Time to time I may produce a concept that would seem a miss or a zinger from the eye of the visionary. Today's entry is no exception to this rule. I am casting a wide net with a forecast not to come perhaps 10 to 15 years from now by my prediction. I can be wrong where it comes sooner rather than later, time will tell.
As a niche outlet of academia in regards to the modern entertainment games industry. Where today colleges and some universities are offering accredited degree programs. In area's of game design, game programming, if not game business enterprise such as marketing and public relations. Right now there are many arena's where modern gaming is finding outlets in economics, sociology, healthcare, psychology, medical research, and finally military applications. Be it physicians offering patients a game so as to instill in practice a non-local sedative throughout the course of game play. Economists drawing parallels between the wealth in a particular online game's faux currency. In comparison to a sovereign currency on a per capita basis of overall wealth. Game graphic engines being developed for modern day military grade simulators as a training aid for combat. As to most recently medical research scientists making an AID's drug design discovery last September. Where gamers via crowd-sourcing in under 3 weeks time find a solution of a molecular structure in an enzyme in the game of Foldit. That previously left scientists stumped for the last decade in how to figure out how to bind the molecule together.*
Academic pursuits are only growing in terms of the backdrop of modern games as a source of entertainment. I am going to surmise that in 10 to 15 years time as the games industry continues to mature as both an art and a science. That the most progressive and forward looking colleges and universities will offer history degree's for "Modern Games". Where the traditional Ivy League Universities (Princeton, Harvard, Cambridge, etc..) will be the last ones to jump upon such a band wagon. Since it will be commonplace and a safe bet to pursue as a degree curriculum program. Everything from the modern era on Pong down to the latest blockbuster game title would be known by modern game historians. Be it game design elements, the technologies utilized to make the games, down to best business practices put out into the marketplace.
Today many savvy gamers and shrewd investors rely on predictions from financial analysts. As to the market success of a game company or a new game title. When modern game historians come onto the scene perhaps a colorful personality will emerge as a celebrity of sorts. Much like Dr. Michio Kaku is to modern day audiences for a physicists perspective of scientific developments. Where a modern game historian will offer up sage like recollections of past success and failures of particular game publishers. Knowing the consumer trends of what makes a good game much like a game designer could envision for their installed base of customers.
Those that are history or philosophy majors that work in the corporate environment and not in academia. Due to their educated knowledge of foresight and mature discernment in roles of corporate leadership be it in management or as an executive. Will be similar for the future Modern Game Historian finding roles within the games industry be it working for a game publisher or a game developer. Using their education and expertise as a predictor of consumer mega-trends in order to launch new corporate initiatives. Be it a new corporate policy or a new game project development cycle for an eventual wide market release. Modern game historians will be utilized as a layer of consultancy aside from many other secondary disciplines. Besides modern game historians entering roles of governmental policy or think tanks for the entertainment industry as a whole. Today's amateur game historian as an enthusiast will be delighted that their passionate pastime hobby is assimilated into academia. When the rest of society plays catch up (pun intended) to the pivotal role of the grand history of modern games. That will be offered to all of us as beneficiaries in education, scientific research, and in many other forms of commerce.
* Gamers Succeed Where Scientists Fail: Molecular Structure of Retrovirus Enzyme Solved, Doors Open to New AIDS Drug Design