Serious Games and Virtual Worlds: April 4-24, 2007

Second Life places of interest

Second Life places of interest

by Corinne Brooks -
Number of replies: 22
As its so awkward finding places on SL I thought we need a thread to share the good places we've been. Maybe we could then compile yet another list?

Boracay is known to most of us

I just found a mathematical one:

The Crooked House of Seifert Surface
Boggle your mind as you bounce around this Möbius strip of interconnected rooms. The loopy structure was inspired by Robert A. Heinlein’s short story about a four-dimensional hypercube.

Also visit the Sculpture Garden in this "Future" world. You can find it by entering the transport tubes, or fly to Grand Central Station and take the tube from there.


These also look interesting:

International Spaceflight Museum
Come visit an island bristling with scale replicas of rockets from the dawn of the Space Age to the present day. There are also regular lectures and demonstrations, and a bitchin’ planetarium.

Svarga
It’s not just an island paradise: It’s also an experiment in ecosystems, with clouds, plants, bees, and birds all interacting in a circle of virtual life.




In reply to Corinne Brooks

Re: Second Life places of interest

by Cynthia Alvarado -
Have you tried the list at http://edumuve.com/tour/. I spent several days going down the list as I had time and found them all interesting.
In reply to Cynthia Alvarado

Re: Second Life places of interest

by Tia Carr Williams -

Cynthia,

Thank you, thats an excellent resource. I found this pdf on '101 uses for SecondLife in the college classroom' by Dr Megan Conklin, Elon University, a very valuable read.

Tia

In reply to Tia Carr Williams

Re: Second Life places of interest

by Therese Weel -
Thank you for these worthwhile and fitting resources. I'll get them into the wiki at my earliest opportunity.

I have been exploring second life with the help of these links.  I agree Corinne the tough part is finding the good places to go and perhaps finding people to go there with.

I explored Svarga last night and made my first SL friend.  I was up in the clouds editing my appearance when a fellow avatar spied me from the tower and flew up to see what I was up to.  The  conversation centered around my wardrobe choices. 

I found it interesting how much more personal and direct the conversations can be in SL compared to discussion forums.  There is certainly an opportunity to enhance lavalife with second life. blush
In reply to Therese Weel

Re: Second Life places of interest

by Therese Weel -
A noteable site  that I've come across that has quite a bit of information on education and virtual worlds is simteach

http://www.simteach.com/wiki/index.php?title=Main_Page

One of the many good resources they have is this section

Teen Second Life Educational Projects

  • EdBoost A Campus: TSL project where students script the contents of the island and adults teach computer programming.
  • Global Kids Island - Global Kids Island in the teen grid is a place for teen residents to learn about important social and world issues. The island recently hosted (winter, 2006) a digital media essay contest, the SL version of the Save Darfur charity wristband campaign, a photo show from Global Kids Leaders, Camp Gk (summer, 2006, Fall 2006 UNICEF A World Fit For Children Festival, the Henry Jenkins lecture/dance party, and interactive, experiential workshops led by GK staff on issues related to digital media. In the fall of 2006, a real world machinima program and a real-world gaming program, both using TSL, were launched in NYC. Information about all of these projects - teen posts, comics, video, press coverage and more - available at our web site.
  • Kids Connect Island - Kids Connect is a series of workshops for young people in multiple locations, teaching them to connect and work together via performance, storytelling and collaboration by both theatrical and digital means. In our pilot program in summer 2006, participants connected and created with other students in New York and Amsterdam via video streaming and on Kids Connect Island in the teen grid. Guided by artists and educators from theatre and new media, they learned skills like VJ-ing, Playback Theatre, digital storytelling, and 3D modeling. In teen SL, they met and collaborated to build a hybrid city combining aspects of both New York and Amsterdam. Within that common space, they created a performance that occurred both live and online simultaneously.
  • Pacific Rim Exchange - PacRim X is a collaboarative project between two school districts, one in California, and one in Japan. The island will be private and only open to exchange students from the two school districts, and their teachers. The blog will catalog the progress of the project.
In reply to Corinne Brooks

CURA/BCcampus Second Life tour April 17

by Sylvia Currie -
Speaking of interesting places to go in SL, Dan O'Reilly will be taking us on a tour tomorrow of CURA/BCcampus and knowing Dan he will have a few interesting things to show us!

We'll be meeting April 17 at 10:00 am (PDT). Check the time in your location.

