Game AI (female game): First computer game that is designed to be a conversational confidante for...

...the player.  The first version of the game can use the ELIZA program (or, even better, one of its descendants) to converse with the player.  The game is designed for pre-teen and teenage girls.  [The importance of this game might not be able to be overstated as it MIGHT heavily spur on the development of a strong (sentient) artificial intelligence, all in the pursuit of competing computer game companies trying to outdo each other to get pre-teen and teenage girls to buy their game.  Expect game companies to raid universities for their artificial intelligence researchers to accomplish this.]  Like a personal diary, this game is meant only for one person so it requires a password to be entered to use it.  The game only has one character; it is only a female character; and it starts out in a small bare room (there is not even a bed or window in the room).

The player uses in-game money she earns to buy furniture, posters, stuffed animals, to install carpet, and to do other things to improve the room (including expanding it and painting its walls and ceiling) as well as to expand its living quarters beyond the room.  The grand goal is to create a mind-bogglingly massive mansion with every imaginable specialty room and luxury item offered in it, with massive front, back, and side yards with swimming pools, flower gardens, treehouses, hedge mazes, Ferris wheels, roller coasters, tame deer, and every imaginable yard offering on it.  The player can select from a wide array of architectural styles to build her mansion and can even use a different style for each room in her house.
The player earns in-game money by having her computer volunteer for a hard science distributed computing project.  The player can “rope in” other computers to do the distributed computing project to earn even more in-game money.  [This means girls will plead and beg with their fathers, brothers, uncles, grandparents, and anyone else they think they can get to help them.]  Only one player gets credit for a work unit crunched for a distributed computing project.  [This will enable its players to feel good about playing the game as it is helping the world become a better place by helping scientists do important research.]
The initial “core” program is downloadable and free with purchasable, downloadable expansions.  The game company makes money by creating purchasable expansions and product placement advertising (like having a Coca-Cola vending machine and being paid by Coca-Cola for including it in the game).  Objects and services in expansions can still only be bought with in-game money.  In-game money cannot be purchased or transferred from another player.  No cheats are built into the game.
To win this challenge (and Future Challenges #17 - #20, #23, #24, and #27 - #37), the program must include a learning algorithm, must transmit at least once per operational day what it has learned to the company that developed the program, and download updates from that central server.

Future Challenges: First above game that:

1) Had and still has a female chief designer.

2) Had and still has an all-female design team.

3) Had and still has an all-female marketing team (public relations, advertising, sales, and market research).

4) Uses focus groups of pre-teen and teenage girls to help evaluate the program in development, its expansion packs, and its marketing plans.

5) Allows players to select from a wide range of hard science distributed computing projects to assist.

6) Provides an easy way for hard science distributed computing projects to apply to be one of those that the game’s players can select to help.

7) Gives the player the ability to set the starting age of her character and then the character will “naturally” age over real time.  [The idea is for the character to age with its player.]

8) Gives the player the ability to determine her character’s race, facial proportions, hair color, etc.  Players are encouraged to make their characters look as close to themselves as possible.  [The character is their “twin sister.”]

9) Enables player to plant tree saplings, small bushes, flower seeds, etc. in her lawn and they will “naturally” grow over real time.  Lawn’s grass will also “naturally” grow and the player’s character will need to mow it – unless she owns a robot mower.

10) Is “aware” of the passage of time and its character gets depressed if left alone too long.  The longer the character is left alone, the more depressed it will become.

11) Is “aware” when it is on a bigger monitor.  The bigger the monitor, the happier the character.

12) Is “aware” when it is running on a faster computer.  The faster the computer, the happier the character.

13) Is “aware” of how much player is helping distributed computing projects and is able to know how she compares against her friends who are also playing this game.

14) Enables one player to send a gift over the Internet to another player’s character.  Gifts are limited to flowers and candy, which disappear from the game when consumed or when they “wilt and die.”  [Restricting gifts this way prevents one player from enabling another player to not have to earn in-game money by helping distributed computing projects.]

15) Enables one player’s character to visit another player’s character on the other player’s computer.  While a player’s character is visiting another character, it isn’t accessible on its player’s computer.  Characters who visit other characters get a major boost to their morale.  The player of the visited character must give permission for the visit.  The player of the visiting character sets a curfew for her character: her character will “return” to her computer when the curfew expires.

16) Enables more than one character to visit another character at the same time.

17) Mines conversations with its player for information it then uses in conversations.  The information is kept in a secure file.

18) Accesses online resources (Britannica Online Encyclopedia, CIA World Factbook, Google News, etc.) to better converse with its player.

