I have been struggling with the new attention on online virtual worlds like Second Life, World of Warcraft, etc, etc. I think that there’s something here that’s more than games. But I can’t quite tell what yet. And if it’s just games, well I don’t want to get sucked into this, as I waste enough time on the Internet already.
Here’s an article by a tech veteran suggesting that this is The Next Big Thing. The question is, what moves to virtual worlds? If it’s just games, then it’s self limiting as only some people have that much time on their hands and they’re not the ones with the money. There are obviously options for moving community online to virtual worlds, but community per se doesn’t have that much economic value. However in some aspects of health care, like patient groups, there is real value from community.
The web though is most important for moving commerce and information online. It’s not clear to me how you put that into a virtual world, other than advertising to those who are playing games or otherwise spending time there which is the TV/newspaper model. Any ideas?
(Note: Slight edits made to clarify)