234: Gaming Isn't Brain Surgery

Gaming Isn't Brain Surgery

Don't have enough time to stay current with the latest videogame releases? Imagine if you only had a few minutes a week to even think about gaming. Rich Retractor explains how his career as a brain surgeon leaves little room for games - and how they've become even more to him because of that.

Read Full Article

That's why I don't want to be a doctor. I want time to self-indulge, play games, play guitar, listen to music for hours on end, and write.

I'm glad I read this. It shows how much someone dedicated to their career and, in this case, their patients appreciates the distractions created and creativity involved in games.

A very interesting article, it outlines how much these Men and Women abjure to keep the rest of us safe. Hats off to you Rich Retractor.

I love this article, kinda lets me know what i'm letting myself in for :p

Am i crazy though? I could have sworn this very same article popped up in an Escapist issue a few months back.

OmegaXIII:
I love this article, kinda lets me know what i'm letting myself in for :p

Am i crazy though? I could have sworn this very same article popped up in an Escapist issue a few months back.

The exact same article appeared in issue 224(this is 234).

Heh, thats a relief i thought i was going nuts for a second

I love this article because it makes me appreciate every chance I get to play games. The "You don't know what you've got till it's gone" line is trotted out quite frequently and it's never been truer in this case. Except maybe I feel the absence for this man more than he does. It's incomprehensible to me that you could still muster any enthusiasm whatsoever for a game when you've come home from looking at brains all day.

This doctor, despite an excruciating work schedule, manages to enjoy this hobby of ours and I find it inspirational that he does so. I feel I owe it to gamers like this to take the full enjoyment out of every playing session and not forget how many people wish they could be doing the same.

It also enforces how little I want to be a neurosurgeon because there's no way I could survive on brief plays of Dwarf Fortress.

OmegaXIII:
I love this article, kinda lets me know what i'm letting myself in for :p

Am i crazy though? I could have sworn this very same article popped up in an Escapist issue a few months back.

This is our Best Of issue :)

CantFaketheFunk:

OmegaXIII:
I love this article, kinda lets me know what i'm letting myself in for :p

Am i crazy though? I could have sworn this very same article popped up in an Escapist issue a few months back.

This is our Best Of issue :)

Ah that would make a lot of sense. Good choice!

Very nice. Reminds me of my first year in college where I didn't touch my xbox for months.

You have my sympathies despite lacking a devout sense of self-pity.

I have learned, from previous working experiences, that I cannot sell the time I need for my own sanity without going insane. An occupation where I have so little time, perhaps even for sleep, would likely crush me.

I have found my niche, however, and am most pleased with my progress, and time management.

Flour:

OmegaXIII:
I love this article, kinda lets me know what i'm letting myself in for :p

Am i crazy though? I could have sworn this very same article popped up in an Escapist issue a few months back.

The exact same article appeared in issue 224(this is 234).

I KNEW IT! I too thought I was going crazy. Thanks for reassuring me that I don't need to call the men in white coats that watch the padded cells just yet.

My hat's off to you, "Rich".

I will try not to repeat my comment on the other issue...

As a doctor too (Psychiatrist), I also have little time for playing games, and I miss it soo much. Strangely enough, I have learned to sublimate such desires by doing other stuff, like coming to The Escapist and reading about it, talking about it, even watching videos seem to ease the urge of playing a bit. And, of course, thinking that better days may come... I hope I'm not too old when they finally arrive!

This makes me wonder just what my adult life will be like. I'm in my freshman year of college, but I'm already feeling all of that time I used to spend enjoying myself slipping away. I wish I had spent more time being a kid instead of pretending to be an adult.

You have my respect, Rich!

I have had a job where I spent almost the same amount of time at work, away from home and my computer, but when I did get the time it did feel all the more enriching. A job like being a surgeon requires true dedication and sacrifice. I sometimes wonder if I have the character for such a responsibility. I am glad though that there are people like Rich who do have the character and devotion to such a job, and yet they don't forget fun. Even if they might forget to think about it now and then.

