A video game powered washing machine

first_imgUnless you send your clothes to the Goodwill every time they get dirty, doing laundry is part of your weekly routine. And it’s not nearly as fun as other things you make time for, like a little button mashing on your favorite video games — though that’s not quite as practical as getting chores done.Masters student Lee Wei Chen decided that the two could be combined to make laundry more fun and gaming more productive. The result is the device you see above: a vintage arcade cabinet married to a front-loading washing machine. Pop a coin in to get things started (after you’ve filled the drum with your filthy clothes), and the game is on! The better your performance in the game, the sooner your laundry is done.Design Week thinks there’s genius here, but you tell me. The washing machine was invented to speed up housework and allow people to multitask. By forcing launderers to stand in front of the machine and race their way to cleaner clothes, a modern convenience becomes inconvenient — and less efficient, too.There’s no genius in the cost per load, either. Just like a regular video game, if you suck at laundry wars you’ll be feeding in additional coins. Play the more traditional version at your local laundromat, and you can feed in a set number of coins and then play Angry Birds on your phone while the machine handles the dirty work.Chen says that he realized his gaming skills were “useless in the real world” and that he “wanted to make them useful.” Useless? Clearly he hasn’t heard about Valve’s Learn With Portals program — that uses Portal to help teach kids science concepts and problem solving skills.More at Design Weeklast_img read more

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