Wednesday, January 27, 2010
Monday, January 18, 2010
Second Life® Residents Rally for Haiti
I am always overwhelmed by the generosity of the people in Second Life. For years, many charitable organizations have been successful in their in-world fund-raising efforts, most notably The American Cancer Society who has raised over $650,000 over the past five years. To get learn more about these efforts, click here. With the devastation from the earthquake in Haiti, Second Life residents have again rallied are creating their own efforts to support the people affected by this tragedy. We know there are many ways to get involved: from donating $10 by texting 'HAITI' to 90999 to contacting the American Red Cross directly. We encourage you to help however you can.
You can get more information here on the Second Life efforts to help the people of Haiti.
Saturday, December 19, 2009
Happy Holidays from Cranial Tap
Monday, December 14, 2009
Search and Rescue
I am constantly impressed by the many different ways that folks are using virtual worlds. For example, universities use the space to facilitate interactions between students and faculty and businesses use virtual worlds to cut costs while still reaching their employees and customers efficiently. Last week I attended a discussion on how the Texas Engineering Extension Service (TEEX) is using the space to help save lives!
TEEX is using Second Life® to simulate disasters, such as burning buildings or deteriorating bridges. Simulations are crucial for training and the testing of procedures. What responders learn can save costs and more importantly, save lives. On Public Works Island, anyone can take a self directed tour of common bridge maintenance concerns. Click this link to watch the video.
Thursday, December 03, 2009
Virtual Worlds as Green Workplaces
Over the past few years, virtual worlds have gone from a game to a real world, real work, collaborative effort. More companies are using spaces like Second Life for recruitment, training, conferences, sales and trade shows while reducing travel costs, getting marketing feedback and with the added benefit of being "green".
When asked specifically how the Federal Government is using virtual worlds, the obvious answer was that in using discussions such as this well-attended event, they are able to get a larger, more diverse and international dialog going. Cranial Tap shares the views of the panel and will help your company achieve it's goals for green efficiency.
Wednesday, November 25, 2009
Intel CTO predicts 3D Web is the Platform of the Future
As reported in Network World: That "killer application framework," Rattner said, is the 3D Web, powered on the back end by cloud technologies and the HPC industry. The 3D Web technologies will not only power virtual worlds we know today like Second Life, but create ways for people to interact with each other and new platforms for businesses to test products, he said.
Read more at Network World here
Friday, November 20, 2009
Cognizant global training video
This video was produced by a Cranial Tap client, Cognizant. It demonstrates highly effective use of meetings and training scenarios in Second Life that pulls together staff members from around the world: www.youtube.com/watch?v=YwzhQpzRmY4
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
Video Shows Virtual World Business Use
Cranial Tap has created a two-minute video overview of NIC's new virtual world environment in Second life. NIC USA, the nation's leading provider of official government portals and online services, hired Cranial Tap, Inc. to design and build this interactive, 3D online headquarters. Narrated by NIC CEO Harry Herington, the video provides a sweeping visual overview of the space and close ups of innovative technologies which include 3-D interactive data panels, unique employee and visitor orientation, and effective collaboration and training areas. The video also references the fact that NIC held its 2009 shareholder meeting there and demonstrates to visitors from around the world how states can disseminate relevant information to their constituents through NIC services.
Tuesday, September 01, 2009
Getting Past the Hype
ThinkBalm surveyed 66 businesses and held 15 in-depth interviews in order to grasp a larger picture of current immersive internet business solutions. The results show that businesses are finally getting past the hype and into the practical. Immersive Internet technology once seemed a business risk taken on only by the earliest of early adopters, but now the solid numbers are coming in, and they're impressive.
Ninety-five percent of survey respondents "reported some level of success with their 2008 / 1Q 2009 immersive technology deployments," and 30% of those surveyed recouped initial investment within nine months. The main reasons for client satisfaction with Immersive Internet technology: low cost, innovation, and and real world "presence" only 3-D, virtual world meeting places can provide.
From Cranial Tap's perspective, ThinkBalm's report explains our growing client base. And we're staying ahead of the hype with cutting edge technology, round-the-clock service, and a highly anti-Dilbertian business philosophy of over-delivering on product.
ThinkBalm Immersive Internet Business Value Study, May 09: http://www.thinkbalm.com/reports/.
Saturday, July 25, 2009
Telework Day - August 3, 2009
If you are a company based outside of Virginia, contact email@example.com to see how your business or organization can benefit from working remotely.
Tuesday, March 17, 2009
More Companies Go Virtual, Save Money
Wednesday, January 07, 2009
As Seen on SecondLife.com
Second Life® has recently redesigned their homepage and we at Cranial Tap are pleased to see one of our builds featured! CyberExtruder, the company that can put your (any) face on your avatar, hired us to bring their presence into Second Life®. Avatar Island, with it's active community, new technology and proven new user orientation has been so successful that we're thrilled to be recognized in this way.
