Category Archives: Second Life

Cypris Chat at the Global Education Conference

I’ll be in Edinburgh when his online session is on, but I know Mike will be great (he always is!)- so I just have to share the following post from Mike McKay (ProfessorMike Merryman if you know him from SL):

**Please Twit, share, post, or 1+ the following to help me promote virtual world language learning. Thank you so much! On with the show!**

I will be presenting at a fairly major international online conference next week and thought I would pass on this information to you. Many of you are aware I have been researching ways to use virtual worlds like Second Life for language learning. In the past few years I have grown my community, Cypris Chat (http://cyprischat.org), to over 500 active members from more than 40 countries. The conference I will be presenting at is focused on global awareness and education. I think it will be very exciting to show how a community like Cypris Chat has brought the world together with one main goal in mind, to learn or teach English. I hope this presentation will help promote this fantastic medium for educating students.

WHEN: Tuesday, November 15th from 10:00pm to 11:00pm JST – 1:00pm – 2:00pm GMT

WHERE: Blackboard Collaborate link will be provided here on the 15th: http://globaleducation.ning.com/page/globaledcon11-schedule-gmt-9-1 Please find my presentation in your time zone (Cypris Chat) I will be on Facebook during the presentation. Cypris Chat members can help you on our Facebook group page and chat channel here: http://www.facebook.com/groups/58820483559/

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Virtual World Watch #10

John Kirriemuir is starting work (after a break) on Virtual World Watch snapshot #10.

This time round the snapshot will cover Ireland as well as the UK. The main body of the snapshot will be based on self-reported activity, so get working on your submissions and send them to John before the November 14th deadline.

More info here. Prize for the wittiest contribution, apparently.

ReLIVE11 – Submission extension, reduced price!

Good news all round then… no formal dinner, but the cost saving is worth it. Less speeches, more chat I reckon:

Researching Learning in Immersive Virtual Environments 2011 (ReLIVE11)

Creative Solutions for New Futures, 21st – 22nd September 2011, The Open University, Milton Keynes, UK

Reduced Fee! New Deadline!


In response to feedback from the enthusiastic but underfunded community, we have worked to reduce the conference fee, enabling more opportunities for attendance in a period when budgets for conferences are constrained. Although we are no longer providing a formal conference dinner and entertainment, we anticipate that this will provide more focus for academic collaboration and networking. This has enabled us to reduce the fee to £285 for early birds and £340 for later registrations. Consequently we are offering a new deadline for abstract submissions, and will be accepting these up to and including the 3rd of July.


We are pleased to remind you that there will be Best Paper awards at the conference, to the value of £300 in Springer books, sponsored by Springer. Publication opportunities include an ISBN registered conference proceedings (note that the ReLIVE08 Conference Proceedings are still regularly downloaded from the archive conference site), and an edited book of chapters developed from the top paper submissions, published in the new Springer Immersive Environments series (to be launched at the conference).


As a delegate to ReLIVE11 you will meet with other leading edge researchers from around the world to exchange ideas and scholarship. With an opening keynote from Robin Wight, founder of The Ideas Foundation and a creative legend in advertising, we challenge the community to think creatively and to look for opportunities to collaborate and innovate. The invited panel speakers from within and without academia bring a range of interesting perspectives and expertise to our discussions and we anticipate a showcase of papers and workshops that reflect the best of current academic research, making ReLIVE11 your one stop conference this year for disseminating, sharing and stimulating your practice in virtual worlds.


We are now seeking proposals for papers, workshops, symposia, posters and inworld events that demonstrate innovation within the themes of Concepts, Methods, and Implementations (In collaboration with JISC CETIS).


ReLIVE Virtual Festival, 20th September 2011 We are also pleased to offer a ReLIVE Virtual Festival. This will take place within Second Life and/or other immersive environments, and we invite innovative proposals for activities (see ‘Call for Papers’ section on the ReLIVE11 website for more details), particularly from and for those who would otherwise be unable to attend the conference. Registration for this one-day event will be free, but places are limited.


The Virtual World Conference, 14th September 2011 ReLIVE11 is linked to The Virtual World Conference, a 24 hour conference of invited speakers taking place within Second Life on the 14th of September. Please see www.thevirtualworldconference.org for more details.

Please visit our website for full details www.open.ac.uk/relive11

Best wishes

ReLIVE11 Conference Team

A Virtual Worlds Miscellany

Clearing out my unread mail and inbox, found lots of posts saved for later. Below a selection of tit-bits and links relating to education in virtual worlds.