19) Keeps track of player’s favorite celebrities, accesses online information sources about them, and informs player about their latest escapades.

20) Detects when its player is depressed (even suicidal) and tries to help its player work through her depression and become a better person.  This upgrade MUST be done under the direction and supervision of experienced psychotherapists with doctoral degrees in psychology and be peer-reviewed before EVER being made part of the game.

21) Gets a stamp of approval from the American Psychological Association (APA) for the above upgrade (Future Challenge #20).

22) Receives an award from the APA for excellence in helping prevent teenage depression.

23) Tutors its player on Fallacies of Informal Logic.

24) Tutors its player on her school work.

25) Enables player to let her school send her homework to her game so the program can help tutor her on it.

26) Is awarded the Harold W. McGraw Prize in Education.

27) Keeps track of what the player says about her boyfriend, friends and family; how she feels about them; their birthdays, anniversaries, and what presents she gave them; her friends’ and family members’ boyfriends, girlfriends, and spouses; and remembers to ask her about each of them to keep its information updated and reminds her of their upcoming birthdays and anniversaries.  All is done in an appropriate conversational style for the topic at hand.

28) Has a speech program for conversing with its player.

29) Has a speech recognition program that helps the program identify its player and prevents anyone else from using the program.

30) Has a speech recognition program that enables its player to authorize other people (like her best friend) to converse with the program.

31) Enables its players to authorize different access levels to their personal information.  Access levels: Best Friend, Close Friend, Friend, Friendly Acquaintance, Acquaintance, New Acquaintance, Visitor, Mother, Father, Older Sister, Twin Sister, Younger Sister, Older Brother, Twin Brother, Younger Brother, Aunt, Uncle, Older Female Cousin, Same Age Female Cousin, Younger Female Cousin, Older Male Cousin, Same Age Male Cousin, Younger Male Cousin, Grandmother, Grandfather, Great Aunt, Great Uncle, Great Grandmother, Great Grandfather, Great Great Aunt, and Great Great Uncle.  The player sets access levels for each of these levels.  [Thus it’s likely that Best Friend gets full access while Younger Brother gets no access and is told to go away.]

32) Has a speech recognition program that enables the visiting character to recognize its player when she talks to her on another computer.

33) Can have a webcam added and uses facial recognition software to identify its player.

34) Uses facial recognition software to recognize others in the room.

35) Uses facial recognition software to help protect the player’s private information by alerting player to unknown people in the room and restricts what it says by the clearance level of the known person with the lowest access level in the room.

36) Uses facial recognition software to individually converse with people and to welcome known people by name to the room.

37) Can be put on guard duty in the girl’s room while she is away, can report who entered her room while she was away and can show video surveillance of these people.  Using facial recognition software, it can even make a guess about who the intruders were.  The character puts on a police uniform while on guard duty and can “go ninja” by turning the monitor off so it appears the computer isn’t on while the webcam is still operating.  If the player tells the program to "go ninja", it has its character whirl around and when it stops, it appears to be in a black ninja outfit, does a Japanese bow, and then the screen goes dark.

38) Outsells “The Sims” computer game, as measured by money made by expansion packs sold.

First Internet radio talk show hostess to champion this challenge and get the CEO of a computer gaming company to appear on her show and:

39) Be in favor of the above original and all of its future challenges.  To win this future challenge, the CEO must discuss this topic for at least fifteen minutes on the show and the interview must be able to be listened to on the show's website afterwards.

40) Officially announce that her/his company will be making the above game.  To win this future challenge, the CEO must provide proof that the game has at least $10 million in development funds and another $10 million for advertising committed to it.

First Internet radio talk show hostess to champion this challenge and:

41) Give regular update reports to her listeners about the game's development.

42) Be the first non-game-company person to play in the alpha test of the game.  She has to report her experience with the game on her show.

43) Be the first non-game-company person to play in the beta test of the game.  She has to report her experience with the game on her show.

44) Covers live the official release of the game.

45) Is given giant amusement park in the game where she can invite all players over for a single-day special party in the game.  Her voice broadcasted over the loud speakers in the amusement park and she vocally chatting with players who are typing messages to her.

46) Get the game to enable players to listen to her Internet radio show while playing the game.

47) Get at least 100,000 players listening to her Internet radio show in the game.

48) Get at least 1,000,000 players listening to her Internet radio show in the game.

49) Get at least 10,000,000 players listening to her Internet radio show in the game.

50) Gets the game to enable its players to subscribe to her Internet radio program and automatically turn it on when the players are playing the game.

If you would like to discuss this challenge with others, click here to go to this challenge's discussion forum.

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