Monday, May 25, 2009

xtranormal: Cool 3D Movie Maker -- Based Just on Text and Few Icons

Still a bit basic -- but the idea is amazing.. fun...

Friday, May 22, 2009

Real Virtuality: Preparing for a Long-Term Paradigm Shift (IT perspective)

Update: Quick access (free) to the 3d3c Identity issues: http://www.cutter.com/offers/infosecprivacy.html

A new Cutter IT E-Mail Advisor that I wrote. Posted as is.

20 May 2009

by Yesha Y. Sivan

IT managers need to have a split personality: they must be both conservative and innovative. On the one hand, they have to maintain older systems and keep current processes working smoothly. On the other hand, they have to continually examine new IT technologies that can alter the business. Around 1990, a "game-changing" technology, the Internet, emerged. New businesses that embraced the Internet in innovative ways -- such as eBay, Amazon, and Google -- thrived. However, companies that failed to embrace the Internet early -- such as Tower Records, Barnes & Noble, and Rand McNally -- were less fortunate. Tower closed, Barnes & Noble missed the online business that now belongs to Amazon, and Rand McNally failed to capture the online mapping business.

In the IT field, we have a technology shift of the magnitude of the Internet once every 10-20 years. Such paradigmatic shifts can break older firms, reshape entire industries, and create enormous value and wealth. Missing such a shift, however, can be detrimental to businesses and IT suppliers alike. Consider the shift from mainframe computers to minicomputers (which IBM missed and Digital captured), from minicomputers to PCs (which Digital missed and Compaq captured), and from PCs to the network computer (which Microsoft missed and Google captured).

I maintain that real virtual worlds will, in due course, offer such a paradigm shift. What we see now, with Second Life (SL), World of Warcraft (WoW), Club Penguin, and more than 100 other worlds, is just a beginning. I use the adjective "real" to distance virtual worlds from the gaming worlds. "Real" hints at a much more far-reaching potential. While today virtual worlds are used mostly for games and fun, real virtual worlds have the potential to alter our lives.

I define a real virtual world as an aggregate of the following four factors (for more on these factors, see " Identity 3D3C: Confronting the Security and Privacy Challenges in Virtual Worlds," Cutter IT Journal, Vol. 22, No. 4):

  1. A 3D world
  2. Community
  3. Creation
  4. Commerce

What I have also learned in the last two years in the field is that only hands-on experience by IT leaders inside the enterprise can pave the way to valuable and timely use of virtual worlds. Just reading about virtual worlds will not give you the visceral feel of the new medium. I call this hands-on approach "active research."

Following is my 10-day recipe for a good active research stage for virtual worlds.

1. Setup (1 day).

a. Select an internal service that connects people in the organization. (it will be mostly likely marketing related or something that has to do with collaboration).

b. Plan for at least a six-month period. (Things take time, and you need the time to learn).

c. Appoint an IT project leader; make sure you have a business leader. The IT project leader and the business leader should meet weekly to manage the project.

2. Explore worlds (1 day per world).

Open an account in the following worlds:

a. IMVU. Buy credits; get the adult pass. Join some groups. Buy items. Hire a designer to create a shirt with the logo of your firm. Buy IMVU credit from alternate sources (e.g., www.imvu-credit.com/).

b. WoW. Play a bit (just a bit -- this could be addictive!).

c. Second Life. Go through the training island. Visit NASA, a club (any), and a furniture store (any). Buy land in the main land and position a small house. Furnish it with things you have purchased.

d. Qwaq Forums. This is more for business collaboration. No money here. Less complex than Second Life.

3. Start exploring 3D3C factors (1 day per factor)

a. 3D. Use Google SketchUp to build a sample home; use Blender to build a small 3D logo for the project.

b. Community. Open a user account in Facebook. Organize an event for employees using Facebook. Appoint officers. Understand Facebook infrastructure, as well as Open Social (Google).

c. Creation. Find a 3D tool for Facebook, such as Scene Caster, Mini Life, or Lively and create a 3D space for yourself. Read about how open/joint development works.

d. Commerce. Explore PayPal and eBay; buy and sell something. Explore various payment methods: credit cards, store cards, SMS, and phone.

