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03 August 2009

Panoramic Views
A million years ago I used to send my students out to take pictures to make panoramas (the interactive kind) from - they did very well, and the school panoramas were a nice addition to the school's website. That was ages ago, though, and I haven't been moved to do anything since then (I made one of the lake and one of my house when I was figuring out how to do it so I could teach the children), so I'm sure things have probably progressed since then.

Torley has a nice blog post showing some of his panoramas of Second Life, which as he says, would be useful to show someone who has never been in SL, * and beyond that (which I never thought of) could be useful for a developer. I can imagine it would be. A little panorama would give a simple way to illustrate what's being referred to, with no entry barrier at all. Beyond selling the idea of a virtual world presence, a client is usually a company/organisation, and even after the decision has been made there are scads of employees/members who will have no clue what SL is, even if they are required to log in. Due to my jobs within the past month, I've watched hundreds of absolutely clueless business people log in for the first time and go through a few stages that seem common.

First, they log in and stand in one spot without moving for about half an hour, trying to sort out a few things like "Where am I?" "How do I move?", without noticing (apparently) that everyone is spawning in the same spot in a giant intersection. Then they abruptly move forward, run into a wall, go backwards, go forward, maybe stand still AFK for fifteen minutes, then get the hang of it a little bit. After an hour or so they suddenly begin to experiment a little, dance around, make "Beam me up, Scotty" remarks, and appear to be having fun.

A quick and painless way to give just a clue as to what can be expected - I'd imagine that will be very useful, since so many people genuinely have no idea at all what to expect. I'm not sure I'll be moved to make more panoramas, but for anyone who is there are lots of links in the blog post.

* Although in my experience people sometimes get the wrong idea (maybe just people whose experience is limited to what a crap computer can do) - I showed someone Snapzilla once and she got the weird idea that SL was a series of stills. That might've been (I hope) a completely strange isolated experience - who knows?

posted by - 11:04 AM

Thank you and goodnight!

Actually, I wish you had posted a panorama for our viewing pleasure, but interesting to hear about the poor newbs.
Well, I wouldn't call them poor - it's all brand new, and they go from cluelessness to experimentation in fairly short order. Experiencing that kind of giddy wonderment is not usual for a grown person at work (artists excluded), so I'd say it was kewl for them.
To post an old panorama would entail digging through archived files for an hour, and really there's no need.

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