Tips for Second Life Presentations


Previously I have discussed the interface of the standard Second Life client. But on this post I’m looking at how people can step up beyond their usual real world methods when giving a presentation or talk in Second Life (SL). Now I’m not an expert on Second Life, but I have noticed a few things that work and don’t work when presenting a talk. Most of them are really simple if you think about it. But we are making way too may assumptions that Second Life works like Real Life (RL).

When doing a presentation in Second Life:

  • Don’t assume people will get the slides downloading on to the presentation screen as fast as you are.
  • Don’t assume that they have their configuration such that the pictures render with the same amount of detail
  • Don’t assume they have mouseview activated and have the presentation screen filling the entire HUD
  • Don’t present with a standard Real Life MS-PowerPoint presentation layout. The screen can be small and fussy at best. Avoid text altogether if you can.
  • Don’t assume everyone has audio in SL. Or that if they do they know how to configure it. If audio is essential for the presentation then make that clear in any SL or RL invite you issue. But be prepared to coach newbie SL avatars on how to configure audio.
  • Allow for people without audio or slow internet connections. Be prepared to Issue a notecard with all the speaker transcript and references at the end of the session.
  • Have someone as a shouter that shouts out the presentation, usually via cut and pasting from a notecard into the chat dialog.
  • Don’t have computers with separate microphones and speakers setup in the same room as you will get double, triple or even four times the echo of the talk. Even headsets can’t overcome this problem.
  • Test the speakers audio setup before the presentation.
  • Seating, don’t use the RL arrangement of seating like a normal layout, or set them far apart. Make sure they very close together in almost a tiered traditional speaking pit of amphitheater arrangement, or even like a large cube with the speaker at one end. You will be suprised the number of avatars you can get in small space.
  • Record the session in SL via tool such as Rogue Amoeba’s Audio hijack.
  • Think about loading the seats with a script to send the avatars a notecard of the speakers transcript, pictures or any other object required.
  • If you have promoted the event in the RL expect a good number of newbie SL avatars, allow for this.
  • Be prepared to have a lot of avatars present (40-50) and remind people of techniques in decrease any lag time in Second Like.
  • Position your avatar or camera so you can see the screen and the audience.

Well that’s it do you have any pointers for presenting a talk or workshop in Second Life?

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