First Foldit, then Phylo, now EteRNA. Investigators at Carnegie Mellon University and Stanford University have launched "an online video game that challenges players to design new ways to fold RNA molecules," reports The New York Times. EteRNA, which was designed for non-scientists, allows players to "design elaborate [RNA] structures including knots, lattices and switches," the Times reports, adding that the game will go beyond simulations, in that "each week the best designs created by game players and chosen by the gaming community will be synthesized at Stanford." Carnegie Mellon's Adrien Treuille, who was part of the team that created Foldit, tells the Times that EteRNA "is like putting a molecular chess game in people’s hands at a massive level. ... I think we are democratizing science." Users must register for a free account on the EteRNA homepage, which greets visitors with the message "played by humans, scored by nature."
'Played By Humans, Scored By Nature'
Jan 11, 2011