EDUC 8845

EDUC 8845

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

The Disruptive Power of Second Life

Second Life (SL) becomes a disruptive technology through its effort to change the way individuals use the internet. According to Rosedale (2008), the internet is a tool to manage, create, exchange, and absorb ideas using a 2-D method in forms of text and images. SL incorporates the same concept through a 3-D virtual reality application. Their concept continues to challenge search engines, the Consumer Report, social sites, instant messengers, as well as the traditional brick-and-mortar classroom environment.

SL replaces the 2-D technology of Sims City, Giga pets, and other forms of virtual entertainment, as well. Providing virtual experiences through a 3-D distribution and collaborative approach, SL adds challenges to blogging, wikis, and other collaborative learning environments. This virtual environment enables dialog through instant messaging among its members. Onsite dialog shortens the timespan required in reaching answers, as well as other learning objectives. The traditional 2-D approach can take days for an individual to come to a resolution to their question or concern which may interfere with their learning style.

SL’s instant messaging technique creates a social and collaborative atmosphere. Identity to speakers of the dialog is provided by through the creation of an avatar. The avatar may not reflex the actual physical appearance of the individual, although it does represent a perspective to the individual’s personality.

SL will remain in existent as it becomes emerged throughout distance learning and other social settings. Creating a virtual, collaborative group provide an alternative for technology users possessing the interpersonal learning style. Creating an avatar, as a metaphor for oneself, provides the means for technology users with the intrapersonal learning style, (Lumosity, 2012). The avatar enables the individual to collaboratively participant in a group setting while hiding in comfort behind their computer screen.

SL will continue to support an unique virtual alternative, until the telepresence through holographic images becomes emerged into society, (Dimensional Studios, 2008). Nevertheless, both types of disruptive technologies offer features and means that entice various learning styles adding value to experience.


Lumosity, (2012). Overview of learning styles. Retrieved from

 Dimensional Studios. (2008). Musion eyeliner: 3D holographic projection system. Retrieved

Rosedale, P. (2008). Philip Rosedale on Second Life [Video]. Retrieved from


  1. I think that a huge draw for Second Life is that it gives people the freedom to be who ever they want to be including changing their appearance, expressing feelings that may not be considered "normal", and creating a whole "second life" separate from their "first life," but as this technology expands it seems it will blend more with the "first life". Do you think this "freedom to do or be who you want to be" will continue or do you think second life will begin to mimic the first life as it blends?

  2. Cheryl and CJ; good points recognizing that many desire a virtual change because they are not disciplined enough or fortunate to create their changes. It does however promote an anonymous chance to collaborate, become comfortable in an environment where intra-personal skills can grow. Due to social challenges and poor relationship skills, users may or may not become real first life peers.

  3. Good point as well, I have noticed many people lack in the area of social graces. Just go into a store and you will see people on the cell phone when checking out, or walking along talking on their phones instead of interacting, it seems the more "digitized" we become the more "unsocial" we become. Maybe with second life we can also learn to interact once again (unless they introduce the virtual cell phone, maybe they have).