Games get better

Published: 3 January 2008

New technology to improve the lifelike quality of computer games is being developed at the University of Glasgow.

Researchers are developing technology that will improve the lifelike quality of computer games.

Silicon chips which power current mobile phones, computers and games consoles have reached their peak in terms of speed and ability. Now a team of international experts are coming together to create a new generation of super chips.

A partnership between international experts in electronics at the University of Glasgow and the US Semiconductor Research Corporation (SRC) aims to develop chips that will allow computer game designers to create more complex graphics to enhance the real life experience of computer games. These chips could be available for games manufacturers within three years.

Lead researcher at the University of Glasgow, Professor Iain Thayne said: “A lot of computer games still feel very unrealistic and flat. What gamers want is to develop games that make you feel as though you are part of the synthesised world. It is the silicon chips installed in games consoles which are holding this development back and so by increasing the power of chips a whole new generation of computer games can be launched.”

The new chips could also be used to increase the battery life of mobile phones and digital cameras, as well as increasing the speed of computers and laptops.

Professor Thayne added: “By increasing the power of the chips we will pave the way for more advanced and complex electronic gadgets.”

The £1.2 million partnership is recognition of the University of Glasgow’s position as a world-leader in this field. By receiving backing from the SRC, the group of 20 academics at the University have joined an elite group of researchers in the semiconductor industry supported by the SRC.

The project is also supported by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) and builds upon research funded by the Scottish Funding Council.

First published: 3 January 2008

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