Anyone have a Second Life yet? What's so compelling about Second Life anyway? Is this the dawn of Web 3.0? What are the implications for education? Any great SL resources out there?

My avatar's name is Lucy Daffodil if you're looking for a friend there!

Lucy Gray

Tags: life, virtualworlds, Second_Life, secon, second

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Hey, Kevin! I was waiting for you to chime in on this! I've been hoping to take you up on this offer. Like M. SESHAGIRI, I had trouble finding the island whne I saw your similar posting somewhere (EdTech?).

Maybe you can facilitate a Skype conference call? eLuminate sesssion? Or is there a step-by-step cheat sheet??

I, for one, need some serious handholding on this one! :)
OK, just took a look at some of the resources you provide, Kevin, and they seem to hold my hand pretty well. Now just to carve out the time to dive in. . . !
Hi Lucy,
I think the "what's so compelling" question is interesting.

Lots of us are here and doing stuff like this simply because we like new things. We are the early adopters, the ones who try stuff and think about what else could be done with it. So SL, for all the hype that it's mainstream, is compelling specifically to early adopters for these reasons - it's a challenge, it's new, it feels different. The interface being difficult to use, strangely enough, is an attractive feature to early adopters, since it rewards you nicely when you succeed and makes you feel smart.

The problem is that most people are not earlly adopters. It's not just educators, but in every part of life, the great mass market of people are simply not interested in being pioneers. And the things that attract early adopters, like challenge and being first, are exactly the things that the next wave of people hate. In fact, the faster a "new" technology gets adopted in the early stages, the more likely it is that it will have a harder time "crossing the chasm" to mass market.

My SL name is Kay Idziak - look me up!
Hi Lucy,
I have am also in SL (Hex Rau), but as many mentioned First Life gets in the way of exploring too much or too long. I would love to find a buddy in SL to explore together.
I find this all very fascinating! I am just learning about the SL and I agree with the philosophy of not making it like a typical classroom experience. Active learning is a must and with great educators like you all, I know that it will shape into something spectacular! I hope to find some time to dabble in it myself. This is a compelling discussion.
If there's anyone else here who suffers from pc lag syndrome then this link might interest you, AjaxLife Second Life in Your Web Browser
I gave up on trying to make my way round second life - everything just took too long, I haven't tried this browser SL yet, but apparently it enables you to chat with other residents, reply to IM sessions and teleport to other locations although once you get anywhere you can't move around. Hey I rarely move away from my pc in real life so I can't imagine that bothering me very much.
I tried SL for a short time, with encouragement from Meg. I found the interface confusing and some of the cool features like acquiring stuff seemed like a big waste of time. I'm too busy in my first life to fuss with some of the stuff in the virtual world that makes it so appealing. Once in a while I stop by Eduiland to see if anyone is there. It's always empty, except during NECC when a lot of people were checking it out. ISTE seemed to have set up a really nice portal for the conference.

I've been shown around to some pretty popular places, but the whole SL experience isn't very appealing. I'm too bogged down by the technology, like wireless speed and the clumsiness of "walking around", changing clothes, etc.

I really liked meeting people and getting a chance to talk to people that I would never chat with. That was a real benefit, but it didn't happen enough to make it compelling.

Personally, and I'm probably a minority in my belief, but I'd rather stay in real life. I can learn alot from reading blogs and forums. There are opportunities for chat (tappedin) with educators that don't involve all the extra nonsense of SL. To be honest, I really don't see the appeal.

As far as working with students, it would depend. I know kids who go through spurts when they'll totally addicted to SIMS, so they might like it. But I'm not sure if it would be worth the effort.
So, Nadine, I have to say that I'm with you on this, especially when I compare with the read/write Web. Two reasons. First, the hardware requirements for SL are too much to ensure equal or ubiquitous access. Second, the user contribution aspect of SL seems significantly more technical and difficult to participate in. Maybe there is some engaged dialog, but I think the technology gets in the way currently. What I love about the read/write web tools (blogging, wikis, social networking) are that they allow a relatively simple way to become involved and to truly contribute, and in their best form are more about the ideas than the technology.

Having said this, I think SL will likely become the environment of choice for much of what we do in the cyberworld in 10 years. It will make it possible to interact virtually without having to follow technical instructions. I did some fun interviews on SL some months back that are at http://edtechlive.wikispaces.com.

But for now, I choose to stay here, where the conversation is often brilliant, and almost always accessible to everyone. :)
I'm glad I've found someone who agrees. I just think one would have to have a lot of time on their hands to really fully participate in a virtual world. I don't have enough time to fully participate in my real life.

I think you are right about the future, although it's hard to predict. When the kids who big fans of SIMS, whyville, and clubpenguin grow up, who knows?
Hi, Lucy. I, like you, have an inkling that Second Life may be or will be a compelling part of teaching and learning. But I am not totally sure how it will be yet. My avatar is Cricket Loon. I will look for Lucy Daffodil. I don't know many folks in SL yet. I want to know more too. On that note, at my school we have an annual 2 day event called "Art Start." We invite artists of all kinds to conduct two day workshops with a final day presentation of final products and performances. This year we are becoming a 1:1 laptop school. As a member of the planning committee for Art Start and as one who is interested in SL, I wonder about doing a two day intensive SL workshop. I would want clear objectives for the course (things that can be done in the time we have available over two days). My goal for students would be to get them set up and familiar with some of the quality/educational applications of SL. That would be my goal too. So I am interested in feedback about that if anyone has any. For example, anyone have any ideas about objectives and, more importantly, does anyone know folks who might be interested in helping organize and/or teach the workshop? There is a stipend for artists and a budget for supplies (purchases in SL?). The days of our Artstart this year are October 31 & November 1. Anyone?
Camela Giraud
(SL: Cricket Loon)
Hello Lucy .... My avatar is "Growing Wise" Our education service center also has an Island dedicated to educators topics and events ... Our island is located here:

http://slurl.com/secondlife/Greenbush%20Education%20Island/195/60/32

Teleport over and say hi !
I am getting into this discussion late, but like others am interested in the possibilities but RL has trumped SL for the past two months. I'm Witchyrichy Witherspoon in SL and will be looking for the rest of you the next time I'm running around. Through my urging, my university rented land and now I'm supposed to have great ideas for what to do with it ;-) Thank goodness for this group...

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