Thursday, October 4, 2012

Art tours and Second Life

My favourite artwork during the tour - animated falling autumn leaves
Tonight I had a great time in Second Life.  I have been having issues with my computer with lag and voice chat which made it difficult to go an any tours the course was offering.  However I borrowed a laptop that ran a windows operating system and was able to interact really well, and get my voice chat to work.  I run a Linux OS and it don't think that Second Life has really developed a good SL viewer for Linux.  Anyway.......It was great that I could talk and hear the tour and get some insights into Second Life, and chat with people from my course.  Being distance Ed this doesn't happen much, so interactions on Second Life for distance education students would be a great way to build up a class community.
Gallery of people and their avatars at Thothica

Cas took us on a tour of some of the art installations and galleries in Second Life.  One of the most fascinating was a gallery with images of people and their avatars.  The way that people customize their avatars to look like them, down to the clothes they wear.  It is interesting to consider people's relationship to their avatar.  I haven't done much customizing of my avatar, but I am certainly not going to have one that mimics my over weight, middle aged body!  There are not many places I can be thin, young and energetic in real life, so I need to take advantage of Second Life.
Avatars are an important part of Second Life and as in real life I have found that they effect the way I think of people in Second life.  Cas I found extroverted which mainly had to do with the gestures her avatar made, confident and open.  However Mishellanous, another avatar who is new to Second life spent most of the time looking straight ahead with her hands by her sides so I assumed that she is quite and shy.  This is probably no the case but being new she hasn't added gestures to her avatar.  I probabaly seemed the same to her.

Right: Buying souvenir t-shirts at Artropolis
Left: End of tour in our Artropolis t-shirts

Cas gave me some landmarks to go shopping, so I have spent the past few hours shopping in Second life and then finding a changing room and trying on my outfits and doing some mixing and matching.  There are some great free shopping areas to take advantage of, even if a lot of outfits are a little skimpy.  I collate some outfit shots into the image below.

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