Tuesday, December 16, 2008
CRANIAL TAP, Inc. Releases WeatherBug® Panel to residents of Second Life®
The line between online visual environments and real life blurred today as Cranial Tap releases the WeatherBug Panel to the Second Life® community. The fully interactive display provides real time weather data provided by the expansive WeatherBug network. Residents can place the displays in their virtual homes, businesses or social spaces.
The interactive panel provides a menu of features that leverage real world data in 3D virtual environments. Timely information provided includes current weather, high and low temperatures and an animated wind speed and direction gauge. The panel supports current or SL time, and temperature in Fahrenheit or Celsius.
The WeatherBug real time display is just one example of Cranial Tap’s growing list of technologies that serve to increase enterprise productivity. While fun and engaging, the panel’s core functionality is crucial in supporting today’s virtual world business applications. Other Cranial Tap technologies include data visualization tools, metrics analysis, environment and media management.
See it on YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0qDILwBc15U
Try it for yourself: slurl.com/secondlife/Cortex/27/231/56
Sunday, December 07, 2008
Obit: Google Lively
Lively offered little in the way of enhanced features over other similar products. While room editing was supported, it remained a platform where community building was left to users. This is especially difficult with an endless series of self contained rooms where few can gather. In my opinion, the 3D chat space requires community areas embellished with activities (e.g. gaming, lectures, learning).
Google has an incredible array of solutions and content to help meet this need. The involvement of creative types from their Business Development team should have been able to marry relationships and help redefine this field. Lively's early demise was no surprise. However, community and content seeding could have delayed it's early passing.
The real opportunity for Google in the virtual world space lies with Google Earth. They are well positioned to lease virtual space to real life business. The opportunity lies in providing the ability to virtually stroll down any business district in the world and go shopping. Tie Google's other services into this type play and you have the makings of a highly compelling experience.
Labels: lively obituary 3d chat
Wednesday, November 05, 2008
Innovative Strategies for PR Professionals
Dave spoke at the 2008 PRSA International Conference in Detroit. Public relation and communications professionals came for "four days of knowledge-packed workshops, sharing strategies and making new connections." His dynamic presentation on the benefits of public relations in 3D Virtual Worlds was informative and lively. Many thanks to toprankonlinemarketing for the above photo.
Thursday, September 25, 2008
Go Green, Go Virtual
Many studies have been done lately on the benefits of teleworking and teleconferencing. The benefits include an increase in productivity, cost savings and positive environmental impact. Organizing a virtual conference can save up to 6-8 hours of travel time per employee. Work virtually and save the costs of hotel, travel and other expenses.
Adopting a teleworking plan can help save the environment. According to Tesla.com "teleworking saves an average of 242 kgs of carbon emissions per employee. That's the same as taking six cars of the road per 50 employees." Additionally, "a reduction in office space required by 75% of the teleworking population and reduces the co2 emissions of 1,200 kgs per teleworking employee."
Other examples include: by using Web Conferencing technology, Arizona's State government has saved 760,773 pounds of co2 and over $1 million dollars. Georgia's Journal of Extension did a study whereby they found that with only four workshop conferences, there was a savings of $6,000 in mileage reimbursement, 200 hours of employee time and 3,400 fewer pounds of carbon emissions.
See how working virtually can benefit your company. Contact Cranial Tap for more information.
Wednesday, September 17, 2008
The Latest from Cranial Tap
The Cranial Tap team has been hard at work creating innovative technologies and new environments for businesses to increase their productivity. See how we've been working with more companies to leverage the virtual world space for training, collaboration, research, simulation and more at http://cranialtap.blip.tv/#1273753
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
Happy Virtual Worlds Day!
Labels: holiday virtual worlds celebrate
Monday, August 11, 2008
Philip Rosedale Interview
Thursday, July 31, 2008
Microsoft® Launches Visual Studio 2008 Pro in SL
I was at the well-attended launch of Microsoft's Visual Studio 2008 and .NET 3.5 in Second Life today. It was an interactive presentation of the new features from the latest version of the popular Integrated Development Environment (IDE). Following two main paths, both framework and Visual Studio, VS 2008 touts more options for .NET users and many improvements over older versions.
If you'd like to see the features for yourself, visit http://slurl.com/secondlife/Microsoft%20Island/188/75/21. But put on your peg leg and eye patch, it's all done in a pirate's theme!
Thursday, July 10, 2008
The Cranial Tap WeatherBug® Panel
When WeatherBug® announced their API contest in June we knew it was a good opportunity for us to demonstrate the breadth of our skill set for creating data driven objects within virtual worlds. The fact that the WeatherBug® API is so well thought out and simple to use just made our job that much easier.
Our entry for the contest, aptly titled The Cranial Tap WeatherBug® Panel, relies on design and functionality that is core to all virtual world business applications, including: remote data access, meaningful data visualization, and simple, but effective, user interface design. The panel is not just a static data display - it is fully interactive, engaging, and fun. We think it will be a big hit when we release it to the Second Life® population.
