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An Educator's Perspective...

Byron Genira
Registered User
Join date: 16 Dec 2008
Posts: 3
07-29-2009 12:19
Dear Second Life Administrators,

I am a college educator and I would like to share some FREE ideas with you for the improvement of your site. As you probably know, more and more educators are starting to look to Second Life as a wonderful opportunity for doing virtual-teaching, as it allows students to learn directly from the comforts of their home or work environment. You have a wonderful opportunity here, but I am afraid that many of them will leave your site with time, unless some enhancements are made:

1) Offer private land parcels (for verified educators only) for $14.95 a month that are 4K in size. This should give plenty of prims to the educator, so they can put up illustrations, PowerPoint slide shows, hands-on examples, etc. These parcels cannot be sold to individuals, but must be purchased from Linden Labs themselves. (If they need more space, they can buy another land parcel at another $14.95 a month in addition.)

- Helps to ensure that the region is dedicated to learning and keeps it free from offending garbage, such as pornography, or the promotion of illegal activities (such as doing illegal drugs, etc.)

2) Land-Parcel video needs to be done differently!

- Two options need to be made available. The first is the land parcel media button. When this video is started, the video should automatically show and play for everyone on the parcel without any action being required on their behalf.

- The second option needs to be added where individual textures can be linked to different video files from the web. This way, if I have five different educational videos (such as screencasts), my students can then click on an item with that texture and that particular video file would start to play. This should be local for that student's client browser only, so it doesn't disrupt the other students in the class setting.

3) Builders should be given the ability to use HTTP textures. Why?

- Allows teachers to be able to easily put together PowerPoint presentations without having a constant Linden "upload" fee for their students. Think about it like this -- we can either upload our PowerPoint presentation to a web server -- or we can upload it to Second Life at cost. If our PowerPoint presentation has 50 slides in it, that means that we have to pay a $2 USD upload fee, which really isn't very teacher-budget friendly. Which one do you think teachers are going to prefer -- a free upload to a web server -- or a $2 fee per PowerPoint presentation in SL?

By giving educators the ability to upload their converted PowerPoint slide images to a web server, and using HTTP texture links to these files, this allows for educators (and others) to be able to provide a constant flow of quality materials into Second Life without placing a burden on the SL server system, etc. Another advantage is that it also reduces lawsuit and copyright issues, since these materials aren't being technically "stored" on the SL system. In the long run, this will be more cost-effective for Linden Labs.

- Now, to protect Linden Labs from losing vast money with this, put a limitation so that items that use HTTP textures cannot be sold. Also, in regards to privacy issues, I really don't believe this will be an issue for most users -- but Linden Labs can alway provide users with an option setting to disable remote resource retrieval.

- Another advantage is that it also cuts back on the amount of images (disk space) that Linden labs has to store. Storage = expense. If you can cut back on storage, it cuts back on your expense.

4) And finally, Linden Labs needs to provide an "Educators Training Facility" that is designed to welcome new teachers to SL, to provide them with free training resources, and even free materials for their classrooms. Not all teachers will have a degree in computer science, nor will they know how to do LSL scripting. Due to this, it's imperative that a training facility be published where educators can volunteer their time and efforts to help make SL a more teacher-friendly facility.

Thank you! Please consider... :-)
Lee Ponzu
What Would Steve Do?
Join date: 28 Jun 2006
Posts: 1,770
07-29-2009 13:20
SL administrators don't read this forum.
So many monkeys, so little Shakespeare.
Byron Genira
Registered User
Join date: 16 Dec 2008
Posts: 3
07-29-2009 13:24
Do you (or anyone else) know how to get this message to them?
Nika Talaj
now you see her ...
Join date: 2 Jan 2007
Posts: 5,449
07-29-2009 13:33
First, have you looked at Linden Lab's site for educators who are joining SL?

Second, have you been to Second Life's teaching wiki? Most of the info here has been contributed by actual educators: http://www.simteach.com/wiki/index.php?title=Second_Life_Education_Wiki

Thirdly, to speak directly to a Linden employee about education, lookup Pathfinder Linden's office hours here: http://wiki.secondlife.com/wiki/Office_Hours

(but, many of your issues are more general in nature. If you have new feature suggestions, and are a little technical, these can be made in the PJIRA issue tracking database: https://jira.secondlife.com/secure/Dashboard.jspa

Have fun and welcome to the forums!
Lindal Kidd
Dances With Noobs
Join date: 26 Jun 2007
Posts: 8,371
07-29-2009 13:39
From: Byron Genira
Do you (or anyone else) know how to get this message to them?

Write it on a notecard, and drop it on the profiles of a few Lindens. Snail mail to their corporate HQ in San Francisco might work too. Send it Registered, you are not likely to get a formal acknowledgement.

You can also make feature requests in the JIRA, Linden Lab's bug-tracking system. But I often think that they read those about as often as they read these forums.

At present, the only way to insure privacy and freedom from griefers and pornography is to purchase a private island from LL. This will cost your institution $1,000 US, and a monthly upkeep fee of $295 US.

Almost as good would be to rent a large chunk of land from another private estate owner. Just make sure the estate owner is reputable.
It's still My World and My Imagination! So there.
Lindal Kidd