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Thursday, February 11, 2021

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Mint

Professor Lopes makes a good point about how OpenSim may not be suitable for all coursework, or even all coursework within computer science at large. As an international relations student, I'd have no idea how OpenSims could be adapted for us, besides having everyone go there to sit down for a lecture. But that comes with additional problems, such as how to also embed the powerpoint references our professors often use. All of our projects are still likely to be turned in outside of OpenSim (eg. papers, book reviews, exams) as well, so there's not much interaction possible.

I'd be curious to know what the students in Professor Lopes' class thought about the experience. Did they enjoy it? Would they take another class that used OpenSim? Also, will professors teaching higher-level courses think that students are adequately prepared for their courses after learning primarily on OpenSim rather than on more conventional platforms?

Gord Holden

Have used virtual worlds for 13 years to teach DL students, with great success. The platform I used was Active Worlds (which has been around and continually upgraded for 25+ years). It is cheap, simple to use, appropriate for all users, and has an incredibly powerful suite of multimedia applications already built in. No need for ANYTHING else.

John

"more conventional platforms" like Zoom?

Hyacinth Jean Landry

"OpenSimulator is basically a reverse engineered version of Second Life, with a notoriously difficult UI and old graphics"

Hi! I have been running an OpenSim grid for many years, and I am also one of the developers of an OpenSim branch. OpenSim functions and has the same features as Second Life, plus a lot of unique features like NPC's and LOTS of extra script functions. The UI that you see in Firestorm and other viewers is the same as you would experience in Second Life.

The "graphics" are actually better than anything I can do in SL. We have "Var" regions, which can be any multiple of 256 meters.. So you can make gorgeous landscapes all around you that can actually be built and walked upon (not a sim surround). It's great for things like flying or sailing.

The downside is less people (which may be a good thing haha) and less legally-obtainable content. Luckily our particular grid has some great creators, and we have some really beautiful open source mesh avatars.

OpenSim is a good solution for education projects like this. Or if you want some really big spaces to build in. On most OpenSim grids, you can rent a full region for between ($5 - $30/mo), or run your own from your home PC or an inexpensive cloud server.

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