The U.S. Army Research Laboratory, Human Research and Engineering Directorate, Simulation and Training Technology Center’s Military Open Simulator Enterprise Strategy (MOSES) and AvaCon organized the Federal Consortium of Virtual Worlds 2015 Workshop that took place March 6–7, 2015, in a virtual conference center designed specifically for the event.
This workshop was an active experience, with online exhibits and presentations provided in an interactive manner. Workshop participants were encouraged to engage and interact with the presenters, and the exhibits ranged from cultural-training material in a mock village to scientific ethical dilemmas in a city landscape.
The Federal Consortium for Virtual Worlds (FCVW) supports individuals and organizations from federal, state, local, and international government, academia, and corporate sectors. The FCVW’s goal is to improve government collaboration through the use of virtual worlds, enrich shared online experiences, explore technologies that may enhance telework, and foster cross-agency cooperation. It provides a venue to share best practices and lessons learned for the mutual use of virtual worlds, address common challenges, and create structures to share resources.
The National Defense University iCollege established the Federal Consortium for Virtual Worlds (FCVW) in July 2007. The consortium was created to explore multi-agency and intra-agency collaboration using the robust capabilities of virtual worlds, examining best practices across multiple sectors. The objective of the consortium is to help government agencies to share resources, training, and experience; leverage outreach capabilities and practices; connect to new partners and business opportunities, and demonstrate the benefits of virtual worlds’ collaborative capabilities.
Virtual-world technology has matured significantly and rapidly over the past eight years to the point where hundreds of people are able to simultaneously participate in an online event. The workshop is open to military and civilian personnel and the public. The conference will be held entirely within an Open Simulator virtual environment, and reservations will be free for attendees.
OpenSimulator is an open-source platform that supports the creation of collaborative, immersive, distributed, and social 3D-virtual environments over the Internet. Started in 2007 and developed by individuals and organizations large and small, it has become a versatile system with which anyone can experiment. OpenSimulator software is now the basis for many “grids” of varying sizes and purposes.http://opensimulator.org
The Military Open Simulator Enterprise Strategy (MOSES) was created to research and develop advances in virtual-world technologies for use in simulation-based warfighter training. MOSES is a coalition of military, industry, and academic partners who share a common interest in the advancement of virtual-world technology for simulation-based training and education. The MOSES project seeks to address issues surrounding current game-based, virtual-environment training systems in the two key areas of scalability and flexibility, and create a practical and deployable virtual simulation-based training system capable of providing a learner with a means to test skills in an accreditable manner.http://militarymetaverse.org/
AvaCon, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting the growth, enhancement, and development of the metaverse, virtual worlds, augmented reality, and 3D immersive and virtual spaces. It holds conventions and meetings to promote educational and scientific inquiry into these spaces, and to support organized fan activities including performances, lectures, art, music, machinima, and much more. AvaCon’s primary goal is to connect and support the diverse communities and practitioners involved in cocreating and using virtual worlds and to educate the public and its constituents about the emerging ecosystem of technologies broadly known as the metaverse. http://avacon.org