China’s newly-announce Chinese Recreational District puts virtual worlds on the legitimate map. In the 40-square-mile area of West Beijing, they intend to open the largest virtual worlds park in the world, and are establishing a virtual economy that will interact with real world economies worldwide. They will target businesses to help them do business virtually. It sounds very exciting, but are there causes for concern? We’ll soon see. It opens in June, 2008.
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Archive for November, 2007
Brookstone announced the opening of its 3D virtual retail store on the Web. It can be accessed using the Kinset browser plugin, and provides a good user experience — as long as the user’s system uses Windows XP and has a lot of memory.
As much as I love virtual worlds, I don’t see the value of turning a core business tool like email into some sort of Super Mario Brothers levels quest. 3D Email is a flawed product, but a good example of the kinds of mind stretching that will have to happen for 3D or virtual reality to have a meaningful impact on everyday business. I believe it’s important, however, to applaud valiant attempts at something completely new, even when they fail.
It’s been over a year since I wrote anything about machinima, and since then it has started to take off. Here are some of the new things I discovered when I went surfing last night to find some entertainment.
Educators who are experienced with simulations know that learners engage the content of a course or lesson in different ways, but adults universally want to participate in their education. Adults learn by doing. Clicking a “next” button between screens of text is not the same as “doing”. Adults want their brains to be challenged. That is one reason why the concept of questing has so much potential for virtual learning scenarios. Virtual quests let the user take control and think about their own learning experience.
Here is my suggested definition of “Virtual Worlds”: A persistent simulated space inhabited by multiple concurrent or nonconcurrent users who share a sense of physical embodiment that enables them to interact imaginatively with others and experience real world outcomes. Think of it as a concentrated definition. Here’s how I got there…