WeatherBug® has a more detailed post about our panel and how it works on their blog, Inside WeatherBug, but if you've got Second Life installed you can see it in action right now by visiting our new virtual headquarters on the island of Cortex: slurl.com/secondlife/Cortex/27/231/56.
Tuesday, July 08, 2008
Google's Lively World
Google made it's first foray into virtual worlds today with the announcement of Lively. The above screen shot shows my character, CranialDave, hanging out in a coffee shop environment. While it was slow loading over my wireless data card, it finally offered a rich space resembling There.com. Users can create their own rooms using provided templates and fill them with common furnishings.
It's a nifty beginning for the search giant, though Orkut was less than a success. They are also competing with established mini-worlds like Meez and IMVU. Now if they link Google Earth to this, they can support users strolling down virtual streets and visit shops at corresponding actual addresses. We'll be keeping a close eye on this.
Labels: Google Lively 3D virtual world
Tuesday, July 01, 2008
New Cranial Tap HQ
Cranial Tap is designing a new virtual headquarters, located on the island of Cortex. It will open in the next couple of weeks. Featured above the forest is a stylized building in the shape of our brain mascot. Visitors can learn about our latest business solutions that support global collaboration, training, presentations and spacial data displays.
Wednesday, April 09, 2008
Federal Virtual Worlds Expo
We will be announcing new clients and exciting projects soon, stay tuned....
Tuesday, March 18, 2008
Mitch Kapor discussion in SL
Mitch Kapor, an early Second Life investor and luminary, spoke yesterday at a CMP event. He talked about future technologies that will be responsible for making virtual worlds more appealing to users and business alike.
He talked about photo-to-face services that allow users to look more like themselves inside of virtual worlds. He was obviously not aware of Cranial Tap's Avatar Island build which has offered this service since June of 2007. He also discussed 3D camera's that can be used to drive character gestures using body movements. He may want to be aware of the efforts of LightGlove who offer much more functionality over a camera. Mitch...call me and we'll do prim lattes and talk.
Close up of Mitch's character sporting his real face.
Wednesday, February 13, 2008
Cranial Tap distributes face service
Cranial Tap has become the distributor of CyberExtruder's photo-to-face service in Second Life. Extending the Avatar Island project, we programmed this service to operate anywhere in the grid under the brand name; AutoFace. Anyone who wishes to apply their own photo to their avatar can now do so within minutes. This service has become popular with business users. The service can be tried here: http://slurl.com/secondlife/Cortex/146/173/40.
Monday, February 04, 2008
Media Grid Meeting
Cranial Tap attended a meeting of the Media Grid organization last week. Aaron Walsh hosted the event where educators learned more about this evolving platform effort. The goal is to provide immersive training in ways not possible in the real world. Open standards and easy access are parts of the over all goals behind this effort. To learn more about Media Grid, visit this link: mediagrid.org.
Thursday, January 17, 2008
How to build a company mascot
A strong design is initially required. This step involves creating an image that properly reflects the message you want to convey. A brain seemed to be an appropriate place to start for us. Because we have many years of experience in developing online consumer media, we wanted to convey this fact visually; we tap into the brains of virtual world users to deliver compelling experiences.
This blueprint shows the final design chosen for our mascot. Now the challenge in building the design...
Top of Mascot - Workbench
A special work bench was constructed to securely hold the top part of brain mascot. Many special materials were fabricated and tested with this particular part of the brain holder.
The brain cage construction required scaffolding. A special ceiling mount was erected to hold the cage in place during construction. The high tensile wires held everything in place during the build.
Perhaps the most difficult part of construction was formulating the brain itself. The cell division process took several months to develop under polygonal microscopes.
Assembly of the mascot was a satisfying part of this whole experience. Spending many months on construction all lead up to this moment. User laser guided restraining forms, we gently slid each part together.
The final design! The fully assembled and functional mascot now serves to carry the message of the Cranial Tap team. We're here to tap for you!
Labels: logo mascot design render 3D
Friday, December 14, 2007
Monday, December 10, 2007
Melty's Misadventures Contest
Say hello to Melty the Snowman. This quirky but adorable fellow wants to travel with you in Second Life and have his picture taken. Doing so could earn you $5000 Linden dollars and a month's lease in a Costa del Sol beach house.
This event is managed by Cranial Tap's sophisticated contest technology. Users can submit photos to a kiosk in an automated fashion. A voting system allows the community to choose which entry is their favorite. Complete metrics are provided in terms of rules / snowmen taken, entries began and those completed. The system ensures one vote per user and the results are emailed to contest managers.
The contest runs from December 14 through January 4. Stop by Costa del Sol, located in Montserrat sim for more details: slurl.com/secondlife/montserrat/173/159/22