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Virtual Laboratories and Virtual Worlds  [PDF]
Piet Hut
Physics , 2007, DOI: 10.1017/S1743921308016153
Abstract: Since we cannot put stars in a laboratory, astrophysicists had to wait till the invention of computers before becoming laboratory scientists. For half a century now, we have been conducting experiments in our virtual laboratories. However, we ourselves have remained behind the keyboard, with the screen of the monitor separating us from the world we are simulating. Recently, 3D on-line technology, developed first for games but now deployed in virtual worlds like Second Life, is beginning to make it possible for astrophysicists to enter their virtual labs themselves, in virtual form as avatars. This has several advantages, from new possibilities to explore the results of the simulations to a shared presence in a virtual lab with remote collaborators on different continents. I will report my experiences with the use of Qwaq Forums, a virtual world developed by a new company (see http://www.qwaq.com)
Corporate Training in Virtual Worlds
Charles Nebolsky,Nicholas K. Yee,Valery A. Petrushin,Anatole V. Gershman
Journal of Systemics, Cybernetics and Informatics , 2004,
Abstract: This paper presents virtual training worlds that are relatively low-cost distributed collaborative learning environments suitable for corporate training. A virtual training world allows a facilitator, experts and trainees communicating and acting in the virtual environment for practicing skills during collaborative problem solving. Using these environments is beneficial to both trainees and corporations. Two system prototypes – the sales training and the leadership training virtual worlds – are described. The leadership training course design is discussed in details.
Virtual Worlds as a Support to Engineering Teaching  [PDF]
Roberto Mu?oz,Marta Barría,Cristian Rusu
Computer Science , 2011,
Abstract: Virtual Worlds (VWs) are an emerging technology used by a growing number of educational institutions around the world. It is an environment, a way of learning and an educational tool that allows different levels of online interaction. In the course "Programming I", of the career Informatics Engineering at Universidad de Valpara\'iso, we conducted a pilot experience with the VW of Second Life, in order to evaluate the potential of using VWs in the teaching practice.
Building an ecological knowledge of virtual worlds  [PDF]
Pierre-Olivier Montiglio,Julien Céré
PeerJ , 2015, DOI: 10.7287/peerj.preprints.473v1
Abstract: Virtual worlds supporting massively multiplayer games have become so complex that they exhibit temporal and spatial dynamics mostly driven by interactions between players. In this respect, virtual worlds resemble closely natural ecosystems. Studying the ecology of virtual worlds is an outstanding opportunity for ecologists as well as the game industry to collaborate in order to test several aspects of ecological theory difficult to study in nature, and build manageable, resilient virtual worlds.
Verbal Interactions in Virtual Worlds  [PDF]
Pierre Nugues
Computer Science , 2000,
Abstract: We first discuss respective advantages of language interaction in virtual worlds and of using 3D images in dialogue systems. Then, we describe an example of a verbal interaction system in virtual reality: Ulysse. Ulysse is a conversational agent that helps a user navigate in virtual worlds. It has been designed to be embedded in the representation of a participant of a virtual conference and it responds positively to motion orders. Ulysse navigates the user's viewpoint on his/her behalf in the virtual world. On tests we carried out, we discovered that users, novices as well as experienced ones have difficulties moving in a 3D environment. Agents such as Ulysse enable a user to carry out navigation motions that would have been impossible with classical interaction devices. From the whole Ulysse system, we have stripped off a skeleton architecture that we have ported to VRML, Java, and Prolog. We hope this skeleton helps the design of language applications in virtual worlds.
Virtual Worlds for Student Engagement  [PDF]
Atul Sajjanhar
Creative Education (CE) , 2012, DOI: 10.4236/ce.2012.326118
Abstract: In this paper, we study the scope of virtual worlds for student engagement in higher education. The motivation for the study is the gap in opportunities for interactivity that exist for off-campus students compared with on-campus students. A student taking a course at a university, while located in a different geographic location, has limited opportunity for student-student and student-teacher interaction; this effects student engagement significantly. We conduct a feasibility analysis for engaging students in a virtual world; Second Life is used as the test-bed to create the virtual world environment. We present preliminary findings, the promises and the limitations of Second Life as an immersive environment for engaging students.
Virtual worlds, fiction, and reality
Niiniluoto,Ilkka Maunu;
Discusiones Filosóficas , 2011,
Abstract: my aim in this paper is to raise and discuss some philosophical questions about virtual reality (vr). the most fundamental problem concerns the ontological nature of vr: is it real or fictional? is vr comparable to illusions, hallucinations, dreams, or worlds of fiction? are traditional philosophical categories at all sufficient to give us understanding of the phenomenon of vr? in approaching these questions, i shall employ possible world semantics and logical theories of perception and imagination as my philosophical tools. my main conclusion is that vr is comparable to a 3-d picture which can be seen from the inside.
Learning and teaching in Immersive Virtual Worlds  [cached]
Frances Bell,Maggi Savin-Baden,Robert Ward
Research in Learning Technology , 2008, DOI: 10.3402/rlt.v16i3.10892
Abstract: This special issue comprises a number of exciting initiatives and developments that begin to put issues of learning in immersive virtual worlds centre stage. Although learning through specific types of serious games has been popular for some years, the pedagogical value of immersive worlds is currently not only inchoate but also under-researched. Whilst several of the articles here are not based on empirical research, what they do offer is new ways of considering the pedagogical purposes of using these kinds of digital spaces. The difficulty with the perception of immersive virtual worlds is that there is often a sense that they are seen as being dislocated from physical spaces, and yet they are not. Web spaces are largely viewed as necessarily freer locations where there is a sense that it is both possible and desirable to ‘do things differently'.
Using Second Life for Just-in-Time Training: Building Teaching Frameworks in Virtual Worlds  [cached]
Gail Kopp,Martha Burkle
International Journal of Advanced Corporate Learning (iJAC) , 2010, DOI: 10.3991/ijac.v3i3.1373
Abstract: This paper presents a framework for using virtual worlds in the construction of teaching platforms for just-in-time training. In the critical economic situation that many companies are currently living, the need to update skills without leaving the workplace has become urgent. Employees are demanding training for higher performances, knowledge and skills, without requesting time to attend university, or leaving their work behind. In this context, the use of virtual worlds has become the way knowledge is shared and accessed, as virtual groups become learning communities. The potential of Second Life as a space to learn and be trained are explored. The characteristics and capabilities of virtual worlds for teaching and learning are examined, the role of the virtual tutor is analyzed, and further areas of research and development are presented.
Comparing Social Virtual Worlds for Educational Purposes
Education , 2011, DOI: 10.5923/j.edu.20110101.04
Abstract: Over the last decade the interest in social virtual worlds as tools to improve the teaching/learning process and to stimulate knowledge, including the development of learning to learn autonomy, has greatly increased as a result of their promising potential. In the current work we introduce a concise definition of a social virtual world and make a comparative analysis between different virtual worlds based on Mannien’s matrix. For this study, Second Life, Active Worlds and There were selected as they are the virtual environments most commonly addressed by the academic community. Finally, we discuss the potential of social virtual worlds for educational purposes.
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