Nortel’s web.alive: Awesome browser-based 3D!

2 07 2009

Want to experience a 3D immersive world for business without the learning curve associated with other “in-world” applications such as Second Life?  Well, Nortel’s web.alive may just be the enterprise platform you are seeking for virtual collaboration, learning, and engagement.  The application “combines stunning 3D graphics and unparalleled in-world realism ..with industry revolutionizing 3D spatial audio”.

I recently attended a session with the Nortel folks that was organized by ThinkBalm.  After the client application downloaded, I was able to quickly name then change the appearance of a standard avatar and proceeded directly into a discussion room with a number of colleagues.  I must admit the audit was superb if you were standing close to the speaker.  Movement is achieved by keyboard direction arrows (just like Second Life).   Separate meeting rooms can be designated as portals for private presentations and discussions and in-room screens have the capability for live streaming video, PowerPoint presentations, YouTube videos, etc.

I made some general inquiries about costs and this depends on whether a customer requires a “high touch” customized environment or a “low touch” prepackaged environment that can be slightly customized.  Customers pay monthly subscriptions per user which are in the order of $10 per user per month.

I will be holding further “in-world” discussions with the development team at Nortel and will provide updates on other cool features of this application.  In the meantime to provide a “real world” example”, one of Nortel’s customers has written a recent blog about how web.alive will be used to train their team members in a dangerous environment.

Once you experience and actively engage in various 3D immersive environments, it become harder to remain focused during a 2D webinar.  There’s nothing that beats “being there” in 3D where you immediately assume the persona of your avatar and your mind is completely enveloped with the possibilities of learning and operating in an alternate reality.




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