Wednesday, December 29

Stranger Than Fiction

Life really is stranger than fiction. That was my response when I read Matt Hickey's article on Nissan's new electric car, the Leaf, entitled, "Nissan's Leaf featuring automatic gaming system". Let me explain.

Many massively multiplayer on-line games -- World of Warcraft for instance -- include achievement systems. For example, if a person completes 500 quests he would earn an Achievement and a certain number of Achievement Points. Achievement Points can be earned for things like reaching the level cap (e.g., level 85) or fully exploring a certain area. You can then compare your achievement points with other the achievement points of others and give yourself a congratulatory chuckle if yours are higher.

Now, back to the Leaf.

The Leaf displays information about things like how much less CO2 the car is producing when compared to other cars AND it displays Achievements
... averaging a driver's usage with others, assigning rankings, both regionally and globally. There's a notion that electric car drivers tend to be smug, and this allows them to measure that smugness. It's a fun idea, and contributes to the gamification trend, something that we expect to see show up everywhere in the next year.
I just had to smile.

Here's my picture of the day:

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