Virtual Worlds at a glance: The updated Universe graph for Q3 2008 from Kzero

Nic Mitham from K Zero, the UK based virtual worlds agency, updated their Universe graph showing total registered accounts for the virtual worlds sector. There’s four graphics now, each one showing segments for different age ranges (between 8 and 25+ years). New data included relates to Q3 2008. Nice that somebody out there does such an incredible job collecting and visualizing all that data for the rest of us to glance at – thanks, Nic!

Universe graph: Virtual Worlds showing total registered accounts over the years for the age range 15 to 25

See all of them here: The updated Universe graph for Q3 2008 : Kzero >>

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Can robots become our ‚phriends‘?

„A friendly collaboration between humans and robots is not always easy. Either robots work efficiently and far from humans in controlled environments, or they’re equipped with lots of sensors to work along humans and not harm them. Now, a EU-funded project, Phriends — short for ‚Physical Human-Robot Interaction: DepENDability and Safety‘ — has started to force robots to respect Asimov’s laws. In a nutshell, these laws say that robots cannot cause harm to humans and that they have to obey us. This 3-year project will end next year and has received € 2.16 million from the EU. (…) The robots developed by Phriends will be intrinsically safe, since the safety is guaranteed by their very physical structure, and not by external sensors or algorithms that can fail. (…)“

Read the full article here: Can robots become our ‚phriends‘? >>

Papermint: „You know – for kids!“ teens made of paper in a 3D cartoon world

I dismissed Papermint earlier as too simple (flat people in the age of life-like 3D graphics??) because up to date I only saw screenshots of this weird little virtual world built by Austrian company Avaloop. But when I watched the video above (made by a creative Papermint user called Seppl – skip over the first 30 secs) I got their special drift and think I finally see why kids and teens find it interesting…I never thought I’d say it, but maybe it doesn’t have to be 3D all the way to have fun in social virtual worlds 😉

papermint people

Papermint people: click on „watch movie“ in the upper left corner of their homepage, it’s a cute and entertaining demonstration why flat people sometimes have all the advantages…

Papermint Homepage >>

If you don’t “get” Facebook and Twitter, read this NY Times article

Blog post listing the highlights of an excellent New York Times article by Clive Thompson (who is also columnist in Wired magazine) about:

– the psychological and sociological view: ambient awareness and weak ties

– how microblogging and social networking is having effects a small-town life has

If you don’t “get” Facebook and Twitter, read this NY Times article on Lightspeed Venture Partners Blog >>

Bigstage: Create the digital you in 3-D and put yourself into photos, videos

Johnathan Strietzel from Big Stage is showing Craig Raymond (Intel „demo guy“) how to get his virtual me into a TV series and publish that video on Facebook.

All it takes is three pictures of your face (taken with any ordinary digital camera) and you’re off to posing with historical figures or playing a real acting character in a real movie or your favorite TV series. Then show off your new entertainment career on Facebook etc. Runs on Windows XP/Vista only (and under Bootcamp on a Mac).

Here’s a full review by Mashable: http://mashable.com/2008/09/03/big-stage/

Bigstage Homepage>>