What is a Virtual World Rehearsal?
In 2006, WTRI began experimenting with to importing its methods to virtual worlds. As we developed a greater understanding of the important role of the modeled environments and the granular feedback, it was getting more difficult to develop complex physical models that kept pace with our other technologies, such as the FutureView™ Patterned Event Generator and the Dynamic Strategic Modeler™. We needed a way to host mega patterns. On the other hand, “immersion” or the feeling of “being there” is critically important to the power of our methods, so we were skeptical. However, after many years of trial and error, we came up a “secret sauce” for deploying our learning approach in a virtual world that “feels real” and produces the same profound effect. In same some cases, the effect is more profound than can be achieved in face to face models because we can make complex, huge environments. The large library of assets and scenarios also allows rapid development of new rehearsals, even highly customized versions.
In order to accommodate our powerful technologies, we had to make our own FutureView™ Virtual World Platform, which is more powerful than most “game” engines, and supports our customers’ goals for complex rehearsals. It also has some nice built in features, such as Siri-like “assistant” for users called “Wendy” for which Apps can be written, an email system, chat, VoIP, inworld phone, walk-talkies for certain environments (such as large mines), calendars and document handling system.
An important added feature is that the platform is cloud based and works in all time zones. A global company can have multiple groups going through the same rehearsal in their own time zones, in their own copy of the rehearsal without interfering with others. The Platform can make “parallel” universes using group membership, spinning up as many simultaneous copies as needed, and saving the results of each group as they progress.
Why would I want a Virtual World Rehearsal?
The primary added business benefit of the Virtual World Rehearsal is that it allows users to rehearse strategic solutions from remote locations and allows our science to be applied to more complex business problems. The Virtual World Rehearsal is particularly useful for firms that have users in various locations and very difficult challenges that affect large numbers of employees.
How does it work?
In addition to all of the principles applied in the face to face accelerated learning intervention, Virtual World Rehearsal extends the capabilities of face to face accelerated learning intervention by enhancing the granularity of metrics tracking, using programmable intelligent objects. Programmable intelligent objects in virtual worlds respond and communicate with other objects, users or even systems in order to document activity. The objects send information to remote sources and providing feedback to participants indicating the success of the task affording a degree of granularity in the metrics that cannot be achieved in real life. This kind of feedback allows participants to adapt and respond better to critical, time-sensitive issues and receive immediate information as to the ways in which they may be deviating from target outcomes. Granular metrics are critical to accelerated learning, particularly in complex areas.