4. Share experiences and brainstorm for pilot internal projects (1 day)

a. Prepare a brainstorming day. Gather lessons learned and initial ideas. Invite both business people and IT people. Prepare to show concrete demos of what you have done. Encourage people to come up with their own creative suggestions. While I have heard many ideas, I'm still surprised by the creative concepts people generate when presented with virtual world opportunities.

b. Conduct the brainstorming day. Generate several options. Do both a business analysis (what should be done) and a technical analysis (how it could be done).

I welcome your comments on this issue of the Cutter IT E-Mail Advisor and encourage you to send your insights on the market in general to comments@cutter.com.

-- Yesha Y. Sivan

Real Virtuality: Preparing for a Long-Term Paradigm Shift

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Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Cool Beta for 3D face Book Scenes

My old friends -- did it again... still in beta but and very interesting... path...
Try to find the naked lady movie inside.... :-)



See this facebook application

Sunday, May 17, 2009

May 31: Second Life Israel hosts Israel’s 61st birthday with opening of ‘Israeli Entrepreneurial Spirit’ exhibition


What: Israel’s 61st birthday Second Life Israel
What 2: I will kindly invited to as the "guest of honor" and talk about "Israel, entrepreneurship, and Virtual Worlds."
Where: http://slurl.com/secondlife/Israel/29/58/22



Here's the official note:
In honor of Israel’s 61st birthday Second Life Israel will be opening an exhibit titled ‘The Israeli entrepreneurial Spirit’ showcasing some of Israel’s finest innovations in a variety of fields. The exhibit’s opening will feature technology expert and Metaverse Labs Founder Dr. Yesha Sivan as its guest of honor. The event will take place in SL Israel on Sunday May 31st at 10 AM SLT (1 PM NYC, 8 PM Jerusalem time).
The Israeli Entrepreneurial Spirit highlights 17 leading Israeli companies in the social, environmental, medical and technological fields. Each of these companies represents the best in Israeli innovation, making a difference in ways that better their communities and the lives of people from around the world. This exhibit is a natural fit for Israel, long described as a second ‘Silicon Valley,’ and Second Life’s technologically savvy membership.

Dr. Yesha Sivan is the founder of Metaverse Labs, and has consulted on technologies for knowledge infrastructures to many companies based in Israel and around the world. His field of expertise is the linking of second life and real life. Dr Sivan received his PhD from Harvard University and teaches at the Software Engineering Department of Shenkar College of Engineering and Design. He has previously taught at Bar Ilan and Tel Aviv University. For the event opening Dr. Sivan will speak about ‘Israel, entrepreneurship, and Virtual Worlds.’ He will then take questions from the audience.

Following Dr. Sivan’s address and the subsequent question and answer session there will be a ribbon cutting ceremony for the exhibit and Israeli music will be played on a dance floor. There will be a chance to speak to representatives of companies that choose to send someone to represent them at the event.
Second Life Israel was launched January 2007 and since then has consistently ranked as one of the top Israel and Jewish sites in Second Life. SL Israel offers Second Life’s millions of members the ability to teleport instantly into the virtual Israel, and to explore a country that is fun and educational, ancient and modern, imaginative and real. There is a tourism information spot for those interested in a real life visit to Israel. Other major sites on SL Israel include the holy sites of the 3 major monotheistic religions, the Tel Aviv Promenade with the Opera House and Dizingoff Fountain, the Dead Sea and mud baths, the Eilat Underwater Observatory, and the Roman Amphitheater in Caesarea.
For additional information
Chaim Landau, SL Israel Founder
Tel: 972-54-753-9943, Email: SLisrael8@gmail.com

Who we are: SL Israel, founded by Chaim Landau and assisted by Beth Brown, presents a complete and comprehensive Israel experience, both for the experienced sightseer and for the first time visitor. It aims to convey a variety of experiences about what Israel is all about, and to present the country in its complexity and diversity to a global audience.

