Human Brain Cloud
From Kyle Gabler, one of the brains behind the Experimental Gameplay Project, comes an equally experimental massively multiplayer online word association "game", Human Brain Cloud. To play, all you have to do is read the word (or words) on top, then type in the first thing that pops in your head. Don't censor yourself, just think, then type. Human Brain Cloud collects associations made by players around the world and dumps them into an interactive database. It's a fascinating experiment that just so happens to be an addictive "game" to boot.
As you type words in the box, Human Brain Cloud maps out your associations on the right, displaying each phrase with the number of other people that formed the same connections. The leaderboard, accessible from the top of the screen, displays a handful of stats such as the most words submitted, users who are most "in tune" with the rest of the players, and the strongest connections so far. Click "view the cloud" to see a goo-based display of a word with its associated entries. Click one of the blobs to explore a new word to see what connections the rest of the world made.
To date, over 3 million associations have been submitted, connecting over 300,000 unique words and phrases by over 200,000 people. That's a lot of random human thinking. While it's far from fool-proof scientific, Human Brain Cloud is an interesting experiment that could yield some thought-provoking results. Plus, it's really fun to play around with.
You might also like to keep tabs on Kyle's latest efforts, as he has recently launched a brave new indie game studio based in San Francisco named 2D Boy.
Update: Human Brain Cloud is no longer available.