Sunday, July 15, 2007

San Jose SLIS Embraces Second Life

Title:San Jose SLIS Embraces Second Life
Author: Blumenstein, Lynn and Oder, Norman
Title of Journal: Library Journal; 6/15/07, vol. 132 issue 11, p17
Date: July 15, 2007

This article discusses the use of the online software virtual reality site Second Life. The SLIS school at San Jose University is running a summer class in the Second Life environment. The University began reading itself for such an undertaking last year. The Soros Foundation enabled the school to purchase a 16 acres site on the Second Life. This particular parcel has been deemed information island. Several of the classes at SLIS have been using second life as a tool for their students to setup young adult spaces for the library program. The schools future plans are for the students to create a reference experience via using a voice chat tool. The SLIS assistant director says that Second Life is a way of showing students different types of software applications. The school has even begun to think of a prototype virtual graduate school.
I had previously been introduced to the Second Life in young adult literature class. It was a bit over the top for me. I fin it hard to believe that a university could think about using Second Life as a virtual graduate program. I think that it would be difficult for individuals to use the program and have the needed components to utilize it properly. My thought on the other hand, is that it is a great tool for informal chats and for meeting people around the world. The Second Life would not be something that I would use in my library but, it would be something that I could tell my patrons about.

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