Blurring Lives : have virtual environments made their way into our Real Lives?

Having had some interest in virtual environments for some time, initially through Second Life, there now seems to be a critical mass of projects and people as well as a growing interest for Virtual Reality environments in the education and research community.

Of particular interest here is a paper [1] by Nancy Jennings and Chris Collins documenting current practices and uses in education and research within Second Life. The survey covers some 170 accredited educational institutions and is a very good starting point to get an idea of the kind of activities that are being carried out using this new media in order to augment, transform and start (re)thinking how some Real Life activities may be re-visited through such technologies. Mew media warrants new thinking! It will be very interesting to see how education and collaboration will look like in a maybe not so distant future…

[1] N. Jennings and C. Collins, “Virtual or Virtually U: Educational Institutions in Second Life”, International Journal of Social Sciences, Vol 2, No. 3, 2008, ISSN 1306-973X. (PDF File Here)

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