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26 Life-Size Versions of Popular Board Games

Everyone's favorite board games get a whole lot more fun when they're super-sized. (Also: the pieces are harder to lose.) We've gathered up a collection of jumbo variations on classic board games—if you think we've missed a good one, let us know in the comments!

Candy Land

I was surprised there weren't more life-size versions of the candy-themed game, but the quality of these two jumbo versions makes up for the lack of other variations.

Lombard Street

San Francisco's famously winding Lombard Street was turned into the biggest version of Candy Land ever to celebrate the children's game's 60th anniversary in 2009. Laughing Squid has more videos and photos.

Candy Land Garden

Craftster user KandeeCorner (and YouTube user eieioh1) created a garden based on the various iterations of the Candy Land game board. You can read about her project in the Craftster boards.

Operation

On G4's "Attack of the Show," Kevin Pereira, Candace Bailey, and Gillian Jacobs played a life-sized G4 version of the buzzing medical game. Check out the photos on Attack of the Blog.

Scrabble

America's favorite word game is also one of the most popular games to get the life-size treatment.

Mississippi Children's Museum


The Mississippi Children's Museum boasts a Hasbro-official giant Scrabble. In the photo above, some members of the Navy ham it up at the museum for Mississippi Navy Week. Photo from the Mississippi Children's Museum's Facebook album of Mississippi Navy Week.

Canstruction Vancouver 2011


Amazingly enough, the Scrabble above was created from canned goods for the 2011 Canstruction Vancouver, a canned food sculpture competition that raises money for the Greater Vancouver Food Bank Society. Photo by Flickr user Karen Neoh (karen_neoh).

Valley Fiesta 2010


The "Giant Games in the Valley" portion of the 2010 Valley Fiesta in Brisbane, Australia, boasted this colorful version of the word game. Photo by Flickr user Michael Zimmer (zayzayem).

Kensington Market


Toronto's Kensington Market has "Pedestrian Sundays," during which this giant homemade version of Scrabble was available to play. Photo by Ish & Jen of SunshineInToronto.com.

World Literacy Day 2010


Literacy Aotearoa Wellington (LAW), a not-for-profit organization that provides free numeracy and literacy support to residents of Wellington (New Zealand), hosted a giant street game of Scrabble on World Literacy Day 2010.

Toy Story Mania!


While this version isn't playable, its size earns it a place on this list. Gracing a building at Toy Story Mania! in Pixar Place at Disney's Hollywood Studios is a folded Scrabble board being hoisted by Army men. Photo by Flickr user Beau B.

Monopoly

These "life-sized" versions of Monopoly aren't quite the size of the real locations named on the popular game's board, but they're still a lot bigger than the table-top version!

Guadalupe River Park


This permanent installation in Guadalupe River Park, near the Children's Discovery Museum in San Jose, CA, is the largest Monopoly game board in the world. Photo by Flickr user HarshLight.

Bally's: Atlantic City


To attract attention for their "Pass GO! Collect $200" promotion, Bally's and Hasbro created a jumbo Monopoly game on the boardwalk outside the Atlantic City casino. More information about the game and promotion at Press of Atlantic City. Photo from ACWeekly.com's Atlantic City Central blog.

Minnesota State Fair 2002


The 2002 Minnesota State Fair included a tented walk-able version of Monopoly. Photo by Stephen A. Edwards from his Crazy Minnesota album.

Mousetrap

This amazing life-size game of Mousetrap was created by Mark Perez and company for Maker Faire 2007. To see more of the game, check out Nathan Bennett's (mostly) night-time photos.

Word on the Street

Origins Game Fair 2010 hosted the first life-size rendition of Out of the Box Games' Word on the Street.

The Royal Game of Ur


Odessa Design created a giant (yet portable) version of the Royal Game of Ur for the British Museum to celebrate the press launch of www.mesopotamia.co.uk/. Photo from Odessa Design.

Chess

Giant chess games can be divided into two categories: human chess, in which people are the pieces, and super-sized chess, in which jumbo versions of the traditional pieces are used.

Jeu d'Echecs Indien


Henri-Pierre Picou's 1876 painting, Jeu d'Echecs Indien, depicts a human chess game in India. Unfortunately, we can't find much more information about it, although there are an awful lot of sites offering reproductions. Image via Wikimedia Commons.

Monselice, Italy


This human-chess game took place in Monselice, Italy, and was photographed by Wikimedia Commons user Zyance.

Jai Mahal Palace Hotel


The grounds of this luxury hotel in Jaipur, India, include an amazing carved life-size chess set. Photo by Flickr user squinting.

Taj Exotica


Taj Exotica, another luxury hotel owned by the same company as the Jai Mahal Palace Hotel, is also home to a cool jumbo chess set. Photo by Flickr user Sean Ellis (s_w_ellis).

Brindavan Gardens


They must really love chess in India, because a third life-size chess set resides at the Brindavan Gardens in Krishna Raja Sagara, India. Photo by Flickr user lucy like whoa.

Yahoo! Burbank


Yahoo!'s Burbank, CA, campus includes this giant courtyard chess set surrounded by flowers. Photo by Flickr user Konrad Summers (tkksummers).

Best Western Resort Country Club


The fourth (or fifth, if you count the Henri-Pierre Picou painting) Indian life-size chess board on our list is an amenity included with club membership at Best Western Resort Country Club, Gurgaon in New Delhi, India. Photo via the Best Western Resort Country Club web site.

