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Tutorial:   Getting Started with Virtual Worlds (Half-day Tutorial)
Leaders: Anne Massey

In business, education, and government, Virtual Worlds (VWs) are gaining traction. Also known as Web 3D, VWs may extend the boundaries of Web 2.0, by allowing users to collaborate and ‘co-create’ in ways not previous possible. Although Second Life has garnered the most attention, there exists a growing array of other platforms (e.g., Qwaq Forums, Metaplace, etc.) that vary along many dimensions, including ease-of-access, customization, and purpose.

We will take a detailed look at VWs – how they differ from and/or extend Web 2.0 capabilities and their current state of application. Using a sampling of VWs for illustrative purposes, we will present a framework to help attendees ‘get started’ so they can compare (and select) platforms relative to application (e.g., teaching/learning, collaboration, B2C, etc. Long-time collaborators, we have implemented VWs in educational settings and are currently working with a number of business enterprises to assess the impact of VWs on performance outcomes.

Anne Massey
(amassey@indiana.edu) is Professor of Information Systems at Indiana University. She currently teaches graduate courses in innovation and collaboration, and management of IT. Her research interests focus on technology-based innovation, including enabling internal and external collaboration social media and virtual worlds.