, yuppie parents flail their arms and declare their kid "out of control." >Take him to shrink and drug him with off-label prescribed antipsychotics

        >Kid docile for over 10 years

        >Kid shoots the fuck up out of an Aurora, CO movie theater soon after that

        America, fuck yeah!

        --Ethanol-fueled

  • I'd like them to help developers crank out a "Douchebag Detector" sooner than later.

    • Re: (Score:2, Offtopic)

      by camperslo (704715)

      How about one that'll spot potential embarrassing political candidates?

      You're in England, and want to show off your skills and leave a lasting impression. What do you do?

      1) tell the locals you have no faith in their ability to put on an event

      2) complain about the traffic

      3) raise funds from law-breaking foreign troubled bankers while there

      4) brag about promoting Mormon business in Utah using huge government subsidies

      5) reveal talks with MI-6 that weren't supposed to be mentioned

      6) Refer to the senior offici

    • by Shavano (2541114)
      Pretty easy for muliplayer games. The douchebag is the one who often survives when his teammates are killed.
  • I wonder how they figured out hot to spot minors in video games???
    • by Carnildo (712617)

      I wonder how they figured out hot to spot minors in video games???

      Easy: they're the ones who swear the most in team chat.

    • Re:Minors? (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Sir_Sri (199544) on Friday July 27, 2012 @11:11PM (#40798767)

      Language, hours of access, reaction time, friends (once you know one is a minor you can work backwards).

      Kids also have certain stages of development with language and reasoning, and they will suffer from difficulties with particular challenges in sequence.

      While not my research area, I'm AI development, there are people in my research group who have looked at this problem. Even with machine learning, if you have a reasonably accurate training set you can blindly pick out certain things.

      Even basic stuff. Do they have a credit card in their name? If not then you don't have proof of course, but you can start to combine with other factors and start seeing a pattern of child like behaviour.

      Kids will also like some much more childish games in addition to adult ones (so an 11 year old might play a game like 'campers!' just released for the iphone, and grand theft auto, whereas a 30 year old would only play grand theft auto).

    • by Hsien-Ko (1090623)
      In TF2 there's often pre-pubescent engineers announcing to every player that they have a sentry and a dispenser. Some will ask if they can upgrade another's sentry ro dispenser.

      It happens more often than you think.
    • by Lehk228 (705449)
      def isUserAChild(user):
          if (len(re.findall("faggot|fag|homo",allChatMessages(user)))*3>len(allChatMessages(user)):
               return true
          return false
  • by ftsf (886792) on Friday July 27, 2012 @10:22PM (#40798525) Homepage
    You have earnt: Colourblindness!

    Wear this badge of pride on your Steam Profile.
  • by Anonymous Coward

    Something to "bear in mind" during military style games - it'd be an easy detector, right there (most likely)... I'd also like to add that though some of the colorblind (since there are varying degrees of it) cannot see the same things "normal folks" do in "lantern tests", there are other forms of those lantern tests that show the colorblind see differently - because they can see types of those tests (whereas by way of comparison, the normal sighted cannot). I wouldn't call it "seeing the world through rose

    • by Black Parrot (19622) on Friday July 27, 2012 @11:23PM (#40798811)

      I'm red-green colorblind, and it has always been a *huge* problem with games.

      Also with graphs and slides. When people use color coding in graphs I often can't tell which line or bar is which. Likewise when people plot data on maps by coloring the regions - annoys the heck out of me when I'm reading something interesting and can't process the graphical data display. For slides, same problem as graphs but worse - sometimes I literally don't see one or more of the lines on a graph projected as a slide.

      As for camoflage, folklore has it that during WWII a bomber was flying over the Pacific and one of the crew, colorblind, spotted an enemy ship that none of the others could see even when he pointed it out. But he convinced them to fly down for a closer look, and then they saw it.

      Possibly colorblind people are more attuned to value (lightness/darkness), since that's information we can reliably process. Very often I can only spot food stains on shirts if they are darker or lighter than the material.

      • by houstonbofh (602064) on Saturday July 28, 2012 @12:32AM (#40799033)
        Color is differentiated by hue and intensity. "Normal" vision is more hue than intensity. The common forms of color blindness is more intensity than hue. So camo is less effective. You can see if a portion of a car is repainted when others can not. Also, since people know this, traffic lights are not just red and green. The red is a darker intensity and the green is a lighter intensity. Even in black and white you can tell the difference.

        I am color blind. Friends often take me to look at used cars. :)
        • by Tokah (859694)
          Thank you for posting this! I helped a friend with a painting job that we didn't have time to do right. When I asked her how it came out, she said it was good mostly but sometimes looked bad when the light hit parts of the wall or at certain angles. Then I visited and it looked so awful. I had assumed she was just being nice and wanted me to feel ok about it all, but no one else seemed to notice it either. You have just cleared the whole thing up for me.
      • As for camoflage, folklore has it that during WWII a bomber was flying over the Pacific and one of the crew, colorblind, spotted an enemy ship that none of the others could see even when he pointed it out. But he convinced them to fly down for a closer look, and then they saw it.

        TIME article from 1940 [time.com], which unfortunately now requires a subscription (it didn't when I bookmarked it).

