Nikko LeFavre is my avatar. For over a year now I've thought about creating an account on Second Life. Mainly to see what all the hubbub was all about. Then, after reading more and more about how some companies are experimenting with Second Life as a training venue, my curiosity continued to grow. But, for some reason, First Life kept getting in the way of the Second. Besides, with memberships on about a dozen social networks, group blogs, discussion forums and chats, it just seemed unfathomable to add yet another network to my list.
So, this year, I culled the list down to a few. From about a dozen, I've decided to focus on: LinkedIn, a local chapter of ASTD, RealBlogging and, of course, Business Casual. I figured I should now have a little more bandwidth to find out what all the hubbub is all about on SL. Then another few months went by...
Recently, I read an article with an interview of Joe Miller, VP of platform and technology development at Linden Lab, the operator of Second Life. The discussion included examples of how British Petroleum, IBM, Starwood Hotels, and others are using SL to explore new venues for training. That dialog brought back the familiar pique. So, being the trainer guy that I am, I figured today was the day for a second birthday.
I registered on SL as Nikko LeFavre (Pronounced, "Le-farv," like how Brett does it, but without the "le" in his case.). I always thought Nikko was a cool name. Maybe I would have gotten more dates in high school and college had I been called Nikko instead of Melven.
The only thing cooler than Nikko as a first name would have been to have a first-syllable last name to go along with it. Nikko Criss and Nikko Thor were possibilities. But, already taken apparently. (When setting up your account for the first time, you have the option of picking your own first name, but you're limited to a selection of last names.) So, Nikko LeFavre it is.
So, after setting up my account, downloading the client software and logging in again, I showed up as cool man Nikko LeFavre in the middle of town square -- naked.
There was a brief moment of panic'd chagrin where I thought, "oh shit, they really get you coming right in, huh? I'm gonna have to spend money right off the bat to buy clothes now, huh?" But, thankfully, that wasn't the case. The powers that be, found it wise to start us all off with some "default clothes."
From a training perspective, I thought it was good what Linden Lab has done in terms of requiring each new Resident to complete a series of four tutorials before cutting us loose into the world. As the video above shows, each of the required tutorials progresses from learning the basics of moving around (left, right, forward, back); changing appearances (hair, clothes, glasses, other trinkets, and so on); communication basics (mainly chat, but voice is available, too); and searching.
That's about the extent of Nikko's foray on Day 1. He did go to
what I call the Search "ministry," a big futuristic looking building
with big maps on the walls. But, after trying a couple of short
searches, we figure he needs a little more coaching. So, he's gonna
spend time figuring that out and see if we can find some real estate
businesses or training venues and report back on the next post.