Phaedra Boinodiris

ECGC Keynote: Paedra Boinodiris- The Intersection of AI & Play: Making Data Science Actionable

Posted on Updated on

At 9:00am on 4/19/2017, I attended the ECGC Keynote: The Intersection of AI & Play: Making Data Science Actionable, presented by Paedra Boinodiris, at the 2017 East Coast Gaming conference in Raleigh, NC

phaedra-boinodiris-using-games-to-do-stuff-the-ibm-way-2-638

ECGC Keynote: Paedra Boinodiris- The Intersection of AI & Play: Making Data Science Actionable

This is the 9th East Coast Gaming Conference, and even though she got married last week, this is part of her honeymoon. She began by talking about science fiction.

WE began by viewing, ‘Playtest’ in BLack Mirror. That show is certainly a distopian view of tech and the future. In the show, material is fed directly into the brain, and used to create some feedback to better engage the viewer. Then we moved on to Star Trek holodeck, Ender’s Game videogames, and then into games.

Games are powerful instruments of change. They are powerful instruments for helping people to think outside the box. To recruit, assess, change cultures being the holy grail. So much data is out there, but it is tech-centric and not people-centric. Why should people care? how wwill it affect them? why should viewers believe. What should they do with the information, and are they supposed to remember this a year from now?

THere is a huge problem to find what to do with the data itself. We discussed Watson as a way to mine information in ways to find patterns. WHen this is blended with experiences which are engaging, it can be a fantastic experience.

VItuozo – assess your critical thinking in roughly 8 minutes. How do you act? how do you shift your strategy based on failure. It also builds teams for your.

Hazardous software cyber simulation suite. Rather than 1 API for watson, we now have 50+. WIth 4 different domains for data insights, language, speech, vision . THe language AI can mine written text but also has tone analyzer. Working with tweeted data, the Met built a dress with the ability to change colors of the dress. Watson Personality Insights allows us to see the personality of the subject. How might that affect an RPG? give us your twitter handle, and we’ll build a character based on your tones, etc. People love to learn about themselves. Curate info of the player and create a better game!

Star trek-like Watson Dialog uses natural language to interact with the computer. YOu can feed it data and train the ai to learn more about it. We saw a disadvantaged teen program at Connally high school reskin the minecraft game based on their works. In their version, you fly a nanobot into a diseased body to fight virus. Watson gives feedback into the game to develop a complex ecosystem. They could stand up an instance on IBM bluemax, and manage the projects directly. ONce they see their worlds come to life, they can become fully engaged. That’s the hope of every teacher.

emotivinsight: coding to use the force to move items with their mind was shown. An interesting start 🙂

Data Insights allow games to see what the proper level of engagement is. this was used with edtech for Sesame Street software. It gathers information about the

Watson similarity Search was used to recognize tumors. Watson was used in conjunction with database materials to recognize problems before they occur. Seeing robot legs and chests, it might ask, “are you building a robot?” Watson AI can be trained to have drones play a frightening noise when being approached by birds of prey. We can teach it to recognize faces and emotions.

In the world of VR, Watson speech can help youadjust or interract based on the physics you’re creating. While these are nice, blending these together is truly exciting.

IMagine you were to create an empathetic chatbot. Tone analyzer + text to speech + speech to text + visual analyzation of face+ IOT + dialog. WHat if the chatbox knew your personality, knew your history, could talk with you about what you’re interested with and able to access written information on how to work with that.

What if this could help us train? what if it could recognize when a student or policeman were depressed? Could you use this to make highly customized training and effectiveness tools. Of course, but how?

How can we engage young children in “New Collar” careers? We are using games and gamification to bring students up to speed on quantum computing, design learning, etc. The public schools are a difficult nut to break into. Its not about throwing an idea over the fence, its more about breaking the mold and getting people on board while being totally invested. We’ll see a lot more in education with serious gaming.

When this gets focused on serious gaming in the workplace, there will be mountains of businesses who will DEMAND that we have graduates with this knowledge, but how prepared will we be?

phaedra-headshot
See her weekly gamification podcast at http://www.Gamesatwork.biz

Advertisements

ECGC Conference: Serious Games to Effect Change

Posted on Updated on

At a 9am session in the East Coast Gaming Conference held in the Raleigh Convention Center, Phaedra Boinodiris spoke to the Serious Games Track audience about how Serious Games effect change.

