[SLED] Presense vs Immersion - definitions/distinction & reference

Owen Kelly owen.kelly at arcada.fi
Sun Oct 3 10:59:22 PDT 2010

  I simply don't believe that "immersion" is a single phenomenon, and 
your post suggests why. It all depends on what you are simulating, or 
more specifically, it depends on the relationship between what is being 
mapped and what it is being mapped onto.

So, if you map "living in a pseudo-medieval Gorean society" onto "my pc 
running SL Viewer 2" there are likely to be problems. I am immersed only 
as long as I don't look away from the screen, or the phone doesn't ring, 
or whatever. However, map "My computer is in contact with an alien 
civilization thanks to this dvd I got in the mail" onto "my computer is 
running this dvd I got in the mail" and there are far fewer problems. 
Because what you are doing playing the game (tapping the keyboard and 
trying to figure out what the responses mean) is very similar to what 
you would be doing if your computer was actually using the dvd to get in 
contact with aliens.

To return to your example, if you are in contact with others by SMS, 
then the whole experience of being in contact with them is more or less 
the same whether they are people experiencing a disaster and needing 
your help, or people pretending to be experiencing a disaster and 
needing your help. The tool being used is in congruence with the task 
being simulated.

If you have an activity that, in real life, would be carried out via SMS 
or a computer keyboard, then it should be possible to provide  very 
immersive simulation using SMS or a computer keyboard. Here you are only 
required to suspend your disbelief about the source of the 
communication. As anyone who has "danced" in SL will testify, physical 
activity in a keyboard/mouse controlled virtual world requires a lot 
more (and a lot more different kinds of) suspension of disbelief.


On 29/09/2010 17:21, Marston, Philip G. wrote:
> We found that they did in our 3 day SMS based disaster simulation - 
> you can read about it in this short paper here 
> http://www.rcetj.org/index.php/rcetj/article/view/86/182 (it's on page 
> 70) "Further Development of the Context Categories of a Mobile 
> Learning Framework" some of our other papers on the subject are cited 
> there too.
> I was originally interested in mobile phone immersion when I heard 
> about research in to drivers being distracted while immersed in 
> conversations ... ultimately contributing to the banning of the use of 
> mobile phones while driving (at least in the UK).
> In our simulation, students did feel a degree of immersion in the 
> imaginary world they were interacting with, even though the interact 
> was only via SMS.
> Phil
> On 29 Sep 2010, at 15:10, Dick Seabrook wrote:
>> Do students actually experience a virtual environment
>> using cell-phones to exchange text messages?  Is
>> there some way we could make the SecondLife
>> interface as easy to use as a cell-phone?
>> Dick S.
>> -- 
>> Dick Seabrook ~ Anne Arundel Community College
>> http://vader.aacc.edu/~rhs <http://vader.aacc.edu/%7Erhs> ~ Speed the 
>> Net!
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> *Phil Marston**
> **Learning Technology Adviser*
> *& PhD Candidate
> **School of Education
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