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Home :: Archive :: 2010 :: February ::
Virtual Printing Press

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 21.0081  Wednesday, 24 February 2010

 

[1]  From:      Ian Gadd < This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it >

     Date:      February 24, 2010 6:55:36 AM EST

     Subj:      Virtual Printing Press 

 

[2]  From:      Gabriel Egan < This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it >

     Date:      February 24, 2010 12:01:17 PM EST

     Subj:      Virtual Printing Press 

 

 

[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------

From:         Ian Gadd < This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it >

Date:         February 24, 2010 6:55:36 AM EST

Subject:      Virtual Printing Press

 

Dear SHAKSPERians,

 

A footnote to Gabriel's posting: for those of you who do not have access to, or interest in, Second Life, we will be posting a short video of the press on the project website in the coming days.

 

Best wishes, 

Ian Gadd

Department of English & Cultural Studies

Bath Spa University

 

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------

From:         Gabriel Egan < This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it >

Date:         February 24, 2010 12:01:17 PM EST

Subject:      Virtual Printing Press

 

Dear SHAKSPERians

 

I understand that a few of you have had problems accessing the Virtual Printing Press in Second Life, so I thought it might helpful to explain a little bit more about the project, Second Life, and our longer term ambitions.

 

The press was created, bit by bit, using the plans included in Elizabeth Harris's The Common Press (1978). At the moment, it is essentially static although we're hoping to be able to animate the movement of the bar.

 

Second Life, to quote the website, is a 'user-created, 3D virtual world community'. To join, one must download a separate application and then create an account. Once logged in, your 'avatar' can be customised in any way you wish; there is also a rather complex set of instructions for moving around and interacting with people and objects.  A large number of universities now have a presence in Second Life.

 

     http://secondlife.com/

 

Gabriel and I wanted to create a 3D model of a press that was as accurate as possible; ultimately, we hope that users will be able to interact with it. The problem is that existing web-technology (ie your usual Internet browser) would not be able to support a 'virtual' object of this complexity and so, in the first instance, we choose Second Life as the home for the pilot project.  Second Life provided all the infrastructure for us-we didn't need to buy a computer server and so on-and we were able to draw upon the existing expertise of Graham Hibbert, who has worked on a number of Second Life projects.

We do not intend the Virtual Printing Press to be a 'closed' project at all, and have ensured that, as part of the next stage of the project, we will be able to export the press out of Second Life into some kind of different online 'environment'. Should our goal of a fully interactive virtual press be realised, we will have to create our own infrastructure not least because the technical demands will be well beyond the capabilities of Second Life itself.

 

So, at the moment, if you wish to visit the press and interact with it (albeit in a very limited way), then you will need either to join Second Life itself or find someone else who is already a member to show you. (Those of you at universities may find that your e-learning team will already have accounts.) Otherwise, we will be providing a short video of the press in the coming days.

 

I hope this helps.

 

Best wishes,

Ian Gadd

(send on Ian's behalf by Gabriel Egan)

 

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