This is only the first time that online gamers have figured out the solution to a complex scientific problem. Foldit co-creator Seth Cooper said that their spatial reasoning skills allowed gamers to succeed where powerful computers had failed before and expressed hope that their game, and others like it, would lead to many such accomplishments in the future.
Ah well, just goes to show, if you have a great idea, someone else has usually had it before you. In this case, gaming for ‘real’ problem solving. As someone whose spare PC in the loft is helping cure cancer and find aliens, I’ve long held the view that it would be great to create a game that enabled people to have fun while helping solve problems. I also figured that whatever humans could do in this area, computers could probably do better. Quite possibly however, I felt that maybe we could win at spatial or verbal reasoning. And it looks like we have our answer. Nip over the thenextweb.com for the full piece, but in summary it looks like gaming could have a future beyond smashing cars and killing people.