The title of Ebbe Altberg’s talk at the Silicon Valley Virtual Reality Conference on Monday was “The Future of VR is User-Created.” While Altberg did describe examples of well-known user-created content in the current Second Life virtual world, there were no specifics about how users will generate content in Linden Lab’s own virtual reality world of the future, the project currently known as Sansar.
In response to a Quora question, here are five main ways that education will be affected by virtual reality. 1. The ‘Magic Schoolbus’ Virtual reality will allow teachers to take students on guided virtual...
As everyone who has ever tried to set up a hyperport well knows, hypergrid destinations change frequently. Regions move, grids close — staying up to date can be a nightmare. Especially if you’re doing...
OpenSim’s land area and active users hit new record highs this month. Land area passed 4,000 square kilometers for the first time, and 60,000 regions, while active users crossed the 32,000 mark. At 4,015...
Virtual Desktop is a free Windows application that instantly makes the entire Windows operating system accessible via the Oculus Rift. Anything that you can use on your monitor, such as a word processor or a...
I often tell game developers that I came to GlassLab because I believe that the worlds of learning and education represent the next leap forward in game design. My feelings are mixed: I’ve loved “entertainment” games since I was a child; I’ve made playful interactive things on computers for longer than I can remember. My life — both work and play — has been connected to games forever. But the truth is that the mainstream industry got a little boring. A couple of years ago, games took a swerve into some depressing places: AAA teams where you spend 4+ years of your life on a tiny part of a huge (if magnificent) machine, startups that were making actual slot machines for iPhones, pay-to-win stacked-deck PvP tablet games.
Even if those were my kind of games (hint: I got into the industry for multimillion-player shared worlds, immersive narrative, and simulation games), it just seemed like there wasn’t a heck of a lot there to learn from about game design. Whereas prior years had led to explosive learning about game design, recent ones flattened out, and the challenge in the space was more about acquisition and monetization than design.
Enter: education. Not only was EDM (educational data-mining) on the rise (representing a new kind of game datastream analytics), educators were finally starting to see games as allies rather than enemies. Little companies were starting to show big results, and games like DragonBox were showing us that not only could learning games be elegant, beautiful, and usable, but they had the potential to reveal brand new game mechanics.
The truth is the learning world is a thinky game designer’s dream. It’s deeply hungry for new ideas, deeply hungry for engaging kids, and completely dedicated to making a better world. With Mars Generation One, we built mechanics around argumentation — that had never been done before. With SimCityEDU: Pollution Challenge, we set out to mine millions of game data points for hints about systems thinking — never been done before. At GlassLab I am ridiculously fortunate to be trying to solve problems in utterly uncharted territory every hour of every day.
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