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Gaming For Science

Gaming For Science

If you’re a gamer and you’ve ever had a hankering to be on the cutting edge of science, but want to skip all the boring degree part, scientists at the University of Washington are looking for you.

They’ve developed a game, Foldit, that might help in finding a cure for some diseases. The games examines protein strands and the folds that set them apart, according to TechNewsWorld.

In Foldit, the screen is filled with many-colored, geometric snakes. Players go through an introductory level to learn the rules, which are basically how protein shapes move into 3-D shapes. And that’s the nub of it – solving problems in 3-D. The aim is to discover those who are natural prodigies at protein folding.

The game has gone through testing before its public release. Big as its goals already are – even with all the computers in the world, it would take centuries to understand all the possible folded shapes of proteins – Foldit will expand this fall to try and create new proteins, and eventually to try and find a cure for malaria or HIV. The best protein designs will be synthesized in the lab, and those who score high on Foldit will also receive credit.

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