I-X Second Life Demonstration: Virtual World of Whisky I-Room

Stephen Potter, AIAI, University of Edinburgh
Updated: Mon Jul 21 12:54:22 2008

The I-Room

This demonstration is based around a (fictional) virtual event at which a tutor delivers a tutorial about some aspect of whisky to those present. This event is held in Second Life, a 3-D virtual world in which avatars, in-world repesentations of people, can move around and engage various social activies in an environment that they themselves have, to a certain extent, created and fashioned. More specifically, the event is held in an I-Room, an intelligent collaborative space whose visual manifestion (in this case) comprises a designated area of the Second Life world containing objects intended to clearly represent their counterparts in a real life meeting area (seats, tables, screens, etc). It is into this area that the avatars (and, by extension, their 'owners') enter at the agreed time so as to attend the tutorial. (For those with an avatar, the Virtual World of Whisky I-Room can be visited at this location in Second Life.) For the purposes of this demonstration, we consider that the room specifically contains:

A ready-to-assemble kit containing a screen and I-X Helper Robot can be collected at this location in Second Life; assembly instructions can be found here.

Outside Second Life, the tutorial is supported by I-X agents. I-X is a framework offering process support for collaborative and multi-agent systems; in this instance, the process is that of delivering the tutorial in question, and I-X is used by the tutor to provide and control the tutorial and the display of information. To do this, the tutor uses a Process Panel, the primary human interface onto an I-X system. A second I-X agent, which runs autonomously, acts as a communications conduit into the I-Room in Second Life: it passes instructions from the tutor's Process Panel to a specified object (an "I-X Helper Robot") in the I-Room, which then interprets them, and performs the appropriate action (which might be, say, to have a screen display a particular image).