Super Betterer

I wrote about the new video game designed to help people recover from things, Super Better, when it was first discussed on On the Media two months ago. Game designer Jane McGonigal was back on this week, and she revealed a code that grants access to the beta version of the game. (Go to the SuperBetter site, and enter sochofriend where it asks, “have a key to enter?”).

It’s a fantastic concept, one that will help tons of people. It was designed with brain trauma victims in mind, but can easily translate to other types of afflictions.

First, you tell SuperBetter what ails you:


It’s essentially an interactive web app that helps the user focus on getting better, picture what that improved state would look like, and enlists the support of friends and family. These are all concepts supported by science, and the video game-esque presentation hooks the user and encourages them to stick with it.

I look forward to seeing the final release!

Science, Brain Trauma & Video Games

Two interesting notes from last week’s On the Media:

First is Super Better, a collaborative video game designed to help recent trauma victims focus on getting better and implementing a plan to make it happen. From the official Super Better site:

SuperBetter helps you achieve your health goals — or recover from an illness or injury — by increasing your personal resilience. Resilience means staying curious, optimistic and motivated even in the face of the toughest challenges.

Next up is a video game that may help solve medical mysteries, called Foldit. Foldit is based on the promise of video gamers’ uncanny ability to work on complex problems for a really, really long time. From the On the Media site:

Using a game called Foldit, gamers build enzyme models that may be crucial to understanding how many diseases do their damage. Scientists couldn’t solve the crystal structure of the M-PMV retroviral protease for more than 10 years. Gamers solved it in 10 days. Zoran Popovic is one of the conceptual designers of Foldit – a kind of 3 dimensional Tetris.