Wimbledon, IBM si Second Life

Am facut o vizita pe simul IBM 7 Wimbledon construit in Second Life unde l-am intalnit pe Ian Huges aka epredator - metaverse evanghelist la IBM, cu care am purtat o conversatie foarte interesanta despre proiect, despre IBM si despre viitorul lumilor virtuale. LaraCroft Akula: and what are the plans to do in here? live tennis games for residents? epredator Potato: well this is a representation of the real life Wimbledon, we are here in RL running http://www.wimbledon.org. IBM is the tech partner. We extend what is happening in RL and provide behind the scenes access to help people understand what we do for Wimbledon. LaraCroft Akula: that's cool epredator Potato: showing that events need to have staff, not just clever gadgets. But we have those too The ball here (when its working) is a replay of the live track of the ball from Centre Court. It was mainly done for last year to show the potential in the future, this year the web browsing integration is the key part. LaraCroft Akula: and upstairs? epredator Potato: upstairs is the back lot tour, it shows the path of the data from the time we collect it on court to when we pass it to our systems to create tv graphics and to a live intranet full of stats. The broadcasters use that to help them. We also then have a website content publishing system that merges the data and the stories that are written by us, our clubs content team. LaraCroft Akula: so basically it's 3D representation, very visual, about what your real work for Wimbledon is? epredator Potato: yes. And we do tours here in RL, of the backlot with our visiting customers. We manage to deliver points in seconds to the web, from the moment they happen on court. Btw the wimbledon.org website last year got 8,618,366 unique users for the event and 266,311,332 page views. Which is why it needs IBM here of course there are less people, but… we are able to talk and explain. So I spend 12 hours a day showing and sharing what we do LaraCroft Akula: well, it's great, and fact is that for people who are interested, it's a wonderful way to get their information epredator Potato: yes a mix aswell. We can talk IBM and Tech or Wimbledon. Or virtual worlds and why I got IBM into all this LaraCroft Akula: well, I think IBM is doing right being here and honestly, apart the great image that they build, it's gonna be the future. So, from my point of view - is smart to be in. epredator Potato: yes We have to do tings and try them to see what works. But from a business perspective this is all software, running on hardware and needs to communicate with other systems and has a whole cultural aspect to it around knowledge sharing and human communication. I often have to deal with those challenges. Non verbal communication is so important. The fact I am sitting near you to talk is relevant. If this was just a text chat or phone call, we would not remember the context. Bbut we would in RL, and we do here. LaraCroft Akula: yes. And how do you see - if I may ask you - interoperability? epredator Potato: well it needs to happen and it will happen. We are already doing it here in a way. On glass integration with web content. Data into the world. LaraCroft Akula: i've seen there was some kind of experiment epredator Potato: I already interoperate at a human level. I am consitently epredator, its my brand I choose to take around LaraCroft Akula: he, like me lara croft epredator Potato: well opensim . Make the servers run where you want them. Closed platforms will not be the future. Things will evolve and SL as it is not as great for some things. LaraCroft Akula: that's sure, but I do believe SL is not easy to beat epredator Potato: well its physics is not good. So to do a scientific simulation its not the right platform. Yet we dont all need scientific simulations. Hence we need variety and some times things need to be massive broadcasts to lots of people. Other times intimate closed conversations. Also we are already painting ourselves into a corner, with flat land grid model and avatars as figures. LaraCroft Akula: howver, if I see SL as a platform, comparable with a web browser, let's say mozilla… I only use one browser to navigate through various pages, built in various ways. epredator Potato: yes the browser analogy is a complicated one. Yes but this is a server too. Embedding flash or other applications would be good next. Metaverses need to be not just places to escape too, but places that are integrated with the world and consume and produce services. LaraCroft Akula: would IBM think to design a new platform? epredator Potato: we are still in an emerging business phase. We have people building all sorts. But not as product. I work on a team building a torque based virtual world, inside the fire wall, integrated to our company systems. We also have activeworlds, forterra. LaraCroft Akula: I don't really understand what is this torque? epredator Potato: torque is a game engine, not a virtual world engine as such. But as you have the whole code, it lets us make changes to interface with systems at a very deep level to see if it makes sense. SL cant do that and we dont have the codebase. We started the torque one 18 months ago. There were very few things we could use at the time. Now there are lots. LaraCroft Akula: must be thrilling epredator Potato: well its great to see an industry emerge. The thing though with SL is that it was never supposed to be a business platform. Which is its charm. Phillip wanted to create something for the world, not just make money. Its that spirit and creativity and shared ownership that means way more than all the other tech bits LaraCroft Akula: as long as there are people, which means audience, business wants to step in epredator Potato: yes. There is room for both. Linden now see the market and the potential which is why we have the joint project to try and run a private part of the grid but still attached to the main grid and resolve all the content creator issues that that brings up socially and technically. LaraCroft Akula: right. Well, and here are any events planned for the next days? epredator Potato: well here is a permanent event as it flows with the RL wimbledon. Its just open and staffed 12 hours a day should anyone care to drop by. LaraCroft Akula: Well, thank you very much, talking to you was very informative, things you can't get from simple text chat. epredator Potato: Well I have made this my job too, as a metaverse evangelist for IBM. Trouble is that means a lot of non SL presenting to people and getting the ideas across. I have 3 things I say at the start of any of those conversations: 1. metaverses are about people, all the non verbal comms etc 2. user created content. Its all a giant wiki really 3. about persona and reputations LaraCroft Akula: right, but there are people who understand well if we talk about web 2.0 but when i comes to SL they start laughing. Or say that RL is too busy to have a SL too. epredator Potato: I know They say that about web 2.0 too. They would much rather process rubbish emails all day rather than share via a blog their responses and hence save time. They would rather sit on a plane for 10 hours that have global meetings. The major figure I use is around teleconferences. We have alot of those. The first 5 mins is wasted time. Waiting for the beeps to stop as 20 people dial in. Its wasted time. Its frsutrating. In a virtual world you see people arrive, you have pre-event mingle, people talk to one another just as in RL meeting. So 5 mins on telelcon wasted and no talking. I did some maths: 330k employees 5 telecons a week each. 5 mins unproductive and bringing money on phones works out 9.4 weeks a year we waste on that as a company. I mean 9.4 years a week!

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