Do you like the life you are living? No?! Try Second Life. Second Life is a virtual and networked world where anything is possible. Real people are able to join Second Life where they are able to live out their virtual lives together. Users unhappy with the way they look can take on a character that looks like their ideal self. People are able to build their virtual homes the way they want. If you do not like your current weather, you are able to virtually move to another environment. Second Life is the perfect (or un-perfect) world, exactly the way you want it to be. Rosedale (2008) noted that a virtual environment is ideal for the creativity process because of the reduced costs in creating things.
Dr. Thornburg noted that a disruptive technology is a new technology, which is like an old technology, but it is enhanced and a replacement of the old technology (Laureate Education, 2008). Second Life is that type of disruptive technology. Well, what is the old technology being replaced? Life itself. The user is able to build anything anywhere in the name of creativity and exploration.
Surrogates, starting Bruce Willis, pitched the idea of people living safely at homes while a perfect robotic representation perused the world, which is similar in idea to Second Life. Surrogates is a movie of people living in a utopian world behind a sensory system that is attached to robots. Unlike Second Life, the movie is limited to laws of physics whereas Second Life allows people the freedom to defy physics. View the trailer of Surrogates.
In terms of education, Rosedale (2008) noted that a virtual world allows people to communicate through 3D pictures. Pictures are more memorable than using words (Rosedale, 2008). Learning material can be presented in words and with pictures where the users are free to explore the content like a virtual fieldtrip. Second Life also has the potential to replace fieldtrips for schools. Instead of visiting a museum, students can attend it virtually and a their own pacing.
Are you a Second Life user? Leave a comment, tell us how and why you use it!
Laureate Education, Inc. (Executive Producer). (2008).Emerging and future technology: Disruptive technologies. Baltimore, MD: Author.
Rosedale, P. (2008). Philip Rosedale on Second Life [Video]. Retrieved fromhttp://www.ted.com/talks/the_inspiration_of_second_life.html.