Tuesday, October 27, 2020

2020 #VWEDU: Why the digital campus should provide private student places: Identity and ownership. And how to do it in virtual worlds

Why the digital campus should provide student places.  
Identity and ownership.
Schools can provide private spaces for students at negligible cost and with significant benefits.  
My place in 3DWebWorldz
Click image to enlarge
  • I make my place public so anyone can visit.
  • No walls or roof: the weather is always good.

A place of my own.

  • Where they can keep a calendar, a work schedule, and links to work in progress.
  • Where they can show their work products and talk with friends
  • Display badges, trophies, posters and media prims showing their portfolio products.
  • A place where they can put their furniture and decorations.
  • How do they get all those things?  By working (learning) for them.  
  • How to Teach Online So All Students Feel Like They Belong

What gives a sense of ownership? 

  • Control: having control over it
  • Intimate knowledge: knowing a lot about it
  • Self-investment: putting a lot of effort into customizing it.

Can virtual worlds handle private spaces?

  • Web-worlds, completely
  • Installed virtual worlds, mostly private

Suggested sources

How can virtual worlds provide private spaces?


  • Web-worlds are made of web pages that cost almost nothing for maintenance.
  • You just give each student a web page and the password for access as owner.
  • The owner can set the room to public or private at any time.
  • Or the owner can set access permissions for specific people.
  • Anyone can access a public room, but cannot alter it without the owner's permission.
  • No one can access a private room unless the owner gives permission.
  • Conversations are private because the place is a private web page.
  • And the space is not just a room.  It can be a huge yard..
  • The student can have a house and a garden.
  • The cost, when it is not in use, is the cost of a little disk space. It is only a file.
  •  And the cost is little in use: most of the work is done by the user's machine.
  • (Pricing will probably be in units of a thousand or more.)

Installed virtual worlds 

  • Installed virtual worlds that follow the Second Life pattern rent "sims" or regions that would hold many dorm rooms.  
  • Typical dorm room size=130 square feet (DormStormer).
  • A sim is a square 256 meters on a side or 703,921 square feet.
  • In Kitely you can get 16 sims for $40 per month.  
  • Such a region is limited to 100 people. 
  • Allowing for guests, it might reasonably house 50 people.
  • Simple math: 3 people per sim handles 48 people.
  • Rental cost: Less than $1 per month per student
  • Again, each person can get a house and yard (technically a parcel)
  • Each parcel can have access control by the owner.
  • Each parcel can have voice limited to the parcel and outside voice excluded.
  • But there is no way to prevent people from "camming" into a house.
  • (Camming is a viewer technique that lets the screen viewpoint around.)
  • Note that a school can both a web-world and an installed virtual world.

How would it benefit the school?

  • Value added: a benefit easy to demonstrate.
  • Social space that safely excludes sex.
  • Space to house and display things awarded or bought from the school.
  • May be used to support student networking and development of school spirit.
  • May be used to maintain contact with alumni.

What system would I recommend and why?

  • The system: web-worlds.
  • Low cost: so low that the school can easily maintain alumni pages (places).
  • Easy access: Only a browser is needed to get to the place. 
  • Family and friends can visit from anywhere.  
  • Alumni can meet with their friend network from anywhere.
  • Wonder how easy it is?  Scroll down and visit my place on the web.
  • Privacy: Web pages can be completely private.  

Visit me on the web



  • Original text in this blog is CC By: unless specified public domain.
  • Use as you please with attribution: link to the original.
  • All images without attribution in this blog are CC0: public domain.
  • Screenshots from ShareX
  • Second LifeLindenSLurl, and SL are trademarks of Linden Research Inc.
  • Annotated screenshots made with Techsmith Capture
  • This blog is not affiliated with anything.   Ads are from Google.
  • Selby Evans in Kitely and Hypergrid, Thinkerer Melville in Second Life.

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