ECGC Conference: Serious Games to Effect Change: The new business model in serious games

How the space is evolving and how we can use technology to evolve the space

WomenGames.com was started by Phaedra and a family member because no games were pointed or marketed to women. In fact, women were not encouraged to work in the industry. In the early days, the trend of ads and advertisements for video games began with families. Shortly thereafter, it starting to show only boys. This disenfranchised many women gamers. Once the Wii came out, more women and families began to be shown in commercials and advertisements. This prompted her to begin working in earnest to get back into gaming. Phaedra pursued her MBA to begin a business and get loans to get her business off the ground. In school at UNC, she worked on “case competitions”. This would allow students to come together with other colleges and pitch answers to real client issues. Her breakthrough project had to do with a problem business process management for IBM. She realized reading the papers provided that the problem was really just one of creating a proper strategy.

She pitched a video game to gauge, assess, and teach. The Vice President of IBM in attendence was interested in having a proof of concept to create a business process management game. He proceeded to grab her at the meeting, and request that she build and code a bpm simulator. Her first example INNOV8 was a call center environment. Character had to talk with employees and management and find out how the call center process was working. Required talking to people, and identifying issues and possible solutions. Suggested solutions could then be mapped out and used to determine their effectiveness. It was a hit, and she was hired. this was the innov8 engine.

innov8 2.0 was built to teach marketing tools for clients and business. it was an even bigger success, and IBM sales were enormous.

CityOne was her next roject, a smarter planet game. It was a simulator for a city with challenges. How can you effect change in a city systems? What steps might be needed to make an electric car for a smarter grid. How can we use games to explain the things we already do? With the success of this item, fast company listed them as a top serious games company

Working examples of current serious games include:

  • civilization for sustainability
  • fold-it for process options and complex problem solving
  • WOW for talent management
  • Eve online for strategy
  • Tetris to teach PTSD
  • Candy Crush for recruitment

So, how can you leverage games for management? Everyone wants it cheaper, faster, and customized for their businesses. That is the real opportunity for gaming businesses.. 99% of companies use their dollars for professional development, with a special focus on skills training. Games can be used to train individuals to do specific tasks quickly and often encourage them to try again if they fail (perform emergency surgery, fly a helicopter, etc.). Once you can create a game which can include real data, you can integrate strategic execution, teaching a skill and optimizing learning.

Last year, HR summits across the globe began focusing closely on serious gaming. Serious Gaming has some obvious advantages for HR. It is:

  • rapid dev
  • tested mechanics
  • inexpensive
  • sclable
  • visulal
  • engaging
  • repeat play
  • real data

How can you deliver on that?

We know you have built components that can be reused and repurposed. The future of game design is MODULAR design. Companies are outsourcing parts of games that are not ancillary to their business. Its same with software development. This is not a new trend.

Building modular components for your games and your designs allows you to sell not only your game, but also the pieces of the game. It would not be unthinkable that the pieces of what makes your game great might also be used by other games to make them great.

BLUEMIX- cloud based offering

What if your game could leverage Business Process Management Software? After innov8 2.0 — a game for marketing— was built, Dept of Defense became interested in their work. She presented her software at an enterprise architecture conference, and she was invited to present to the department of defense. They asked “How can we vet our playbook to be able to visualize the complexity of the situation, collaborate with one another, and communicate about issues well before boots are on the ground, and dollars are invested?” She presented a similar set of ideas to attack the problems she had been shown. She posited to them the idea of a game in which the actions and their reverberations could be shown.

“There is a confluent of gaming engines out there,” she noted “a deluge of data available to us at all times, and the ability to include this data in the game.”

She was asked after the even if she could show a game to demonstrate how they might affect an experience like logistics for getting aid to a country like Haiti in the midst of takeover or natural disaster.

She knew of a designer who had built a Resequencing engine for the game Achron (find at: http://www.achrongame.com ). The game allows players to go forward and backward in time. The engine was usable for process invitation. People can play the main characters or the adversary (could be manmade disasters such as alqueda, or natural disasters such as earthquakes, etc). As you play, you are effecting process change.

Could our team use this for commanders to optimize missions for platoons to examine and try again? With out team, we were able to integrate real data and make adjustments in real time. So one scenario could be played again and again, and different iterations might have topographical changes, troop and boat positioning differences, and natural disasters or uprisings that could be triggered at the hands of a secondary team or player. Teams could go head-to-head with real updating.

This was such a success they also requested the creation of another game called PointRecon for recon analysis, that worked in a similar way.

In healthcare, BreakAway Games created Code yellow, a hospital process optimization game. Certifications were needed to keep hospitals up to date. Most customers enjoyed a game in which a fictional hospital was setup and participants effected process change to assure that they received their certifications and training. However, not all were satisfied. Many wanted to see their own data reflecting in the game, not canned games, but their own hostpital numbers data and floorplans. They approached Phaedra and IBM to find out: “Can we base this on a service, piping information through the cloud?” This would allow them to create a modularized system into which The game hooks into hospital data fields and online records and floorplans.

Enter WATSON

Watson (the computer AI) looks at a question and gives answers with a percentage of confidence (see jeopardy, and the book 4D gaming with Watson). Watson was experimentally placed with a simulations similar to CityOne. Using a city plan, watson can react to placements of fire stations, etc. Rules are created PRIOR to game launch, and Watson can work within those rules to create challenging gameplay. Imagine the rules integrated with Watson on a broader scale, or within YOUR game. Rather than a developer setting every mission, an artificial intelligence can take city data and codes into account before on real historic data, etc. what will that mean for defense, public policy, etc. What if scenarios can really help build a city more efficiently?

City Resilience Game

What if your game had real analytical computer engine behind it? Serious games are good for assessing your work personality and leadership. Kenexa is the standard IBM process for assessing potential employees. The project gives a multipage assessment upon completion. How you approach the task tells them about you and how you work individually and in a team environment. The future of HR is in analytics.

Workright created the game: The Guardian Angel. Biofeedback and sensors were integrated into clothes and helmets. These items of work uniform (helmeted sensors, clothing with GPS and biofeedback) were used to locate persons on the construction jobsite to note how their bodies reacted when in certain zones, how and where they traveled in the site, and how their bodies reacted to area of the jobsite. It is interesting to find out how your analytics might gauge biofeedback to help create a safe work environment and process change.

What if your game had a social wrapper?

The Next Grand challenge is to see how larger companies and systems can leverage social tools in their business enviroment. IBM’s Grand Challenge leveraged social tools to leverage worker participation. This materials was covered pretty heavily last year. Find the article: ECGC: Gamified Talent Management: Using RPG design to motivate employees and redefine work.

bluemix

Bluemix is a platform specifically built for gaming. The need for this system comes directly from students and business owners who have an idea to get a game off the ground but may not have the ability to purchase all the front-end work, or may have a great component and no way to bring it to the market.

Monetize their IP. Build your market and win together. Developing on bluemix can be built as a web service. Integrate your service or game with other services, and then sell it. 130 million people play with IBM services. (here she talks about working with IBM as a business partner)

Bluemix is made on SOFTLAYER ( cloudant ). Thursday you can sign up to meet with a bluemix consultant. The Watson incubator lead will be looking for projects to fund new materials. See games at work.biz

Q&A

If I’m a small studio, why is this interesting to me?
If you don’t have the bandwidth or funding to make your own AI, bandwidth, etc. BLuemix is pay as you go, and has a free trial. Use their services to meet enterprise-level clients without having to spend up front.

Success metrics: what can you plug in to give back to clients:
What are the success metrics? What do I need to show? When you build your own platform, you need to integrate into that platform how to cough up those metrics at any time. Bluemix has those capabilities already built into the system and they can be adjusted live.

Without a client, will I have to make my own use cases? There are wide ways to go about this. You might break into groups of participants or not. Bluemix has built-in analytics and that can be used.

Business and gamification. Those who ignore this… where do you see them going?
Few notes: a large trough of disillusionment on gamification. because points, badges and leaderboards are enough to cause change. But it fails. Those who go about this the right way find work attitude, process, and participation go up. I suggest you read this book on motivation THE BOOK DRIVE. What motivates us is a sense of self-direction. I encourage you to read the book and think about if the book is giving them mastery, purpose, self-direction, etc. you really want this to be as engaging and enjoyable as possible

You talk about fast turnaround times. How big were your teams?
innov8 and DOD games. innov8: 1-3 months per iteration. Teams of 7 part-time people. Artist, sound, etc. For large data-integration and AI-integration, they aren’t ready to integrate. We create a canned diversion of this. As data sets become available, different iterations will change. With a cloud model, times have drastically increased. However, we can’t wait a year for the military to have ISIS training. How can you create a game that changes and is customized with new data in a modular design environment? Only through integration of live data, and that is what makes Bluemix and cloud data integration so exiting.

how does bluemix work with twitter?
What are people saying about the game? Learn more at the bluemix booth.

As a teacher, what within bluemix would be valuable?
We will have an academic initiative, but its coming slowly. To leverage a free trial, join the academic roster. Then you’ll be able to find out as soon as possible when that’s available.

