June 21, 2012: “Why We Remain in Second Life: What is SL’s ‘Special Sauce’?”

June 21st, 2012 | Posted by iggy in Transcripts

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VWER Meeting Transcripts by Virtual Worlds Education Roundtable is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

Based on a work at www.vwer.org.

VWER June 21, 2012

Transcript of the Virtual Worlds Education Roundtable June 21, 2012

Topic: “Why We Remain in Second Life: What is SL’s ‘Special Sauce’?”

Photos by Iggy. Join our VWER groups at Flickr and Koinup to add your own pictures!

Ignatius Onomatopoeia: Hello everyone and welcome to the Virtual Worlds Education Roundtable! Our topic today is “Why We Remain in Second Life: What is SL’s ‘Special Sauce’? ”

Ignatius Onomatopoeia: This is a public meeting in TEXT CHAT, so we will be keeping and publishing a transcript of what is said. If you’ve not seen our transcripts, you should check them out – they are an excellent information asset.

Grizzla (grizzla.pixelmaid): Or stuff you didn’t sign up for? If we take the job, we take the eval too.

Ignatius Onomatopoeia: I’m Joe Essid, Writing Center Director at the University of Richmond. I’ve finished a semester with students using immersive literary build based on Poe’s “Fall of the House of Usher” in Jokaydia Grid. You’ll find a version in SL too,

Ignatius Onomatopoeia: Thanks to the goodwill of Kali Pizzaro and Glasgow Caledonian University.

Ignatius Onomatopoeia: A bit about this group, if you are new to VWER:

Ignatius Onomatopoeia: The VWER meets each Thursday at 11:30am SLT for an hour and is a forum to educate and inform the community about issues that are important and relevant to education.

Ignatius Onomatopoeia: Our group has met every week for over three years and we get a wide variety of educators, from seasoned veterans to the newly rezzed.

Ignatius Onomatopoeia: The transcripts can be found at our newly updated web site – http://www.vwer.org – select the LIBRARY tab at the top.

Ignatius Onomatopoeia: Please join the Virtual Worlds Education Roundtable group here in SL. If you are on Facebook, please join our group there – Virtual Worlds Education Roundtable.

Ignatius Onomatopoeia: You can also find and post pictures to our Flickr and Koinup groups and follow us on Twitter @VWER. When you blog or tweet, please remember to include the tag #vwer

Ignatius Onomatopoeia: Now, let’s begin as we always do, and introduce ourselves.

Grizzla (grizzla.pixelmaid): Chris Robinson, Georgia Gwinnett College, metro Atlanta

Merlin Moonshadow: Michael Smith, Emory University, Atlanta.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): don’t be shy…let’s hear who you all are 🙂

Chris (schott.tophat): I’m Chris, I’m a teaching professor at the university of missouri, st. louis, and the writing center coordinator for our second life services.

Aurora Tutti: June Power – UNC Pembroke – librarian

Grizzla (grizzla.pixelmaid): …and I’ll add that Merlin/Michael Smith just graduated from the Virtual Worlds certificate program…

Morgan (morgan.voltaire): Casey Lee, UTSA student

Galileo Zeplin: Ed Johnson – Board of Regents, University System of Georgia

Chris (schott.tophat): way to go merlin!

Ridvan-Researcher (ridvan.atolia): Ridvan Ata, PhD Candidate, University of Sheffield, UK

Ozma Malibu: Sandy Andrews, newly retired from Arizona State University

Tori Landau: (looks for somewhere to hide) °͜° Patricia Dean, student at the Open University and also the event coordinator for their Dept of Computing sims, Deep Think, in SL

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): anyone else…(looks for typing hands)

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): okay going once

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): twice

Duncan Ramer: Duncan Ramer all round good guy and behavior modification specialist . . . .

Duncan Ramer: I teach High schoo

Duncan Ramer: school

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): SOLD to the woman in the balloon hat!

Duncan Ramer: usually spelling . . .

Merlin Moonshadow: lol

Grizzla (grizzla.pixelmaid): Marc Rexan is our man of mystery

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): LOL Duncan. Okay we’ll start with an odd question today…which of you has been in SL the LONGEST?

Merlin Moonshadow: And thanks, Grizzla. Just read up. 🙂

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): /me waves at Dan!

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): /me waves back to Iggy.

Grizzla (grizzla.pixelmaid): /me also waves at Dan

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): I’m January 2007..any older rezz dates here?

Merlin Moonshadow: Over five years for me, but I’m sure I’m not the longest.

Grizzla (grizzla.pixelmaid): I’ve been in since Sept. 2007

Merlin Moonshadow: May 07

Ozma Malibu: Oct 2006

Ozma Malibu: I think

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): /me waves both hands at Grizzla.

Merlin Moonshadow: Not in this account, obviously.

