The way we work has changed dramatically over the past few years.  I’m relatively young…turning 27 in a few weeks – yet even I can recall working for previous employers where there was just no way of getting things done without being present in the same location as my teamRead More →

There is a ton of debate and discussion and information Out There about why virtual worlds are, or aren’t, or might someday be, important for business. Important, that is, to people who are wearing their money-making hats to know about, or to use, or to invest time or effort orRead More →

Editor’s introduction: Machinima refers to animations filmed inside virtual worlds or video games. Machimina is cheaper and faster than the alternatives — traditional filming using real actors and sets, hand-drawn animation, or computer-generated animation.    Many people see machinima as a documentation of the virtual life — a bridge that allowsRead More →

Some event planners just know that they want to produce a virtual event.  Others take a circuitous route to a virtual event, considering other options first.  For those of you “on the fence” – you’re interested in virtual, but not sure if a virtual event makes sense right now, readRead More →

Ever since Second Life made virtual world a common reality, people have been trying to find ways to utilize this new-found platform for unimaginable reasons. Soon enough other companies cropped providing quick similar features. These include Active Worlds and Entropia Universe. They all mainly started as a virtual social gameRead More →

(Image courtesy Unisfair.)

The virtual event space has heated up over the last year.  That’s what a recent Unisfair survey of 500 technology marketing professionals revealed:  40 percent polled considered virtual events “one of the top emerging channels for lead generation in 2010 and beyond.”  Companies today look for an experienced virtual platformRead More →

Second Life, Openism, Blue Mars, 3D Explorer.  If these mean nothing to you today, they certainly will in future.  They are all example of Virtual Worlds and this evening in Manchester I had the job of Chairing a really interesting mixed reality debate called The Death of Distance.  Around 800MRead More →

These days, we are experiencing a period of extraordinary growth in the Virtual Events space. Let’s face it, air travel isn’t getting any easier as long security lines, service reductions and flight delays take their toll on traveling executives. Recent pandemics from bird to swine flu prompted companies to implementRead More →

Early mainstream adoption of enterprise immersive software will most probably not take place in 2013 because of issues regarding the ease of use and the scalability of those immersive environments. That is what Erica Driver, a co-founder and principal at ThinkBalm, told me. I interviewed Erica about OpenSim and theRead More →

One of the great things about the Internet is that it connects people who, in the past, have had a hard time keeping in touch. In researching the phenomena of medical amputees rehabilitating and re-integrating into their home communities, it has been shown that peer support is a real keyRead More →

Last week I attended two conferences simultaneously, one in Cancun, Mexico (MPI Meet Different) and the other in Santa Clara, Ca. (Virtual Edge Summit)  Such is the life of a virtual traveler!  While I certainly missed the face-to-face interaction at both events, the experience of navigating two conferences at theRead More →

I recently saw the Michael Douglas/Demi Moore 1994 movie called “Disclosure.” In the movie (which explores sexual harassment in the workplace), Michael Douglas was working for a computer company that created a 3D virtual reality database. The user would put on special glasses and he was literally inside the database with the data. HeRead More →

A growing number of companies are instituting virtual workforces allowing the employees to be closer to their customers and working in a remote environment. These remote employees work distantly from the members of their team and may rarely have in person contact. As a manager you soon learn you can setRead More →

I was reading something about how a small cadre of vocal power users can skew the development of a virtual world platform, and it got me thinking about the kinds of things corporate clients I’ve worked with have asked for in the past. Oddly, these are things that don’t evenRead More →

Second Life is being held back by an “elite group” of users, according to Forrester Research, Inc. analyst Tom Grant. There is an ” Iron Law of Oligarchy,” Grant wrote this week. “Over time, a subset of customers emerge who participate regularly in user group meetings, discussion forums, the commentsRead More →

As 2009 comes to a close, and we can look back and see what happened this year, I’d like to make some predictions for what will happen next year. #1 – Consolidation continues throughout the first half of 2010. Platforms with relatively simple feature sets will continue to face increasedRead More →

