Monday, April 9, 2012

Virtual Workplace and more

Linden Lab,

It is amazing to know that these virtual worlds that are typically used for gaming and leisure reasons can actually serve a purpose greater than what it was intentionally created for.  Never would I have thought that Second Life had the capacity to host a large scale conference like the one that was held in 2008.  I find this to be quite fascinating being that much of the older generations are against using technologies especially when they are viewed as a video game.  Being a part of the conference must have been an interesting and beneficial experience reading that so many people gave positive reviews at the conclusion of the conference.  My initial thought was that it might have been difficult to gain the same effect as being there in person.  However, it seemed have worked perfectly.  The most important result of holding the conference in the virtual world is the large amount of money that was saved.  Not only was the amount of money that was saved impressive, so was time that was not wasted traveling and getting back into the office.

On the other hand, Castronova's article felt more like a commercial and that he trying to sell this great idea of the virtual world.  Maybe this article would be better for those people who are skeptics of the Internet, but for those that are familiar with it, I felt that it was a little overpowering.  He did bring up some good points that it could bring families together that are separated by distance.  The "meemaw" story was the one that stuck out the most simply because many families can relate to having family members far away.  But overall, virtual worlds are something that some people are going to be totally against because of the fact that it resonates with video games and that will just have to be accepted.  At the same time, these virtual worlds are becoming more accepting and people are finding productive uses for them like the IBM conference.  Time will tell whether there is a future for the virtual worlds in other contexts.  

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