The Power of Appearances

Just a short note, at the start of a busy day in a busy week …

I’ve recently been looking at the magnificent Unity game development platform for creating web-embedded 3D worlds (but that will be for a later post); and, in the course of looking for samples worlds, found on YouTube a video of a development by the University of Hertfordshire (which was also an early adopter of Second Life).  Note the user comment:

Wow. I am considering this University to study at as an International student and it looks fabulous if your animation is based on it. Is it surrounded by water or did you just use that as a cool effect? It’s difficult to find good pictures of the University and its surroundings on the Hertfordshire Uni website. Fantastic presentation.

The question that springs to mind is: Does it matter whether the bricks and mortar, or glass and concrete, that contingently house a seat of learning in the real world should be replicated in Second Life?  The University of Sussex has, for example, created an almost pixel-perfect replica in SL of the core of its real world campus; and, arguably, for marketing purpose this may have some value.  But not, I would argue, if the primary function of a university’s Second Life presence is to serve as a platform for e-learning.  I’d be interested in the opinions of others.

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About Christopher Hutchison

Museologist, cognitive dissident, political grouch, curmudgeonly bibliophage, and all round jolly nice chap.
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