MAGIC Center partnership with Foundry creates interdisciplinary research opportunities for students

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    RIT’s MAGIC Center was originally developed around the idea of ​​creating and commercializing digital media products, but again and again creates unique opportunities for creative student research.

    RIT’s MAGIC Center and MAGIC Spell Studios Foundryis a Rochester-based company with a mission to provide institutional investors, staking clients, and blockchain entrepreneurs with the tools they need.

    As part of a two-semester partnership, Foundry recruited several students from multiple disciplines (3D digital design, game design and development, computing and information science) to lead projects in the Foundry effort. asked for cooperation. Student projects included building plugins and software his patches for video game engines used in blockchain development. Conduct gamification research studies to explore whether users can fully learn the complexities of blockchain and digital transactions through games. Decentraland is an educational blockchain-based metaverse platform, working on the pre-production of the Foundry experience, allowing users to explore an interactive digital universe and ideally demystify complex blockchain processes. increase.

    A blockchain is a distributed database that maintains a continuously growing list of ordered records called blocks. Blocks are linked using cryptography, and previous blocks, timestamps, and transaction data are also recorded. The purpose of blockchain is to share information between all parties that access it through applications.

    Huadong Zhang, a 2nd-year PhD student in the Computing and Information Science program, worked on designing user studies and analyzing data from educational game studies. He was scouted for the project by Zhao Peng, Associate Professor and Advisor in the Department of Interactive Games & Media.

    “For me, it is interesting to see how users react and play games in a multiplayer VR environment, which may improve the efficiency of learning outcomes. , I think we can consider polishing it to improve the quality of the game,” explained Zhang, who is from China. “My future plan is to continue pursuing my PhD. In the field of virtual reality and game technology. This project is a valuable experience for me.”

    Porter Henderson, a 4th year 3D Digital Design major from Tennessee, served as the student lead for the project, responsible for game conceptualization and environment modeling, as well as Foundry’s weekly presentation updates.

    “In addition to my extensive research on blockchain entertainment and virtual land, I have gained a lot of experience leading teams,” said Henderson, who hopes to work as a character artist after graduation. “I also learned how to communicate with clients as a design lead and be specific about their schedules, and how to assign tasks to colleagues and allow them to voice their concerns.

    Assistant Professor Ihab Maldini of the Faculty of Design worked with students to help design the concept, and the project provides students and faculty with a meaningful experience that broadens their horizons and strengthens interdisciplinary links with other programs. said he did.

    “The Metaverse is a new and interesting industry,” says Maldini. “Students often want to swim without a float for the first time when they go to their first job. At MAGIC, we help them unfloat. I observe their errors and help them overcome them in order to increase their professionalism, which I call making my students bulletproof professionals.”

    David Long is the Director of RIT’s MAGIC Center and MAGIC Spell Studios.

    “MAGIC is proud to partner with such a groundbreaking company as Foundry,” he said. “These connections provide students with real-world experiences outside the classroom that not only hone their skills, but are a testament to the quality of RIT education. I am also excited to take advantage of these new opportunities to see the industry from a different perspective.”

    Upon completion, the 10 students collaborated with faculty mentors to present their findings to Foundry leaders.

    “Student plots have been developed, games they have created that teach young people to understand digital ownership and NFTs, and that students are well-prepared to use these tools in the real world is a significant achievement.” ,” said General Manager Josh Byung. Education support at Foundry. “The project itself is based on his RIT and Foundry brands, and the metaverse, or spatial computing, remains relevant. We look forward to working with Foundry on future endeavors.”


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