Virtual Scientific Collaboration

(Via PhysOrg) This is totally cool. We should set one of these up for QIP/QC Scientists around the world:

Virtual Worlds May Be the Future Setting of Scientific Collaboration


Image © MICA

Could be quite cool if combined with something like Google Wave so you could have avatars inside a virtual meeting room as a front-end for the wave tools.

I’ve been avoiding second life for so long, but I know I’m going to give in at some point… This kind of thing doesn’t help!


4 thoughts on “Virtual Scientific Collaboration

  1. quantummoxie says:

    I was very active in Second Life for many years but haven’t logged in in over a year. The problem is that it is too distracting to do much of anything useful. I would rather some sort of Skype-like collaboration software.

  2. physicsandcake says:

    Hmm, I’m thinking of having a look at Second Life, but I probably will only stick with it if I start getting something useful out of it – this is the same inner dialogue I had with myself over Facebook!

    I think the problem with Skype is that it isn’t very immersive, and it can be a pain to use for meetings/distance conferencing. Although that does mean that everyone tends to keep to the point!

    A combination of the best features of both would be good I guess.

  3. I understand what you mean about SL; it only makes sense to use it if you have something useful and interesting to do, e.g., attend a seminar, talk with your collaborators, attend a public lecture, etc. That is what we do in MICA, so do come and check it out. In my view, SL is just a very early, relatively primitive example of the immersive VR technology: much better things will come. As for Skype, or indeed any other video/tele-conferencing tool I have tried, for reasons that I cannot explain, interacting in a VW environment somehow feels much better subjectively. I was surprised by that. Check out my guest blogpost on Cosmic Variance, or heaven forbid, read and come join us in cyberspace some time, and see for yourself.

    • physicsandcake says:

      Hi George,

      Well I’ve got an SL account now so I’d be interested in attending the MICA lectures. I agree that SL isn’t quite there yet, it’s baby steps but they are in the right direction.

      I spent a little while wandering around the Scilands, there is some interesting stuff there. I think the main problem is organisation, you need specific events happening at specific times (like the MICA lectures) so that people know when to turn up and the gatherings will then acquire momentum.

      I’ll hopefully see you around SL some time!

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