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Happenings - Virtual Worlds
What, why and where of happenings in virtual worlds
Curated by Alexina
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Today's Campus Presents - September/October 2013 - Vol 5, No. 5

Today's Campus magazine covers the people, campuses, and companies making business news in higher education" The short article, "Virtual Learning Landscape" is on pages 10-11.

Alexina's insight:

"Virtual Learning Landscape: The newest landscape for higher education" by Brian Shuster. The 2-page article is in Today's Campus, published online as a flipbook at Uberflip.com. It may take an extra minute to load.  He mentions using a virtual world platform to build historical settings. One mentioned is "Harlem Renaissance", by Dr. Bryan Carter.

 

I know of two instances where history is learned through immersive learning in a virtual world. A graduate program for future librarians at the SJSU School of Library and Information Science has a Fall 2013 course "Virtual Worlds: Life in Tudor Times" where students must help recreate a small tudor village and do role playing.  In Spring 2014 they are offering "Virtual Worlds: Traveling Through Times and Space: BIrth of the Renaissance in Florence". 

 

There are are hundreds of virtual worlds that have free accounts. However, there is a steep learning curve if the participants are going to be required to build a whole village. Building and role-playing require a lot of research by the participants. 

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InWorldz launches mobile fitness app – Hypergrid Business

InWorldz launches mobile fitness app – Hypergrid Business | Happenings - Virtual Worlds | Scoop.it
Alexina's insight:

Have your avatar exercise along with you by using a free mobile fitness app. CTO David Daeschler says, "The app is currently able to track the level of activity when walking, running, and using stationary bikes and elliptical trainers. Turning isn’t currently supported, just forward motion, so in order for avatars to use this to, say, explore a scenic region, they need to be following a pre-built path."

 

Just imagine the future creative expansion of this to something besides fitness. I am thinking business and education uses. The InWorldz virtual grid an exciting place to be...no wonder it is growing so fast! 

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Bryn Oh: New terms of service aka kiss me you giant bomb

Bryn Oh: New terms of service aka kiss me you giant bomb | Happenings - Virtual Worlds | Scoop.it

The only other thing I can think of is if they were planning on closing down second life and selling it.  I imagine, theoretically, they could sell it for more if they owned the entire thing from code to content. A new owner would have the freedom to make drastic changes if they had to, but perhaps without that new TOS they could be wary of being handcuffed. 


Via Asil
Alexina's insight:

Have you been following discussions on the recent Second Life TOS changes? Friends and I moved over to the InWorldz grid ages ago when we discovered affordable virtual land ($75 / month and curently no setup fee), a lot of prims for creating (35,000 to 45,000 per region instead of 15,000), many wonderful and generous InWorldz residents. Since the TOS changes, artists and other creators are moving over to InWorldz.

 

There are many grids based on OpenSim software available. Maria Korolov of Hypergrid Business http://www.hypergridbusiness.com/ keeps an updated list of non-SL grids and is a good resource for finding out more about the various grids. Of those listed on  http://www.hypergridbusiness.com/opensim-hosting-providers/ my favorite is InWorldz. I am looking at Kitely for a side adventure.

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Asil's curator insight, September 28, 2013 8:40 PM

Here's a sad breadcrumb: "...it seems Madpea might leave as a result of these new terms."

 

Maybe if enough quality creators leave, the Lab will re-think this new ToS. 

Asil's comment, September 29, 2013 4:28 PM
@ Alexina. I've tested most of the OpenSim worlds (including inWorldZ and Kitely). And I've played around with Sim-on-a-Stick tech. But SecondLife is still the 800lb gorilla; it has the user base and it has years of inventory and builds in it. To recreate the two SIMs I have in SL would probably take me about 1,000 hours and I just don't have the time. At some point, it might be worth the effort, but for now, SL is still the v-world that fits my projects best.
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Making a Flat Cutout for Second Life using Photoshop ...

Making a Flat Cutout for Second Life using Photoshop ... | Happenings - Virtual Worlds | Scoop.it
Video tutorial showing how to make a flat cardboard cutout for Second Life, similar to the Flat Rodvik Linden.

Via Dulcie Mills
Alexina's insight:

This may be a useful technique for those in other virtual worlds too. We had cutouts of avatars wearing steampunk or fantasy clothing in some of our virtual community library exhibitions in InWorldz.

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One cancer survivor's virtual journey - Hypergrid Business

One cancer survivor's virtual journey - Hypergrid Business | Happenings - Virtual Worlds | Scoop.it
Hypergrid Business
One cancer survivor's virtual journey
Hypergrid Business
I first came to Second Life after meeting a musician who told me about live concerts in the virtual world.
Alexina's insight:

Relay for Life fundraising is in other virtual worlds too, such as InWorldz. Daniel Voyager summarizes the 2nd InWorldz Relay For Life in InWorldz that begins August 24th. http://danielvoyager.wordpress.com/2013/07/27/inworldz-2nd-relay-for-life-season-2013/

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InWorldz 2nd Relay For Life Season 2013

InWorldz 2nd Relay For Life Season 2013 | Happenings - Virtual Worlds | Scoop.it
Great news to announce that there will be a 2nd official season of Relay For Life on the grid of InWorldz which kicks off from 9am on  Saturday 24th August 2013. I'm really looking forward to the 2...

