Tuesday, 14 October 2008

Second Life

A few months ago I signed up for Second Life but have hardly looked at it for weeks - it turned out to be very much a passing fad for me. This is partly due to technical problems, for some reason every time I log in I seem to have lost some of my clothes (no seriously!) and it doesn't seem to work well on either my home or office PC. I also got a little freaked out when people's avatars started talking to me, it's the idea that they are 'real' people so it actually matters what you say to them. The final clincher was that I simply got bored, there's lots to look at but there doesn't seem to be much to do, especially if you're not using it in a social way. I have come across a few people who are very enthusiastic, for example Sheila Webber who has a SL blog, Adventures of Yoshikawa which covers a lot of information literacy activities within SL, but I've not come across any of our students who use it. Perhaps this will change for future generations, especially those who have been members of virtual worlds for children, for example Club Penguin.
That's not to say that I don't believe SL has its uses, this morning there was a very good example on my own university website of a paramedic course using SL to create scenarios that test the skills of the students (finding someone collapsed outside a nightclub etc). They can check pulses, administer drugs and make use of the emergency equipment that they would carry in real life. Perhaps I shouldn't be so cynical...

No comments: