In what has to be the most absurd, unprecedented and most unbelievable news this year, a press release from Mixed Reality Lab in Singapore has heralded a ?Breakthrough Invention In Computer Gaming, ?Human Pacman?, Where The City Becomes A Mixed Reality Pacman World.?
Willing players have to equip themselves with a special backpack and goggles before embarking on a quest for yellow pills in a big maze. Except these yellow pills are real Bluetooth enabled ?cookies? and the big maze is an entire city. These Pac-People even have to avoid the clutches of real human ghost players, who will be tracking them and trying to tap the on the shoulder (scary, eh?). The search and tap quest enjoyed by the ghost players is made easier by the fact that the movements of all the Pac-players are tracked wirelessly, enabling online spectators to dish out hints and directions to the participants.
The leading journal on such human-computer interaction, the incredibly named ?Personal and Ubiquitous Computing?, published a report on Human Pac-man this month, marking it as a significant step forward for this field of study. In its present state, the project?s emphasis is definitely on understanding the potential uses of this technology, instead of providing a bona fide gaming experience, but it does hint at some exciting possibilities for the future.
In the meantime, Mixed Reality Lab is continuing its work ?on research covering mixed reality, human-computer interaction, wearable computers and smart spaces, fuzzy systems, embedded systems, power electronics, and multi-modal recognition.? At least, that?s what the press release says. We can?t honestly pretend we understand what that all means, but it does sound rather grand, doesn?t it?