[SLED] Re: Virtual World - definition (IMHO)

Morgan Leigh morgan at wirejunkie.com
Mon Sep 8 07:04:33 PDT 2008

Welcome to my thesis... :)

Some things to consider;

Our information of the the world that is called 'real' all comes to us
via our senses. Ditto info about virtual worlds. People usually chime in
here with, "But not all your senses are stimulated in VW's, so its not
real". A blind person doesn't have all their senses stimulated in the
'real' world, does that make it less real?

Several people have made arguments that all of what we call reality is
probably an information construct, by this argument VW's are no less
real as they are also information constructs.

"VW's are just made up of ones and zeros so they are not real" The
'real' world is 'just' a variety of electrical charges, just like the
switches inside chips.

Experience is what is real to us. All the things we know come to us
through experiences, like Second Life does. If experience is real, then
SL is real.

My research focuses on Pagans in SL. The Pagan world view posits that
the microcosm contains the macrocosm, in this conception SL is part of
'reality' as it is a microcosm of the greater universe. This argument is
 very similar to the holographic universe conception.

Another way of thinking about the "What is a virtual world?" question is
to ask "What is not a virtual world?".

Morgan Leigh
PhD Candidate
School of History, Philosophy, Religion and Classics
University of Queensland

AJ wrote:
> Real.  Hmmm....this is something I've been thinking about for while and
> spent a good deal of time talking to folks about here at SLEDcc.
> I have an issue with contrasting the virtual experience by calling it
> "real life".  My experiences in SL are real.  The social interactions,
> the learning, the communication, the emotions that come from those
> experiences, all very real.
> So I'm not sure I'd agree that a virtual world is not real.  I'm not
> sure the things that happen in virtual worlds are not real world
> phenomena.  I think people refer to non-virtual world as real life
> because no better term has been agreed on yet.
> So, the question really becomes, what is real?
> aj
> On Sat, Sep 6, 2008 at 9:47 AM, Graham Roberts
> <Graham.Roberts at beds.ac.uk <mailto:Graham.Roberts at beds.ac.uk>> wrote:
>     Hi
>     A world is a place you inhabit or potentially could live in, and
>     virtual means it is not a real place.
>     The features of interactivity, social networking, 3D environment, or
>     even augmented reality, are simulations of fundamental real world
>     phenomena.  Isn't this why residents in SL refer to the actual world
>     they inhabit as RL, and the place that avatars interact within are
>     called sims and they have status of residents?
>     Regards
>     Graham
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> -- 
> AJ Kelton
> Director of Emerging Instructional Technology
> College of Humanities and Social Sciences
> Montclair State University (MSU)
> 1 Normal Ave, Montclair, NJ 07043
> Second Life Project Coordinator
> College of Education and Human Services, MSU
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