Tori Landau: May 2008

Ridvan-Researcher (ridvan.atolia): since March 2010

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): Ozma, you might be our wise elder then

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): Where I’m going with this:

Ozma Malibu: and newly retired to boot

Aurora Tutti: this account 2010 but had a personal account for several years previously

Grizzla (grizzla.pixelmaid): Yes, I am Chris Robinson

Grizzla (grizzla.pixelmaid): ‘s alt

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): This week we had a compelling new virtual world spring on to the scene, Cloud Party

bertique: I have been since… I think February 2011..

Chris (schott.tophat): yea, i logged onto cloud party today

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): Fall ’08 here.

Ozma Malibu: Is it true that it isnt available to Mac users?

Merlin Moonshadow: Hey, Ellie!

Grizzla (grizzla.pixelmaid): I went in for a bit, the day you posted it on FB.

Merlin Moonshadow: I logged in on my Mac in Chrome.

Chris (schott.tophat): nope, i was using chrome on my mac and it was fine.

Grizzla (grizzla.pixelmaid): Ozma, I use a Mac and I got in

Duncan Ramer: Hey I like it already . . . almost

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): funded by one of SL’s founders, Cory Ondrejka (sorry, chat log)

Ozma Malibu: oh good thanks

Morgan (morgan.voltaire): July 2006

Merlin Moonshadow: Ellie and I were discussing that in the SLED list today. 🙂

Ellie Brewster: I just lost two hours of my life in there.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): Cory was Woz to Philip’s Steve Jobs, and well respected by oldbies here in SL

Chris (schott.tophat): i was underwhelmed by cloud party, but that’s because im used to SL’s special sauce…

Ellie Brewster: I have a house… neighbours…

bertique: Me too, house, neighbours, dogs etc.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): we’ll get to Cloud Party soon, but my point it, it ERUPTED into our consciousness…showing the hunger for other virtual worlds, even if they are limited by being linked to Facebook

Merlin Moonshadow: True.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): We all know that someone will build a SL competitor that is viable

Morgan (morgan.voltaire): Has yet to happen.

bertique: I cannot compare fb with sl… these are absolutely different thinks to me…

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): maybe not this one, maybe not Hypergridding on OpenSim

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): but it will happen

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): so my first question to each of you, briefly, what makes SL special to you.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): for me, it’s community.

Merlin Moonshadow: Community.

Chris (schott.tophat): huge social capabilities.

Merlin Moonshadow: Creativity.

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): In comparison to other VWs, Iggy?

Morgan (morgan.voltaire): My friends. I guess that counts as community.

Aurora Tutti: Unlimited possibilities

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): Yes, Dan.

Morgan (morgan.voltaire): And exploration.

Morgan (morgan.voltaire): New things.

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): Community and relative stability.

Ridvan-Researcher (ridvan.atolia): community

Chris (schott.tophat): lots of very well built sims

Chris (schott.tophat): expansivness

Grizzla (grizzla.pixelmaid): I was thinking of creating a new FB account just for Cloud Party

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): Community I get, as with stability, though Cloud Party has been flawless for me so far.

VWER June 21, 2012

Ageliki Mekanic: social network : learning network

Tori Landau: creativity, community… the sheer size of the communities in here compared to other worlds currently

Ozma Malibu: community and resources

bertique: community, exploration & a new way of learning languages

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): Iggy, maybe so, but with 20 students?

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): that said, what do you who said “explore” or “unlimited possibilities” mean?

Tori Landau: and for me, stability, other grids are v laggy for me despite all the tweaking I do

Grizzla (grizzla.pixelmaid): YES

Ellie Brewster: I cant justify bringing students into the FB sphere

Ageliki Mekanic: limitless creativity

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): @Dan, I was on a Cloud Party island with at least 15 and NO lag

Morgan (morgan.voltaire): There are just thousands of places to choose from. Lots of things to see.

Grizzla (grizzla.pixelmaid): I wish there was a way to be neighbors in CP w people we already know.

Aurora Tutti: that Second Life has so many options available limited only by ingenuity – so much to explore and experience

Tori Landau: agree with Ageliki

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): Sounds promising. But prior to Cloud Party, that has been a problem on opensim grids.

Morgan (morgan.voltaire): And you can do almost anything here.

Chris (schott.tophat): you can’t fly in cloud party

Chris (schott.tophat): i think

Morgan (morgan.voltaire): Like, think of something, anything, you can probably find it here.

Morgan (morgan.voltaire): And then some.

Morgan (morgan.voltaire): It’s amazing.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): @Ellie, all my students have FB accounts or they cannot stay in touch. Does your school limit access?

Ellie Brewster: cant fly, no

Marc Rexen: Loading now for me, a male in the beginner zone.

Morgan (morgan.voltaire): I think it’d take a LOT to come up with something to compete. And I think it’d take years and years of development.

Morgan (morgan.voltaire): It’s a long ways away.

Marc Rexen: Looks like the browser versions of SL they tried a year ago.

Chris (schott.tophat): user generated stuff, when fully adopted seems to develop quicly though.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): Here’s the Cloud Party URL: http://www.cloudpartytime.com/

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): Cloud party is browser based–no viewer needed?

