Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Second Sweden Embassy Opening

These are images from the inworld live stream of the opening of the Swedish embassy in Second Life. Realism and planning were the key principles at play during the ceremony. Foreign Minister Carl Bildt's avatar not surprisingly looked like Carl Bildt (they even had the same suit on) and he opened the building with a virtual pair of scissors cutting a virtual ribbon. It was however very well done, a model perhaps of state presence in a virtual environment. We average avatars will not know until tomorrow as the island with the embassy on it was only accessible today for the invited. We had to make do with a wobbly video stream (it cut out three times) of the proceeding. The embassy will be open to the SL public from tomorrow. What we did see demonstrated of the embassy building seems to be a very high quality production. The obvious stuff was present, links to information about Swedish culture and travel. What did strike me was a panorama globe with the location of all the RL Swedish diplomatic missions in the world featured. An avatar can stand in the center of the globe and click on the spots marking the location of a Swedish embassy, this opens the web page to that mission.
I will begin my SL short course in HUMlab tomorrow (9am in the lab..just turn up if you have not booked) at the embassy site. The SL Swedish embassy seems like an interesting hybrid between website, virtual world and the sort of stalls you find at World Expo extravaganzas. Nice work Sweden.
For those with a special interest, a large part of the chat history from the video stream site can be downloaded HERE.

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