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Second Set of Microsoft RFP Awards Announced

The second set of winners in Microsoft's Request for Proposals game development grant competition has been announced, shortly after the
March 29, 2005
The second set of winners in Microsoft's Request for Proposals game development grant competition has been announced, shortly after the first set was revealed on the Microsoft Research website. Another three grants, for an overall total of $480,000 in funding over all six, have been awarded to Dr. Flavio Soares at the University of Sao Paulo, Randy Pausch and Jesse Schell at Carnegie Mellon, and Ian Parberry at the University of North Texas. Dr. Soares' approach will be to prepare a series of smaller laboratory courses to focus game-related education into a few small but deep modules. They also serve as tests bringing together the various other work that students have done in their normal education, independently assessing their progress from the standard courses. The Carnegie Mellon professors have an unusual approach within the pool of winners in that their project requires funding not for an educational curriculum but for software tools provided to the students. Pausch and Schell are working on Alice, a drag and drop programming environment designed to prevent syntax errors; and Panda3D, a game developed by Walt Disney Imagineering that Carnegie Mellon has taken over for educational purposes. Parberry's program also centers around development of a game engine, though in his case his proposal calls for one to be created from scratch rather than fund development of a currently existing engine. Students will use C++ to work on the engine, and create tutorials for future students to follow when using the engine for their own coursework. Those interested in learning more can check out Microsoft Research's Computer Gaming Curriculum RFP awards page for more information.

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