About 4 or 5 years ago my partner was "addicted to" the multi-user micro world, Ultima Online. They called it a "game" but it was a full, rich underworld, populated by millions of people of all ages, but dominated by youth. At the time, we (both of us teachers) thought what an amazing education tool it could be if we were to set up a school within that world. A "real" (academic) school where students could earn real-world graduation credits. Why not?.... the game already used real-world money for property transactions and more. Students could earn not only course credits and degrees for the "real" world, but in doing so could also earn other items that would be of value to them in their virtual world.
Of course, we didn't take that idea any further, and now in 2006 the rest of the "real world" is catching up to our idea. Will they acknowledge that we were the first to think of it? Ya right. Nevertheless, I'm glad it's finally happening. Academia, welcome to your Second Life.
Second Life lands B.C. campus
Sloodle - 3D Learning Management System