[SLED] Mac Master's Professor take on SecondLife

Bill Freese iedbf at montana.edu
Fri Oct 6 11:08:25 PDT 2006

What kind of studies have been done on what influences the ability of  
people to cross the boundary? I am fascinated by the question of the  
threshold of the suspension of disbelief. Some of us know for a fact  
that after spending hours in Second Life, we really feel as though we  
have been somewhere else. Last weekend, I walked in a garden with my  
sister; I attended an educators workshop Wednesday; I had a chat with  
a fellow educator in her home yesterday. I was totally there each  
time even though each of these events was in SL.

But there are people I have tried to introduce to SL for whom it  
really is "like a Fisher Price-level" toy.  They look at it instead  
of being in it. They do not seem to be able or willing to mentally  
cross the threshold into the virtual space. Those of us who do must  
be understanding of those who can't and tolerant of those who won't.  
At the same time, we must keep working to make the unreal more real  
if we want others to be able to follow us there. We can say to  
professor Hamilton, "Wait. It will get more real as the technology  
improves." But just as some people can lose themselves in a novel and  
some can't, I suspect that some people will never really enter a  
virtual world.

Bill Freese / Friis

On Oct 6, 2006, at 11:06 AM, Ramesh Ramloll wrote:

> Hello,
> I got this off Tony Walsh's blog. Full article here but the  
> relevant bit somewhat buried in it: http:// 
> www.hamiltonspectator.com/pdfs/20061006/G5.pdf
> "
> Not everyone is a fan. McMaster University professor Robert Hamilton
> says Second Life "fails miserably" on several levels.
> "It does not really suspend my disbelief, it does not draw me
> into the experience. The graphics are really low quality, and  
> that's really important.
> "It's like a Fisher Price-level entrance
> into this kind of stuff," ......
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