Chris (schott.tophat): *quickly

Tori Landau: ty Iggy

Duncan Ramer: we restrict access to FB, MP, MYB and the like . . . in High School its a problem

Chris (schott.tophat): yeah, that is impressive, browser based

Ellie Brewster: Look me up. Be my neighbour

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): @Chris, I agree. New open virtual worlds will catch up fast in terms of content

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): and features such as flying are only a set of wings away 🙂

Marc Rexen: WASD keys work. 🙂

Aurora Tutti: I think if SL ever came up with a browser based viewer they would see a serious upsurge in participation.

Morgan (morgan.voltaire): I’ve been here for several years and it hasn’t happened yet. That’s why I am doubtful.

Morgan (morgan.voltaire): I have been on the search for other virtual worlds before.

Ridvan-Researcher (ridvan.atolia): is it user-generated or content ready ?

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): I’d argue that community is all that current keeps me in SL. I do my work in OpenSim now

Chris (schott.tophat): it might be doubtful because people fear accessibility to VWs

Chris (schott.tophat): learning curve, etc.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): @Ridvan, the building tools in Cloud Party are CLEARLY derived from SL, thanks to Cory’s influence

Morgan (morgan.voltaire): And they’re all different, too.

Ti Mosienko: the appeal of SL is a stable and robust platform

Chris (schott.tophat): but cloud party DOES make it accessible, which is step forward–even if it sucks right now. haha

Ozma Malibu: I think that the IPO gave FB some credibility. More newspapers are requiring FB accounts in order to comment on stories. I think that much as I am convinced that it’s a bad idea to use FB for identity creation, it isn’t going to be stoppable.

Ozma Malibu: So yeah I will try Cloud Party.

Tori Landau: I’ve not yet had time to fully explore other VWs but are they not becoming more specialised than SL… commerce or education etc whereas SL still has everything? Apologies if I’m wrong on this

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): Does it have MOAP?

Merlin Moonshadow: I think that if someone develops a user-friendly, stable, creative platform, the user base and the content will spring up quickly.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): I admit I don’t like the limited look for the avatars in Cloud Party, but that will change fast

Ageliki Mekanic: Compare SL and Opensim community please

Morgan (morgan.voltaire): Facebook is an entirely different monster. It’s become ridiculous.

Grizzla (grizzla.pixelmaid): And I couldn’t find any hats…

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): @Morgan, in theory, something like this new world won’t need FB to join. But my sense is that they wanted users fast and it’s a good place to go hunting

Ageliki Mekanic: @Morgan…it depend on the use

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): Of course, the big question is whether or not Facebook is Myspace.

Marc Rexen: Like most “first timers” to something new, they will love Cloud Party, but it’s sorta like all of the other grids other than SL, a pale reflection of what it is here in SL.

Aurora Tutti: I have not been impressed.

Chris (schott.tophat): @dan–i think facebook has learned from myspace, so no.

Chris (schott.tophat): but what new problems will they fall into?

Aurora Tutti: I know it’s stil beta – but it just doesn’t have much functionality at all

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): @Marc, for now. Given time and lower costs, I think SL will die slowly. I’ve been convinced of that for years. A browser based world that is mobile friendly will put SL out of business

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): Their user base growth has slowed down, we’ll see.

Chris (schott.tophat): or sl will adapt?

Chris (schott.tophat): i hear that sl is dying allllll the time. but it never does.

Merlin Moonshadow: Without innovation from SL, I agree, Iggy.

Morgan (morgan.voltaire): I feel like it will adapt, like Chris says.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): Cloud Party, for its warts, is still in Beta. It needs only a WebGL compatible browser and no special client

Marc Rexen: I agree, SL is going to die unless they can get new people into the game.

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): That’s a real plus, Iggy, to use with students.

Morgan (morgan.voltaire): It has withstood nearly a decade.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): It seems likely that LL will release a new product…not SL

Chris (schott.tophat): i can’t see it dying.

Ti Mosienko: the sheer variety of things to do in SL is attractive. Scale matters.

Tori Landau: The OU will be using Unity for some courses next year si I wonder if if it will still be in SL this time next year

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): that’s been in the works for some time. Rumor has it that it is a text-based adventure game

Grizzla (grizzla.pixelmaid): AOL hasn’t died either, but…

Merlin Moonshadow: Well, it won’t die until something better comes along. But I think that’s inevitable.

Marc Rexen: The learning curve is still considerable. The attraction is still, once you’re over the hump, you can “do anything” here.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): SL is set to lose 1000 more sims this year, too

Chris (schott.tophat): yOU GOT MAIL

Merlin Moonshadow: The question is if Linden Lab will make something better first.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): LOL Chris! Back to the MUD

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): But if Cloud Party does catch on in FB, SL will be dwarfed in short order.

Ozma Malibu: Do you think that SL is trying to focus on gaming?

