State of Play – New York

19 06 2009

I am attending State of Play conference in New York. The opening speech was interesting – by the creator of Metaplace. Here are some highlights of what he said:

Raph Koster: A New Kind of World

Where is virtual world’s relevance? Virtual worlds are web 1.0 not even 2.0 not to mention 3.D. Why does the web work today? Because it is open: html, Mozilla, apache, CGI, CSS, DNS, Google. The biggest underlining assumption is that everyone can do what they want. Virtual Worlds don’t work this way. It is  a network and does not run on a single centralized server. Can they become relevant and can they break out of the plateau? When will VWs become more like the web? Metaplace tries to do that – it leaves open template content, etc. Problem is, we don’t know if anybody cares. What is the killer app for VW? It is wasting time and having fun – not education nor distance collaboration.

Do users care that they are beyond entertainment? What does it mean to build that? How do we evolve our thinking? If we actually give users the ability to work it as the web [not centrally managed, not on a single server etc].. how do we think about commerce? Eulas? Privacy?

Metaplace TOS: gives rights of creators and rights of users unless overridden, responsibilities of creators and users. It is rights of avatars. Freedom of expression, ownership, including earning money and running their own world, privacy, develop their own TOS. The declaration of the rights of avatars is now in place. They told users not to break the law. This was of course challenging.

Could we have this any other way? What areas are public? What things are private? What about people hopping across worlds? Which TOS do they belong to?

Modeling after the web: hotlinking or deep linking for example could it be the same when avatars are actually walking around through links?

Future: what will VWs be?

  • Ambient: are you in your browser frame?
  • Pervasive: what’s the TOS for a widget?
  • Preamble: what’s the privacy policy of a multidirectional stream?
  • Overlays: what’s a world in the first place?
  • Relevant? The new kind of world isn’t this; it’s the new hybrid.

Looking for the new model. Old worlds will not go away but there will be a change. If they are to be relevant, how much can they emulate the web and take down countries [as did Twitter].




4 responses

22 06 2009
Raph’s Website » State of Play reports

[…] On my keynote […]

22 06 2009
State of Play reports « Austin Entrepreneur Network

[…] On my keynote […]

24 06 2009

Just wanted to point out that the statement “It is wasting time and having fun – not education nor distance collaboration.” is rather ironic when looked at from the point of view of Raph Koster’s book, A Theory of Fun. According to it, fun and learning are linked. But it’s not learning about state capitals but real light-bulb-goes-off-and-we-see-something-new learning.

24 06 2009

Ah interesting. I would definitely agree with that interpretation. But I think they are not really mutually exclusive. In any case, I will leave that to Raph to respond to. 🙂

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