Thursday, October 04, 2007

Quickie Excitement: My Current Project in the News

There's a New York Times article today about the virtual CSI:NY experience that will be launching in Second Life on October 24. There's a link to a video clip from the episode that will kick it off here. I've had a blast working with The Electric Sheep Company and Anthony Zuiker (creator of CSI) to design the narrative game that will accompany the superlative CSI:NY virtual environment. For all those who wonder whether Second Life can be used for a mainstream, mass audience experience, the virtual CSI:NY experience will be a great test. Stay tuned for more...

1 comments, add yours!:

Anonymous said...

Congratulations, Nina. I'm not a CSI viewer, but I just might tune in for this innovative media mash-up.

The CSI-Second Life hybrid touches on my earlier commments to your previous post. Specifically: What is 2.0 meant to do? For Zuiker, it's a way to "keep the spirit of the brand and the story line alive in Second Life.” I wish him well.

To me, it's just layering meta upon more meta -- fictional characters get fictional lives as avatars in a virtual universe that... I'm getting dizzy just typing this. It reminds me of this item I saw earlier this year -- -- about Second Life within Second Life. Why do such a thing? As the old joke goes, for the same reason a dog licks himself: Because he can.

I once told Sibley that I have new appreciation of the meaning of the Second Commandment: "Thou shalt not make graven images of anything in the sky, on the earth, or below the sea." I realize the rabbis were talking about worshipping golden calfs & the like, but I think it has a modern meaning too, namely: If we create virtual representations of the world that G-d has created, then we run the risk of preferring that virtual world to the one we actually live in -- and that, tradition teaches us, would be a not-so-good idea.

I remember a magazine advertisement I once saw for a plasma TV. In the ad, the TV displays brightly costumed circus performers -- a swirl of reds, yellows, and greens. But the room around the TV is a deadly grey, as if dusted with ash. The ad's tag line: "Reality: What a letdown."

An attack ad on... life itself? I was stunned. But that ad, I think, is a warning about the risks we run when we get lost in meta-worlds of our own making.