Bitte lächeln :-) Smileys lösen ähnliche Reaktionen im Gehirn aus wie echte Gesichter

Offenbar hat das menschliche Gehirn die Sprache der Emoticons bereits gelernt. Sieht es ein liegendes Smiley, reagiert es darauf wie auf richtige menschliche Gesichter. Das hat eine Studie australischer Forscher ergeben.

Gaby K. Slezák’s insight:

Nicht wirklich neu, aber nun auch von Hirnforschern belegt und als nonverbales Element wichtig für die Kommunikation über digitale Medien  (E-Mail, Facebook, Chat, Powerpoint Slides etc.): Emoticons wirken auf uns  ähnlich wie echte menschliche Gesichter; d.h. wir erkennen die kleinen Smileys schneller, nehmen sie als wichtiger wahr (z.B. als den Text  bzw. die sachliche Information drumherum) und reagieren entsprechend ähnlich emotional darauf. Hier die Studie im Original

See on www.focus.de

Advantages of 3D for Learning – And the Secret Ingredient

Karl Kapp’s listed today some of the advantages of 3D environments (virtual worlds) for learning. Take a look at this list if someone (your boss, client) asks you why they should allow you to set up the next employee-training or any other course in a 3D world.

Although Kapp, one of TrainingIndustry.com’s 2007 „Top 20 Most Influential Training Professionals“, sums the advantages up pretty nicely, I’d like to add the following two aspects that in my experience had the most impact on successful and sustainable learning situations:

1) One of the most important aspects in any learning environment: fun. Having fun is the most emotional engagement you can get (and that secures sustainable learning). Students have fun in 3D environments, especially if they’re designed to include casual games or playful training situations. But the three dimensional, immersive online environment is already so much fun for youth that this alone works to your advantage.

UPDATE: Jacob Everist has a background in dealing with East Asians from living in Korea Taiwan and China and writes in his blog that „Particularly in East Asia, education is considered hard work. If something is fun, it is not taken seriously. “ Interesting aspect that could also be said about some „typical“ Germans (I am German, but lived abroad a lot) 🙂

2) The water cooler effect. This is true for business trainings or meetings; studies show that the informal socializing in-between or after sessions is as important in virtual worlds as in the real world. Only that you don’t need to pay for airline tickets, hotels and catering.

My Sky Campus in Second Life: Example of a 3D learning environment with extensive multimedia capabilities (YouTube screen, 10 m high presentation screen, interactive web displays) and a recreational area with bean bags, cocktail bar and many fun features you can’t experience in real life classrooms or seminar settings

If we still missed some aspects (I added some in the comments) please comment here or in Karl Kapp’s blog!

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Arts & politics, anyone? Not only teens in Google’s Lively

There’s not only rampaging teenagers and dirty sex in Lively, Google’s virtual world of cartoon-like chat rooms. Or would you have thought that you’d find an art gallery with the title „Captured fractions of human history“ here?

Lively Gallery

This room belongs to Yaniv, a 36 year-old Jew from Israel who decorated walls and floor of his room with animated slideshows covering politics, art and history. The pictures in the backround are constantly updating themselves. We talked about religion and problems between fundamentalist Arabs and Jews and I learned that I would have been treated differently if I hadn’t told him I was married. Since you can pretend to be anything in a virtual world, carrying any name you choose, it is a good example of how important it is to take „virtuality“ seriously – social conventions are in the backpack of anybody logging into virtual worlds.

Because once you feel immersed you act like you would in the „real world“ – even if you’re just displayed like a cartoon-like Avatar.

If you use Windows you can have a look at the Exambitions Gallery right now (yeah I know that’s lame – Google doesn’t love Mac users):
www.lively.com/dr?rid=7746274979763050908

P.S. naturally I’ll never know if Yaniv isn’t in fact a teenager anyway(although I’m pretty sure because of our conversation)…nevertheless he created something interesting with that simple platform. Oh by the way here’s my „virtual meeting & presentation room“ in Lively, just in case. Here’s a picture of it (for Mac users – blame Google, not me):

Consiliera’s virtual meeting room in Lively

The Psychology Of MMO Players: Community Managers and Psychologists Speak

A group of MMO community managers and psychologists from the University of Texas came together at GDC Austin to examine common scenarios.

community managers „are being the police, the therapists, the legal system, the arbitrators.“

Dr. Gosling urges the industry to take advice from outside disciplines, such as psychologists, and even consider specialization in different aspects of community management.

Read the full blog post here: AGDC: The Psychology Of MMO Players: Community Managers, Psychologists Speak >>

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

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 >>