The Embarcadero


Pieces for the giant chess board at the Embarcadero in Morro Bay, CA, can be rented from the city's Recreation Department. Photo via TripAdvisor.com.

Checkers (and Chess)


Bastions Park in Geneva, Switzerland, has at least four grids painted onto the pavement, with corresponding sets of playing pieces for checkers or chess, whichever strikes the players' fancy. Photo by Flickr user gringaespanola.

Chinese Checkers


The “Giant Games in the Valley” portion of the 2010 Valley Fiesta in Brisbane, Australia, also included this large version of Chinese checkers as well as the previously mentioned large Scrabble. Photo by Flickr user Michael Zimmer (zayzayem).

Battleship


Julie, who writes the blog Jules Journal, and her family created this jumbo version of Battleship for an event at their church. Photo via Jules Journal.
***
26 jumbo versions of our favorite board games not enough for you? Don’t worry, we’re not stopping the fun. Head over to our “Popular Games, Super-Sized” board on Pinterest for more giant games around the world. And if you’ve seen a good one, let us know in the comments and we’ll add it to the board.

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Cell Free Technology
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technology
This Pixel Kit Will Let You Play Tetris With Jellyfish DNA
Cell Free Technology
Cell Free Technology

Forget playing Tetris on your phone. Now you can play it with jellyfish DNA. Bixels is a DIY game kit that lets you code your own games using synthetic biology, lighting up a digital display with the help of DNA.

Its 8-by-8 pixel grid is programmed to turn on with the help of the same protein that makes jellyfish glow, called green fluorescent protein (GFP). But you can program it to do more than just passively shine. You can use your phone and the associated app to excite Bixels' fluorescent proteins and make them glow at different frequencies, producing red, blue, and green colors. Essentially, you can program it like you would any computer, but instead of electronics powering the system, it's DNA.

Two blue boxes hold Bixel pixel grids.

Researchers use green fluorescent protein all the time in lab experiments as an imaging agent to illuminate biological processes for study. With Bixels, all you need is a little programming to turn the colorful lights (tubes filled with GFP) into custom images or interactive games like Tetris or Snake. You can also use it to develop your own scientific experiments. (For experiment ideas, Bixels' creator, the Irish company Cell-Free Technology, suggests the curricula from BioBuilder.)

A screenshot shows a user assembling a Bixel kit on video.

A pixel kit is housed in a cardboard box that looks like a Game Boy.

Bixels is designed to be used by people with all levels of scientific knowledge, helping make the world of biotechnology more accessible to the public. Eventually, Cell-Free Technology wants to create a bio-computer even more advanced than Bixels. "Our ultimate goal is to build a personal bio-computer which, unlike current wearable devices, truly interacts with our bodies," co-founder Helene Steiner said in a press release.

Bixels - Play tetris with DNA from Cell-Free Technology on Vimeo.

You can buy your own Bixel kit on Kickstarter for roughly $118. It's expected to ship in May 2018.

All images courtesy Cell-Free Technology

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Habibou Kouyate, Stringer, Getty Images
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science
Play a Game to Help Scientists Defeat a Cancer-Causing Toxin
Habibou Kouyate, Stringer, Getty Images
Habibou Kouyate, Stringer, Getty Images

If you're used to fighting virtual zombies or flying spaceships on your computer, a new series of games available on Foldit may sound a little unconventional. The object of the Aflatoxin Challenge is to rearrange protein structures and create new enzymes. But its impact on the real world could make it the most important game you've ever played: The scientists behind it hope it will lead to a new way to fight one of the most ruthless causes of liver cancer.

As Fast Company reports, the citizen science project is a collaboration between Mars, Inc. and U.C. Davis, the University of Washington, the Partnership for Aflatoxin Control in Africa, and Thermo Fisher Scientific. The team's online puzzles, which debuted on Foldit earlier this month, invite the public to create a new enzyme capable of finding and destroying carcinogens known as aflatoxins.

Aflatoxins form when certain fungi grow on crops like corn, nuts, and grains. Developing countries often don't have the resources to detect it in food, leaving around 4.5 billion people vulnerable to it. When people do eat food with high aflatoxin levels unknowingly, they can contract liver cancer. Roughly a quarter of all liver cancer cases around the world can be traced back to aflatoxin exposure.

The toxin's connection to agriculture is why the food giant Mars is so interested in fighting it. By working on a way to stop aflatoxins on a molecular level, the company could prevent its spread more efficiently than they would with less direct methods like planting drought-resistant crops or removing mold by hand.

The easiest way for scientists to eradicate an aflatoxin before it causes real harm is by making an enzyme that does the work for them. With the Aflatoxin Challenge, the hope is that by manipulating protein structures, online players will come up with an enzyme that attacks aflatoxins at a susceptible portion of their molecular structure called a lactone ring. Destroying the lactone ring makes aflatoxin much less toxic and essentially safe to eat.

The University of Washington launched Foldit in 2008. Since then, the online puzzle platform has been used to study a wide range of diseases including AIDS and Chikungunya. Everyone is welcome to contribute to the Foldit's new aflatoxin project for the next several weeks or so, after which scientists will synthesize genes based on the most impressive results to be used in future studies.

[h/t Fast Company]

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