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hyzrVkwcYEiKKXrlHrY, 2012-12-08 23:50:04
Hi John,I realise this is an old post and you may not read this coemnmt, but I am glad I came across your post.The idea of using virtual worlds (I teach in Second Life) to build communities and activities that can take video and online games beyond the office, bedroom or lounge and engage us in activities that are not only mentally good for us but physically good for us too has fascinated me for some time.While probably not new, my 11 year old daughter came up with the idea of using our treadmill together with the Wii fit jogging programs/games (the short and long distances ones). I love the idea of combining this kind of Wii activity with something that genuinely does have health benefits like walking on the treadmill. The virtual environments that the Wii provides for you to walk and jog in, while not brilliant, are okay and do give you a sense of being outside in a nice environment. By watching the terrain closely and ajusting the angle of the treadmill to suit uphill or flat ground you actually not only have a good workout, but you also have a sense of real topography. If more diverse environments could be built for the same activity you could go to a different place each time. If there was a way to use the Wii remote or some other similar motion capture device to animate an avatar in a 3D virtual world like Second Life, you could have a huge range of environments built for relatively little cost that would provide an interesting background for the jogging. In the middle of the freezing North American, with the ground covered in several feet of snow outside, how nice would it be to go to a tropical island for a jog?What is missing is the social/community aspect of this kind of activity. What if I could Skype a friend in another part of town, another city, another country and agree to meet him/her in a particular place for a nice social jog together? With the VOIP voice communication setup in SL, you could jog and chat at the same time. You could also watch (dare I say compete) with other joggers too. How much fun and more motivating would that be? So, Internet connectivity would bring a whole new dimension to the activity of jogging in a virtual environment.Why I would prefer environments like SL to the one provided by Wii is that SL is an open environment where you can pretty much walk anywhere, unlike Wii where you have to stay on a pre-programmed track. You could imagine taking the social aspect of such an activity even further by, at the end of the jog popping into a virtual sports clothing shop to check out the latest fashion clothing for your avatar, or even sit in a virtual cafe and chat till you recover (byo coffee of course!).This will all come, I believe. I for one can wait till its here.Cheers,Scott


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