"Second Life" in Education Interview: Wow...

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Steve Hargadon

Dec 4, 2006, 1:57:45 PM12/4/06
to Fedora Education Initiative, k12ope...@googlegroups.com, EDTECH - Educational Technology

I don't know whether to be scared or excited about Second Life. This interview today with Gavin Dudeney of The Consultants-E, who run the EduNation island in Second Life, was a fascinating look at this virtual online world--a place where Gavin spends 8 - 10 hours per day!

We spent the first half of the interview just talking about how Second Life works. It is both compelling and frightening at the same time--the idea of "going" to a virtual location for a conference actually makes a lot of sense (with all of the technologies built into the venue, it will be very intuitive), but paying money for designer clothing to put on your online avatar (character)? Yikes. I have an image of pale, lifeless children sitting dark rooms in front of their computers, sucking nutrients from a tube while their heroic online avatars live their lives for them...

When I asked about the safety issues relating to the use of Second Life for youth, Gavin described a "teen grid," which even Gavin doesn't have access to because you have to apply and go through some security/background checks to be able to interact with youth there.

This interview is only about 33 minutes long, and--for those who don't know anything about Second Life--should be a real eye-opener. At the end of the interview Gavin generously gives instructions for getting a personal tour from him once you are in Second Life.


Steve Hargadon
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