Via Mal Burns
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Cloud Party | Virtual Worlds Best Practices in Education

What is Cloud Party?

The virtual world of Cloud Party is built on WebGL and HTML5 technology, so it runs directly in a modern browser. Copy and share your URL with anyone in the world and they can be there with you in seconds. No plugins. No downloads. For a fast start to creating a Cloud Party account, read this Cloud Party Quick Guide for Educators.


Via Pilar Pamblanco
Alexina's insight:

Note that Google Chrome is the browser of choice to access Cloud Party. I had problems when connecting with Firefox.

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How we turn Second Life into a Lag Hell

How we turn Second Life into a Lag Hell | Happenings - Virtual Worlds | Scoop.it
"Lag Hell". This is how Second Life has always been referred to by oh-so-many people throughout its ten years of existence. We often see people complaining about how laggy a region gets the moment ...

Via David W. Deeds
Alexina's insight:

This advice about texture sizes is relevant to many virtual worlds. Mona discusses the download size of a 1024x1024 24-bit color-depth texture versus the download size of smaller texture sizes and how that impacts the visitor's viewer. In May 2013, Ciaran Laval blogged about this topic also: http://sl.governormarley.com/?p=3128#more-3128

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David W. Deeds's curator insight, July 21, 2013 8:20 AM

Avoiding lag is a good thing. ;)

Deborah Banker's curator insight, July 22, 2013 11:38 AM

Hmm....

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VWBPE 2013 Schedule | Virtual Worlds Best Practices in Education

Alexina's insight:

The VWBPE 2013 calendar has been published. One discovers a lot in the presentations that are not specific just to virtual worlds.

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5 Ways Virtual Worlds Can Help Therapy - Hypergrid Business

5 Ways Virtual Worlds Can Help Therapy - Hypergrid Business | Happenings - Virtual Worlds | Scoop.it
5 Ways Virtual Worlds Can Help Therapy
Hypergrid Business
Patients are confronted by their fears in a safe, virtual environment, and allowed to explore them at their own pace.
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Computer games to cultivate

Computer games to cultivate | Happenings - Virtual Worlds | Scoop.it
Helen Babbs meets two video game designers who have taken their inspiration from nature and swapped gun toting for tree planting
Alexina's insight:

Relax in nature and music. Babbs writes, "Enter planet Proteus and you're invited to wander through a rough-edged landscape that responds to your presence with music. Eufloria blends exploration with a cultivation quest and is more aggressive, involving fighting a diseased strain of seedling that's hindering your attempts to colonise an asteroid belt with trees. Both games are inspired by the natural world, and both are selling surprisingly well."

 

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Higher education in virtual worlds: the use of Second Life and OpenSim for educational practices - University of Bedfordshire Repository

Higher education in virtual worlds: the use of Second Life and OpenSim for educational practices - University of Bedfordshire Repository | Happenings - Virtual Worlds | Scoop.it

"This thesis explores the features of Second Life and OpenSim that affect the choice of academics who are planning to use a virtual world in order to meet the learning needs of their students. For the conduct of this study, what was taken into account is a preexisting framework which proposes the evaluation of virtual worlds against four dimensions: their contexts, the immersion encountered within each, their cost, and their persistence. "


Via Dr. Susan Bainbridge, Elizabeth E Charles
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Presenters | Virtual Worlds – Best Practices in Education

Presenters | Virtual Worlds – Best Practices in Education | Happenings - Virtual Worlds | Scoop.it
Alexina's insight:

Submit your presentation by June 15th! "Calling all virtual world educators! Share your innovations and best practices at VWBPE 2013 24 – 27 July. We are encouraging presentations from across all virtual worlds, hosting presentations in Second Life, OpenSim, Unity/Jibe, and Cloud Party. The theme is Beyond the Stage."

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InStylez Magazine October '13

A magazine dedicated to bringing the best in fashion, business, art, entertainment, and fun from around InWorldz.
Alexina's insight:

InStylez Magazine for October is out. Get it in InWorldz or read it online at ISSUU. The Community Library on InWorldz Delphi region has a distribution newstand to the right of the reference desk.

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JOIN VIRTUAL CHRISTINE FOR A DESCENT INTO HALLOWEEN MADNESS

JOIN VIRTUAL CHRISTINE FOR A DESCENT INTO HALLOWEEN MADNESS | Happenings - Virtual Worlds | Scoop.it
Talla Adam's insight: Take a trip with through one of the free Metaverse grids this Halloween! (JOIN VIRTUAL CHRISTINE FOR A DESCENT INTO HALLOWEEN MADNESS!!!