A Virtual Immersive Environment is Not a Parallel Universe, It is an Alternative Reality. While it is possible to make a 3D virtual immersive environment (VIE) look exactly (or pretty darn close) to your actual office building or training room or college campus…what’s the point? The real power of aRead More →

Virtual Worlds, Simulations, and Games for Education: A Unifying View I wrote this article for Innovate magazine a few months ago, to coincide with the release of Learning Online with Games, Simulations, and Virtual Worlds. While pieces have have been excerpted, many have asked for the complete article, which IRead More →

One year ago (nearly to this day), Cisco Systems announced the cancellation of their annual “Global Sales Meeting” – in a statement, Cisco CEO John Chambers was quoted: In almost all instances for business critical activities, we will be utilizing Web 2.0 collaboration technologies, such as TelePresence and WebEx, toRead More →

Back in August, I jumped the gun a bit and wrote a “year in review” posting about virtual events.  Now that we’re in December,  I think it’s high time to peer into the Magic 8 Ball and speculate on what’s in store for the virtual events industry in 2010.  AwayRead More →

On Thursday, I experienced a wonderful example of effective training in Second Life.  During the weekly Train For Success meetup, Mark Jankowski of Virtual Training Partners conducted a portion of his negotiations training course and gave a tour of his training grounds.  It was impressive not due to fascinatingly complexRead More →

Social networking tools dominate communication over the web and this is not limited to sending simple messages between friends but can also include interaction and collaboration within virtual world environments such as Linden’s Second Life application. The targeted use of Web 2.0 social networking applications provides opportunities for communities ofRead More →

Philosopher and essayist George Santayana was quoted as saying: “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”  With virtual events, the “past” is fairly recent.  However, the spirit of Santayana’s quote holds true – we need to learn from our prior virtual event in order to makeRead More →

From the very start of my educational consultancy over seven years ago, I have always trusted my gut instinct in business. I have always worked in the innovation field, often years before others, trialling and testing ‘proof of concept’ ideas, no matter how outlandish, to probe those boundaries. Over theRead More →

In Virtual Events Year In Review: 2009, I summarized key trends that I witnessed in the virtual events industry this year. The trends for 2009 included global adoption, emergence of new industries (as virtual event show hosts), emergence of hybrid (virtual/physical) events, the shift to ongoing communities and the shiftRead More →

Coming into this year, I considered 2009 a taking-off point for the virtual events industry.  Sure, virtual events and virtual tradeshows have been around for some time, but I felt 2009 would see enormous growth (in both event volume and in the breadth of industries entering the mix), as virtualRead More →

Guess what, the below is not security! “If we want to put a life-size prototype of our super-secret product in Second Life, then there are many creative ways we implement extra layers of security such as making it invisible unless we’re in the room.” Really? Did you just say that?Read More →

I frequently am tasked with recalling specific data points from the ThinkBalm Immersive Internet Business Value Study, Q2 2009 for client inquiries, presentations, press calls, and blog posts. I can’t remember the exact numbers — my memory is sieve-like — so for the first week after the report was published I would go to theRead More →

If Opensim is the Apache of the Metaverse, then what will be the Joomla of the Metaverse?  This isn’t a idle or rhetorical question, it’s something which has to be answered if Metaverse solutions like Opensim are ever going to truly become the next incarnation of the Web. While itRead More →

When you first open up an OpenSim browser – Hippo, for example — it seems pretty straightforward. Logging in is a snap, just type your name and password. But once you log in, it’s a different story. You start out as some faceless person in ugly clothes, although it canRead More →

My first time in OpenSim was on May 22, 2009, when my internship program put me in contact with my new boss. She suggested that I download Hippo so that we could meet at the company’s virtual offices and discuss my internship. I was studying in Madrid and she wasRead More →

Update: Full, up-to-date list of OpenSim hosting providers is here. Running an OpenSimulator instance is a challenging prospect for many — there are a number of important criteria you should be looking at before purchasing, but the single most important question is: “Will I be managing this myself?” “Do itRead More →