This is the SLURL that will get the avatars to the start of the tour:

http://slurl.com/secondlife/Klaw/177/17/21/

If you haven any difficulties finding the tour, send an IM to Odysseus Chandra when you get into SL and he will teleport you to the location.

Hope to see you all in SL tomorrow!
In reply to Sylvia Currie

Re: CURA/BCcampus Second Life tour April 17

by Deirdre Bonnycastle -
I'm disappointed. I went to the Cura site at the right time and couldn't find anyone.
In reply to Sylvia Currie

Re: CURA/BCcampus Second Life tour April 17

by Salvor Gissurardottir -
I tried to connect to Second Life but had lots of technical difficulties. I thought it had to to with my computer at work, I have a brand new computer with Windows Vista Business version. Last night I created user and downloaded Second life at my laptop at home and it worked fine.

I searched google and I found this solution to connecting to Second Life through a proxy http://www.sl-through-a-proxy.com/

I followed the steps  (they seem complicated though) and I was able to connect to Second Life but then I could not find anyone (or anything as a matter of fact - I am not even familiar with how to move in Second Life).

Yesterday I was at last able to log into Virtual Worlds after several attempts, I had previously downloaded to Virtual Worlds servers but they were not the right one. 

Somehow I think it is still too complicated to log into virtual worlds and several security issues involved in connection from work /university computer.

But these are fascinating worlds.
In reply to Sylvia Currie

Re: CURA/BCcampus Second Life tour April 17

by Therese Weel -
Getting people to the right spot at the right time can be a challenge.
After that keeping everyone together with our feet firmly on the ground is another challenge.  Odysseus "Dan" Chandra was a maverick.

I'm sorry you missed the experience ladies.  It is a common experience and one which we need to overcome.  All the more reason for Odysseus to repeat the experience some time real soon (nudge nudge)

Odysseus "Dan" Chandra is a maverick. He showed us the educational objects he  collected and deployed for the CURA project   (Community- University Research Alliance).  A chat box, a movie, a sky platform with audio globes and a holodeck.  We also got  Cura t-shirts to wear which is good because it was a snowy winter's day.

The comment which stands in my mind from the experience was-  "This is what the web should be"

If you took snapshots of the experience please post them in the forum for all to enjoy.

Thanks Dan - The tour was exciting and eye opening.

In reply to Therese Weel

Re: CURA/BCcampus Second Life tour April 17

by Sylvia Currie -
Salvor and Deirdre, so sorry it didn't work out! I'm usually the one waiting for my computer to reboot or trying to find everyone. sad

Therese, I did take some snapshots but will have to post them later -- they're sitting on my home computer.

What a great tour! Thanks so much Ody!

Each visit to SL I get a little closer to understanding how I might use it in my own practice. Today what really hit me is that SL would be a very interesting design environment for students -- give them access to all the tools to develop a virtual campus and course spaces. It seems we spend far too much time designing these experiences FOR students.

I'll be back with snapshots later...
In reply to Sylvia Currie

Re: CURA/BCcampus Second Life tour April 17

by Cynthia Alvarado -
Yes, I am really struck by the constructivist learning possibilities in SL. I am beginning to think in terms of having my students literally "construct" meaning in Second Life thorugh building 3d representations of comcepts. it also seems like having them assist in construction of the learning environment and learning tools could only lead to deeper understanding and student invollvement.
In reply to Cynthia Alvarado

Re: CURA/BCcampus Second Life tour April 17

by Dan O'Reilly -

Hi Everyone,

Sorry some of you could not make it to the CURA/BCcampus site, or couldn't find us.  SL is a bit of a challenge on both these issues.  We have only been working on our site for a very short time (about three weeks)  and it is easy to get lost at the site, we do all the time LOL.  However, that is also what makes it fun.  A couple of prostitutes from Spain showed up the other day trying to pander their wares.  You just never know what is going to happen.

Though I have been in SL since September that time has basically been learning different SL skills and not showing others around.  It is a bit of a challenge figuring out how to keep avis together especially with varying skill levels.  Much different than having a captive audience in a lecture theatre.  But everyone was really patient and helpful, especially WebbedFeat, and most (that we know of except for those still in the metaverse - there was one still in the holodeck when I returned later LOL) survived.

