While most applications are meant for only the user, this should mark a change in the way they can be utilized. Tokyo based Genkii has created an app that lets iPhone users connect with others. Sparkle is claimed to be the first virtual world that links your phone to Second Life and OpenSim grids. Send teleport requests and IMs or chat with others. Sparkle is available for $4.99 now but plans include a 3D version to come with personal space, social networking, virtual games and goods, and more.
Read More | Genkii
Think that Second Life is a safe haven for your kids? Thirty three year-old Kimberly Jernigan from North Carolina met a man, aged 52, on the site, but he broke off the relationship when they got together in person. She apparently went to his Delaware apartment with a stun gun, handcuffs, and the always necessary duct tape. Although she fled when he got home, the man called the police. Now the woman faces charges including attempted kidnapping. Jernigan is being held on $65,000 bail.
Read More | MSNBC
If you think your Second Life avatar is kewl, think again. Edd Hifeng is not just a typical virtual world figure. He is actually an AI created by researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. He can converse and reason to a limited extent. While he can answer limited questions, he only understands English that has been translated into mathematical logic. Director Selmer Bringsjord says Edd could be a hint of things to come and hopes that it will lead to more sophisticated holograms that can interact with people in 3D settings such as subway stops.
Read More | ABC
NASA is considering creating a multiplayer online game which would simulate some of their missions. They are hoping that it might attract the next generation of astronauts and are seeking volunteer companies to invest in their idea by February 15. As they put it, “Virtual worlds with scientifically accurate simulations could permit learners to tinker with chemical reactions in living cells, practice operating and repairing expensive equipment, and experience microgravity.”
NASA already has an island on Second Life called Co-Lab that may someday invite avatars to come along on future space missions. Perhaps willing organizations’ avatars can meet their avatars for virtual lunch.
Read More | BBC
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