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Second Life


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HYPAR Hands-On Learning Workshop, Australian Technology Park, 1st June 2007
Presenters: Jo Kay and Sean FitzGerald, Second Life in Education -

Second Life is an online 3D virtual world developed by Linden Lab. It provides an immersive environment where users are able to create a digital character, or ‘avatar’, and interact with people from around the world. Second Life allows users or ‘residents’ to come together to engage in a range of activities including socialising, attending musical events, playing games, shopping, running businesses, building, collaborating, attending meetings and presentations and undertaking training and education. What makes Second Life unique is that the world is 100% user-generated - that is, everything you see and experience in the world is created by the residents – and residents retain intellectual property rights over everything they create. The platform provides relatively easy-to-use building and scripting tools which make it easy for users to create objects, experiences and environments including highly personalised avatars, clothing, gadgets, vehicles, buildings and landscapes. Additionally, Second Life supports a built-in economy that enables residents to buy and sell goods and services. The in-world currency – Linden Dollars (L$) – can be exchanged for real US dollars on the Linden Exchange. Second Life is not a game like other Massively Multiplayer Online Games (MMOG) such as World Of Warcraft, but residents do create games within the world. As of May 2007 there are over 6.7 million accounts, an estimated 600,000 regular users, approximately 80,000 premium (paid) accounts and an average of about 25,000 users online concurrently with a peak concurrency of approximately 44,000 users. Residents have to be over 18 years of age. 13 to 17 year olds can join on the Teen Grid where adults are restricted.

• • • • • • • • • Introductions Agenda Overview Introduction to Second Life Educational Uses of Second Life Getting Started with Second Life Exploring Jo & Sean’s Virtual Meeting Space Tour of Second Life Using Second Life with Young People Wrap-up and Where to Next


Key Features of Second Life
• Completely user-generated content - it’s an open world that gives users creative control. • Relatively easy-to-use built-in building and scripting tools allow users to create almost any object or any experience they can imagine. • Customisation of avatars - users can create highly detailed ‘virtual selves’. • Users own the intellectual property for their creations. • A real in-world economy with real money transfer makes it easy to buy and sell creations (and profit from them). More than $5 million USD is transacted between users every month. • Audio and video can be streamed from the web and played in-world. • Linden Labs takes a hands-off approach to governance, allowing residents to self-govern (although residents are expected to abide by Terms of Service and Community Standards).

• Second Life offers a fun, creative space where students can engage in rich, sensory, immersive experiences. It is an ideal platform for engaging students in creating their own learning activities, experiences and environments. It is particularly appealing to the gamer generation. • Second Life facilitates collaboration and co-creation and is a great platform for engaging students in active and experiential learning in authentic contexts. It encourages social and peer learning. • Second Life is ideal for role-plays and simulations, modelling of complex scenarios and data visualisations. It is a mediarich environment that offers enhanced communication via avatars, and is fantastic for exploring identity and developing communication skills.

The unique qualities of a 3D virtual worlds can provide opportunities for rich sensory immersive experiences, authentic contexts and activities for experiential learning, simulation and role-play, modelling of complex scenarios, a platform for data visualisation and opportunities for collaboration and co-creation that can not be easily experienced using other platforms. Second Life can be used for a range of educational purposes including: • Distance and Flexible Education • Presentations, Panels and Discussions • Training & Skills Development • Self-paced Tutorials • Displays and Exhibits • Roleplays & Simulations • Data Visualisations & Simulations • Libraries, Art Galleries and Museums • Historical Recreations, Living & Immersive Archeology • Computer Programming • Multimedia and Games Design • Artificial Intelligence and Artificial Life Projects • Art & Music Projects • Literature & Creative Writing • Photostories • Machinima • Treasure Hunts • Virtual Tourism, Cultural Immersion & Cultural Exchange • Language Learning and Practice • Social Science and Anthropological Research • Awareness/Consciousness Raising • Support and Opportunities for People with Disabilities • Politics, Governance, Civics and Legal Practice • Business, Commerce, Financial Practice & Modelling • Real Estate Practice • Product Design, Prototyping, User-testing & Market Research • Interior Design • Architectural Design and Modelling • Urban Planning and Design Note: We have interpreted the term education very liberally. Like in real life, learning can occur anywhere within Second Life. We see all of Second Life as a learning environment.

For further info & examples of the Educational Uses of Second Life visit:

Basic Accounts Are Free
• If you have a verified Basic account (credit card or paypal), you’ll also receive $L250 upon verification. • Premium accounts are required to own land (to build permanent structures). Premium accounts give you an initial grant of L$1,000 and a weekly grant of L$300 (even if you don’t log in). • Payment options:
- Monthly: US$9.95 or AU$12.85 - Quarterly: US$22.50 or AU$29.00 (US$7.50 or AU$9.70 mth) - Annual: $72.00 or AU$93.00 (US$6.00 or AU$7.75 month)