Via David W. Deeds
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David W. Deeds's curator insight, October 12, 2013 7:48 AM

Virtual Christine is great! 

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Opensimulator Community Conference 2013

Opensimulator Community Conference 2013 | Happenings - Virtual Worlds | Scoop.it
Alexina's insight:

OpenSimulator Conference is September 7-8, 2013. I was reminded by David W. Deeds on Scoop.it.

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VWBPE MOOC: VWBPE MOOC

VWBPE MOOC: VWBPE MOOC | Happenings - Virtual Worlds | Scoop.it

VWBPE is over for another year, but is it? The virtual world tours were moved to a post-conference MOOC that starts today.

Would you like to explore more virtual worlds? Perhaps you heard something at the Virtual Worlds Best Practices in Education conference and would like to see how this might apply in your teaching and learning practice?
Consider participating in the 2013 VWBPE MOOC - Virtual Worlds Explorations.  There are 2 levels:
1. Just the tours please.
2. Engaging in the MOOC discussions about the tours.

Each week there will be 1 or 2 tours to virtual world environments, hosted by the people who developed the virtual learning environments. We will start in AvayaAlive on Monday 29 July, finishing the week of 19 August with Jokaydia Grid. Seven tours in all.

What do I do now?
Go to the VWBPE MOOC site http://vwbpe.kamedia-interactive.com/

Choose either:
*       MOOC Starting Course (for just the tours) or
*       MOOC Basics (if you want the full meal deal, discussions and articles).  You will be asked to create a new account with MOOC Basics that will give you full access to the course.


Via Kim Flintoff, KiwiBelma
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VWBPE 2013: Closing Keynote - Dave Cormier

The final keynote featuring some interesting avatar changes from the presenter.
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InWorldz reaches 80, 000 registered signups

InWorldz reaches 80, 000 registered signups | Happenings - Virtual Worlds | Scoop.it
At 2pm SLT today InWorldz reached the 80, 000 registered users milestone which is fantastic news. It's expected that InWorldz will reach the big 100, 000 in mid July 2014 if rates continue. Woooot!...
Alexina's insight:

And 7 days later it is at 80505 registered signups and 1271 regions. Daniel posted a history of growth of InWorldz since it started.

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Virtual Worlds Best Practices in Education | 2013: Beyond the Stage – July 24th to 27th

Virtual Worlds Best Practices in Education | 2013: Beyond the Stage – July 24th to 27th | Happenings - Virtual Worlds | Scoop.it
Alexina's insight:

VWBPE is going on now - July 24th - July 27th, 2013. Conference is free and is online in virtual worlds. List of presentations and times is on the calendar that is at http://www.vwbpe.org/conference/vwbpe-2013-schedule . There are also posters and the list is at http://www.vwbpe.org/conference/vwbpe-2013-posters

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This Saturday! July 20th: Take part in the biggest experiment for massively multi-user virtual worlds

This Saturday! July 20th: Take part in the biggest experiment for massively multi-user virtual worlds | Happenings - Virtual Worlds | Scoop.it
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Journal of Virtual Worlds Research

Journal of Virtual Worlds Research | Happenings - Virtual Worlds | Scoop.it
Alexina's insight:

The online June 2013 issue of Journal of Virtual Worlds Research had been published. It covers the arts.

 

"This issue on Arts and Virtual Worlds features six exciting papers from artists and scholars on a variety of topics, each investigating at least one art medium (though often more) and its relevance to and within virtual worlds. You will find papers about music, television, storytelling along side avatar designs, real world assemblages and more artistic processes. JVWR continues to encourage this diverse approach as we explore and expand our field."

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Embedded Librarianship: Physical Worlds & Virtual Worlds

Embedded Librarianship:Physical Worlds & Virtual WorldsValerie Hill, PhDLewisville ISD School LibrarianTWU Adjunct InstructorVirtual World Librarian@valibra (Thanks @valibrarian!
Alexina's insight:

A slideshow by Valibrarian Gregg.

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Immersive Technology Strategies June 2013 E-Newsletter

The Immersive Technology Strategies June E-Newsletter
Alexina's insight:

Via LinkedIn VirtualWorlds group http://www.linkedin.com/groups?home=&gid=744527&trk=anet_ug_hm

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Avatar therapy helps silence voices in schizophrenia

Avatar therapy helps silence voices in schizophrenia | Happenings - Virtual Worlds | Scoop.it

An avatar system that enables people with schizophrenia to control the voice of their hallucinations is being developed by researchers at UCL with support from the Wellcome Trust.


Via Stylianos Mystakidis
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Stylianos Mystakidis's curator insight, June 6, 2013 5:49 AM

Innovative virtual reality application