ETUG (BC Educational Technology Users Group), a group associated with BCcampus, is having a workshop about SL at its annual Spring Workshop in May.  The workshop is being held here at Thompson Rivers University and I will be leading a group, along with a number of other leaders, on a scavenger hunt.  So, some of the experience from today will help in planning that workshop.  [A side issue:  I am working with computer services to provide a lab for the workshop and DO THEY ever have issues about security for SL.  I have to do some research on that to ease their minds.]

I would be happy to lead another group at some point if there is interest.  Possibly visiting some of the interesting sites that have been listed here or do a session on building.  I really like the idea of building objects to represent concepts. I have found the building tools in SL to be very rich, especially once one learns how to use textures and scripts with prims; it seems that the only limitation to what one can build is one's imagination (but being a philosopher I know that there are logically impossible things that can't be built LOL).

Ody

In reply to Dan O'Reilly

Re: CURA/BCcampus Second Life tour April 17

by Deirdre Bonnycastle -
Curious that I couldn't find you. I did sit and watch your video and tour your tower from the air though. Great site, loved the snow effect.
In reply to Cynthia Alvarado

Re: CURA/BCcampus Second Life tour April 17

by Margaret Corbit -

This is exactly what we do through SciFair at Cornell, Cynthia. I would be delighted to show you our worlds. I think you will find that Active Worlds might be a bit easier to suppor for K-8 students. Perhaps we need to set up a second foray into CTCUni? Of course, we are PC-based, if this is an issue. I have a colleague testing running AW on current Apples, which should work. But I don't have confirmation on that.

Best,

Margaret

In reply to Cynthia Alvarado

Re: CURA/BCcampus Second Life tour April 17

by Kim FLINTOFF -

I like those possibilities too Cyn, the social construction of reality can be quite literal in a space like SL.  I have a Holodeck thast I was hoping could be used a Research poster space - where researchers would constrcut rooms where the 3D representation was a summation othe research.. the same idea could be applied with your example...

...with effective faciltation the possibilities for deep understanding are enhanced...

... the possibilities for Critical Pedagogy are also phenomenal..  imagine analysing and critiquing the entire process of constructing the environment... challenging the underlying epistemology... the assumptions we make when building such spaces... and then transferring that understanding to other social institutions...

I love the subversive nature of it... the liberational qualities... and the potential for recognising the complex social structures tht come into play....

Kim

 

 

In reply to Sylvia Currie

Re: CURA/BCcampus Second Life tour April 17

by Margaret Corbit -

Exactly right, Silvia! The main issue is the best use of time. And this is based on your learning objectives. If you are using a virtual world (whatever version, and there are many) to present content, then you can provide design/building scaffolding and have students work through a constructivist model or you can prepare a world (very time and energy consuming) that better be pretty darned engaging and they will have a great time interacting and gathering knowledge. If you want them to learn about design, the demands for scaffolding are much less.

If anyone knows of a community developing and sharing learning scaffolding for SL, please post to this forum. I would love to join in.

Cheers,

Margaret

In reply to Margaret Corbit

Re: CURA/BCcampus Second Life tour April 17

by George Kurtz -

Hi Margaret,

I have a group of people that is building a knowledge base of the entire virtual space in the form of a mindmap.  You are welcome to join in and help us build it, as well as use it as an resource tool.  It's a work-in-progress.  There is a section on Learning & Education, as well as a section on Gaming & Learning.  You can just collapse the nodes you are not interested in.
 
The Virtual IT mindmap is a "big picture" view of the virtual space.  I'm adding between 50 to 100 new things to it per day.  I want to identify all of it's components.  I use the mindmap to identify trends.  What is the next big thing?  Where is the big money going to be made?  What will be the next Google or Microsoft?  Plus, I use it as a knowledge base to learn from.  It contains hundreds of links to web sites, articles, conferences, books etc.
 
There are a lot of smart people in the world.  What are they thinking and doing?  I want to build upon their research and ideas.   What are all the new things coming online, etc.  What are all the components that make up Virtual Information Technology because everything boils down to information.
 
Let me know your thoughts.  What did you like about it and what didn't you like about it?  Do you see it as a useful tool?  I know mindmaps are new to a lot of people but it is the best way to identify all the components of a project.
 
To view the mindmap either download the standard viewer or the viewer for IE.  They are free.

