where the researchers go to explore the raw material, so to speak, of their interest and then synthesize that for their own use. I think that there is rich potential for collaborations. I think we will both still have our own roles, but maybe there are ways that we can bring those skills together.”
A participant asked Hone how accessible video game creation is at this point, “Presumably there are some tools out there for people like amateurs to make, and is that a possible avenue to make like little applets for a classroom? How accessible and how much time would be involved?”
Hone responded that the tools are available. A lot of the material for PBSKids was built in Flash. He said, “I think the harder challenge is the craft of game design. Having done television, having done instructional activities, I think game design is probably the toughest, because you are juggling not only the technical challenges of the programming, the art challenges, but also this contract of how you keep it interesting, and how you build that mountain of challenges. So I think the tools are there. I think what is probably lacking are people who are skilled in the aspects of game design.”
Brown suggested to Twiss-Brooks that for the next year (2011), which is the International Year of Chemistry, the University of Chicago should do an exhibit on African-American chemists. For example, the library could pull their theses out to display and highlight the work of the pioneering students. She offered to help Twiss-Brooks find material.
Finally, Mike Rogers commented on how easy and effective it is to go to various websites and blogs and pose questions, for example, when planning a vacation. He asked Twiss-Brooks if there are such sites for people who might have questions about science or chemistry? She replied that there probably are, but she wasn’t aware of any. Hone mentioned one site called “Ask An Astronomer” and thought there might be a comparable “Ask A Chemist.”