The boy who knew too much: a child prodigy

This is the true story of scientific child prodigy, and former baby genius, Ainan Celeste Cawley, written by his father. It is the true story, too, of his gifted brothers and of all the Cawley family. I write also of child prodigy and genius in general: what it is, and how it is so often neglected in the modern world. As a society, we so often fail those we should most hope to see succeed: our gifted children and the gifted adults they become. Site Copyright: Valentine Cawley, 2006 +

Monday, June 13, 2011

Lucas Ordoñez, GT5, and the power of video games.

Video games may be much more powerful than many people realize, for training skill sets in people. Lucas Ordoñez is an eye opening example. Recently, Lucas Ordoñez and his team, including Franck Mailleux and Soheil Ayari came 2nd place in the Le Mans 24 hour endurance race. Now, you may be wondering why I regard it as newsworthy that someone should come second in a race. Well, it is quite simple. Lucas Ordoñez is not a trained racing driver. In fact, Lucas Ordoñez’ primary experience of racing comes from sitting at home with his Playstation 3, playing Gran Turismo 5. Lucas Ordoñez is a computer games player.

I found this a remarkable case, for what it says about the effects of video games/computer games on our children. It is clear that they are certainly learning something whilst playing them. It would be wise, perhaps, to look, therefore, at which games they are playing. Lucas Ordoñez became an expert racing driver, without even setting foot in a racing car, simply by playing Gran Turismo 5, or GT5. What, however, is becoming of children who play Call of Duty, or other warfare simulators? Are they becoming more efficient killers? Perhaps a child who plays such games, would grow up to be a better soldier.

There seems to me, to be an opportunity for enlightening games, that would entrain positive skills in our children. I am not so familiar with the available games to know whether such games exist – but it would be good if our games actually taught them something worth learning. They certainly taught Lucas Ordoñez how to drive.

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posted by Valentine Cawley @ 11:01 PM 


Blogger Adelaide Dupont said...


The Sims teach people how to organise and manage time.

There is also time for developing skills.

And there are certain architectural principles you learn.

If you're thinking specific skills in specific milleux, I'll see what I can do.

And there is a whole genre called "serious games" which promote themes of social justice.

3:28 PM  
Blogger Valentine Cawley said...

Thank you Adelaide, for the suggestion re. The Sims. I should check it out for my children. I am open to other suggestions, too, if any come to mind. Children will play computer they might as well play ones with beneficial effects on them.

Best wishes.

3:32 PM  

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