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): To be successful, then, and keep us present (I’ll recap)

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): community

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): good content

Chris (schott.tophat): i think it tried a few months ago with that game….what was it called?

Marc Rexen: People will tire of Cloud Party as a game…LL should target the folks in Cloud, which is what FB does with marketing anyway, for SL. 🙂

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): lots of options

Chris (schott.tophat): linden something?

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): what else?

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): Linden Realms?

Marc Rexen: Friends, content, familiarity.

Chris (schott.tophat): yes!

Merlin Moonshadow: Stability.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): easy interface and ability to create

Chris (schott.tophat): wasn’t that a failure?

Praxislady Witt: does Cloud Party use mesh?

Marc Rexen: Realms was a joke.

Chris (schott.tophat): i think cloud party does use mesh

Grizzla (grizzla.pixelmaid): For me – community, good content, and (comparative) stability

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): yes, you can upload mesh to Cloud Party

Tori Landau: oh yes, find the crystals or something, sheesh

Marc Rexen: So was their Amazon jungle thing — I reamed them in the survey on it.

Chris (schott.tophat): so dumb

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): stability

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): thanks, Grizzla

Marc Rexen: Artists are still desperate for sims that can handle a couple of hundred people.

Praxislady Witt: dito, Grizzla :))

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): I’d not tried either game in SL, even though I’m premium. Face it, SL cannot compete on that level with something like Mass Effect. If prices were lower, it would get more open-ended RPers. My group IRL would LOVE to own a sim

Ellie Brewster: That’s the Difference. CP is not for roleplay

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): Is cost a factor, then, in keeping us here? It drove me out from using Sl for classes

Ozma Malibu: So the issue is the price and not just for education

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): Not yet, Ellie. We’ll see how CP pans out

Chris (schott.tophat): i think when we think of sl as a game, or gaming, we are thinking wrongly, or too narrowly about sl.

Ellie Brewster: Cost is a factor for me, I am really scrambling

Merlin Moonshadow: My hope is that the gaming elements signal innovation and flexibility rather than a new focus on ‘gaming’ in SL.

bertique: @Chris agree for 100%

Ozma Malibu: yes we lose our sim in December if I don’t think of something

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): @Chris, agreed. I see SL as a place where you can make your own games or simulations…that is compelling

Duncan Ramer: @ Chris I agree totally that is why I still have an island here for my students

Ellie Brewster: @Iggy – how can it be roleplay if you can click on their FB? doesn’t that destroy the atmosphere?

Merlin Moonshadow: Nothing wrong with more options.

Chris (schott.tophat): i guess to me, it’s about immersion, opportunity, and presence. a social thing.

Duncan Ramer: the benefits totally out weigh the costs

Chris (schott.tophat): i mean, i love games.

Chris (schott.tophat): but still

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): @Ellie, for now, yes. I suspect that CP will offer alts at some point if they want to use the platform for gaming

Praxislady Witt: oh, just read where Cloud Party is a Facebok tentacle?

Chris (schott.tophat): that’s one thing about cp I DON NOT LIKE–links you diretly to your RL account

Ozma Malibu: I know that SL always was billed as not a game, but with costs for education so high, thought that they might have given up on everyone else to focus on gamers. Sounds like this isn’t the case.

Chris (schott.tophat): the filter of the avatar is almost gone

Grizzla (grizzla.pixelmaid): tentacle, eh? Sounds squishy

Ellie Brewster: Yes, Praxislady, and all the time you’re playing, there are those FB adverts at the side

Aurora Tutti: Sorry – have to duck out for RL meeting … looking forward to the rest ofthe transcript. Have a great day! =)

Tori Landau: agrees with Chris. Re. cost, currently it is cheaper to keep universities in sl and depend on volunteers than to have to pay someone to set everythig up again on another grid.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): For educators, Chris, that’s not a big deal, is it? For gamers it would be.

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): Immersion and presence can be had from other VWs. Opportunity, or established community seems to me to be the biggest advantage SL has over others at the present, but that could change with the maturation of opensim, or something new like Cloud Party (though I’m not a fan of the name!).

Chris (schott.tophat): yeah, maybe not. but the ability to feel comfortable with an avatar is important sometimes.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): Some of us put RL info in our SL profile, after all. I understand the appeal of the “nym” however.

Chris (schott.tophat): agreed

Duncan Ramer: which brings me to a point of this conversation are we talking about education or gaming?

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): Dan, I agree as well about the CP name…sounds like something at the Frat house

Praxislady Witt: Reaction Grid is ideal for education

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): exactly, Iggy.

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): My focus/comments have more to do with ed.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): Duncan, why not both? We have gaming in edu now…and each platform offers different affordances for building games or simulations.

Ozma Malibu: Even if you put RL info into your SL profile, you might not want FB to know everything about you.

Camie Rembrandt: @Ellie you don’t need to see all that pub. Access using its.cloudpartytime.com

Chris (schott.tophat): i love that url. lol

Ozma Malibu: Oh, true Iggy, gaming in edu.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): My Usher students wanted a combat HUD and a more gamelike experience. It was pretty universal.

