[Computational Complexity] The Reality of Virtual Pets
The Tomagotchi craze has hit my daughters' school. The Tomagotchi is a small toy with a few buttons and a screen where you can play with a cartoonish creature. You can feed and play with your creature to make him/her happy. Two people can point their devices at each other and their Tomagotchi's will play and possibly "mate".
First my older daughter's fourth grade friends gave her a Tomagotchi and soon after my younger first grader also wanted one and we relented. She then convinced several of her first grade friends that they needed them which caused some parents to call us mostly because they got these Tomagotchis and nobody could figure out how to work them. My first grader is giving out lessons tomorrow.
These devices beep when they need attention—food or playing or needing cleanup after an "accident". Don't attend to them and they will die. My kids pay constant attention to the Tomagotchi and it is sometimes hard to bring them back to reality. My youngest, a couple of days ago, got all excited when her Tomagotchi learned to go to the bathroom by himself. It didn't seem like all that long ago that I got excited about the same thing for her.
Luckily young kids are fickle and the Tomagotchi craze will soon pass. But move over Godzilla, the scariest monster from Japan is a friendly looking creature in a plastic case.
Posted by Lance to Computational Complexity at 3/11/2005 08:02:00 AM