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Posts with tag Williams-Sims-Bainbridge

Sociologists using Warcraft to predict the future of human civilization; sell books

When I was younger, I was in a perpetual war with my parents over video gaming. I suppose I still am in a way -- they still ask me when I'm going to "grow" out of them.

Because of this, I'm always on the lookout for ways to justify spending so much of my free time on my electronic hobby. Back in the days of the Super Nintendo, I insisted that I was building hand-eye coordination. Thankfully, I now have new ammunition: I am a participant in a "virtual prototype of tomorrow, of a real human future in which tribe-like groups will engage in combat over declining natural resources." One that scientists are actively studying and using to learn about our real-world society.

Those are the words of MIT Press, the publisher of a new book by sociologist Williams Sims Bainbridge, The Warcraft Civilization. The book is a product of over 2300 hours worth of game play by the author. New Scientist's Culture Lab has a fascinating interview with Bainbridge, giving insight into Warcraft and religion, Warcraft as the next afterlife, and Warcraft as a predictor of the future of Western civilization.

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