MOSES is the US military OpenSim virtual world. Apparently this was started after Linden Lab removed support for the Second Life Enterprise software for behind the firewall solutions. There seems to be a sizeable grid there already.

Aurora Sim is a recent fork of OpenSim, from the people behind the Imprudence line of Second Life/Open Sim viewers. Aurora claims better LSL support and better physics than regular OpenSim, amongst a wide range of other modifications large and small. More details here. Add-ons such as the Web-UI front-end are also available.

Going back a fair while (showing just how much my inbox was in need of a good clear out!), I found a link to a paper on Experiential Learning in Multi-User Virtual Environments by Baba Weusijana and colleagues, published in the now-defunct Innovate Online:

Multiuser virtual environments (MUVEs) like Second Life present unparalleled opportunities to help students connect knowledge by description to knowledge by experience; in a MUVE, students can experience phenomena rather than only reading about them. Baba Kofi Weusijana, Vanessa Svihla, Drue Gawel, and John Bransford describe their use of a maze constructed in Second Life to help students experience firsthand the phenomena described in their educational psychology course. Their use of Second Life is particularly notable in its use of MUVE-based movies and other strategies to leverage Second
Life’s interactive powers for exploration despite restricted access to technology. The examples they present can hopefully lead to new designs and uses of virtual environments that allow students to experience relevant phenomena and enable researchers to conduct additional experiments of virtual, experience-rich additions to traditional ways to teach and learn.

Stephanie Cobb and colleagues report on “The Learning Gains and Student Perceptions of a Second Life Virtual Lab” in Bioscience Education, published by the Higher Education Academy (UK):

The SL practical was well received by students, with 92% of participants reporting that they would like to use the system again and many requesting other experiments to be made available in this manner in the future.

More miscellany to follow, as I continue the great email clear-out (down from 800+ un-read emails in my inbox, plus hundreds of read mail, to under 100 emails in my inbox, total. Of course, this is just one of my email accounts I’m dealing with…)

Webinar recording: Using SLOODLE for Assessment

Yesterday, I had the pleasure of giving a short online talk as part of the Transforming Assessment series of talks supported by the Australian Learning and Teaching Council and led by Geoffrey Crisp at the University of Adelaide.

The recording of “Assessment in Virtual Worlds with SLOODLE” held on
30 November is now online.

Download and view in a number of formats via
http://www.transformingassessment.com/events_past.php

Call for Papers: Learning in 3D

Special Issue of the International Journal of Technology Enhanced Learning (IJTEL): Learning in 3D

Guest editors: Carlos Delgado Kloos and Daniel J. Livingstone

Download copy of call for special issue on 3D learning (pdf)

Journal Aims

IJTEL fosters multidisciplinary discussion and research on technology enhanced learning (TEL) approaches at the individual, organisational, national and global levels. Its key objective is to be the leading scholarly scientific journal for all those interested in, researching and contributing to the technology enhanced learning episteme. For this reason, IJTEL delivers research articles, position papers, surveys and case studies aiming:

  • To provide a holistic and multidisciplinary discussion on technology enhanced learning research issues
  • To promote the international collaboration and exchange of ideas and know how on technology enhanced learning
  • To investigate strategies on how technology enhanced learning can promote sustainable development

Subject Coverage of Special Issue

This special issue seeks to bring together research, from different perspectives, on a range of 3D technologies that may be used to enhance or support learning.
Suitable topics may relate to, but are not limited to, the use of a range of 3D technologies in enhancing learning:

  • Virtual Worlds
  • Game-based Learning
  • Immersive Simulation
  • Augmented Reality
  • Cross and mixed-reality
  • Assessment in 3D environments
  • Pedagogies for TEL in 3D environments
  • Communities of Learners in 3D environments
  • Standards and Interoperability

Submission

Prospective authors are invited to notify the intention to submit a paper by
sending a one-page abstract to the editors by 6th August 2010 and submit the full
paper by 6th September 2010.
Abstracts may be sent to the editors at cdk@it.uc3m.es or
daniel.livingstone@uws.ac.uk
Final papers should be submitted electronically via the InderScience online
submissions system at: http://bit.ly/ijtel

Important Dates

6th August 2010: Title and Abstract deadline (optional)
6th September 2010: Full paper submission deadline
15th October 2010: Decision notification
12th November 2010: Camera-ready version
Early 2011: Publication (tentative)

