more than meets the eye
I like being surprised by virtual world designs, and it happened just few moments ago.
I returned to peek under the hood of an educational sim, one only recently discovered (first clue here). I roamed around and flew up-up-up, ctrl-alt-zooming into spaces here and there; right-click-more-more inspecting random objects…all an attempt to reveal the plan, to discover more of the story.
Then I came upon a teleportal door.
Its location is devoted to avatar appearance, providing freebie clothing to new users. To my surprise, the familiar Anywhere Door led to a skybox hundreds of meters overhead, and…
… an elegant solution to a common problem (“How do you give users privacy for changing clothes?”)
This is where the surprise sunk in. You see, I had found the skybox during an earlier flight around the sim. I must have cammed right through the Anywhere Doors, because the space seemed disconnected, empty, and somehow incomplete; a room with no clear purpose, no obvious context. Bold-headed, I thought “this is just an unfinished sketch” and “too much is going on here.”
Discovering the elaborate build—one that is taking shape under the eye of a single, motivated educator—was a pleasant surprise in itself. Discovering that the host has an eye for interactive, user-centric design was the best surprise of all.
I reckon I will be writing more about this space; and, until l I get my head around it a bit more, I have put off naming it here.