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First time accepted submitter JacobAlexander writes "Writing in PNAS, a University of Manchester physicist has discovered that some games are simply impossible to fully learn, or too complex for the human mind to understand. Dr Tobias Galla from The University of Manchester and Professor Doyne Farmer from Oxford University and the Santa Fe Institute, ran thousands of simulations of two-player games to see how human behavior affects their decision-making. From the article: 'In simple games with a small number of moves, such as Noughts and Crosses the optimal strategy is easy to guess, and the game quickly becomes uninteresting. However, when games became more complex and when there are a lot of moves, such as in chess, the board game Go or complex card games, the academics argue that players' actions become less rational and that it is hard to find optimal strategies.'"

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Cheek'd, Cards-1

I’ve covered a few online dating services in my day, but this one has got to be the most creative.

It’s called Cheek’d, and I’d categorize it as a place where business cards meets picking up prospective boyfriends/girlfriends/one-night stands.

Here’s how it works: you go over to the Cheek’d website, at which point you take a couple minutes to fill out a profile. The fields of personal representation are actually a bit more novel than most dating sites, asking things like where you’re most likely to be found, the most played song on your iPod, and your favorite board game. Upload a pic, and the fun really begins.

You then must order a deck of cards, which say things like “act natural, we can get awkward later”, “don’t overthink this”, and “emotionally available.” There are literally hundreds of different sayings, and there’s even a Wall Street deck with lines like “add me to your portfolio” and “all my bank accounts are Swiss.”

The cards also have a short ID code on them, with a URL for the Cheek’d website. When a suitor receives the card, the idea is that they’re so filled with curiosity that they enter the code on Cheek’d and are taken to your profile page. Cheek’d calls it online dating in reverse.

See, Cheek’d wants to take out the online part of online dating. It forces real-life interaction, even if that interaction seems a bit awkward to me.

You get the first month free, and can also get a free deck of five cards (shipping and handling not included.) Past that, you pay $9.95 for a monthly subscription (which basically means you pay $10/month to keep your profile live). Cards you still have to pay for, and decks come in various sizes with corresponding pricing.

I grilled the founders yesterday at the NY Tech Day because, upon first impression, this sounds like one of the creepiest things ever. Why would I hand someone a card that says “hi,” (yes there are cards that simply say “hi”) instead of just saying hi myself? You know, with my voice?

But they threw out some instances where I could possibly, maybe, potentially see the idea materialize into something helpful.

For example, let’s say you’re out at a crowded bar, and a girl who seems relatively attractive catches your eye. But there’s one problem: she’s surrounded by five of her closest girlfriends, and no man (or woman) has come anywhere close to scoring with any of them all evening. It’s girls’ night.

But you, being the clever, “Cheeky” man (or woman) that you are, decide to send over a drink to the hottie along with one of your Cheek’d cards. Maybe the one that says, “I couldn’t find a napkin.” By the time she gets the card and the waiter tries to point you out to her, you’re walking out the door, all mysterious-like.

I’m not saying it will work, but I won’t say with certainty that it won’t work either.

(Note: Cheek’d is offering our readers a 50 percent discount on cards if they use the promo code “TECH”.)

Click to view slideshow.

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What are the fundamental functional differences between boardgames and card games? I’m not sure how important this question is from a game player’s point of view but it’s certainly important for game designers (even for video game designers).

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What are the fundamental functional differences between boardgames and card games? I’m not sure how important this question is from a game player’s point of view but it’s certainly important for game designers (even for video game designers).

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Gavin McIness of Street Carnage pulls off the world’s most disgusting card trick. When you meet this man on the street and he asks you to pick a card, any card from his deck, don’t. Just don’t.

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