Chemistry and Biochemistry
As problems in structural biology and bioinformatics have become increasingly complex, innovative new com-putational methods have been proposed and implemented. Of these methods, research games are unique in how they privi-lege human intuition over algorithmic verification in certain steps of the research process; researchers in structural biology have developed a number of research games since 2008 to utilize human pattern recognition and spatial manipulation skills. Players are not expected to have any scientific knowledge, as the game interfaces abstract the relevant problems from their biological contexts, and they are not reimbursed or incentivized in any way apart from methods such as in-game lead-erboards and earning in-game points. Games such as Foldit (protein structure prediction), EteRNA (RNA structure predic-tion), and Phylo (DNA sequence alignment) have proven incredibly successful, solving some longstanding problems which had puzzled the scientific community for years.
Rebecca Whelan, Chemistry and Biochemistry
Vigilante, Nic, "Research Games in Structural Biology" (2018). Friends of the Libraries Excellence in Research Awards. 7.