Thursday, December 11, 2014

2014 EDU: BIZ: Wish list from educators in virtual worlds, and a few solutions

Wish list from educators in virtual worlds 

I have been following discussions by educators and other non-profits on what they would like to have in virtual worlds to support educational activities.   Here is my summary of the main items, along with my opinion about what is currently possible. I will keep this page updated as I find out about new needs and new possibilities

  • Education entry portal(s) with no mention of sex, vampires, or zombies.
  • Student onboarding web site and entry portal.  
  • Backups, permanent possession of products, ability to disseminate products.  
  • Collection (library) of evaluated educational resources
  • Support for learning how to teach in virtual worlds 
  • Institutional accounts

Education entry portal(s) with no mention of sex, vampires, or zombies.

  • Opensim: set up your own grid with your institutional computer support
  • Virtual Islands For Better Education (VIBE)  
  • Use an OpenSim grid, such as Kitely, which will let you use your own entry portal.
  • Second Life makes good money on sex, vampires, and zombies.  
  • Second Life has no business incentive to get rid of them

Student onboarding web site and entry portal

Backups and dissemination

  • These wishes apply particularly to funded work.
  • Funding sources are particularly concerned about such issues:
  • Make backups of the work.
  • Make OAR files that can be shared on the web.
If these issues are important to you, start your search here:
The operator of VIBE is an educator who has already solved most of the problems you will have if you run an educational project in virtual worlds.

Educator resources

  • Library of teaching methods and tools. 
  • Teaching methods.  TBD
  • Education tools: Whiteboards, slide shows, etc 
  • Kitely market, Second Life Marketplace 
  • Educator's curriculum: Skills based learning objectives for instructors. TBD

Support for learning how to teach in virtual worlds

Institutional accounts 

  • Host your own grid with support available from your institution.
  • If I hear of grids offering institutional accounts, I will list them here).
  • Check with educationally oriented grids such as VIBE


News and Notes

Contests and dated calls/invitations/events

Newcomer Help in Virtual Worlds


How to handle a Hypergrid address 

From any Hypergrid-enabled grid, paste the address into the address bar of Firestorm and press enter. Or paste it into the world map search bar of any viewer, search, and click Teleport when the destination is found. If it doesn't work, don't give up. Try again in couple of minutes.  Sometimes the first try fails (probably times out).  And try again a few hours later. Some hypergrid destinations are offline part of the day. 
If you get an address like this:     
paste it into the address bar of Firestorm, see if it takes you to the exact coordinates. 


Video-Machinima in virtual worlds

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