Join us on the adventure of
communicating science in virtual worlds
What is the workshop about?
Our goal is to assemble interdisciplinary teams of professionals and enthusiasts from science outreach, technology and creative worlds and support them in exploring novel ways of science communication in virtual worlds.
Read full the announcement here.
Few hours per week commitment
Science communication in virtual worlds
For whom is this workshop?
It does not matter whether you are a professional or an amateur, the unexplored landscape of possibilities in the virtual worlds is so vast, that there are amazing opportunities at every step.
Educators and outreach professionals
will experiment with transferring their experience into a new medium.
will share their domain knowledge and help build meaningful interactions.
will provide a window into the virtual worlds and Augmented/Mixed/Virtual Reality technology.
Creatives, artists and
will contribute their nuanced knowledge of immersive story telling.
What is the structure of the workshop?
The workshop consists of two parts.
The first is a series of pre-recorded interviews with leaders and innovators of online immersive technologies across industries—theater professionals, musicians and educators. We will record their tips for maximizing the potential of virtual worlds. The discussion will focus on the nuances of presenting in virtual worlds and the process of content creation.
The second part of the workshop aims to bring together people from diverse professional and cultural backgrounds, arrange them in groups of 5-7 with complementary skillsets, and guide them through the creation of a virtual show or experience over a few months with a weekly commitment of a few hours. It will be a great opportunity to meet people beyond your professional field and collaborate on creating something experimental and completely new.
The overarching theme of possible workshop projects is science outreach in virtual worlds. Examples can include an interactive self-guided world that mimics a real observatory created within Virtual Reality social network platform VRChat, or a world made for live lectures with the possibility for attendees to run simple physical experiments and collect mock data, or a web-based immersive Augmented Reality (AR) experience accessible through mobile phones telling a story of the unique environment of a distant world, or an audio-centric virtual world telling about a space mission.
Q: Is the workshop focused on the Virtual Reality? What does XR stand for?
A: XR stands for cross-reality that includes Virtual, Mixed and Augmented realities. However, in the context of this workshop we also include all kinds of virtual worlds. For instance, we would be happy to see experimental projects that use audio as the primary media.
Q: What is the selection criteria?
A: The first part of the workshop will be accessible to anyone. By signing up you help us to understand what are the interests of the community, and add yourself to our email list. There will be a selection process for the second part of the workshop. The main constraint will be our inability to find good teams for everyone.
Q: How teams are going to be assembled and when I am going to find out who are my teammates?
A: We will announce the teams at the kick-off meeting. The team assignments will be mainly done based on the skills, i.e. each team should have at least one person from each industry.
Q: What help teams are going to get?
A: We will keep track of what are the needs of teams as they develop their projects, and we will do our best to provide them with all necessary tools and connections.
Q: When and where does it take place?
A: Both parts of the workshop are online. The first part of the workshop is completely asynchronous, meaning that you submit (or not) questions and then we conduct interviews with various people.
Q: The second part of the workshop seems to be very demanding. Do you have any fellowships that could allow me to allocate enough time?
A: Unfortunately. no. For now, we are unable to provide funding for our participants, but we are actively seeking it.
Q: Are there any geographical restrictions?
A: No. We are exited to see people from all around the world. The language of communication, however, is English.
Q: Is there a focus on astronomy or any STEM disciplines welcome?
A: This workshop will be probably focused on astronomy due to the way we are going to advertise it. However, if you are interested but work in another field, please still apply.
Sasha Kaurov, Ph.D.
Astronomy graduate student at New Mexico State University