About this blog and its purpose

There are many things to do in Activeworlds virtual reality environment. I've chosen my way. It is a way of a builder. There are also many ways to build. My way is to create a virtual town.

The town is Horizon City. It was established January 2000 and it quickly became one of the most popular cities back then, with hundreds of builders. Besides that the town serves as historic reminder of how things were at Activeworlds, it is still constantly developing virtual experience, displaying latest features and architectural possibilities.

In this blog I will keep track how the things are going in Horizon City and in Activeworlds community.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Simulated reality

Is it mandatory to have many similarities between 3D environments and real world? Most of the cities have roads that go from one place to another. There are railways, walkways, paths, etc. Why are those needed? Aren't we talking about virtual reality, an environment where everyone can fly or go through objects? Everyone can teleport, who needs roads?!

Is there optimum ratio, how much elements from a real world is needed for a good virtual environment? If a scale is from zero to max, current AW places usually try to be closer a max than a zero. Most of the other virtual environments, such as Second Life, seems to aim to be near max. People like to see familiar features in artificial realities over the technical possibilities of having different kinds of realities. The optimum seems to be quite near the resemblance of real world.

Because of the difference, somekind of lore is sometimes created to fill gaps between realism and fictional computer based environments. For example if teleporting is possible virtually, easy way to explain it is to make a lore that is based on future. But not too far of a future, as most of the similarities to real world have to be maintained. Fictional governments are also common. Or are they fictional? Is it possible to actually have a Mayor on virtual city? Or a city counsil? What would they do? What are their rights? Doesn't everyone who buy a citizenship from a company that runs the program have equal rights? Is there a mature way to have a city in virtual reality? What is the definition of a city in virtual reality?

By claiming that Horizon City is "a city" in virtual environment makes it already a part of an unwritten lore. Why not to write the rest of it, anyone?