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Sustainable Futures and Virtual Consumption

iStock_000003929311Small.jpgAt the World Future Society meeting in Toronto in 2006, Peter Hesseldahl, the excellent technology writer, made an offhand remark to me that I am reminded of almost daily. He quipped that, for most people, ‘the amount of resources you consume is an indicator of your social status’. Exempli gratia..a private jet trip to Paris for dinner equals a high status (and buckets of emissions).At the same time, individuals and corporations are increasingly focused on more sustainable futures for the planet. Clever programs like the University of Hawaii’s Futures Project seek to engage students to compete for which dormitory can be most energy efficient, hybrid-auto owners are fine-tuning their driving style to squeeze extra fuel efficiency and mileage, and collaboration technology is constantly providing us with new options that can help reduce our individual or corporate carbon-footprint by approximating the ‘magic of physical proximity’.Networked Virtual Environments provide an excellent example of a collaboration technology that has the potential to drastically reduce the need for travel and the resultant emissions. Read More »

Game Play in the Enterprise

This is my first post to the Virtual Worlds blog so let me start by introducing myself. My name is Greg Pelton, I’ve been at Cisco for 10 years and I lead the Technology Center. Now that we have that out of the way, let’s talk about collaboration. Collaboration is critical for successful businesses and the premise of this blog is that Virtual Worlds have a role to play in enabling enterprise collaboration. Let’s explore that idea by looking at two examples of Virtual Worlds -- Second Life and World of Warcraft -- and how they support collaboration. Read More »

Why play in the Virtual World schoolyard?

One of the first questions I’m typically asked when I show people various aspects of Virtual Worlds, besides “what’s that?”, is “why would I use that?”. It’s a fair question and one that I can’t always provide a direct, succinct answer. Sure, I have a list of 4-5 bullet-points I could rattle off (collaboration, serendipity, distributed teamwork, etc.), but recently I keep coming back to a quote I read several years ago from Juniper’s CEO Scott Kriens. I don’t recall the exact wording, but it was around the time that Juniper was beginning to win a few deals (before the Cisco CRS-1) and other “Gigabit Router” companies were announcing their intentions. When asked if he was concerned about those companies, he said “..no, because the only way you really learn in this market is to be out on the playground.” Read More »

Virtual Worlds Web 2.0 Or Not Web 2.0

eWeek’s article “5 Steps To Next Generation Web Applications” got me to thinking about the virtual world offerings. And if these two hot topics are really running 180 degrees apart from each other. As I went through the 5 steps I tried to determine how VW vendors might respond.Step 1 -- Build Rich Web Applications. “…hghly interactive and intuitive user interface…”Virtual worlds have the interactive down cold, the ability to create objects, manipulate them in the space and interaction only limited by the builders imagination. The intuitive is still a little vague, it depends is probably the right answer and most world developers will say that they ‘got it right’. Navigation and interacting is still not as standard as the OS or even web page type implementations. All in all give a check mark to the virtual worlds for the richness. Read More »

Making ‘Over the Network’ better than ‘Over the desk’

In 1998, when we were building the original Cisco IP Phones, we spent a lot of time talking about ‘better than’ features that would improve the voice communication experience over the standard PSTN/PBX voice model. At the time, we ran into an established hardware chain that didn’t support wideband handsets, DSPs without G.722 support, and so on. Give me a hand.jpgWe are at the same point in Networked Virtual Environments today, with a few caveats. Read More »