Friday, February 29, 2008

TimeOut Magazine Had a Nice Article About Virtual Worlds

TimeOut Magzine in Israel had an article about Virtual worlds in Hebrew by Dana Shoapi.
You can see the entire article in Hebrew in their web site. (follow the link, a special viewer will pop -- go to page 49). Cool pictures too.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

What is Chumby? (Linux , 3.5-inch touch screen and more)

A small cute things, CNET report on Chumby:
The Chumby is a plush, softball-size Linux computer that includes a 3.5-inch touch screen, speakers, and Wi-Fi. Its an adorable and adaptable machine for hosting music, photos, videos, and Flash-based internet widgets. The Chumby has geek appeal in spades.

See more here.

Eduverse Conference On learning in Virtual Worlds in Amsterdam and SL

Update: See this a good summary of this unique event here.

Lots of people in the lab at the presentation
(left screen is power-point, right screen is a video feed of the audience).

Robert Shepherd will host a Virtual Education Conference both in RL (Amsterdam) and in SL. 27-Feb-2008. 15:00-23:00 EU CET TIME. 06:00-22:00 SL time. See

(I will give a short talk about my course "Virutal Worlds 101 - model 2008" 20:30 CET Time, 11:30 SLT time, 21:30 Israel Time).

The event will be streamed on the web at: (UK) (NL) and will be viewable afterwards from De Balie archives
The event will also be available to be seen live in Second Life at these locations:
Should you wish to stream it yourself, then it is possible using this url:
It will also be streamed live simultaneously with the following codecs for low speed internet connections: (Mp3 audio mono) > ( image refresh 'webcam')

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Invite to the Intro to the Metaverse Tuturial

(In Hebrew... see more info here and to sign up here)

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Open Virtual Worlds Project

Today the New Media Consortium (NMC) announced a $250,000 two-year collaboration with Sun Microsystems to launch the Open Virtual Worlds Project, an effort that is aimed at making it easier to learn, work, and exchange ideas in virtual space. The project will develop a range of standards-based, portable open-source educational spaces, content, and objects, and use them to extend Sun Microsystems’s open source Project Darkstar and Project Wonderland virtual world platforms.


Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Evergreen fund annouce 50$K program for Reserach

This is an interesting concrete development in the relations of venture capital and research. Evergreen people should be commended. A simple and direct program to enhance ideas.
Evergreen Venture Partners launches a research fellowship program, endowing up to five research grants for high level PhD students whose research interests touch upon issues concerning technological, economic and social questions that coincide with themes of interests for the Israeli High-Technology industry. Evergreen strongly believes in cooperation between the academic and the commercial sectors in regards to High-Technology, and conceives such inter-sector cooperation as a key to the development of technology as well as higher education in Israel.
Research Priorities in 2008 In September 2006 Google announced the purchase of YouTube for the sum of 1.65 billion USD. Three months later, TIME magazine published its annual selection of “man of the year”. The selection of an anonymous person, “you”, that is, each and every one of us, the users of new technologies, fore and foremost the internet, marked for many the pick of a process that began as early as the first days of the World Wide Web, back in the 1980s.
The centrality of the singular user and of the particular usage experience brings up a set of questions concerning the conceptual, economic, cultural, technological, social and future-oriented aspects of this approach.
In 2008, the program will focus on the economic, technological and cultural potential of the domain of end-users and usage experience in the era of Information Technology, present and future.

See more info

Saturday, February 09, 2008

Second Life as a Platform for Augmented Reality

Augmented reality that use Second Life. This is the first video that demonstrates how Second Life is beamed into the real world. (source:

Thanks to

Monday, February 04, 2008

Yesha to join Software Engineering in Shenkar College of Engineering and Design

As of Feb 1, 2008 I have joined the department of Software Engineering in Shenkar. Few words about Shenkar: (see also Shenkar site in Hebrew)
The Shenkar College of Engineering and Design was established in 1970 in order to serve Israeli industry in all that relates to academic qualifications for engineers and designers for modern industries. Today there are 2,500 students at Shenkar in two faculties - the Faculty of Engineering and the Faculty of Design - each faculty has six departments. There is close cooperation between the two faculties and the different departments. This has created a dynamic dialogue of joint specializations and projects combining development of original and creative design, a profound understanding of materials and production processes, and advanced management and marketing methods.
This is going to be an exciting journey for me and my work in the Metaverse. Shenkar has both academic work relate to the core of the Metaverse (in software engineering) and the various design, use, and visual sides of the Metaverse (in the design departments) :-)

Friday, February 01, 2008

Microsoft just announced a $44.6 billion offer for Yahoo

According to ZDNET:
Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer made the half-cash, half-stock offer in a brutal carrot-and-stick open letter to Yahoo!’s board of directors.

The Redmond giant appears to laying the groundwork for a hostile takeover if it comes to that. Ballmer writes that the board spurned an earlier attempt at acquisition in early 2007:

The compete letter can be seen here. (interesting read).
This is an interesting development, lets wait and see how it develops.

2007-8 Spring Course: Intro to Virtual Worlds (Shenkar)

As part of the Department of Software Engineering at the Shenkar College of Engineering and Design I will teach my Into to Virtual Worlds Course. The course will allow students to explore the Theory and Practice of Virtual Worlds.

For a review of the Course in Second Life see an on-line presentation in world here (SLURL).
Access course materials for students here (need password).