Group News & Announcements

Kiwi Educators in Second Life

Kiwi Educators in Second Life

by Clare Atkins -
Number of replies: 3

When you next visit Second Life yourself, you might like to join the Kiwi Educators group, membership is free and its main purpose is to provide an easy means of maintaining contact with our educators from around NZ who are interested in some aspect of teaching in a virtual environment. To find group, just use the Search facility at the bottom of your Second Life screen click on the Groups tab and type in Kiwi Edu, the group will appear and you just hit the join button. Current members include Isa Goodman an educational software and content developer from Auckland and a Silel, a Senior Lecturer in IT from TOPNZ. See you there!!

Whether you join the group or not, I would love to know you "in-world". Please send me (Arwenna Stardust) an IM when you are next there - to find me, use Search again, tab People, type in my name and when it is found, just click the IM button and type your message - it will come to me as an email if I am not online at the time.

In reply to Clare Atkins

Re: Kiwi Educators in Second Life

by Deleted user -

Hi Clare,

Finally made it here.

For anyone else reading this my RL name is John Green, SL name is Silel Volitant. Silel was a space cat in a sci-fi series from my youth in case you were wondering - I thought it was a cool name! I first met Aaron on a course at MIT and met Clare as Arwenna in NMIT's garden. I was liked the direction she was taking in moving away from the ubiquitous palms towards New Zealand natives plus NZ bird song, something I've not seen elsewhere - unless everyone comes from Orlando that is!

Unlike Arwenna and Isa I've put my real picture on this site as although I have a much cooler looking avatar many years my junior I'd still like you to know me as John.

I'm hoping to discuss your ideas on ambiance (presence of place), and place structures in Second Life in terms of their appeal for discussion. Just how often should ducks go quack before they distract wink ?I've seen some terribly dull copies of RL dusty classrooms and conference centres in SL and also some exciting spaces full of imagination and sound like Arwenna's Secret Garden. I'm wondering what is best for what subjects and why and hoping to get some cool links to such sites to explore.

In reply to Deleted user

Re: Kiwi Educators in Second Life

by Deleted user -

>>liked the direction she was taking in moving away from the ubiquitous palms towards New Zealand natives plus NZ bird song

John.... a small technical note if I may (given that these things do affect what one can and can't do in SL and the time taken).

The ubiquitous palms (Linden made) you mention have one thing going for them, they consist of one primitive (the building blocks of SL). Why is that important. Well all land in SL has a primitive limit. Use that up and you can't build anymore. Given that the minimum for a resident made plant is 2 prims, and usually more, you can see why those palms are all over the place (and the fern, the tropical plant, the pine etc., i.e. Linden produced one primmers).

The other aspect to having native (or any resident made) plants is time. Both the pohutukawa and the cordyline in her garden were my doing and I won't be going there again for a while. First requirement is a good photograph of the plant requiring good light, little movement and above all a clear blue background (harder to find than you would imagine). Think bluescreen film capturing. Then upwards of 4 or 5 hours to extract the image from its background (less if you aren't that worried about the quality of the final product but I am), to create the transparency channel for it, to blur the edges to prevent the plant halo effect, to upload the image and build the actual tree object and to apply physics for wind effects and gravity. Worth it to have a slice of NZ in SL but a big ask for a couple of plants.

Cheers

Aaron/Isa Goodman

Isa's SL Blog

In reply to Deleted user

Re: Kiwi Educators in Second Life

by Deleted user -

...and it's this technical insight that makes you so valuable! It's my "why not" nature at work again smile

That said it's a shame that Linden technology does not hire someone just like you to increase the variety of plant life, since apart from the hills and mountains that's what defines the natural world. I suppose we could always just ensure that we're talking on the shore where plant life is limited in RL too! Or perhaps most of the US guys out there are used to palm filled city streets?