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Mindshapes: "We're competing with dumb media"

By Rachel Weber

Mon 21 Nov 2011 10:30am GMT / 5:30am EST / 2:30am PST

Educational software developer wants to make the most of children's screen time

Mindshapes CEO David Begg has argued that his company's range of educational apps and games are not competing with children's traditional learning, but they are making the most of their screen time.

"What we would really say is we are competing with dumb media and dumb technology," said Begg in an exclusive interview.

"Kids will spend time on screens when they're at home, playing on all sorts of stuff, and we would rather as parents, and I know this very clearly as a parent, I would rather my children were playing with something that I believe to be more valuable than a simple, non developmental game."

He also pointed out how devices like the iPad were simpler for very young children to use, opening up a new market for developers.

"Obviously the iPhone, iPad, tablets in general are having enormous impact throughout education across all age groups. We're seeing more and more schools supplying iPads, even one per child."

Mindshapes currently publishes titles like Meteor Math, Lingo Zoo, and Casper's Scare School: Costume Closet, and is preparing for the release of Magic Town and Language City.

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Tyler Moore Game Designer & Unity Developer

55 28 0.5
We simply do not know enough about the impact of games to make a claim that certain games are "non-developmental" while others are "more developmental" because of the claims of those who design and create them.

I totally agree that Mindshapes products can provide real, measurable, positive impacts on child development, but we shouldn't be so quick to dismiss the educational value of so-called "dumb" products when we still don't fully understand developmental psychology. Starcraft II may improve multitasking, World of Warcraft may improve social development, Call of Duty may improve spatial-visual and somatosensory intelligence, which in turn may feed into cognitive development.

The attitude that some games are "dumb" while others are not is exactly the type of thinking that hinders the field of educational game development. If we expect the medium to be taken seriously world-wide, we need to keep an open mind about everything.

Posted:4 years ago


Spencer Franklin Concept Artist

107 151 1.4
@Tyler moore

You sir, took the words right out of my mouth. It seems that what Mindshape is saying is in regards to things they can measure, but education goes beyond those things.

Posted:4 years ago


Hakki Sahinkaya

43 32 0.7
This guy needs a little shaping of his own mind.

What ridiculously close minded and unproven claims he is making (see @Tyler Moore post).

Posted:4 years ago


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