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ARCHIVED: About the IU Island in Second Life

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Introduction

Indiana University has created an "island", or virtual campus, on Second Life in order to facilitate experimentation with virtual worlds for education and research. IU Second Life (IUSL) may expand to include dedicated parcels of land for specific long-term projects, but for the time being, the island is designed for short-term educational and/or research use.

All IU campuses will be represented on "Campus Row" on the IUSL island with a structure to represent the specific campus and a traditional sign linking to the campus's main web site. For information on virtual representation for schools and departments, email UITS Second Life.

Requirements

IUSL is open to all IU faculty, staff, and students, with no charge for basic access. Purchasing land or special objects or clothing does incur a charge. (See also Create for information on making items within Second Life.)

Technical requirements

See System Requirements.

Note: Viewer 2.x is highly recommended for a more complete Second Life experience.

Mobile devices

No current mobile client supports the full Second Life experience, but some third-party basic viewers exist; see Third Party Viewer Directory. For iPhone/iPad, try Pocket Metaverse, available through the Apple App Store.

Getting started

To get started in Second Life, create your avatar at Second Life, then teleport to IUSL. For specific instructions, see Quick Start Guide. When you sign up for a free avatar account, you can go anywhere on the SL grid (i.e., the Second Life "world"). Some areas require age verification, but IUSL and most other educational islands do not have this requirement.

For overview training, see the Second Life Wiki.

Teaching in Second Life

For information about teaching with Second Life, see Second Life Education.

Through the fall 2011 semester, IUSL is a pilot program. Instructors are encouraged to explore. Present levels of participation are unlikely to cause constraints in scheduling at this stage; however, to insure the island has adequate space, and to help program administrators understand your pedagogical objectives, please contact UITS Second Life. UITS Second Life can also help you prepare for your teaching activities.

IUSL contains a variety of teaching spaces, including traditional classroom settings, collaborative workstations for group work, and more casual settings, such as gazebos overlooking the Second Life ocean. You can also adjust environment variables, such as time of day.

Intellectual property issues

In Second Life, if you create objects, written items, or scripts, you own those items. (See Create for information about making items.) Second Life has some built-in precautions to secure your intellectual property, but you should take care with whom you share your creations. Also, if you use materials from the web or from other sources within Second Life, you should ensure that either they're free to use, or you have consent to use them in the Second Life medium. Linden Lab (the creators of Second Life) watches for and stops copyright violations.

Recording and streaming

For recording or capturing interactions inside Second Life, see Making movies.

To access external content within Second Life:

  • Stream audio streams onto a parcel (i.e., a specific location in SL), or stream a webcast onto a parcel object; see Playing media.
  • With Viewer 2.x, load a web stream (e.g., a YouTube video) onto an object and view in world; see Shared Media.

Second Life user group

To be added to an Oncourse project site with general information, where you can connect with other members of the IU community interested in teaching and learning with Second Life, email UITS Second Life.

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Last modified on August 12, 2013.

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