1. Check that your computer meets System Requirements: Second Life has specific software and hardware requirements. Check the website for further information - If your computer doesn’t meet these requirements, you may not be able to participate in Second Life effectively. 2. Visit the Second Life Homepage: Go to the Join Now section where you will find an online form to fill out. 3. Choose a Name for Your New Avatar: You don’t need to use your real name... be creative. Choose a first name of your own creation, and a last name from a drop-down list of choices. 4. Choose from Some Basic Avatar Options: New users need to choose a basic setup for their new avatar. There are a number of male and female options on the website to choose from. Don’t worry too much about this, as you will be able to modify and create your own avatar later on. 5. Complete the Registration Form: Add the required details to the final registration form (name, password, email address etc) and submit. You’re pretty much signed up now and ready to go! 6. Optional - Premium Accounts: If you’re interested in owning land or engaging in the Second Life economy, you may wish to sign up for a Premium accout. However - to join our tours in Second Life, you do not need to spend any money - simply skip this step. 7. Download and install the Second Life client: Users need to download and install the Second Life software onto their computer. (About 30MB for Windows users and 62MB for Mac users). You must have this software installed in order to access Second Life. 8. Log in to Second Life and Start Exploring!: That’s it! You’re ready to start your Second Life. Launch the Second Life software and login. You will arrive on Orientation Island where you you will be able to use the resources there to familiarise with the Second Life interface. 9. Instant Message Us!: Once you’re in Second Life - we’d love to hear from you! To get in contact, you can use the Instant Message tools built into Second Life. Simply click on the Search button, and under ‘people’ search for jokay Wollongong or Sean McDunnough. Using the Instant Message button at the botton of the People Search tab you will be able to send us direct messages. You can also visit our virtual home in Wasp via this Slurl:

Linden Dollars
Goods and services in Second Life are paid for by Linden Dollars, which can be bought from Linden Lab or exchanged on the currency exchange. Exchange rate – approx. 270 L$/USD or 207 L$/AUD L$1000 L$100 L$10 L$1 = $3.75 (US) = 37.5c (US) = 3.75c (US) = 0.375c (US) = $4.85 (AU) = 48.5c (AU) = 4.85c (AU) = 0.485c (AU)

Land Costs - Mainland
• Land is purchased at market rates. • A monthly usage fee (tier) is also paid for land. With a premium account, the first 512m2 is included and attracts no usage fee. • Over that, usage fees are: 1/128 Region 1/64 Region 1/32 Region 1/16 Region 1/8 Region 1/4 Region 1/2 Region Entire Region 512 m2 1024 m2 2,048 m2 4,096 m2 8,192 m2 16,384 m2 32,768 m2 65,536 m2 US$5 / AU$6.50 US$8 / AU$10.30 US$15 / AU$19.40 US$25 / AU$32.30 US$40 / AU$51.70 US$75 / AU$96.90 US$125 / AU$161.60 US$195 / AU$252.10

Regular Pricing: • US$1,675/AU$2,165 for 65,536 sq mtrs (about 16 acres) • Monthly land fees for maintenance are US$295/AU$381. Educational Pricing - For educators, academic institutions or non-profit organizations: • US$980/AU$1,267 for 65,536 sq mtrs (about 16 acres) • Monthly land fees for maintenance are US$150/AU$194. Note: Prices & conversions correct as @ May 2007. COMING SOON: The HYPAR Team are currently working on a CD-Rom Resource to help you identify ways of using Second Life with young people. Email: to order your copy!

• Second Life in Education Wiki :
Includes sections on: Getting Started with Second Life, Educational Uses of Second Life, Second Life Resources and Virtual Worlds Resources.

• SimTeach Wiki:
Information and Community for Teachers in Multi-User Virtual Environments

• SL Educators’ Mailing List: • Second Life Best Practices in Education International Conference Wiki:

• Visit us at Jo and Sean’s Virtual Meeting Place: • The International Spaceflight Museum - Spaceport Alpha: • Studio Shores - Machinima by Silver and Goldie: • Regina Spektor Listening Loft: • Campus Second Life:

The following hardware and software is REQUIRED to run Second Life successfully. If your computer doesn’t meet these requirements, you may not be able to participate in Second Life: PC Minimum System Requirements: • Internet Connection: Cable or DSL • Operating System: Windows XP (Service Pack 2) OR Windows 2000
(Service Pack 4) • Computer Processor: 800MHz Pentium III or Athlon, or better • Computer Memory: 256MB or better • Video/Graphics Card: nVidia GeForce 2, GeForce 4mx, or better OR ATI Radeon 8500, 9250, or better

Visit our Second Life in Education Wikispace for more info:

Jo Kay

Second Life Name: jokay Wollongong Blog: Wiki: Email:

Macintosh Minimum System Requirements:
• • • • Internet Connection: Cable or DSL Operating System: Mac OS X 10.3.9 or better Computer Processor: 1 GHz G4 or better Computer Memory: 512MB or better • Video/Graphics Card: nVidia GeForce 2, GeForce 4mx, or better OR ATI Radeon 8500, 9250, or better

Sean FitzGerald

Second Life Name: Sean McDunnough Blog: Wiki: Email:

For further information see Second Life - System Requirements at: Note: A Linux version of the Second Life client is available but only in ‘alpha’ version.

Jo and Sean’s Virtual Meeting Place:

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