        From my own experience, I describe it to people that I don't "see color". I know that different things are different colors, and if someone asks me what color a car is, I can usually get it close to correct, but after 10 seconds, I won't remember what color a car was if I don't deliberately commit it to memory. After spending my entire life not being able to accurately tell colors, my brain just does

    • by th3rmite (938737)
      As someone who is extremely colorblind, I have two different types, I have a tendency to stay away from games that rely on color. You are right, it is like seeing the world differently I suppose, because I have absolutely no idea what the world would look like otherwise. I imagine the world is much more bland to me than to other people.
  • most I get but ADD? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Riceballsan (816702) on Friday July 27, 2012 @10:40PM (#40798617)
    as someone who has some degree of ADD, I have to wonder how a video game would detect it. In general someone with ADD has less focus in many areas of life, but in many cases other activities can lead to a more solid focus, and in many cases, video games are one of those cases. Unless they intentionally make parts of the game extremely boring, I can't quite see that working.
    • by Sir_Sri (199544) on Friday July 27, 2012 @11:18PM (#40798781)

      With a camera you can track peoples vision. You can correlate reaction time to what's going on in game, all sorts of stuff. Games actually work very well for people with ADD because they have a constant stream of rewards keeping you focused on the task. One of the things we worry about when talking about game addiction is that it's not so much addiction as it is one of the few problems people will naturally pay attention to if they have ADD. The logical follow on to that comes from training people at various stages of brain development to behave that way (by giving them rewards), and then having games be a causation problem. Not that we know if that's actually happening yet, but that's certainly something people who do research in this area are worried about.

      There are a few other tangential symptoms how quickly you get frustrated that sort of thing. Those can actually be tracked, the more sensitive the controller (if it has a gyroscope in it) the more easily you can figure out if the player is mashing buttons particularly hard, that sort of thing.

  • Colorblind - someone who treats Blacks, Latinos, Asians and native Americans exactly the same as whites.

  • by eriks (31863) on Friday July 27, 2012 @11:03PM (#40798733) Homepage

    Or how about that they have the necessary skills to man a gunstar and save the galaxy :)

    Death Blossom FTW!

  • I'm sticking to Checkers.

  • This article made me think of TF2. Sometimes players would splat a photo of boobs on the wall. It's fun watching players stop to look an get sniped.

  • Disturbing (Score:5, Interesting)

    by girlintraining (1395911) on Friday July 27, 2012 @11:51PM (#40798911)

    The problem isn't that this personal information can be sniffed out... it's that there are no laws preventing its misuse...

    Dear Customer,
    We regret to inform you that your medical insurance rates will be increasing by 7.35% effective immediately due to a undiagnosed, but now pre-existing condition. Also, your car insurance will be going up by 3%, and your doctor wants to schedule a psychiatric evaluation.

    Sincerely,
    Your Gaming Company
    P.S. We detected that you have an addictive personality and tend to be forgetful. Your monthly renewal fee has been adjusted upwards accordingly. You won't remember this.

  • I know in Dungeons and Dragons Online, they could predict with near 100% certainty that someone was color blind whenever they posted on the forums that they can't complete a puzzle in a quest because it's color coded, and that they were color blind, rofl.
  • by Anonymous Coward

    Game servers running the actual backends of multi-player games and servers to do with PSN purchases and box updates
    make up maybe 25% of what goes on in a sony playstation network datacenter. Most of the storage and CPU cycles go to
    analytics. Similar percentages are to be expected for the XBox. Most of what people point out here has already been happening
    for a long time. Really, by the time they tell you about something they've moved it from 'beta' to 'production' a long time ago.
    So yes, your game moves are

  • Predicting colorblindness is like predicting that the sun rises in the east. It's not a prediction, it's a fact.

    It is reasonable that they could detect colorblindness, but that's not a prediction...

  • by Anonymous Coward

    ..can be easily identified as the first thing they do in a game after trying to move it to go into the menus and try and change the settings.

    When they can't, they either spend 8hrs being hopeless or quit and take the game back for a refund.

  • ... form of human-computer interaction."

    Really? I thought it was JPEGs...

  • xbox live has been predicting things about my mom for years
  • I am not colorblind or such. But in TF2, I have colorblind mode on to show an icon above players who are coated in Jarate. This is much more readable than looking at them. So it should not mark me as color blind just because of that tihing.
  • May be because most game developers are men and have not found what it takes to engage women in games. May be women could be lured in by cow clicker and its clones. But that as of now, using games to understand the human psyche is likely to leave half of human race as inscrutable. But that is just the status quo. Nothing new.
    • by Shavano (2541114)

      Men and women have always liked different kinds of games. There's a large overlap set though. Casino games are popular with both sexes, as are mental games like Scrabble. Games oriented around traditional or stereotyped male activities (building, adventure, combat) attract mostly boys and men. Girls like games oriented around female-stereotyped activities like decorating more than boys and men do. Whether this is because they feel like it's appropriate because of the assignment of the gender roles or wh

  • Why was the word "Predict" used in the title. "Observe" is the correct word. One doesn't "predict" colorblindness. One observes that the individual is colorblind. They're describing the detection of conditions that already exist like colorblindness, ADD, douchebaggery, age and preferences. Maybe if they added Alzheimers. But there's a growing body of evidence that Alzheimers is a lifelong degenerative brain disorder that can be observed decades before it becomes a medical diagnosis.
  • I 'predict' that the headline writer is not fluent in English.

  • This "11-person team, primarily comprised of 20-somethings developers" contends they " can tell if you are a girl or buy, smart, dumb, old and youngcan tell if you’re a gambler or not, if a kid is color blind and confusing red and green. All this, just from a game." One has to believe that they have made numerous observations and reached conclusions but almost certainly they lack lengthy verifiable experiments to establish efficacy. I don't doubt that much they say can be shown to have value, there ju
  • So maybe in the future you'll authenticate by playing a short game.

    Boss: "Hey, what are you doing! I'm paying you for work, not for play!"
    Employee: "We temporarily lost the network, and now I have to re-authenticate."
    Boss: "Ah, OK, go on. However I wonder why we have so many network problems lately ..."

From Sharp minds come... pointed heads. -- Bryan Sparrowhawk

Working...