From Architecture to Wikitecture: How Virtual Worlds and Web 2.0 Will Revolutionize Architecture
December 31, 2007, 5:02 am
Filed under: aias, forum, jon brouchoud, keystone bouchard, ryan schultz, Theory Shaw

Tomorrow, Ryan Schultz and I are heading to Milwaukee to demonstrate Second Life to the American Institute of Architecture Students FORUM convention.

For my part, I put together a survey of everything I could think of related to architecture in SL, and Ryan put together a more philosophical perspective of how we think virtual worlds and web 2.0 will be affecting these students, as the next generation of architecture professionals. We will conclude with a live demonstration of the Wikitecture project, and show our progress to-date.

Beyond our demo, we have the unfortunate reality of reporting to them that New Zealand’s equivalent of their AIAS convention already kicked their butts earlier this year by purchasing an island, hosting an architecture competition, and streaming their entire conference live into Second Life for everyone to enjoy.

The only comfort we can provide is that Ryan and I (former members of AIAS) took both first and second place in their competition! lol. One way or another, 2008 will be catch-up time for AIAS in Second Life, and we hope to kick-start that process tomorrow!

We will be giving a similar presentation at Metaverse U at Stanford University in February.

Its an exciting time to be a Wikitect! =)

via NPIRL: What every Second Life newbie should know – 10 secret tips that will boost your experience from the get-go
December 26, 2007, 3:07 pm
Filed under: bettina tizzy, not possible in real life, npirl

I could be wrong, but I suspect there might be a few readers who still haven’t been in Second Life, or tried and didn’t have a very good time. Just in case you change your mind, I’d like to share this link from fellow blogger and good friend of mine Bettina Tizzy from the ‘Not Possible in Real Life.’ This post contains a wealth of very important points that every newbie to Second Life should consider: 10 secret tips.

While you’re there, check out the rest of the blog. When I open my Google Reader, the first thing I do is scan to see if there’s a new post up at NPIRL.

My post on Clear Night Sky, ‘The Fear of Being a Newbie‘ also has some advice as well (as well as a picture of Keystone Bouchard on day 3 of his adventures in SL! lol). For what it’s worth, you can see all of my Clear Night Sky posts HERE.

Architecture and Culture of Ancient Egypt Recreated in Second Life
December 23, 2007, 4:03 pm
Filed under: ancient egypt, architectural resources, pathfinder linden

For more information, visit the ARCH Network.

“Aura Lily has been using Second Life to recreate the artifacts and architecture of ancient Egypt. Using maps drawn by one of Napoleon’s artist engineers, she’s also working on an accurate recreation of temples and buildings on the island of Philae. Aura’s work is simply amazing, and I think the educational potential to use Second Life as an immersive way to explore ancient architecture and culture is limitless. She has no formal training in 3d modeling, yet she has a true passion for this ancient era and has done all of this work completely on her own. Simply incredible. Visit her amazing space in Second Life and experience it firsthand”

Description and screenshot via Pathfinder Linden’s Flickr site. SLurl.

via SLNN: “Architect DB Bailey ignores gravity and early critics”
December 22, 2007, 7:53 pm
Filed under: db bailey

Interesting story via about RL Architect DB Bailey. Screenshots also via

Bailey says SL is ”unbelievably liberating for an architect, a dream.”

I couldn’t agree more!

[update: after finally having a chance to catch up on my reading, I found another great post about DB Bailey on Eshi’s blog HERE.]

re: What’s wrong with virtual architecture?
December 22, 2007, 6:20 pm
Filed under: competition, gridblog, lordfly digeridoo, virtual architecture

I was a little late on the draw, but there is an interesting post and comment thread over on GridBlog.  Lordfly posts some very insightful thoughts about virtual architecture, competitions, functionality in SL and more.  What are your thoughts?  

Alley Flats Presentation Machinima

Here is a video I made during the University of Texas, Austin Alley Flat Initiative presentation. I have to apologize for the video and sound quality, but I really wanted to share this since it was a very inspirational tour and presentation, including some great quotes and fascinating insights! By no means does this video cover the entire presentation, but is the best I could do at the time. This site is now open for public viewing at the Educators Coop 1 sim in Second Life (SLurl).

This presentation really hit home for me, given that demonstrating sustainable residential design principles is the real reason I started using Second Life in the first place. Our Crescendo Design studio focused on sustainable residential design, and Second Life afforded an opportunity to help educate potential clients about the value and importance of green design principles, and how those strategies can be applied without sacrificing design integrity.

The Alley Flats installation has truly raised the bar for this application of Second Life.


Not only does it describe principles of sustainbility, but it served an integral role in educating students on a University level, and enabled members of the community to experience these designs on a more holistic level than even the most photorealistic illustration or cardboard study model could ever achieve. Given that this project depends on community approval and support, I think this virtual model could go a long way toward helping the general public understand just how well these homes will fit in and improve the fabric of this neighborhood. When you stand in this virtual build, you get a real sense of place, and can more fully appreciate the way these homes will compliment their context.

Plus, if you listen carefully, you’ll hear Sergio Palleroni say ‘yes, Wikitecture is exactly the future.’ Good call! =)

Complete slideshow from the presentation HERE.  This video was originally shared on by keystone1111 with a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike license.

Wikitecture’s N-Tuple Brain Continues Work on the 3D Wiki
December 9, 2007, 1:21 am
Filed under: 3D wiki, open source architecture, wikitecture

Here is a transcript of Friday’s Wikitecture meeting on Friday (link), and here is a slideshow (link). The in-world 3D wiki portion of the open source architecture project is advancing nicely, as is the web forum. We have collaboratively assembled a significant amount of information and insight about the culture of Nepal, the regional vernacular, local materials, site realities and more.

Here is my conclusion:

“While we certainly hope this project results in a successful entry in the competition, it is important for us to remember that this is still just an experiment, and the technology will always be evolving.

But in the end, I think we have to ask ourselves – ‘What if this works?’ The fact of the matter is – if we can collectively prove that multiple designers can collaborate on 3D design within a wiki-like methodology, that reality holds the potential to completely revolutionize the industry.

When you amplify the scale of Wikitecture, it could change the entire way we look at city planning as well. The possibilities are truly limitless.

However, I would like to conclude with the following thought. The Wiki-tree technology is only a very small fraction of what Wikitecture really is all about. Just like Wikipedia – it is nothing without a strong community of contributors.

Likewise, as you read about the reality of the Open Architecture Challenge we are working on, you start to realize that this isn’t really about winning a competition either. These people need serious help, and I want to be a member of a team that has the best chance at helping these people.

As you’ve seen, the first batch of design concepts are truly innovative – and they are just the beginning.

Even if you aren’t an architect or a designer, everyone has a certain innate ability to understand space, and Second Life gives you the chance to express your ideas. I really hope you’ll consider working with us, reading up on what we’ve learned so far about the project, and seeing if you can contribute or strengthen what we have here so far. “