Archive for the ‘Virtual Worlds’ Category

Agenda, May 1, 2007

April 30, 2007

Guest Speaker
Jeremy Kemp, SJSU Kemp on Second Life: Journalism, New Media and Virtual Worlds

Book Discussion and Reading Assignment
We will be discussing the reading assignment. Up through page 208 due today of Naked Conversations by Scoble and Israel. We will also discuss the follow up assignment.

Presentation on Posting to WebServer
I will be doing a demo presentation on using FTP software to post content to.

Students will get their own web server space and will post to it.

Bob Sutor on Open Source

April 27, 2007

Bob Sutor

Sutor’s visit rocked!
Yesterday Bob Sutor, IBM’s Vice president of Standards and Open Source, visited SJSU. He spoke to a small group of Business, Engineering, Computer Science and Journalism students and faculty. He put on a great presentation, I wish my whole class could have heard it.

Sutor spoke about open source and how it differs from open standards and about the need for hardware and software manufacturers to comply with open standards to ensure interoperability. He also spoke about Web 2.0 and blogging. According to Sutor blogging, which has been in the mainstream for 4-5 years, is changing the face of journalism, business and politics. Sutor said, “everybody is a journalist.”

On the subject of open source, Sutor spoke extensively about Web Services and Apache Web Server, the free application that powers the majority of the world’s web servers. “Apache is an example of open source,” Sutor said. According to Sutor the first web services standard was published seven years before by both IBM and Microsoft on the same date as his presentation. “There is still a place for proprietary solutions,” said Sutor. But, he said, “you can build a business on open source, just ask Google.” Google’s servers run their own version of Linux according to Sutor. “Education is the biggest adopter of open source,” Sutor said. As an example for how open source applies to education and government agencies, Sutor recommended the Guide to Open Source Software for Australian Government Agencies. Sutor also spoke a lot about Moodle and other open source solutions for education.

Sutor spoke a lot about open standards and how they relate to competition and innovation. From the perspective of the provider competition may not seem good and they may work very hard to convince you of the need to go with a sole provider. But for the buyer competition is good as it drives down prices and drives the providers to innovate. But, in order for this to be possible buyers have to insist on open standards to assure interoperability, according to Sutor. It is hard for some vendors to let go of closed standards. Sutor said letting go of closed standards for them can be compared to the five stages of grief.

Sutor  spoke extensively about virtual worlds and specifically Second Life. He showed the group IBM’s SOA island in Second Life. Note – IBM SOA stands for Service Oriented Architecture. The IBM island has customer briefing rooms where employees can meet with each other and with customers in a virtual environment that eliminates the need for travel. According to Sutor there are between 36,000 to 38,000 people in Second Life at any given moment. Second Life has its own currency and its own virtual economy. They are planning to open source their server software which would enable organizations like SJSU to create our own virtual worlds, said Sutor. “This is huge,” he said.

We need to do a better job of spreading the word on events like this. I have only captured a small amount of what Sutor said. I was inspired.

Full Disclosure
My wife, Susan Graziano Sloan works for IBM in a different division than Sutor. She works on IBM’s DB2 database product and wrote a couple of books on DB2 including DB2 for z/OS.

John Furrier of PodTech on New Media Journalism

February 28, 2007

John Furrier

“Content is the new search engine”
John Furrier, Founder and CEO of, spoke today at a get together for Stanford Innovation Journalism Fellows at Podtech’s Palo Alto offices. Furrier really impressed me, this is one sharp guy! Furrier who has a solid background in computer science said, “there is a huge demand for content, content is the new search engine.” Furrier spoke about RSS, the engine that enables podcasting, comparing it to TCP/IP and HTTP in it’s impact on business. He said, “TCP/IP gave people using computers access to the world, HTTP gave them access to information and RSS gave them access to relationships.” Furrier mentioned Robert Scoble and talked about how Scoble reads a thousand blogs a day with RSS and Google Reader. Scoble is a graduate of the SJSU Journalism program, an A-List blogger and a PodTech Podcaster. Robert was out of town but his wife Maryam was there. She is also a blogger and she also works at PodTech.

This was an event focusing on New Media and Journalism and Furrier talked about what he sees as the future of Journalism. He described a new media model where reporter’s roles are more and more becoming about igniting and curating conversations. He said reporters of the future will work in more of a software development model, focusing on parts of the big stories and working as a team with others to develop coverage and conversations in a way that collaborates both with their audiences and each other. He described this world as being like the open source software development model.

Furrier also sees a rich future for virtual worlds like Second Life and a growing role for journalists to both cover and work in that space. He also spoke about politics and said one of the great uncovered stories is what he called the blogosphere primary where politicians are courting the blogosphere. He talked about Hillary Clinton’s recent visit to Google and about how Clinton is courting the Google Vote. He said the press is not talking about that much, but they sure are talking about it at Google.

Furrier said there are technologies journalists need to learn and he specifically mentioned Java Script and XML, but he also said the story they’re telling has to be good. He said, “you need to optimize your behavior because if you don’t tell a good story you will be booed.”

STEM is a go!

February 23, 2007

STEM Intro Video

STEM is official, has a blog and everything
Having one kid in who is in his thirties and two in their twenties (yes, we started young) I can assure you that what is written above is true, but that is another post. I am thrilled to be the faculty adviser to the coolest club at SJSU, the SJSU Technology and Emerging Media Club (STEM.) They are meeting weekly in the Incubator Conference Room in Clark Hall and are sharing and teaching themselves and fellow students how to use and create emerging media including blogs, RSS, Podcasts, Video Blogs and virtual worlds. STEM meets Wednesdays at 4:30 in Clark 116.

What is Second Life?

February 14, 2007

Phillip Rosedale

Understanding Second Life
Philip Rosedale, Founder and CEO of Second Life, talks about the creation of Second Life and how Second Life relates to the real world. This is a key podcast for understanding the thinking behind Second Life. Rosedale refers back to the book Show Crash by Neal Stephenson and the concept of a metaverse. This wonderful set of short interviews was done by iinnovate, a podcast about innovation and entrepreneurship by students at Stanford.