Guest Editors

Carlos Delgado Kloos, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid, 28911 Leganés (Madrid, Spain), cdk@it.uc3m.es
Daniel J. Livingstone, University of the West of Scotland, Paisley PA1 2BE (Scotland, UK), Daniel.Livingstone@uws.ac.uk

Editorial Committee

Ignacio Aedo, UC3M, Spain
John Belcher, MIT, USA
Josep Blat, Universidad Pompeu Fabra, Spain
Darryl Charles, University of Ulster, UK
Thomas Connolly, University of the West of Scotland, UK
Abdulmotaleb El Saddik, University of Ottawa, Canada
Lesley Gourlay, Coventry University, UK
Miguel Lizondo, Deimos-Space, Spain
Judith Molka-Danielsen, Molde University College, Norway
Mariano Rico, Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, Spain
Pilar Sancho Thomas, Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Spain
Kath Trinder, Glasgow Caledonian University, UK

Big Trouble in Linden Lab?

I’ve had my hands full the past few weeks – so when the earthquake happened (Linden Lab laid of 30% of their staff!) I didn’t get round to blogging it at all. It did give me a chance to see a number of other reactions on the blogosphere though. I think the most interesting analysis came from ex-Linden Rob Knop:

If Linden Lab had focused on helping make virtual worlds take off– make them more useful by providing functionality people wanted and needed, working on interoperability so that people could take their Second Life accounts to and from software that was developed not only by Linden engineers, but by everybody– I predict they would have done a whole lot better. Their already existing audience would have given them a leg up, and would have kept them a leader or at least a major player. Yes, they would have been helping “competitors”, but by raising the profile, utility, and popularity of virtual worlds in general, they would have helped themselves.

And now the other big news… Mark Kingdon, Linden Lab CEO, will himself be leaving the company – with co-founder Philip Rosedale returning to the fold to take over in his stead. Philip announced his return on the SL blog, here. The general perception is that Mark’s strategies for the Lab generally failed (for example, the cancelled SL Enterprise solution), and also managed to alienate many members of the community. Can Philip turn the ship around and regain some love for the lab? Time will tell… but his initial post is heavy on the technology and relatively weak on the community side:

Our thinking as a team is that my returning to the CEO job now can bring a product and technology focus that will help rapidly improve Second Life.  We need to simplify and focus our product priorities — concentrating all our capabilities on making Second Life easier to use and better for the core experiences that it is delivering today.  I think that I can be a great help and a strong leader in that process.

SLOODLE Moot 2010

From http://www.sloodle.org/blog/

SLOODLE Moot 2010 is approaching!

This weekend SLOODLE Moot – a free, online conference will be taking place in Second Life. A range of presentations, discussions and demonstrations will take place over the weekend including:

  • Devil Island Mystery. Learn how freshman students in S. Korea were stranded on a virtual island – and had to develop their English skills to survive – and solve the Devil Island Mystery!
  • Hacking SLOODLE tools. SLOODLE is open-source – in this sessions learn why you might want to change SLOODLE to suit your own ends – and how you can do so.
  • SLOODLE at the Open University. With around 250,000 online students, and individual courses with student numbers in the thousands, the OU faces some significant challenges in using virtual worlds to support its courses. Learn how the OU has been using SLOODLE to meet this challenge.
  • Cypris Chat demonstration. After a very successful set of demonstrations earlier this year, Mike McKay gives another demo of SLOODLE and the Awards system.
  • Saturday night social. Lights, music, dancing!

Get more details at the SLOODLE home page – http://www.sloodle.org/

( hashtag: #smoot )

Innovation In Application Development

Writing today at the Innovation in Application Development event in Stirling, put together by Scotland’s Colleges (formerly SFEU). Just now Nigel Kennington is demonstrating using Alice to teach programming, and discussing what aspects of computer programming can be taught with Alice. He’s had a very good experience in the lower levels – with much higher engagement from students.

Next up is a demonstration of using XNA, and this morning there were a pair of Apple talks on iPhone development. I’ll be closing the day talking about teaching programming with scripting in Second Life and OpenSim. As this talk is for colleges where many students will be under 18, I’ll be focussing on OpenSim. I was going to use Tony Hirst’s feedshow but it seems to be broken – but you can grab the ‘presentation’ part of my talk (I’ll try to spend more time actually *in* OpenSim, showing how it works, and what can be done) from delicious here:

http://delicious.com/djlivi/IIAD?setcount=15