Some past coverage on SL Israel

Jerusalem Post

Massively

New York Blueprint

Video of last year’s 60th independence party in SL Israel with Omanoot

Saturday, May 16, 2009

May 22-24: Metameet Conference in Amsterdam



First Annual Metameets Conference, Amsterdam Friday, May 22 – Sunday, May 24  2009
MetaMeets09 : "European conference addressing the present and  future of the Web 3.0: User-created 3D virtual worlds such as Second Life, Active Worlds, OpenSource Grids and more..."

World-wide citizens from virtual environments will meet in person at the conference as well as at our cross-media events.Our speakers will cover a range of topics including business, education, non-profit organization and cultural projects.

Our aim is to exchange information and experience with a common goal: to build bridges among diverse virtual worlds.
We welcome those keen upon illustrating the time-saving, cost-reducing and community engagement benefits.This conference also offers visitors without experience in virtual worlds the possibility to get to know this new type of media and environment. 

Speakers include :- Katrin Janssen (European Business Programs Specialist, Linden Lab) 
  • Tim Gorree (Nokia - IT Architect )
  • Robert Bloomsfield (Cornell University, Metanomics)
  • Robert Thomas (Composer, Dizzy Banjo Music & Sound)
  • Yesha Sivan (Metaverse Labs Ltd. & Shenkar College) <==== this is me :-)
  • Kevin Tweedy (OpenSim Consultant, XRGrid.com)
  • Kevin Feenan (Dean of Rockcliffe University)
  • Hein de Graaf (Social-Psychologist)
  • Emmanuel Gruijs (CEO of Active Worlds Europe) 
  • Justin Bovington ( CEO of RRR/Immersive Workspaces) 
  • John Mahon (Dublin in SL)
  • Jules Vos (CEO of Visibuild)
Visit http://www.metameets.com to sign up and find out more details about speaker scheduling and sponsoring.  

Saturday, May 09, 2009

Star Trek Augmented Reality In Your Hand

Star Trek Augmented Reality Demo.

You print this movie sign (B&W or Color), and you have a full 3D ship to play with in your hand.
Loading was a bit difficult but still -- lots of fun.

See http://www.experience-the-enterprise.com/ww/

You will need to download the relevant add on (fusion). DId not work well in Chrom, worked fine in Firefox.

Similar to the GE demo.

Video: World Builder

Future of virtual reality. Amazing concept video. I love the touch of the details. It seems to take the usual Second Life Prims, textures, and giant objects to a new level. Have fun. Kind of a sad (or maybe not sad) ending... Watch in high quality.

A strange man uses holographic tools to build a world for the woman he loves. This is a short by filmmaker Bruce Branit known also as the co-creator of 405.

Friday, May 08, 2009

Video Fun: Medieval helpdesk with English subtitles

Ok, a kind of an old one... but still one of the best. The ability to design an interface that make sense. Have fun.

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Holocaust Survivor Fanny Starr in Second Life


From New Worlds Notes

Holocaust survivor Fanny Starr speaks in Second Life through her daughter's avatar.

This is an amazing sample to what can be done withe the new medium.

Full Video.
Creator Blog.

Sunday, May 03, 2009

Simple Trick to follow @yourself on Twitter Using RSS

Quick intro (skip if you know what is Twitter). So Twitter is making everyone crazy. I know. I'm not sure exactly why. But it seems to create a new medium betweeb email, chat, and IM...

One of the interesting things I wanted to do is to follow who is quating @yesha.

So here is a simple trick.
2. Search @your name (for example @yesha or #sometag or anytying.).
3. On the side there is an RSS logo.
4. Click on it and move it to your favoriate RSS reader.
Ta da...

The result is that you have an RSS on this search. In RSS you will always follow this search for twitts -- never missing anything.

Now I will be able to follow how many people actually re-twit this.

Video: Willilam Shatner Watches Star Trek Movie Trailer


Two movies for the price of one. First the nice Trailer of the new star Trek movie. Then, ALSO at the same time watching William Shatner as he watch the Trailer. Is he happy, is he sad?