Ellie Brewster: TY Camie

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): I’ve contacted a Spellfire designer about a custom HUD

Duncan Ramer: they why have sl at all why not cancel our sl islands and let them play Nplay ?

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): then we can use weapons, traps, etc. even animals that bite you!

Duncan Ramer: then

Ozma Malibu: Yes, students these days do expect certain gaming elements in anything technology-based. it’s a way of communicating I think.

Merlin Moonshadow: It’s what they relate to.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): Duncan, I think it is about controlling the content ourselves. Games don’t let you create much content.

Tori Landau: Agree, a number of our newer students are coming fom gaming backgrounds

Duncan Ramer: exactly!

Ozma Malibu: Gaming as platform with tacit agreement that certain actions will lead to particular events

Chris (schott.tophat): if anyone has not, they should Reality is Broken by Jane McGonigal.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): this is Castronova’s theory in the book Exodus to the Virtual World: all of human experience will increasingly feature gamelike elements, including our day jobs!

Chris (schott.tophat): describes how games interact with our lives in interesting ways, even learning

Claudia13 Rossini: (does what i shouldn’t do) students, catering to them, is not my idea of providing them with a good and useful education….the real world won’t cater to them once they get out in it

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): @Chris, tell us more…I’ve seen ads for that book

Duncan Ramer: yes BUT to use that line of logic and carry it to its end we would never have them read anything that isn’t a comic book or use technology for anything other than games . . .

Grizzla (grizzla.pixelmaid): /me agrees w Duncan

Grizzla (grizzla.pixelmaid): or Duncan, as the case may be

Duncan Ramer: LOL

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): @Claudia, but if you can both cater to them and achieve pedagogical goals, why not?

Ozma Malibu: The game of life made visible. No, you could still earn points, or points for a team, by reading.

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): I don’t think it’s an either/or proposition?

Chris (schott.tophat): The book addresses (sometimes broadly, and not well) how games give us RL problem solving skills, which drew me into it.

Chris (schott.tophat): gives nice details from studies.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): I’ll be sure to read it!

Praxislady Witt: will educators not well versed in gaming have to rely on others to develop?

Chris (schott.tophat): that’s the problem im running into now praxis…i NEED BUILDERS!!!

Ellie Brewster: Isn’t it more a state of mind?

Chris (schott.tophat): haha

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): In my case, Praxislady, yes. I cannot design an SL combat system

Duncan Ramer: I don’t think its either or BUT I do think we need to have divisions

Ozma Malibu: ASU is or was (I retired remember) working on an M.Ed. that’s based on badges to earn, rather than on courses.

Chris (schott.tophat): are there good companies/folks that will hire themselves out for scripting/building educational stuff?

Chris (schott.tophat): /me is naive

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): I do like how Cloud Party gives you some virtual land for finishing the building tutorial. LL used to do that with the First Land gifts (say, in 2003)

Duncan Ramer: how may builders do you want I graduated 15 builders this year

Chris (schott.tophat): wow!

Claudia13 Rossini: i build Schott, though not for free, and not cheaply

Ozma Malibu: Vesuvius is a good company that has done a lot of educational and nonprofit work.

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): Games are great, and can enhance education, but my interest is more in providing a persistent virtual space for online students, so that they don’t just have textual conversation in an LMS.

Chris (schott.tophat): there is ther problem claudia…im quite poor.

Chris (schott.tophat): haha

Duncan Ramer: as a developer I charge $65.00 USD an hour to build and script

Ellie Brewster: We need a virtual Angie’s List for builders

Tori Landau: Chris, through the builders brewery group you may be able to ask for people

Claudia13 Rossini: and you expect good builds for little to no money?

Chris (schott.tophat): thanks tori. i’ll start searching around.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): @Dan, is that partly because you teach distance ed? For those of us with all F2f classes, other aspects of the virtual become important

Chris (schott.tophat): i dont expect, no.

Ozma Malibu: some builders can repurpose wonderful things that they have created.

Duncan Ramer: However, I graduate at least 10 builders every year that go to colleges that can’t get into a program that uses sl . . . yet

Claudia13 Rossini: /me sits on my hands

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): Agreed, Iggy–which is why games/simulations are very important.

Praxislady Witt: Washington University has a great virtual world builders certificate

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): My point is we need both, game elements and persistent virtual space.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): @Duncan, but if you teach them the principles of good design, that can apply to other interfaces (looks to Claudia with a grin). So much of SL is poorly built!

Tori Landau: I wonder if that would be open to people from outside the USA

Tori Landau: the certificate

Merlin Moonshadow: It is, Tori.

Ellie Brewster: I would rather depend on reputation than certificates.

Merlin Moonshadow: I just graduated, and we had people from all over the world in our class.

