Monthly Archives: March 2010

PS3 Home – Just got better

I have often been a bit annoyed by PS3 home that I did not feel comfortable with my avatar. I had a few custom clothes that were fun, but the lack of green hair just grated.
Now though with the release of the game AvP (which I have on my Xbox) some limited edition content has been made available.
There is a predator helmet and body suit (cost about £2.00)
So I bought it last night and whilst I cannot overlay my jacket as in Second Life it did feel just right. Odd as that may seem.
Predator home
It made posing and dancing even funnier than it has been before
It also leads to the clash of content that worries many people about interoperability
Predator home throne
I am also sure this is not seen in too many Audi showrooms
Audi predator
The models and movement and lighting are all very high grade as you would expect. Though I think it still shows the fantastic skill of Sythia Veil who created my predator AV in Second Life over 4 years ago with just the tools in SL !
Which I might add if I had not had so much time and emotion invested in that look I would not have paid to have that in PS3 Home and then written this post singing it praises. Note, there is a lot to be said for user created content and fan art!

Exploring the galaxy

I just tried to put google sky on a media surface on the inside surface of a sphere in #slviewer2
SL viewer 2 and google sky
It sort of works. Of course if you do put a web surface on the inside of a sphere and want to drive it you have to be able to click on it 🙂 I think there is some scope for some interesting holodeck effects and animations though using web content.
I was experimenting with some spherical photos out on the web, as we really have a qtvr viewer like viewer thats much easier to control for people

180 ideas by 22 experts

Yesterdays quick brainstorm idea generation session for DotGovLabs was a very interesting session indeed. Ren Reynolds had invited an amazing set of people and I have to thank them all for coming and joining in.
We only had two hours to see what we could all generate from one another’s interactions. Using the tried and tested (but still quite scary) technique of crowd-sourcing with post-it notes around the subject of Games and Government everyone dived right in.
Having (over) 22 people in one session was likely to be too many, but as it turned out once everyone got going things started to flow. The lack of complete structure is not always for everyone, though many people have experienced this free form idea generation before. I had created some themed areas to help focus some thought, but in general we wanted whatever came up to be put on the board.
I was very happy when the brainstorm “rules” I had on a whiteboard that included “Wild and extreme ideas are good” was adjusted to “are fantastic”
The voting section highlighted some interesting points which then led to good round table discussions on the subject too.
There are some report deliverables out of all this which need some work to put all the various other inputs together.
I went through all the 180 ideas and comments this morning grouping and ordering them. I also had a flashback to a whiteboard session in 1998 when I put MMORPG up in a session on where we should go with the web business at the old firm. It was not high on the list of voting, but would have actually generated a lot more revenue if we had engaged with it all at the time 🙂
Idea generation workshop
One thing I can share at the moment is the result of the warm up exercise.
I suggested that people write down a significant influential gaming moment and put that on the board. As we are dealing with engagement and we were in general a group of gamers it created the following list. See how many resonate with you 🙂

Playing quake for England
Doom II over a serial cable for the first time
Getting the Babel fish in hitchhikers guide to the galaxy
Getting an Xbox to try and get down with the kids (Failed!)
Meeting Darth Vader in Star Wars Galaxies
Pong in the 1970’s
Choosing to be a vengeful or benign god in Black and White
Discovering I was actually evil in world of warcraft (where I thought I was good)
Galaxian 10p after 10p spent in an afternoon
Swooping in Zagawhateva on flying mount
Capture the flag (in real life)
Having pong arcade game fall on me at youth club circa 197?
Heavy Rain
Seeing the power of narrative in Fahrenheit
Portal’s ending made me cry
T-Rex on original Tomb Raider
Learning to play chess with my dad
Linking 2 BBC B together and playing Elite for days with brother aged 10
Getting 70 on Iphone Scrabble
The death of Aeris on FFVIII
Seeing the facial animations on Half-Life2 on my PC (real time) for the first time
Finding out that ‘Hunters’ are really fun in PvP in World of Warcraft
Realizing what Stranglethorl Vale was saying
Completing Myst – No Cheats

Facilitation thats what it needs. Ideas welcome

This afternoon I am running a brainstorm, ideas generation session in London (as I mentioned in this post) for Ren Reynolds and his tVPN The Virtual Policy Network as part of DotGovLabs which is an R&D project co-funded by Directgov, NHS Choices and Business Link. Initially for a small(ish) group but now a much larger one I thought I best ramp up on the equipment needed.
Pre event equipment audit
Postits, pens and stickers are the order of the day.
These sessions are always very flexible and interesting in their outcomes. There is a beginning a middle and and end but other than that …. its down to the people attending sparking up ideas.
A regular facilitator may not get overly involved in the idea generation, but I feel that as this is a session on games, virtual worlds and government I will be joining in and a few of those post-it notes will have my scrawl on them.
Fingers crossed and good luck to all the attendees.

If you want to throw any ideas into the melting pot please feel free to comment on these or any points.

The workshop will bring together Government, Industry and Academics to discuss topic such as:
• Opportunities for presence in platform menus/dashboards
• How can we get government in the space where gamers are?
• Partnerships and placement with 3rd parties
• Online communities
• Being involved in storyline
• Likely costs