Kudos to "Rich". Things like this article make the rest of us(some at least) appreciate the time we do get to play. Makes me personally feel bad for getting upset that I don't get to log into my current MMO at least once a day. And my life is no where near as hectic/full as yours. Thanks for your dedication, and remember that you are truly appreciated for the sacrifices you make for those that need you. Just don't forget to take some time for yourself too, even if it is just 15 minutes every 3 days. :)

I'm prescribing this doctor the Grey's Anatomy game. That way he can "game" (if you can call GA that) and practise medicine!

I'm not becoming a doctor.

Simply put, I like a job that gives me some free time.

Great article, scary for me as I'm a third year medical student.

Yeah I think I'm going to become a General Practitioner with my own practice now, at least I'll control my hours.

Great Article.

I have always had a question concerning the medical industry and I am wondering if perhaps you can help?

Why are Doctors & Nurses worked to such a degree? Why do hospitals short staff themselves to the point that people work 38 hour shifts and don't have time to eat?

One would think that when dealing with the constant strain of life or death decisions, Doctors and Nurses both would be given the time to rest and recuperate to be 100%

I know that there is a Nurseing Shortage, due to high stress, high education requirements and low pay compared to workload when compared to doctors, but why does there seem to be such a shortage of Doctors?

Great article, I'd love to read more of these. How gaming works in real peoples lives and how gamers get to use or manage their hobby in or along side their professional lives.

Nice to know that others also see games in a manner similar to myself (though, I am not a doctor, and I have more time to spend on them)..okay, so we are fairly disimilar, but it feel similar...yeah.

The hectic schedule of many occupations, creates a need for instant responses, and prohibits people from doing research or thinking of creative solutions to the immediate problem at hand, thus decreasing their chance of finding the actual optimal solution. Exploring your problem space takes time. The final "Eureka!" moment is just that, a moment. However, describing the problem you are trying to solve based on different solution spaces and dimensions, interpolating and extrapolating on each of those, and then formulating a final solution all take time. Sometimes, your brain might even need new inputs, nudges in the right direction that serve as inspiration for a new approach, like the proverbial Newton's apple. Obviously the timing of these guiding events is not under your control, and it is very likely that you will miss them when they occur if you are trying to handle too many other tasks at that same moment.

From personal experience, I have learned that creative thinking and multitasking under pressure are two states of mind that are impossible to combine. When you are multitasking under time pressure, you are always trying to achieve the most obvious and immediate solution that springs to mind. If you are well-read, experienced, and knowledgeable, the best solution you will achieve will be a minor deviation from the standard text-book solution. You will go for the local optima! On the other hand, if you are given time, and you think creatively, you will be able to come up with solutions that are much closer to the global optimum. Any thinking machine needs time to simulate multiple possible solutions before homing in on a "great" solution, and humans are no exception.

While I deeply respect you for your dedication, I don't think the system you are working in, has the possibility to offer the best possible help to your patients. While "good enough" is certainly better than none, and in some cases the problem at hand dictates immediate action, I can't help wonder what kind of collective effect the onset of such an "instant action" strategy to solve problems will have on the people who constantly engage in it. We know that we are training our brains to perform in a certain way whenever we make use of them. How then, will a lifetime of making decisions under time and resource pressures as critical as those in an emergency room.

I think that certain types of games, especially those that allow you to pause and plan before carrying out actions, can help people in lines of work similar to yours to re-train their decision-making process, and that this mental change, is in fact at the core of the pleasure you can derive from playing such games, not just as a way to escape the reality of the world as you start to perceive it, but also as a new way of doing things. Maybe, we should all pay more attention to how our minds work, and maybe this will help us understand what sort of games we SHOULD play.

Wow i loved this article.

Though if everything goes as planned i might begin to lead a life where my career does this to me.
Lets hope i keep enough time for my little indulgences.

and THAT'S why I don't wanna be a Neurosurgeon and instead want to focus on orthopedics :P

 

Reply to Thread

Log in or Register to Comment
Have an account? Login below:
With Facebook:Login With Facebook
or
Username:  
Password:  
  
Not registered? To sign up for an account with The Escapist:
Register With Facebook
Register With Facebook
or
Register for a free account here