Geekend: Gaming For Cancer With Will Ferrell - InformationWeek

InformationWeek is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Geekend: Gaming For Cancer With Will Ferrell
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
User Rank: Ninja
9/30/2014 | 3:34:09 PM
A new benefit
I already knew that video games help with spatial awareness and hand eye coordination, but it's good to see they do more than that. After I give these charities a look I may have to go sit my kids down and challenge them to a super mario race kart game.


As a kid I remember playing q-bert when I was under the weather. What games did you guys play to get you through?
User Rank: Ninja
9/18/2014 | 11:24:19 AM
Re: Great idea
Thanks for this, Dave. Of all the worthy causes out there to donate to, cancer care and research (for children, no less) is certainly among the most important. It can't be overstated what organizations like these do for these children and for all of us. I don't know if it's intentional, but it's worth mentioning that this comes around the same time as a larger partnership between St. Jude's and Twitch to raise money and awareness for children with cancer through some of their most popular livestreamers. It's great to see celebrities and big companies get involved alongside the grassroots community that's sprung up over there. No doubt St. Jude's has plenty of great contributors already, but that last can never be long enough.

As for the health benefits of gaming, it's nice to see some concrete research behind it. We had a nice discussion about this on IW Radio earlier today (which those interested in the topic should check out) , and Curt Franklin brought it up alongisde 'the power of laughter'. It seems a little obvious when you put it like that, but it's interesting to see the subtle naunces that are different (chemicals released in the brain, etc.) when we're talking about an interactive medium, where the player/patient can make some decisions and get some feedback. I'll definitely keep it in mind next time I'm gaming. Maybe that will make it work better.
User Rank: Author
9/17/2014 | 1:30:54 PM
Just what the doctor ordered...

I was not a gaming fan until I saw the benefits it provided my daughter, it helps with coordination, following directions independently and demonstrates the benefits of improving skills ---all good life skills. I can fully understand how games help people heal because they enable them to escape the depression of hospital stays, tests and the realities of their illness even if it's for a short period of time. The stress reduction can do wonders. Dave has there been any research on the effects of stress reduction in employees that game? Could be interesting maybe we could all have scheduled game breaks at work! Employee game room anyone?

User Rank: Ninja
9/15/2014 | 9:28:23 AM
Re: Great idea

"Patients showed "enhanced mood and engagement" 

As a mother of children who are addicted to Minecraft, I can't believe I'm saying this, but we found out that there are benefits to these games. Apparently, they do help with concentration, they help with peripheral vision, and they help to calm hyper kids. Minecraft is different from other games--the kids have to build and create the worlds, it requires math (because there's some sort of trading) and players do have to work together (as opposed to killing each other).
User Rank: Ninja
9/15/2014 | 7:48:04 AM
Great idea
I can't say that I'm a big Will Ferrell fan and I won't be entering for a chance to play a game with him but his approach is a great one.  When you have the public appeal that some stars have and you can do great things by leveraging that appeal in a constructive way you've got my support.  I hope that the person who wins has a great time and they blow past their monetary goals.   I could see this branching out to other areas too a pickup basketball game with an NBA star, a game of checkers with Patrick Stewart, a beer with Nick Offerman, etc.  

The second part of the blog made me wonder "Patients showed "enhanced mood and engagement" and lower stress, specifically indicated by a change in alpha waves in the brain."  Is this a function of shifting their focus from pain/discomfort and occupying their brain on other things?  Is it the games or is it the interaction and the concentration required to play those games?  Could a board game or a word game have the same effect?  


User Rank: Ninja
9/13/2014 | 11:44:49 AM
video games helping lives
I had no idea the many benefits video games had specially for kids with cancer.  I enjoy playing video game, reading news like this really makes you think that video games can have a huge impact on people's lives.    I would really like to play with weird al Yankovic.  I'm sure he plays video games. May be he can sing on of his parodies songs while playing.
User Rank: Strategist
9/12/2014 | 5:35:40 PM
It's a tossup between Dodgeball against Ben Stiller or bowl some frames with Bill Murray with a prosthetic arm.

2020 State of DevOps Report
2020 State of DevOps Report
Download this report today to learn more about the key tools and technologies being utilized, and how organizations deal with the cultural and process changes that DevOps brings. The report also examines the barriers organizations face, as well as the rewards from DevOps including faster application delivery, higher quality products, and quicker recovery from errors in production.
The State of Chatbots: Pandemic Edition
Jessica Davis, Senior Editor, Enterprise Apps,  9/10/2020
Deloitte on Cloud, the Edge, and Enterprise Expectations
Joao-Pierre S. Ruth, Senior Writer,  9/14/2020
Data Science: How the Pandemic Has Affected 10 Popular Jobs
Cynthia Harvey, Freelance Journalist, InformationWeek,  9/9/2020
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
Current Issue
IT Automation Transforms Network Management
In this special report we will examine the layers of automation and orchestration in IT operations, and how they can provide high availability and greater scale for modern applications and business demands.
White Papers
Twitter Feed
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.
Sponsored Video
Flash Poll