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Take a Photo, Capture an Idea in the Virtual World

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We all take photographs but few of us know how to take the photograph that causes people to stare.   A weekly gathering provides virtual world artists, interested individuals, and  the curious  an opportunity to hone the skills of image/idea … Continue reading

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EDUmachinima Fest Expands Categories for 2012

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The Internet is changing the world of journalism, publishing, the music industry, education, storytelling and moviemaking.  Video capture and editing tools provide an opportunity for anyone to create, entertain and inform using video and audio.  Machinima, originally used to capture … Continue reading

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Virtual Pioneers To Host History Conference 2012- Virtually

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The Virtual Pioneers are hosting the Second Annual History Conference 2012 on Friday, January 20 – Saturday January 21.  All educators, particularly those who teach the Social Studies are invited to attend this fun, free event online. You will need to … Continue reading

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Edublogs Awards Not So Short List

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This morning as I sat down with my morning coffee and iPhone I had a pleasant surprise, someone had nominated this blog for the “Best ed tech / resource sharing blog 2011” and….. this very blog is on the list … Continue reading

Student Machinima at ISTE 2011

Almost half (17 out of 40) of the entries in the ISTE 2011 Machinima competition are student created and range from a 5-year-old working in Minecraft to university students working in Second Life to demonstrate their learning. Attendees in Philadelphia as well as those attending virtually can view the machinima at the iste Wikispaces .  Machinima was created in a number of virtual worlds, including Second Life, Reaction Grid, MineCraft, World of Warcraft and WolfQuest and covered a variety of curriculum areas including history, social issues, creative writing and science..  Be sure to access the ballot at http://bit.ly/j8Amyj  and vote for your favorite student created machinima.

Middle School Students Build A Virtual World

The students in “Norma Underwood’s” class in an Arizona public school are building and scripting in a 3D environment, sculpting in Rokuro, collaborating on projects, and communicating with their peers and interested visitors.  I had the opportunity to visit Norma’s  virtual class space on Reaction Grid,  never having to leave my home state over 2000 miles away.  What a treat  to see 12 and 13 year olds assembling, communicating and cooperating in a medium that many are completely unaware of.

The class is an art class, lucky for these students they have a teacher who acknowledges and has taken the time to learn an art medium for the future.  The young architects and 3D artisans have used floor-plans to build 3D homes, decorated them and added items like video games and chess sets. Learning objectives  focus primarily  on standards in the area of art and mathematics. Additionally, Norma is incorporating 21st Century objectives like collaboration, communication and problem solving.  These are not as easily tested in the traditional assessments required by the state but obvious in the products the students have created and obvious as well when you watch them engaged in their work.

VWBPE 2011 Machinima Finalists Announced

The First Machinima 4 Educators Appreciation Contest finalists are grouped into 3 categories with a fourth being the “People’s Choice”.  VWBPE participants will be able to cast their votes for this last category during the VWBPE Conference beginning on Thursday March 17.  Screening of all submitted videos will be on Friday, March 18 at 8 pm SLT on Machinima (East 1) East 1/2  http://slurl.com/secondlife/VWBPE%20East%202/56/116/32.  You can see ALL the entries and cast your vote  for the people’s choice on the electronic Ballot.

Best Educational Machinima

Each of the following three entries uniquely demonstrates educational media.  Muinji Becomes a Man, written by Chief Mi’sel Joe is aimed at preserving and sharing the history and culture of the Miawpukek people of Conne River in Canada. SWIFT Virtual Genetics Lab is a product of University of Leicester and depicts the use of a genetics lab in the virtual world used to orient first year students in the safety and best use of the lab to prepare them for the use of the actual lab.  The lab also provides opportunities for students to use the lab for what is impossible in the real world.  Kansas to Cairo Projectis a blend of Machinima and traditional video and allows the viewer to become acquainted with both the real-life participants and their avatar representations in this depiction of cross-cultural collaboration between university students in Los Angeles and Cairo solving real world problems.

Best Production

Machinima  production incorporates traditional as well as new digital and animation techniques in both capturing action and in the editing process. Click: Immersive & Interactive Art, written & edited by Lori Landay for University of Western Australia Imagine 3d Art & Design Challenge, zooms in and around stunning examples of virtual art that is immersive or interactive.   Munji’j Becomes a Man is a beautifully crafted Machinima with traditional language and music of the Miawpukek people, English subtitles translate  much of the dialogue.  The build eloquently depicts the habitat, the animation and color provide a sense of being, and the voices of the young boy and his mentor are realistic and well synchronized.     The skillful blend of cinema and machinima in Kansas to Cairo Project allows the viewer to see architectural students and their avatar representations in their collaborative work in a virtual world.

Best Story Line/Narrative

Each of these machinima entries had a compelling story.   Muinji’j Becomes a Man is a story about a Miawpukek boy coming of age.    WB Yeats – An Irish Airman Foresees His Death is a narration of the story of the Yeats poem with the same title, filmed on the  flight sim, Rise of Flight with vintage war planes. Time Travelers – Episode 1 – The Time Machine is an adventure story about teenagers, a time machine, and fighting evil in the future with sequels to describe scholarship and funding opportunities for college.

Be sure to attend the screening and vote for your favorite.

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Gartner Hype Wave

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Always good to triangulate your data – 1.  The Gartner  Hype Cycle/Wave indicates that “Virtual Assistants & Public Virtual Worlds are nearly through the Trough of Disillusionment, about to enter mainstream in 5-10 years” 2.  Recent Grant activity encouraging the use … Continue reading

Federal Virtual Worlds Challenge

An open challenge to create the most innovative and interactive solutions in virtual environments.

http://www.fvwc.army.mil/

  • $25,000 in prizes
  • Focus on AI
  • Open to everyone
  • Submission due date Dec 6 2010