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The Hugo Awards will have a video game category in 2021

Engadget

For the first time in its storied history, the Hugo Awards will honor a video game. The annual literary award has avoided recognizing the medium for years, but present circumstances being what they are, it will make an exception at the next World Science Fiction Convention in 2021. As you might have guessed, the about-face came out of the coronavirus pandemic, and more specifically the amount of time most in the sci-fi and fantasy communities have spent playing video games in lockdown. In 2021, there's going to be a Hugo Award For Best Video Game. The DisCon III committee has chosen to create this special category for 2021 only, as provided for by the rules of the World Science Fiction Society.#HugoAwards


Once more with feelings: How Yakuza: Like a Dragon reinvents middle-aged men in video games

The Guardian

It sounds like the set-up for a violent revenge movie. Low-ranking yakuza Ichiban Kasuga takes the blame for an inter-clan assassination and does 18 years in prison to protect the organisation's patriarch. But, on his release, the gang disowns him and the boss, who he considers a father figure, shoots him and leaves him for dead. Surely, the stage is set for bloody retribution? Kasuga is not that kind of protagonist.


Video games can improve mental health. Let's stop seeing them as a guilty pleasure Keza MacDonald

The Guardian

After an Oxford study this week showed that people who play more video games report greater wellbeing, the headlines reflected a sense of stunned incredulity. "Playing video games BENEFITS mental health," exclaimed MailOnline, while Business Insider went with "Video games might actually be good for you." My dad sent me a clipping from the Times, as he has done every time he's seen video games mentioned in the paper for the past 15 years, that began with the words "parents beware". For anyone who actually plays video games, this is hardly news. Video games are fun and interesting, and doing fun, interesting things makes you happy. Would we need a study to show that watching a few episodes of a beloved TV show makes you feel good, or that sitting down with a good book is relaxing?


'Call of Duty' writer: Video game takes place in the past, but questioning of truth rings of today

USATODAY - Tech Top Stories

David Goyer is a master of multimedia. He's written screenplays for blockbuster films including Christopher Nolan's Batman trilogy, TV series such as "Da Vinci's Demons" and "Constantine," video games including "Call of Duty: Black Ops" and "Vader Immortal: A Star Wars VR series." Goyer took time recently to discuss "Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War," the latest entry in the multibillion-selling first-person franchise from the set of "Foundation," the Apple TV series based on the books by the late Isaac Asimov on which he is a writer and executive producer. Despite the effects of the coronavirus pandemic, the game's developers at Treyarch and Raven Software opted not to add any hint of the crisis into the game, says Goyer, who was a writer and story consultant on "Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War," out now, for PlayStation 4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X and S, and PCs on Battle.net'Madden NFL 21':Update for PS5, Xbox Series X and S brings more realistic moves to the game midseason The Game Awards:'The Last of Us Part II' leads video game nominees for next month's event "People have asked me on'Foundation,' are you going to weave the idea of COVID into the show even though that show takes place in the future," Goyer said.


Modern AI evolution timeline shows a decade of rapid progress

#artificialintelligence

AI has become an asset for organizations to better understand their business position, and its capabilities have improved dramatically over the past decade. Artificial intelligence, first named in 1955 by computer scientist John McCarthy, has gone through a tremendous shift in the past decade. From the development of the first generative adversarial networks to Waymo reaching 10 million self-driven miles, AI has come a long way. Though many notable technologies seem ageless, most of them have come into fruition within the last 10 years -- Siri, Watson, Alexa and AlphaGo, to name a few. Beyond the development of digital assistants, there's been a paradigm shift in approaches to AI and enterprise application.


Douglas, the latest step toward realistic AI, is unsettling

Mashable

He's touted by his creators as the "most realistic real-time autonomous digital human in the world." If that's true, then I don't think the best the world has to offer is quite good enough. Douglas is being developed by Digital Domain, a visual effects titan that has worked on movies including Titanic and the last two Avengers releases, as well as video games like Destiny and Assassin's Creed Odyssey. He's certainly an impressive creation visually, but once conversations get rolling, you can really tell that he's an imposter. Digital Domain modeled Douglas off of its senior director of software R&D, Doug Roble, capturing his facial structure, movements, and mannerisms from all angles, as well as his voice.


If a robot is conscious, is it OK to turn it off? The moral implications of building true AIs

#artificialintelligence

In the "Star Trek: The Next Generation" episode "The Measure of a Man," Data, an android crew member of the Enterprise, is to be dismantled for research purposes unless Captain Picard can argue that Data deserves the same rights as a human being. Naturally the question arises: What is the basis upon which something has rights? What gives an entity moral standing? The philosopher Peter Singer argues that creatures that can feel pain or suffer have a claim to moral standing. He argues that nonhuman animals have moral standing, since they can feel pain and suffer.


'Demon's Souls' review: The ideal PlayStation 5 launch game

Washington Post - Technology News

The "game feel" is enhanced with 3D audio and the DualSense haptic feedback. The controller now mimics what your character's hands might be feeling. If your sword hits a wooden shield, your controller will vibrate softer than against brassy, grinding steel shields and walls. Every squish of flesh when you turn your blade will be heard from the controller's speakers, all timed perfectly to your on-screen action. With headphones on, it's true that you can almost feel arrows whiz by your left ear, while a torch crackles to the right of your head.


The enduring and ongoing legacy of Bjergsen

Washington Post - Technology News

The following year, Bjerg helped lead TSM to further success, with another MVP-winning spring split and playoff championship. TSM would also notch an international tournament win that year, a rarity for North American teams competing against Korean sides. TSM also took the spring split that year, but fell short during the summer split and in Worlds. However, as TSM and Bjerg dominated North American play it became less important to him as success at Worlds proved elusive.


How Video Game Historians Resurrected Sega's Lost VR Headset

WIRED

In 1993, Sega made a Power Rangers-esque VR headset that the company hoped would bring VR to the masses. "It takes us into the future," said MTV's Alan Hunter on stage at that summer's Consumer Electronics Show. Sega never released the headset. It was discontinued shortly after the trade show, and then it vanished. Not even the video game archivists over at the Video Game History Foundation could track one down.