[SLED] RE: Imaginary virtual worlds

Ignatius Onomatopoeia iggyo at mac.com
Fri Nov 28 19:32:23 PST 2008

Philip Marston wrote:

> I'm looking for any research that looks at user experience in
> Interactive Fiction and MUDs.  I gather that MOOs have been popular in
> teaching so these too, but they're all related.

<apologies if this posts twice. I'm in a Tryptophan-induced haze compounded by three hours of the listening party on NPR for the 40th anniversary of The White Album>

Philip, it's great that you bring up this issue on this list. So much good work was done with the theory and praxis of MOOs and MUDs in the 90s.  A lot is applicable to the study of virtual worlds.  Let's face it, MOOs were a lot like VWs, esp. for those of us with wizards' skills.

I'd recommend a collection edited by Haynes and Holmevic, High Wired:


The essays touch on everything from the history of MOOs to case studies of students using them.

I still miss MOOnDog's Coffee Shanty, a beatnik coffee house I "dug" in a virtual San Francisco we had on a campus MOO server. I used the Shanty in a few classes in the 90s. I made group-chat tables with transcript makers, tossed in Zen-master and surly barista chatterbots and coded tons of replies that picked up key words in visitors' questions.

It was a lot more like SL than a text-only world would seem to be.  Students had fun, finding the MOO quaint and "old school." Now I want to rebuild the Coffee Shanty in SL. Happy Post-Thanksgiving, you way-gone cybercats...
Iggy O. and his RL avatar,

Joe Essid, culpable for "In a Strange Land"
jessid at mac.com


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