I just have to say a little about last nights visit to SL. I accompanied Sarah in but initially was not part of the group finally got that sorted and found out how to accept invites and teleport. We went to the Rod Laver stadium and had a go a playing tennis but I didn't know how to make myself move once I took the role of player. Wandered a bit aimlessly and no one seemed to be talking. I was a bit too nervous to try talking, a bit worried about making a twit of myself I think, and not too sure what to talk about really. We went to IBM and saw quite a lot of good things, got a ride on a wee flying car. I accepted some gifts there but I don't know what happened to them, or what if anything I can do with them. I also managed to fill in a couple of online surveys. One highlight I have to say was flying over to a large yacht and having a brows around, it was very luxurious and a lot like the real thing I imagine.
Went to some Island where I had a go at playing a tin drum and wind surfing,then I followed a link to a halloween site. I lost everyone at this point. It got really weired I clicked on something that got me dancing and I couldn't stop. Mind you I was a pretty good dancer and the guitar music was really good. I literally lost my head. In the end I got out of there somehow, I can't remember how, by choosing to go back to the orientation area. When I was back there I met another newbie, from New York. We met by a cow and decided to see what it would do, we made it go Moo and then we sat on it together. Then I told him I had to go said goodbye and left.
In the IBM site there were meeting rooms, I can see that sitting around with a group of people who share a common interest and are unable to get together in any other way could be useful. I can see that there is an option to present people with online resources outside second life, such as the surveys I completed which could also be useful. I think there is a great deal of learning to do before we are all ready to be able to make use of this. Maybe we need a bit more help here.
I do believe that in time we could make good use of SL, when we are getting students coming through who are familiar with online tools such as this. Given the level of technophobia I see around me [as well as my own trepidation], I think that is a fair way off. I will wait until we have managed to have a group meeting where we have actually communicated before I draw any final conclusions though. I intend to check my students next year to find out what their level of knowledge is on online social networking tools.
If you are a midwife or midwifery student and have any experience of using second life to network with a community of midwives or students I would love to hear from you about how you are finding this and if it is really useful.
I wish I could load the photos I have but can't seem to work out how to get them from email into my blog. I could use some pointers there too.