SOS kinderdorpen is a dutch organisation with 16 sister-organisations world wide. They help 75.000 orphans and homeless children in 132 countries. They have gone and merged fundraising with pay-per-play by having One Shoe develop a habbo style (isometric) world in which you are a SOS – kids village director for 20 cents a day at http://www.mijnsoskinderdorp.nl/
20 cents a day is is a net 6 euro’s per month, and as a director you can invite friends and family to come and build a house in your SOS kids village, which has a total of 14 plots. Besides fundraising it also raises the awareness of the cause of SOSkinderdorpen in a playfull manner.
A number of dutch celebrities have started a village in light of the launch, and the singer Jan Smit now has 5 villages filled, and a new one on the go. It went live on juli the 16th this year, 10 days later there is a total of 732 plots occupied over 211 villages, resulting in 4300 euros extra per month extra funds from now on.
I like this approach, though the offering is still rather thin from a gameplay/ involvement point of view. I would like to see a profilepage or a way to offer other people in my village ways to contact me. I am missing social networking tools, that are essential for online communities nowadays.
If the project team behind this 3D social networking tool can make the place more interesting, it will be a great example on how to serve a community sympathetic to your cause.
Have a look here to see my village in action, and buy a buildingplot
Now imagine that that sheet the crane runs on, is one of a number of sheets you have on your desk. and each sheet represents one of the programs you use from your default office package.
Evolver.com has come out of beta today. The service lets you define a stand alone avatar on their site, inside your account. You then export the avatar to a range of platforms, from Facebook to immersive 3D worlds. Evolver also lets you create scenes with the avatars you have created, one example being the Hallmark moment below.
The sweetest effect of this, is that I now have a single point to manage my avatar from for my online personality. I prefer to have the same looking avatar when i move through different 3D communities. This service facilitates me in presenting myself the same way any where.
Animators need to check out the program evolver have set up, allowing content creators to set up paid services in which they use the avatars in your Evolver account.
I think the most impressive thing about this movie is the clip at the end where a previous schizophrenia sufferer confirms that this experiment recreates the experience in a very believable fashion.
Its done by the french easyweb.fr , and its the most complete video ive seen so far.
It seems we are most definately on the slope of enlightenment. Ask K-zero. They have the data:
K Zero data points to a significant increase in total registered users across all virtual world products. Including estimates, the total number of registered accounts in the virtual worlds sector totaled 579,000,000 in the April-June quarter, 2009. That’s an increase of 38.6 percent from the prior quarter when the tally was 417,000,000.
So, why is that important?, you ask. Because studying the numbers you will see the rise is with the youngsters, not the current aged working force. It is mainly game worlds, not collaboration worlds. It is important, because 3D platforms with visualised data and visualised interfaces are the tools kids are learning to work with. Its this lesson that IBM has learnt too while developing its Sametime 3D technology that integrates with its office product Lotus:
“IBM has been very aggressive in seeing these opportunities and going for them,’’ said Larry Hawes, lead analyst for Collaboration & Enterprise Social Software with the Gilbane Group in Cambridge, speaking from the Enterprise 2.0 show floor. “A lot of kids who are just entering the workforce don’t really use e-mail, for example. They are going to have a different way of working. These new products get IBM ahead of that.’’
Read more where that came from here
Congratulations Jules, nice piece of work. Jules and his company have just gone more public with their 3D environment hosting service to be found at Sketchworld. Their world is based on the OpenSim 3D environment expanded with ModRex (Modrex is mainly a graphical enhancement pack).
OpenSim in itself is largely based on Second Life and its interface, though it is easier to expand the system as it is an open source offering.
Sketchworld have neatly utilized the open back end to the core of OpenSim, and allow you to import Google Sketchup straight into the world. The service also includes direct web-based uploads of the models you make in .mesh format. (Read more about this)
Yeh, its from 2008. So im late. But you still want to watch this 25 minute of enlightenment by Joseph Pine II.
We have seen the music industry react like a scared cat in a tight spot when the digital revolution hit their neck of the woods. A few years on we now have a legal Napster, Itunes and Digital Rights Management to keep the music industry and its consumers happy in this new age of technology.
In a like minded act, the Chinese government has set up laws to forbid people trading online ‘virtual’ currency for its real currency. In effect players from World of Warcraft are gathering in-world virtual gold and selling it off through the web, earning real world Yuan’s in the process.
“The trading of virtual currency for real cash employs hundreds of thousands of people worldwide and generates between $200 million and $1 billion annually, according to a 2008 survey conducted by Richard Heeks at the University of Manchester.
He estimates that between 80% and 85% of gold farmers are based in China.”
So why would you want to prevent people from doing this? As far as I can see there is only one good reason, and its the lack of control on people’s income and hence the income tax they should be parting with for the work they have done. Alternatively, this can be seen as a form of protectionism, preventing people from sinking their cash into virtual world companies that are situated in other countries. But then thats what virtual worlds are all about : No more geographical borders.
One of the bottlenecks for acceptance of 3D as a communication platform is the need for a seperate viewer that supports the heavy graphics. The download and learning curve to work with these browsers is preventing the general public from using the 3D platforms. Embedding with proprietary plugins (Vivaty for instance) turns out to be a hard nut to crack, as you need to create a plugin for each browser on each seperate platform. (Vivaty wont run in Google Chrome)
Metaplace, natively in flash, is now allowing an easy, flash based, embed code from the ‘share’ menu in its creation view of the worlds you own. With Flash being a must have for any one on the web, its the way to go for these low-graphic intensive worlds.
(Alas, MetaPlace closed end 2010, demo no longer available)