Tuesday, May 13, 2008

793.932 Another Second Life Adventure

Because of my membership in ISTE due to my planned attendance at NECC this summer, I got an email from one of my favorite bloggers, Blue Skunk Doug Johnson about a talk he was going to give this evening on ISTE Island in Second Life. (nope not open in district)

It was going to start in 15 minutes. Plenty of time I thought...and an opportunity to "hear" someone I had been reading for some time now! I also needed a reason to get back into Second Life and experience it again.

Ha! 45 minutes later I got in and only caught the last part of the talk.

When I opened Second Life, I was notified that I need to download an update or I would not be able to use the site. My possessed computer took FOREVER connecting to the download and then I had to wait for it to do its thing.

Ok, ok..only 10 minutes into the program. I clicked the transport address from the email and landed on the right island...with absolutely NO clue what to do next. I looked around and around and saw no one. Then I started hearing voices...barely. Dug up my headphones. Eureka, I was at least hearing the talk.

And as always, someone showed up and asked if he could help. Sorry, I did not get his name...but I think he is a "docent" for the island. He was great at explaining what I needed to do and was VERY PATIENT when I explained I moved slowly! BTW...he had a cool vehicle...forgot to "screen shot" it. Anyway, I walked carefully, managed to stay out from UNDER any buildings thistime, flew a little and crashed only once.
So I finally show up at the location...the screen is full of Blue Skunk's cartoons and they are talking away...and there is not one single person in the audience, but I see all kinds of names on the screen. There was 25 minutes left of the program so I just quietly listened and watched the typed comments on the screen.

Some points from the talk:
1. Human vs. machine
content filtering done by a machine cancels out the human's ability to discriminate what is appropriate for what situation...not a good practice, but "we" all do it!

2. Self-empowered or self-discovery type staff development...a good thing! Score one for my circle! We are doing that again this summer with our 23 Things...opportunity for educators to learn on their own with help/support, but the self-discovery of knowledge is a key component of the experience!

3. Blue Skunk reminded us of one of his favorite statements...# of kids in the library is in reverse proportion to the importance of the next visitor. Boy, that has been the truth for me in SO many cases!

4. Sometimes technology can be over used. If the only tool you have is a hammer, everything becomes a nail! His analogy...going online and finally finding the population of Bolivia from a 1995 CIA Fact Book vs. thumbing thru the current World Almanac that is probably sitting relatively close to the computer. not sure I know a lot of libraries that have a current World Almanac anymore, but I definitely understood his message. The right tool for the right job at the the right time!

Gosh, I wish I had heard the whole thing.
O, also ...You can download his book Machines are the Easy Part, People are the Hard Part: technology in the Schools for free here.

P.S. I loved his voice (my first time to hear him)...sounded just like what I had imagined from reading his posts!

And I KNOW inquiring minds are waiting...........................



I did not sit down because I could not remember how!

For the uninformed...it's ok. You hadda be there to understand!
Just know that this Second Life thing is never gonna be a strong suit for me...I will keep trying, I know I will...it will just be continue to be pitiful. I just know it will.


Library Girl said...

You go, girl, whether you sat down or not! I have GOT to play in Second Life this summer. I bet there are TONS of Twilight neighborhoods. Tee Heee! Better yet, I could actually make myself into a vampire, probably?!

Emily Lloyd said...

Great post--and hey, I'm impressed you managed to take a few screenshots while you were there! That's further along than I've gotten in my few forays into SL.

melscales said...

I am so proud of you for even trying out SL. I'm a little scared, still. And you sit enough in front of a computer in "first life" that it's okay for you to stand in Second Life.

doug0077 said...

Wow, what an adventure! Thanks for attending the talk. I didn't see many people there either.

You can't sit; I can't land. Never figured out how to stop flying gracefully.

Thanks so much for the kind words. Hope to see you again in SL!


mmw said...

I feel your pain, girl! I tried SL for the first time earlier this week and never made it off Orientation Island! You've inspired me, though, to try it again soon.

Jodi Zawadzki said...

I laughed out loud at this one! Why? Because it could've described my own adventures in SL. I'm doing well to be able to walk and stay dressed. And I've never been off Orientation Island.

Actually, SL frustrated me to no end at first. I couldn't even get in! I chose my name and password, yada, yada, played around a bit, but then had to leave. Weeeeeeeellll, the next time I tried to get in, there was a "problem with my username or password." I ended up doing the "if-you're-a-moron-and-forgot-your-password-click-here" thing about 8 times. Still no luck. I even requested my SL name twice, but it was exactly what I thought it was. Finally, I had to create a whole new SL identity. Yeesh...

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