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Video game teaches US troops on Iraqi gestures

Blake Snow

Striving to blur the lines between reality and fiction, the US military has developed a video game system that teaches troops how to avoid dangerous situations by learning Iraqi gestures. In the simulation, dubbed Tactical Iraqi, users must communicate with digital Iraqis with both verbal and gesture commands. From the article: "The program teaches military personnel some key gestures such as an up-down movement with the right hand to ask someone to slow down and gives them tips such as removing mirror sunglasses when approaching local people... 'In Iraq, to show sincerity you have to put more effort into your gestures,' said Dr Vilhjalmsson. 'In Western countries, we control our body language more. In Arabic culture, it is important you show how open you are.'"

Other simulations contracted by the US military and being developed by USC include Afghan and Arabic specific language and gesture programs. Further proof of how the medium is going beyond just fun and games.

[Thanks, JEPrather]

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