Download MindManager Map Viewer for Internet Explorer

http://rcd.typepad.com/rcd/2005/09/free_mindmanage.html

Regards,

George Kurtz

In reply to Sylvia Currie

Re: CURA/BCcampus Second Life tour April 17

by Sylvia Currie -
Here are a few snapshots from our CURA/BCcampus SL tour yesterday. Sorry -- I copied our text chat (or thought I had) but I can't find it now! 
In reply to Corinne Brooks

Re: Second Life places of interest

by George Kurtz -

Hi Everyone,

I have been hearing that there is a need for a central knowledge base of Second Life Places.  I have played around with it and it's a daunting task.  I could do it but I would need a lot of help.  I would need people to feed me: the Classification, Name of the Place, A short description and the teleport.  I have attached a mindmap that I started.  If there is enough interest in helping me built it, I will be more that glad to act as the central focal point.  If not, then it will be too big a task for me to take on with the virtual space research load I currently have.

Let me know your thoughts.

Regards,

George Kurtz

To view the mindmap either download the standard viewer or the viewer for IE.  They are free.

Download MindManager Map Viewer for Internet Explorer

http://rcd.typepad.com/rcd/2005/09/free_mindmanage.html
In reply to George Kurtz

Re: Second Life places of interest

by Emma Duke-Williams -
Hi George
It looks interesting - I have to say that I've thought that a gazetter to SL would be useful - one that could be searchable for various different features.
I suspect that a mindmap could get a bit complex for the number of locations that exist; but then again, though I found yours useful, I'm not a great mindmap person!

Someone (I think on the SLED email list) pointed out Sloog to me (http://www.sloog.org/) - which makes a start, though as it's dependant on tagging, you have to hope that whoever tagged it uses the same phrases that you'd think of.

I've never found the search feature in SL that useful (though that could be my searching technique!)

Incidentally, if anyone, like me, wasn't able to install the MindMap viewer on their computer, it's possible to download George's map & upload it to Mindmeister.com - if you have an account there.

In reply to Emma Duke-Williams

Re: Second Life places of interest

by George Kurtz -

Hi Emma,

I find mindmaps second nature. I guess it's all my years as a computer programmer (using flowcharts), plus my years managing large data centers using (configuration maps).  The only way for me to get my mind wrapped around a large computer network or project is to develop a mindmap.
 
That being said, I believe that category names and the entries in the notes section are key to find what one is looking for.  The Find feature in Mindmanager is not too bad.
 
One interesting note, the Human Brain stores information in a hierarchical format.  So the name--mindmap.
 
Regards,
George Kurtz
In reply to George Kurtz

Re: Second Life places of interest

by Emma Duke-Williams -
I'd never thought of the link between programming diagrams & mind maps! :)

I guess to me, when I've seen mindmaps, they tend to be used far more for mapping ideas that could be fluid - so I've always wondered why someone has put "x" just there, where I'd put it elsewhere. The one that you'd done I found that I agreed with what you'd put where.

I had a go at trying to use them for a while, as several people were singing their praises at work. However, when my laptop had to be rebuilt, I never got round to putting it back on, which I guess highlights how much I'd really got into using them! (I had had MindManager on it, as it's a tablet, and so I was able to use the stylus as a pen, rather than just a mouse. We've got Freemind & Inspiration on the Network, but I've not really investigated them)
Yes, I can see your point about the notes & category names being what I want - but I'd be perfectly happy with them - without the visuals! I guess it's just how people see things differently in their minds.

Maybe I'm just not a very diagrammatic person (though, that said, I really like maps - perhaps that's because I'm generally in agreement with the cartographer as to the location of the hills etc!)

Thanks for your suggestions, by the way, about viewing it - it's our very locked down PCs at work that was the problem. I'm sure I wouldn't have had the same problem, had I had control over the PC.

Emma
In reply to Corinne Brooks

Re: Second Life places of interest

by Dan O'Reilly -

The following are not links of interest in SL, rather they are links of interest about SL:

There is a news program out of Australia called Four Corners and they did an expose about SL (very interesting): http://www.abc.net.au/4corners/content/2007/s1873399.htm This also is an interesting study of SL by researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology: http://www.mattmckeon.com/portfolio/second-life.pdf Another good resource about SL is Reuters:  http://secondlife.reuters.com This is a research study about SL conducted by EPN, a non-profit research group investigating virtual worlds: http://www.epn.net/interrealiteit/EPN-REPORT-The_Second_Life_of_VR.pdf

Dan