Duncan Ramer: I don’t think games are important . . . . I DO think Simulations, creative construction, creative programming (scripting) and social interaction outside of a students geographical and social niche IS

Claudia13 Rossini: i think that’s very smart Ellia

Chris (schott.tophat): games to promote motivation if done well

Merlin Moonshadow: Yes, a certificate only means as much as the reputation of the people who have it.

bertique: sorry, i have to leave… great topic, guys!

Duncan Ramer: as a reward perhaps

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): it can be a small distinction, Duncan. If Usher becomes more game-like, it’s still a simulation with a HUD and some consequences.

Ellie Brewster: Bye Bertique

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): thanks, bertique!

Praxislady Witt: @Tori, absolutley, like all learning institutions

Chris (schott.tophat): that’s true duncan. but i think there’s something else too, a sense of self satisfaction.

Chris (schott.tophat): i remember playing the same mario level 50 times just to beat the dang thing.

Duncan Ramer: I’m not sure I am willing to go down that road Iggy

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): I’m worried about being left by the roadside, Duncan

Duncan Ramer: why is that?

Praxislady Witt: Merlin, I attended one of their graduation sites, was very impressed by what was taught

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): Whatever road you go down really has a lot to do with what your learning objectives are for the course.

Merlin Moonshadow: Using elements of gaming in education is just another tool. If it’s effective, why not use it?

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): did anyone read the article in the Atlantic about game design heretic Jon Blow?

Chris (schott.tophat): no. i have to check that out

Duncan Ramer: Frankly wath we are doing in our school would scare most of you to death

Duncan Ramer: what

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): It makes perfect sense for a gamelike experience with the House of Usher for a literature class that wants students to be immersed in the literary elements.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): he made Braid (Mario cued that reference) and he HATES contemporary games. He wants games to become art (as so much as SL has)

Chris (schott.tophat): agree with dan, that would be awesome!

Merlin Moonshadow: Oh, it’s a good program, Praxislady. Just talking about certificates in general.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): I’ll find the RUL

Chris (schott.tophat): Braid is fantastic btw

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): URL even

Duncan Ramer: I think certificate are a good thing

Duncan Ramer: I have my whole curr. set into certificates

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): “The Most Dangerous Gamer” http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2012/05/the-most-dangerous-gamer/8928/

Marc Rexen: I still want to rush to say that the missing element in so many Distance Education programs, and this will include the new initiative announced by our Governor, will be the “human face to face discussion” aspect.

Marc Rexen: I got into SL 6 years ago to see if Virtual Worlds, specifically SL, can plug the “interaction at a distance” issue.

Ellie Brewster: Which is really only provided in virtual worlds

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): Which can be accomplished here, Marc.

Marc Rexen: SL can do, nothing else I have run into can.

Merlin Moonshadow: I just finished the program and got the certificate. I just mean that the reputation of the program is based on the reputations of the graduates it produces.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): @Marc, this is part of a huge debate in Virginia now. But will Virtual Worlds accelerate the end of face to face? Or can they bring back an element of that experience?

Marc Rexen: I shudder thinking of students doing 120 credits “without seeing or touching a human.”

Chris (schott.tophat): i get asked this all the time “why not skype?”

Ellie Brewster: This year I taught with two grad students who used webconferencing. As far as I can see, no comparison

Marc Rexen: At least SL gives you a very good rendition of interaction.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): UVA’s President was fired by their board last week, partly because she shares your opinion, Marc.

Chris (schott.tophat): videoconference is less real to me than a VW

Marc Rexen: Sky and video are so synthesized…they are better than asynchronous text.

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): Sense of presence is increased with a sense of place, a sense of proximity that you have in VWs compared to videoconferencing.

Ellie Brewster: Yes, and the students aren’t under the instructor’s thumb in the same way as they are in videoconferencing

Marc Rexen: But there’s nothing like walking through a building with someone, camming and talking and pointing things out.

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): That’s an interesting point, Ellie.

Merlin Moonshadow: Immersion.

Tori Landau: was about to type same as Chris… I find this more interactive and stimulating than using Skype

Tori Landau: excuse typos

Duncan Ramer: totally!

Marc Rexen: It does work, it does allow for “presence” to be transmitted…and presence is very important for teaching.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): agreed…Skype and similar are limited and could just reinforce a teacher-Centered classroom.

Ellie Brewster: good for 1 on 1

Chris (schott.tophat): i agreee with iggy 100% about that.

Marc Rexen: Better for gorup discussions.

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): You can’t send students off onto virtual field trips in small groups with Skype.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): For you, Dan, that must be a reason to stay in SL

Chris (schott.tophat): however, the learning is smaller with skype??? im not even sure about that.

Camie Rembrandt: So we stay in SL mainly because of content?

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): Or have them meet with other writers at places like Book Island.

Marc Rexen: Especially when folks are comfortable with the SL interface, and comfortable with themselves – you really do get “people to people” talking where both sides are socially at ease and focused on the conversation.

