For the game setup, these paramecia are contained in a square fluid chamber, which has electrodes arranged along each side. The human player controls a swarm of these paramecia by applying electric fields along two axes via a hand-held device reminiscent of a conventional video game controller. The motion of these paramecia is captured with a webcam and displayed live on a computer screen. This set-up is turned into a game by overlaying virtual graphic objects onto the live video and defining how these virtual objects behave relative to the displayed paramecia. A game score is computed based on these interactions, which are ultimately influenced by the human player’s actions.
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In ‘PAC-mecium’ (inspired by ‘PAC-Man’) the paramecia collect virtual yeast food and are occasionally bitten by a virtual zebra-fish larva.
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