Secondary Worlds

Teaching, Technology, and English Education

Category: Simulations

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If We Built It, Would You Come?

More and more universities are constructing virtual campuses within Second Life. This makes me think about what it would take to build a GVSU campus . . . Second Life lands B.C. campus Randy Shore Vancouver Sun Saturday, October 28, 2006 One million people worldwide have signed on to live out their fantasies in a […]

News, Simulations

Snow Crash in Second Life

Since the idea of the metaverse comes from Neal Stephenson’s Snow Crash (and other works of cyberpunk like William Gibson’s Neuromancer), it only makes sense that Stephenson’s publishing company should take an interest in Second Life. I can’t wait to see what Penguin comes up with to market the book. In the meantime, read Snow […]

News, Simulations

Second Life on NPR

While NPR’s Neil Conan may have seemed uncharacteristically confused at times, Second Life was nevertheless the topic of yesterday’s “Talk of the Nation.” Too bad the session focused on commercial applications of Second Life and not the more interesting things happening with education, though one of hte guests did spend a few minutes talking about […]

News, Simulations

A Shakespearean Virtual World

It looks like Edward Castronova of Indiana University just received a large grant to build something very similar to the Thoughtcrime project in Second Life–only his game is based on Shakespeare, not Orwell, and it is not clear whether Second Life will be his multi-user virtual environment of choice. I am incredibly excited by this […]


A Character-Driven Video Game?

I recently read an interesting article in the November 2006 issue of the Atlantic Monthly. No link here: you will need a subscription or access to GVSU databases to read it. Odd that a literary magazine once edited by W.D. Howells should be on top of the gaming world, but here it is nevertheless. The […]

News, Simulations

Gee and Others on Video Games in Education

Here’s an interesting, 22-minute video produced by the Orange County (California) Department of Education. Seth Cohen is not involved, but some pretty major names in this growing and always controversial discussion do get a say–including James Gee, who is coming to Western Michigan later this year. Check it out if you get the chance. And […]

Multimedia, Simulations

Thoughtcrime Update: What I’ve Been Up To

Longtime readers of this blog will know that I occasionally post updates on a literary game I’ve been working on for a few years now–a multiplayer online role-playing game based on 1984 by George Orwell. The game plays like an online version of the card game Mafia, only it is set in the futuristic world […]


A Farewell to Hyperthreading

After a few weeks of frustration with various applications not running as they should on my new desktop computer at work (Pentium 4, 3 GHz, 2 GIG RAM), I’ve disabled hyperthreading in the bios settings of the computer. Now, Firefox, Second Life, and Google Earth all work without hanging. To accomplish this, I just booted […]

News, Simulations

Second Life Education in the News

This article offers a nice overview of how educators are using Second Life for serious academic purposes. I might include myself in this group of “forward-thinking minds,” since I just joined SLED (Second Life Education) a few days ago. For me, though, using SL for literature instruction isn’t extraordinarily innovative, it’s just another way of […]

News, Simulations

Another Quick Movie

Since I’m on campus today, I thought I would try another movie, this time with my big, scary-fast computer. Here’s a quick look at the Amphitheater on the NMC Campus. A faster connection, higher processing speed, and better video software means this one is a lot less fuzzy than my last effort. And thanks to […]

Multimedia, Simulations

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