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Computer games' influence on scientific and information visualization

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1 Author(s)

The breakneck pace of consumer graphics development has yielded an unexpected dividend: using commodity graphics boards in high-end scientific applications. Historically, the visualization community has been a driving force in high-end computer graphics innovation, fostering technologies that have gradually filtered down to the consumer market. In recent years, however, the financial growth of the computer games market has made it the driving force in the development of consumer graphics applications and hardware. While scientific and information visualization focus on knowledge, computer games focus on play. Thus, the type of play a game depicts strongly affects the graphics it requires. Popular game environments span many classifications, including fast-paced first-person shooting games, massively multiplayer roleplaying games, computer translations of classic board games like chess and backgammon, and construction simulations that let players create a city or even an entire world. Regardless of their differences, each game type facilitates the development of visual thinking concepts. Thinking visually in three dimensions, benefits the sense of wonder and user interaction connected with the application of scientific and information visualization technologies.

Published in:

Computer  (Volume:33 ,  Issue: 12 )

Date of Publication:

Dec 2000

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