Camie Rembrandt: Because we can have interaction in OS…

Grizzla (grizzla.pixelmaid): Field trips are a reason for us, too

Morgan (morgan.voltaire): I come here for the connections, mostly … The friendships I’ve made are some of the best I’ve ever had.

Chris (schott.tophat): content, relationships, immersion, presence, expansiveness,–those are my reasons.

Morgan (morgan.voltaire): But I guess you can find that in any virtual world … but I haven’t.

Morgan (morgan.voltaire): People seem more real here.

Marc Rexen: I’ve tried several, and SL still wins.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): true, Camie. My OpenSim build is larger and more interesting than the one in SL, but SL has better premade props

Camie Rembrandt: but, except for content, all that is available in other VWs, right?

Marc Rexen: Voice, text, movement, content, there is virtually nothing that cannot be done is SL.

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): Is there MOAP in Cloud Party?

Ellie Brewster: good question

Marc Rexen: Animations allow everything.

Tori Landau: the only avatar I relate to is this one… even though in other VWs I use the same name… I don’t connect with the av but that is probably because don’t spend the same time in them

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): except pay tier, Marc. Except that.

Chris (schott.tophat): im sorry to sound ignorant, what’s a MOAP?

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): media on a prim.

Camie Rembrandt: yes, they allow for users to create animations

Chris (schott.tophat): thank ou

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): yw

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): Not that I know, Dan. But I’ve only been in a couple of hours

Camie Rembrandt: media on prim you get by using Firestorm, even on Kitely

Marc Rexen: If the volume of people into SL explodes, tier will go down.

Grizzla (grizzla.pixelmaid): In other VWs, Camie (in my experience, anyway), there isn’t the “concentrated community” we have in SL. Harder to find people

Praxislady Witt: anyone a fan of Clark Aldridge?

Chris (schott.tophat): lol, way to look at the bright side marc

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): @Marc, that won’t happen unless LL changes how it markets SL (well, they don’t market it)

Camie Rembrandt: So it’s content and community?

Duncan Ramer: I agree with Marc

Marc Rexen: They don’t really know what SL is…why the Realms and Amazon jungle mistakes were made.

Marc Rexen: The legacy of King Don still glowers over this place.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): Remember too, that tier went up during the “hype” years here (recall the OpenSpaces debate?)

Grizzla (grizzla.pixelmaid): Sorry, I’m a bit behind – but about the paying-tier issue – for us, paying tier is MUCH cheaper than paying the people who could do it outside SL

Marc Rexen: They mistakenly assumed that teens were the market, they aren’t, it’s older settled folks.

Praxislady Witt: Clark Aldrich is one of the top five active educational game designers in the world.

Duncan Ramer: BUT I don’t see it with the same view as Iggy. I think is purely financial. Everyone is hurting now I had to work like Crazy to keep my sl funding for next year

Marc Rexen: I’ve quizzed a bunch that came in during the 08 early 09 period.

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): @Grizzla, do you mean hosting your own opensim would be more expensive?

Marc Rexen: It was on the strength of a documentary that highlighted the social, somewhat seamier social.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): Marc, that’s a good point. I suspect that the right campaign would reach the demographic you mention.

Marc Rexen: All of them older…this is the market for the masses.

Camie Rembrandt: What about being able to use OAR files, does that matter to you?

Grizzla (grizzla.pixelmaid): Hosting it and paying people (employees or contractors) to do the building, scripting, etc

Praxislady Witt: Clark also teaches how to write and build gaming

Camie Rembrandt: We cannot use OAR files in SL…

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): @Camie…to me a LOT it matters so I can back up Usher off-world

Marc Rexen: This is the same demographic that need to either go through College, or pursue Degree Completion.

Ellie Brewster: But that’s the thing that shook me up about Cloud Party. While I was there, in the time I was exploring the house I’d bought, two people moved in, both old SL residents, both over 40

Grizzla (grizzla.pixelmaid): “We’ll just do it ourselves instead of paying LL” carries very high costs too, just different costs.

Praxislady Witt: he is a graduate of the Univ Washington certificate program and has an AV in SL

Tori Landau: agree Grizzla

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): True, Grizzla, but I’m a DIYer at heart.

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): But you don’t pay LL to build/script, do you Grizzla?

Camie Rembrandt: I’ve been working on OAR, but of course I can’t use them here…

Chris (schott.tophat): thanks for the great conversation everyone, i have to go! take care!

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): I have come to hate Linden Lab and don’t want them taking my money any more.

Camie Rembrandt: … so had to set up shop in Kitely.

Tori Landau: bye Chris!

Duncan Ramer: I think its going to be Very Common to have Avatars in different VW . . .

Ellie Brewster: When I think of all the goodwill those guys have wasted

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): very true

Marc Rexen: Don’t get me wrong, I see lots of good educational builds and innovative teaching ala the Tacoma Nursing or the Border guards.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): So we have 5 minutes…what have we not covered?

