A week or so ago, someone asked me why I am so devoted to working in game development, to the exclusion of other types of jobs. At the time I couldn't really think of a reason beyond that I can't imagine not being constantly obsessed with game design. But I think the question deserves a more thorough explanation.
One reason is that I like to make things. Making things is what I do. At some level, pretty much everything I enjoy involves making things. I also like learning new skills, understanding new ideas. Games, or rather computers, are kind of the ultimate medium for making things. I can create my own miniature universe, limited only by my own skill and understanding. Well, obviously in reality it is a little more complicated than that, but compared to anything else out there, making computer games is the easiest way to realize such a vision.
Another reason is that I have many different interests, and game development is one of the few areas that appreciates and incorporates all of them. Art, music, programming, complex systems, cognition and understanding humanity and life, all can be part of games. It's hard to make time for everything, but focusing on games encourages me to consider them every so often, in a way that say, database programming, doesn't. I doubt that database programmers spend a lot of time thinking about the artistic or societal impact of their work.
Also, I'm not content to simply learn the established conventions of an existing industry and spend my life sustaining tradition. I want to shape the future in some significant way. Games (or interactive virtual spaces in general) are just emerging as a medium. What you see right now in terms of games and computers is just a hint of what is possible. I am confident that games will be extremely significant in the evolution of our society away from industrialism. Using games for education is just part of that. And I think I'm in the perfect position to be part of all this change, through games.