The aim of the Gamiforest Coffee Talks is to give the latest updates about the different projects going on in the scope of the Gamification Work Package of UNITE Flagship and start conversations around them. Each month a researcher from Gamification Group, Tampere University will give talks about the following subjects. Our ultimate purpose with these talks is to create awareness about the possible ways of gamifying forests, raise discussions, hear the feedback of the community and form collaborations with the interested parties. Please leave your e-mail address through the form here if you want to be reminded about the talks closer to their dates.

 

Talk #6: Self Care through Playful Forest Technology

by Velvet Spors

Technology has become a profound companion for wellbeing activities that happen in nature: From instructing you how to perfect your downward dog in the local park, to tracking your GPS during a hike in the mountains or providing a background ambience for a mindful walk in a forest. However, an alliance with health- and nature-centred technologies is not an easy one, as their designers and developers need to conceptualise and present both “nature” and “health” in tangible terms. Considering the many possibilities for how these two aspects can be approached, it becomes clear that it is complicated, contested and ambiguous undertaking. In this talk, I will present findings from a scoping review that surveyed recent research to shed light on this issue. I will sketch out how both “nature” and “health” are being currently presented in nature- and health-focused technologies, and outline pain points and potential future design opportunities.

Date: 26.08.2022
 
Time: 13:00 (Helsinki Time)
 
 
 

Rest of the Programme

Talk #7: Gamification for Sustainable Consumption – 30.09.2022, 13:00 by Georgina ‘Ginnie’ Guillen
Talk #8: Design From the Wild: Playful and Participatory Design in Forests – 28.10.2022, 13:00 by Ferran Altarriba Bertran
Talk #9: Gamifying Occupational Safety in Forests – 25.11.2022, 13:00 by Eetu Wallius
Talk #10: AI Powered Gameful Interactions with Forests – 16.12.2022, 13:00 by Timo Nummenmaa

*All times are in Helsinki Time Zone.

 

Past Talks

Talk #1: Climate Change Engagement and Games

by Daniel Fernandez Galeote

How do games engage players with large environmental issues such as climate change? How can players, as citizens, practitioners or from any other role identity, connect with environmental topics and explore their own understandings, feelings, and actions? In this talk, I will present a few different ways in which climate change is represented in digital games and players invited to interact with it. We will discuss how forests may factor in this space, and how they can be places both present and absent; known and alien; (ab)used and ignored; and where both climate problems and solutions materialize.

 

Talk #2: Ludic Spatial Strategies & Forest Spaces

by Mattia Thibault

How can the organisation of a space favour playfulness, creativity and curiosity? If we look at existing spaces designed to host playfulness (theme parks, arenas, interactive museums, playgrounds, casinos, treetop parks and so on) we can try to outline a series of spatial strategies that are put in place exactly to this end. But how can these strategies be applied to a space with an emergent morphology and an intrinsically open-ended configuration?

 

Talk #3: Playing with Robotic Forest Companions

by Eshtiak Ahmed

What does the future hold for robots? Robots were initially developed to assist humans in situations where the introduction of them would make the process easier or faster, such as manufacturing, logistics, etc. However, the usage of robots has not stayed limited to this domain over the years. Robots have become social and thus have created an opportunity for them to be included more in social contexts. But, how do you perceive a robot when it’s in a social situation with you? Friend? Compatriot? Companion? Or just another command following machine? Can robots be nearly as good a companion as humans? If so, then how, using what features, in which scenarios, and to what extent? We will try to generate some thoughts through these questions with some insights from relevant literature. Additionally, we will explore possibilities in domains that have been unexplored in this context, such as nature and forest engagement. We will discuss how robots can accompany humans in forests as well as their viability.

 

Talk #4: Engaging with Climate Change through Virtual Forests

by Laura Cosio

An intensifying trend in predicted climate change impacts and the complexity of the data required to generate models on its effects on our forests places greater demands on being able to visualize this information in a manner for all to understand is becoming increasingly important. Fortunately, in the last decade, our technological abilities have developed to better visualize these changes and data to the point where we can create realistic virtual forests that can be interacted with from anywhere. How can Virtual Forests help us to visualize and learn about the changes occurring in our forests and their ecosystems? How can these Virtual Forests be used to engage and educate varying communities to foster interest and decision-making for their local forests? We will discuss existing projects and how virtual forests could be used to embody climate change to facilitate cooperation and action from differing communities.

 

Talk #5: Forest Experiences through Location-Based Games

by Samuli Laato

The Pokémon GO boom in 2016 was very noticeable for anyone walking in cities at that time. The game brought people together in public urban spaces and continues to do so to this very day. Most of the contemporary location-based games, including Pokémon GO, are designed and optimised for an urban environment. But can they also bring people to forests and enhance players’ experience of forests? In this talk, I go through academic studies that have been done on this topic as well as review some of the most popular contemporary location-based games from the forest perspective. Join the talk to explore with me important questions such as should Bulbasaurs only be found in forests and how can we meaningfully connect location-based gameplay to forest environments.