About a year ago, I found out about Stephane Zugzwang’s amazing virtual reality rooms and was blown away. These rooms basically surround your avatar with a 360 degree image that is truly immersive and awe-inspiring. You can check out several at Stephane’s shop (click here to teleport.)
Now I get word that Stephane is teaming up with the folks at Info Island and Commonwealth Islands to offer free, fully functional virtual reality rooms to educators and non-profits starting on December 12! This would be a great tool for teaching students about far-away locales or injecting photo-realistic detail into your non-profit space. The complete announcement follows after the jump.
Similarly, the company Inside This World has for awhile now been offering free holodecks to non-profits for use on their sims. The ITW holodeck is actually both a very practical and attractive tool for utilizing a small, low-prim count space. Just like the holodeck on Star Trek, the owner (or anyone else with permissions) can load up an entire room configuration by clicking on a control panel. A holodeck might contain a conference room, a dance hall, a sauna and a coffee shop, complete with furniture, lighting, and decor.
Head to Kenora (Teleport SLURL) to check out these holodecks, and contact Biscuit Carroll if you are interested in the non-profit discount.
EDUCATION AND NON-PROFITS IN THE VIRTUAL WORLD
VIRTUAL REALITY ROOM AND HOLODECK NEWS
If you were an educator, wouldn’t you dream of taking your students on exciting field trips but the location is across the country, or even across the ocean? How about a holodeck in a virtual world where, with the click of a mouse, you can be in New York, Chicago, or visiting Chateau Villandry on the Loire river?
Thanks to the partnership between the Info Island Archipelago, Commonwealth Islands for non-profits, and Stephane Desnault (aka Stephane Zugzwang in SL) educators and non profits can obtain free, fully functional Virtual Reality Rooms at Info Island – Land of Lincoln sim beginning December 12. The Virtual Reality Room is an immersive, photo-realistic environment that brings an unprecedented level of realism to Second Life.
There are a variety of scenes available including starscapes, New York, Chicago, Paris and more. With the new version, VRR owners can add their own scenes. It’s one of the most exciting aspects of the partnership: Educators and universities are well equipped to create new scenes, either from photographic panoramas or computer-generated 3D models, and they’re getting the best available technology to use and distribute them in Second Life. Once a scene is created, it can be shared and used by others. Info Island Archipelago will be compiling such a library of educational scenes, created by educators, to be shared with others.
Lori Bell, Director of Innovation at the Alliance Library System(Lorelei Junot in second life), Josh Knauer(Hayduke Ebisu in second life) of Commonwealth Islands, and Stephane Zugzwang are launching this exciting partnership on Tuesday December 12 with seminars at 8 am, 11 am, and 2 pm SL time (11am, 2pm, 5pm New York and 5pm, 8pm, 11pm Europe) on the new Land of Lincoln Island in Second Life.
Stephane Zugzwang, will introduce the latest version of the Virtual Reality room, and demonstrate its new features, especially how users can now incorporate their own scenes. He will also introduce LOOV, a new initiative designed to foster communication and collaboration in Second Life.
Lori Bell and Josh Knauer, Commonwealth, will introduce what Info and Commonwealth islands are about, and how the VRR distribution initiative plays in their strategy. She’ll introduce several existing and upcoming projects – like Land of Lincoln, where the presentation will take place.
About the Virtual Reality Room:
Stephane Zugzwang introduced the Virtual Reality Room in Second Life at the end of 2006. It quickly gained acceptance as one of the cleanest and easiest way to bridge the real and virtual worlds, by immersing Second Life residents in crystal-clear, photo-realistic environments. More than a thousand rooms have already been sold, serving a diverse group of club owners, individual residents and corporations like IBM. The collection of panoramas available with the Virtual Reality Room is steadily growing: Stephane shoots many pictures himself, while staying on the lookout for original, third party content sold at the VRR shop with the rooms themselves. Yet, says Stephane: "The VRR is not living up to the incredible potential of Second Life: It could do much more to educate and serve the needs of the many non-profit causes that have found a home in SecondLife. The Virtual Reality Room is an easy, cost effective tool to bring reality inside our dream world. This initiative with Info Island is meant to make it useful where it matters most."
About the Info Island Archipelago
Established in 2006 Info Island currently regroups 36 islands and is one of the main centers for education in Second Life. The Archipelago also hosts many libraries, non profit associations and educators most notably Commonwealth Islands, Cleveland Public Library, Stanford University Libraries, San Jose State University Graduate School of Library and Information Science and many more.
"We want the Info Archipelago to be a center for information, education and entertainment," stated Kitty Pope, Executive Director of the Alliance Library System. "Being able to offer the technology for the Virtual Reality Room and building a library for scenes created by educators is very exciting."
About Commonwealth Islands
Hayduke Ebisu introduced Commonwealth Islands in 2006 as part of the Info Island Archipelago as a place where non-profits could build a presence in the virtual world of Second Life and help one another. Commonwealth Island was one of the first places to host a Virtual Reality Room.
"It is unbelievable what is possible today," stated Hayduke. "Technology is changing so quickly and products like the VRR are very exciting."
For more information on this project, to attend one of the planned seminars or to learn more about Info Island, the Virtual Reality Room and LOOV, contact:
For the Virtual Reality Room and LOOV: Stephane Zugzwang (also
For Info Island and the special Virtual Reality Room distribution agreement: Lorelei Junot or Abbey Zenith.