The game, called Innov8, is meant to address a lack of skills in understanding and improving a company’s internal business processes.
Process improvement is a critical component to service-oriented architectures (SOA), a way of designing software as a series of interlinked, modular business services. The software for modeling and running this modular software is called business process management, or BPM.
Carter said she expects the first version of Innov8 to be done in September. IBM intends to make online versions for gaming environments like Second Life, which will allow people to share scores and compete with people online.
There’s both an IBM press release (Link) and a pretty good demo video (Link). While watching the video, I was most struck by the virtual computer screen the player first approaches as it reminded me of Doom 3’s interactive screens (Link – reference images) and my previous comments elsewhere regarding the prototyping possibilities of these games.
Imagine if IBM were to show a demo dealing with the process for developing a real, manufacturable product, and then at the end, the player could fab the product at home… or maybe at their local Kinko’s.
Take it a step further and have participants send their real, assembled prototypes in for judging and use either the virtual or the real model (or both) to generate marketing materials (e.g. machinima commercials). The whole package could then be evaluated and maybe the winner has a real product developed from their concept. This would be similar to but I would argue more “fun” than the Staples’ competition I’d previously mentioned (reLink).
There are so many possibilities almost within reach that when it hits, it’ll be as different to what we know today as cell phones were unthinkable to people in the 70’s.