Duncan Ramer: I don’t see that as a problem or something to make an issue over

Grizzla (grizzla.pixelmaid): And Iggy, you have DIY skills – and you do it because you want to. Without someone like you, a college would have to find and pay someone with the skills – or pay them while they’re learning & doing, as they do with me

Marc Rexen: But the “mass market” is the social and the educational reflection of that is degree completion programs for older adults.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): @Marc, the Border Guard project moves to Unity 3D at year’s end

Marc Rexen: This is definately an Adult grid, be it used for social or for education.

Duncan Ramer: Send them My way I would like to build a shop in my back yard and I could use the funds!

Tori Landau: @ Duncan, most people I know already have avs in several different VWs, residents of the metaverse now

Marc Rexen: Older folks, pursing degree completion, trapped at home, need to interact with other students and instructors.

Camie Rembrandt: @Tori that’s true

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): I suspect, Tori, that will become more common.

Duncan Ramer: @ Tori I know! I have several as it is

Merlin Moonshadow: So what keeps many of us in SL is the lack of a user-friendly, cost-effective alternative?

Marc Rexen: They aren’t going to get enough of that in video-conferenced classes.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): /me sings “community!”

Duncan Ramer: More than that I think

Ellie Brewster: and I thinkwe want to move as a community

Marc Rexen: Agree Merlin.

Ellie Brewster: We’re all watching each other, we’d like to go together, if we have to go

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): Jokaydia Grid has some of that…all educators who left SL en masse and share content now.

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): Agreed, Ellie.

Ellie Brewster: As Tom Lehrer says

Merlin Moonshadow: Hi, Ran!

Marc Rexen: The simple fat that, horror, I’m going to say it, sex works so well here, means that it is a place where people can get comfortable with each other socially.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): Hey, Grizzla! Do we have a topic for next week? This has been a great chat, btw.

Marc Rexen: I’ve been to way too many marriages, both SL and RL, that started here — the interface does allow presence and trust to be “transmitted.”

Grizzla (grizzla.pixelmaid): @Merlin – I think that’s largely true. Recently when filling out a “service eval” after LL messed up our billing again, I wrote that I’m one of many who hopes LL will either get its act together or soon get a superior competitor.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): looks like an open forum next week!

Randy Hinrichs (ran.hienrichs): Hi Merlin

Merlin Moonshadow: So people grumble about SL, but the community keeps us here until something significantly better comes along. 🙂

Marc Rexen: Good discussion, thanks.

Ellie Brewster: As usual, lots going on. Glad I came

Camie Rembrandt: @Merlin agree

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): I enjoyed it! Now back into the Virginia sauna

Ellie Brewster: Check out Cloud Part for next time

Tori Landau: Agrees with Marc re relationships and trust etc

VWER June 21, 2012

Claudia13 Rossini: i stay here just to see Grizzie’s hats

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): Like we all did with AOL ten years ago. The best social network until it wasn’t.

Ozma Malibu: The cost is my issue regardless of whether upfront or now. I wanted to do more with vets with disabilities. VA told me that they would like to do that too since so many are in rural areas, but that they had no funds at all for education.

Marc Rexen: Yup, like Usenet and BBSI.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): read that article too…Jon Blow is brilliant and says a lot about why games don’t satisfy, artistically or intellectually

Praxislady Witt: @Ellie, but I closed my FB account when security prob and ads took iver

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): you can explore Cloud Party anonymously from the Web portal

Scarlett Sismondi: there is a wounded warrior island and the person putting it together would like to join with someone for funding

Tori Landau: I’m on FB but not happy about it. Felt it was a necessity.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): but your content won’t persist

Marc Rexen: FB is pissing off “so many.”

Merlin Moonshadow: Personally, I like SL, but I see the issues with the learning curve and cost. I hope that LL is looking towards the future, but I wouldn’t be surprised if someone else beats them to an alternative.

Marc Rexen: It’s where MySpace was when Murdoch bought it.

Randy Hinrichs (ran.hienrichs): I’m late to the party here: could I indulge you all for a summary. Why are people staying in SL.

Ozma Malibu: Thanks Scarlett I may look into that again.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): @Marc, just like LL…we’ll see another and better social network emerge

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): I like Google+ better than FB.

Marc Rexen: G+ fan too.

Merlin Moonshadow: Cloud Party is definitely of interest.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): to think that I was once a SL evangelist…now I’m a jilted lover, just like AJ

Marc Rexen: Always do Iggy — that’s the one thing I’ve learned…there is always “another.” 🙂

Merlin Moonshadow: Community and Content, Randy.

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): but VWER remains unique. Thank you folks!

Tori Landau: lol Iggy, well I still like SL the best even though fed-up with LL

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): And stability.

Praxislady Witt: me tried other VWs and am satisfied with what SL offers

Scarlett Sismondi: me too

Iggy (ignatius.onomatopoeia): off tot he bus stop before the next big storm…bye all!

Prof. Dan (profdan.netizen): SL is the best, until it’s not, which could happen any time.

 

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