Back in 2007 I wrote A Guide to Writing About Second Life, a tongue-in-cheek how-to guide to lazy journalists that want to write a story about Second Life based on my experience of reading way too many articles of this type and their lack of depth. It offered a few choices, such as how to write “the positive, glowing update”, followed by “the negative, cynical slam”, and maybe “the deep thought piece” to get philosophical about it. My point was that the mass media seemed to follow each other like a herd, veering toward glowing tributes first, then all getting cynical next. And they all use pretty much the same list of talking points, that are both true simultaneously if one were to write a more balanced piece (why don’t they?).
Now I see the third iteration: the “c’mon, it’s not that bad, let’s be reasonable” story in Information Week. The story is called “Rumors Of Second Life’s Failure Are Just Lousy Journalism“. He’s right that journalism here has been lazy and many of the slams were overstated. There’s good and bad to say about Second Life, like anything else. I am working now on a short document to give a quick view into where we see Enterprise Virtual Worlds and their potential value. I’ll try to jump past the one-sided views and get right to a more moderated view of pros and cons and where I’ve seen real business value today.
Virtual Worlds for Inspiration, Innovation, and Participation
Charles White, Senior System Designer and Lead for Virtual Worlds for Engineering and Science, NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory
NASA has used simulator worlds as training environments for many years, but now virtual worlds offer new opportunities to interact with the public, and offers a new canvas to visualize real scientific data. Explorer Island in Second Life is the Jet Propulsion Laboratory’s entry into virtual space. Charles White (Aka: Jet Burns) shares observations and lessons learned from over the virtual horizon.
I hope to see you there!