The ARCH


Virtual Architecture 101: Design Fundamentals, Processes and Strategies for Virtual Worlds

Virtual Architecture 101 (SLurl) is a free, interactive, self guided, educational installation in Second Life, designed to provide visitors with a sampling of architectural fundamentals, design processes, strategies and best practices for creating effective virtual world projects.  The installation also includes case studies and offers specific tips, tricks and techniques covering a wide range of virtual world development topics.  It is not intended to be an all-inclusive resource, but to simply provide a sample overview of design basics and strategies.   If you want brush up on some fundamentals, or if you are planning to develop a project in a virtual world, this installation is designed to serve as a starting point and a place to gather ideas and inspiration for making your project a success.

Read the full post on our main site here: http://archvirtual.com/?p=3201

As a design consultant working in virtual worlds for several years, there are quite a few core design habits, techniques and strategies that I keep coming back to.  Since Second Life and OpenSim are primarily user-generated worlds, and not every project has a budget for custom development services, I thought it might be useful to share some of what I’ve learned in a virtual installation in hopes that it might be useful to anyone starting their own projects or building content in a virtual world.  In the weeks ahead, I hope to add several new stations and replace a large portion of the text with more experience-based 3D props, but in the meantime I will post the text portion of the installation as a downloadable pdf to accompany the exhibit in the weeks ahead.
The installation can be accessed by visiting Architecture Island in Second Life here: http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Architecture%20Island/97/132/1173
If you have any questions, suggestions, or need assistance developing your own  please send them to info@archvirtual.com

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arcspace Builders Academy

For those of you who need basic SL skills the arcspace Builders Academy, run by Mater Rhodes, will be starting classes in SL Building Systems this month.
Mater will be using voice and text.
To sign up:
Contact Mater Rhodes in SL



Can Virtual Collaboration Win the Open Architecture Challenge? Wikitecture 3.0 is ON it!

There’s still plenty of time to join the team! You don’t need any architectural experience, just a willingness to collaborate, learn and help people in the world who need it most.

You can find a transcript of our first Wikitecture 3.0 project discussion HERE.

During Tuesday’s 9am meeting (the time of which was determined by group vote), the community decided to enter a brief R&D phase, and will be spending the next week gathering information about each of the 3 challenges to determine which we will pursue. We are also trying to find potential collaborators in SL or in RL with expertise, or may have lived or currently live near any of these real-life regions to join the team. Perhaps there are nearby universities in these regions we could collaborate with? Are there any unique features of these challenges that lend themselves more or less to a Wikitecture or Second Life build? Scale? Materials? Site?
We’re seeking answers to these questions, and will paste our findings in the new Wikitecture Wiki HERE. If you have any ideas or thoughts on this project, feel free to post them on the wiki!

KK Jewell of arcspace has offered to allow the experiment to be built on the new arcspace island! This is a very generous offer, and we are very grateful! Thanks KK!

Stay tuned for info, date and time for our next gathering, and IM Keystone Bouchard or Theory Shaw in Second Life if you have any questions, or wish to join the team!



Welcome to Wikitecture 3.0! By the Community, for the Community

Read the full release here.

Would you like to participate in the AMD Open Architecture Challenge on a global team of qualified and talented architects, designers and engineers? Studio Wikitecture invites you to just that.

In keeping with the spirit of the Open Architecture Network’s goal of ‘improving the living standards through collaborative design,’ we will be employing the next generation Wikitecture process in order to more fully enable true 3D collaboration by community members from around the world. In much the same way Wikipedia enables multiple contributors to collaborate on content creation, the Wikitecture process gives community members an opportunity to share ideas, edit the contributions of others, and to vote on the success or failure of proposed modifications.

Through a series of ongoing experiments during the past several months, the Wikitecture process has been evolving based on community participation and feedback. With this input, Theory Shaw has developed the ‘Wikitecture Tree’ concept, and we’ve hired the clever folks at i3Dnow to build it for us, which will include both inworld and web-based functionality. We hope to roll out this new platform just in time to get started on a collaborative Wikitecture competition entry for the AMD Open Architecture challenge.

The Wikitecture process currently uses the free to use, free to access virtual reality platform of Second Life to enable multiple contributors to share ideas and collaborate on design concepts.

If you are interested in participating, you’ll need to do the following:

1.) Download and install the Second Life client at SecondLife.com

2.) Complete the orientation course to help familiarize yourself with navigation, etc.

3.) Click on the ‘Search’ button on the bottom of your screen. With the ‘All’ tab highlighted, search for either ‘Keystone Bouchard’ or ”Theory Shaw’ – the organizers of the Wikitecture project. Click on their name, and you’ll see an ‘Instant Message’ button in their profile. Send either of us a message, and we will get back to you shortly with more details on how you can join the community.

4.) By clicking on the ‘Map’ button and searching for Architecture Island, you will be able to teleport directly into the site location, and migth even run into other members of the in-world community who can help with any questions you may have.

Our official launch meeting will be September 25th – the event time will be determined by community consensus. Please send your vote to Keystone Bouchard in-world, or to jbrouchoud@gmail.com

We hope to see you there!

To join our project page on OAN, visit HERE.

To learn more about the evolution of the Wikitecture concept, visit Studio Wikitecture

To learn more about the architecture and design community in Second Life, visit The Arch blog

To see a video of Cameron Sinclair’s event in Second Life, featuring the Open Architecture Network’s Porchdog design, visit This YouTube site

To see the construction of the Porchdog in Second Life, visit: This YouTube site




AutoCAD Import Demonstration: Transcript Posted

Let there be no doubt, the architecture and design community is pining for a fluid and automatic import process!!! I knew a meeting like this would bring lots of new faces. Even the slightest tremor of an import tool shakes out bunches of would-be SL resident architects and designers who are sitting on the fence around Second Life, waiting for the ability to import their CAD models into a virtual environment.

It is refreshing to see the kind of innovation coming from AI Design Studio. There is hope! Thanks very much to Impalah Shenzhou and Asha Eerie for demonstrating their new Henshin Autocad import tool. It is truly fascinating!

You’ll find the transcript HERE.



AutoCAD Import Tool Demonstration: Architecture Meeting Thursday, Sept. 13th, 11AM

This week’s Architecture Group meeting will be a demonstration of the new AutoCAD import tool (Henshin III), created by AI Studio. They will rez a full building, designed and modeled in AutoCAD, completely textured. They will also demonstrate the Layer functions and show how the system can change the visibility and position of imported objects.

Thursday, Sept. 13th, 11:00 AM

Discussion will be held on the new arcspace sim, attached directly north of Architecture Island: SLURL