Learner metrics with bluemix.
Kenexa team will be looking to move onto bluemix. Once that is integrated, you’ll be able to find many ways to use our HR metrics.

Using Watson would compromize gameplay because no programmer could be involved. However, no programmer can access all info fast enough. Watson is really to mirror the real environment, because that’s what we want. In gaming, Watson could be an advisor for the gamer. If you have certain players, what is the best gameplay methods to win? Can Watson recognze patterns and advise in real time? If you could use a game to teach Watson faster, that would be fantastic.

Phaedra Boinodiris is the Global Lead for Serious Games and Gamification at IBM

ECGC: Gamified Talent Management: Using RPG design to motivate employees and redefine work

Posted on Updated on

Gamification and Leadership

Today at ECGC (The East Coast Gaming Conference), I attending a leadership training seminar: Gamified Talent Management: Using RPG design to motivate employees and redefine work, a lecture by IBM guru Phaedra Boinodiris. This was really fantastic, and should fit nicely with the classroom gamification that I’d like to see in some of our flagging classes. Phaedra Boinodiris identified 4 major attributes of using gamification to find and motivate successful employees:

  1. Cognitive stability
  2. Cognitive complexity
  3. motor-impusivity
  4. establishes a baseline

She then demonstrated a game used for potential employees, a game in which the user built a structure with spots and lines to reach a given point. This could then be used with responsive software to determine some of the cognitive qualities of the individual to help with the onboarding process. She further showed some proprietary software (darnit!) which could be used to chart an individual’s current state and progress in a gamification environment: Nick’s portal environment result from data showing changes and adjustment over time.

Using their previous data as well as the results of the employee profile and reviews, a composite was created similarly to a character sheet– showing calculated mentor matches (along with that mentor employee’s contact information, job matches and suggested promotion track to achieve it, how that employee ranked against others in the industry, how that employee was perceived by their peers, how the current marketplace is embracing their recognized skillsets, an employee assessment, and list of training or certifications suggested for the employee.

Upon my request, Ms. Boinodiris would not reveal information about IBM’s proprietary software. 😦

Questions posed by the leaders using this software required the team to be evaluated as a group. Once all members had taken the assessment, a team could further be assessed, posing questions based upon the team performance in addition to the qualities shown by the team:

  • “To be good at my job, what paths need to be completed?”
  • “What training needs to be completed by our current team?”
  • “What training might need to be required of new or potential team members?”
  • “How many goals are being completed within the group?”
  • “What is it about the ‘class’ of employee that makes this optimal or in need to accomplish our team or individual goals?”

Based on results of these tests and questions, what kind of employees are they? Could you give them designations such as hunter, farmer, leader, etc.? After a class designation has been properly identified, can you change or adjust these designations to make your team the team you desire or the team numbers show is best suited for a particular task?

Once backed up with data, adjustments to your staff’s ‘class’ could be made by sending them ‘quests’ perhaps once per day or week. These quest tasks would slowly evolve the thinking of the team or team members, so that training is no longer siloed. For instance, you might recognize ‘Hunter’ employees as those who track down new, effective leads. ‘Farmers’ on the other hand, might be constantly revisiting old leads to grow new business in already fertile ground. You might assign hunters to revisit ‘old hunting grounds’ once a day and slowly evolve their systems. Farmers on the other hand, might strike out into leads on ‘newly forested areas’ where they can begin relationships and begin a new harvesting in new areas.

By removing the siloed training, you make continual training something that is both approachable and achievable. Also, it CAN become fun. However, you must find ways to provide tailored content to make sure your employees know what they need to do, or show them how they can improve.

It is vitally important to remember: As far as gamification goes, if you’re spending a majority of your time at the beginning determining what motivates your audience, you are doing it wrong.

When adding gamification to your school, workplace, etc, you must avoid the ‘chocolate covered brocoli’ – adding a small benefit to something which your population already hates. A badge alone will NOT motivate the students or employees anymore than covering something they don’t want with chocolate.

The Multiplayer Classroom by Sheldon Lee
The Multiplayer Classroom by Sheldon Lee

Consider reading The Multiplayer Classroom by Sheldon Lee. (I spoke with Sheldon Lee the author during a conference call last week. This was great timing!)

seriousgames_book
Serious Games for Business by Phaedra Boinodiris

Also consider reading Serious Games for Business by Phaedra Boinodiris

 

I felt this was a great presentation, and I learned a lot that I felt would be helpful in methods of leadership! Tell me what you think!