I found myself passing the time at the airport with a new smartphone app "What's the Word?" by Redspell.
As a journalist, I am a lover of words. As a photographer, I am a lover of pictures. Put the two together and it is an ideal game for individuals like me.
As with most of my apps, my daughter turned me onto the game. Its premise: show four pictures that all have one word in common between them. Users fill in empty boxes using letters displayed on the screen.
The game developers explain it like this. "When you see a picture of a bank card and a picture of a river bank the word is…bank! When you see a four-leaf clover and a happy jackpot winner, the word is…luck!"
It is simply, but strangely addictive.
However, there are those photographs that are more difficult to discover the commonality. At the moment, I am looking at a picture of a girl in a hat with her mouth open, a girl with a hardhat on and her mouth open, a spider and red button (I think). So, I am stumped.
But I thought of the millions of people who would also be stuck on a word when agriculture photos appeared on my screen. One set of photos contained 2 corn headers, a soybean head, and a large combine. The word was combine. I wondered how many Americans would truly know that answer. I have learned while visiting many schools, most children cannot identify a combine. However, after playing this game, they may now remember it.
And then there was a screen with alfalfa in square bales, hay in big round bales, cornstalks bales and grass hay bales. Of course, the word was bale. The game also had a screen with photos of cuts of meat the word was…meat.
Now there may be a time or two game developers miss it. For instance, I would not consider a hay bale, wheat, but at least they are trying.
I was pleased to see so many agriculture references in such a popular game app, it is the #6 free game on the App Store. With so many downloads, there is sure to be one or two images that made a consumer think about agriculture, if just for a moment.
So kudos to gamers for including agriculture in an app that is fun and engaging.