Dilemma from a Daredevil: Should I use SuperBetter or not?
I don’t know if you know the comic character of the Daredevil? Ben Affleck played his character in a motion picture and it is one of the characters of the great Stan Lee (the creator of: Avengers, X-Men, Fantastic Four, …) Daredevil is a blind attorney who in his ‘spare time’ is a ‘darkish’ hero to see that justice is done, were the courtroom couldn’t do it. With his super-senses he gets the bad guys one way or another.
Don’t worry I am not going to be a caped crusader. I use the word Dilemma from a Daredevil, because I am trying to answer a difficult question in the beginning of my PhD 2 B quest. And in Dutch we have a saying about the dilemma from the devil, but that is too negative. It is a Dilemma from someone with good intentions but are we are willing and can we cross borders?
The dilemma is: Should I use SuperBetter or not for my research?
After a discussion with one of the inventors of it, I had to come to the conclusion that there is only one way to use SuperBetter in my PhD research and that is as it is now. No changes, no alterations can be made that are beneficial to my research (and in my humble opinion beneficial for SuperBetter ;)). That is a downer for me. I had hoped that I was able to collaborate with the developers of SuperBetter to make it even better as it is. And (as you know me) I was not in it for the money. I was in it for 1) the science, 2) for the fun of collaboration and 3) for the inspiration for my students. Originally there was a fourth goal, an epic one, but meeting Jane has gone of my bucket list, as I have done that at the Educause (w00t, w00t). I understand the reasons of the SuperBetter guys and girls not to collaborate at this moment but I also have learned that you have reach for the stars. And I believe in this field (social health gaming) they are the stars. My Bachelor of ICT students, our Innovative Student Company, and the Research Centre for Autonomy and Participation I do my research for, would have been great partners in a combined quest. But SuperBetter is a company and therefore intellectual property and sharing/partnering aren’t easy.
So, if I want to use SuperBetter, I have to use it as is. The biggest problem is that SuperBetter only is available in English. With no Dutch version or cardgame alternative I can rule out a lot of possible target audiences to do my research on. And that is really too bad. On the contrary it won’t be easy to find or make a Dutch equivalent to SuperBetter. Yes I have the research that lies under the skin of SuperBetter and yes I am creative enough to come to ‘some kind of game’. But as I am a knowledge engineer and no game designer (yet ;)) I just am an amateur who wants to make a game as good as the one built by the experts. That’s a big challenge in the beginning of my PhD 2 B. Difficult and time consuming. In both cases I need a super hero to help me!
Daredevil where are you at?
…to be continued… (I hope)