Virtual World Training

All posts tagged Virtual World Training

In an article featured in the August 2011 issue of Military Training Technology the magazine asked, “What role(s) will your company best fill as the United States military turns more to the use of serious gaming in an effort to reduce the military’s training costs while maintaining the combat readiness of the warfighter?”

Here is what Ed Heinbockel, President of Visual Purple contributed to the article:

“Today’s warfighters have been raised on video games. They learn differently than past generations. By recognizing and leveraging the learning styles appropriate to current trainees, 3-D animated decision-based virtual world training offers instruction that is relevant and effective—with improvement in both motivation to train and knowledge retention—this type of training is proven to be very, very sticky.

Through the use of 3-D animated decision-based serious game training, a platform is presented to today’s warfighter that is immediately recognizable and significantly more palatable than traditional PowerPoint-type ‘page flip’ training. By offering simulation training aimed at individuals rather than large groups, training can take place anytime and anywhere the trainee has access to a computer, while non-virtual training can accommodate only a limited number of instructors and students at any given time. Refinement of training content is a continuing requirement necessary to ensure that warfighters have the latest and most relevant training possible.

One of the many benefits of Visual Purple’s training products is our proven technologies that allow for rapid updates and changes. Unlike some training programs that are difficult to make changes and/or updates to, Visual Purple simulations can easily be ‘remodeled’ later should the need arise. The number of true subject matter experts (SMEs) is limited. By incorporating SMEs’ expertise into learning content, the impact they provide is expanded to cover the entire training audience. Improvements in hardware capability have allowed for significant improvements in graphics and training technologies. More ‘horsepower’ in smaller packages (smartphones, touchpads, tablets, etc.) allows warfighters to train anytime and anywhere. These mission rehearsal modeling tools are aiding in overall military readiness by streamlining training capabilities. One thing is for sure: it beats the so-called BOGSAT (or Bunch of Guys Sitting Around a Table). Emerging technologies are changing the way today’s military trains-up.”

It’s no mystery that the human race always relates to other people better when they know them or have had more of an introduction to a person. That’s why movies spend quite a bit of time developing the storyline and characters, before jumping in to the “edge of your seat adventure”…well, the same holds true in simulation development. The trainee is better able to relate to the training program when the storyline and character development are presented in an in-depth matter rather than just seeing “Joe Schmoe” walking around the environment. Not only is character development an important factor in simulation design, but also realistic looking and acting characters are crucial to simulations replicating all of the complexities that the real world offers. Believe it or not…When developing simulations each character’s move is purposefully planned out by the developer- a simulation just doesn’t randomly have a person raise their hand for no apparent reason. I believe that the feeling of immersion and realness are the keys to drawing people in and making training stick.

With the ringing in of the New Year it is once again time to recap the Top 10 blog posts from 2010. Happy New Year to everyone!

Study Shows Video Games Really Do Train People!
In the article entitled “Video Games Can be Highly Effective Training Tools, Study Shows: Employees Learn More, Forget Less, Master More Skills” a study from the University of Colorado Denver Business School established that those trained by video games do their jobs better, have higher skills and retain information longer than that of workers learning in a less interactive environment.

Top 10 Training Mistakes Organizations Make
All too often organizations make the same age old mistakes when choosing and implementing a training program. Below is a list of 10 common training mistakes that organizations make time and time again.

Linden Lab and the Future of Virtual Worlds
With the recent announcement of Linden Labs (you know the company behind Second Life) to begin restructuring, one must wonder what the future has in store for our friends. Does this really translate to the end of all the hype surrounding virtual worlds?

So it’s not exactly decision-based or a virtual world, what the heck is it?

We are officially announcing a new capability of which we are very proud: ‘Hybrid Simulations’…where we lovingly bake in the best elements of Decision-Based Sims with the cost-effectiveness and flexibility of Virtual Worlds.

Training Today’s Military Forces
Military forces around the world rely on computer-based simulators to provide invaluable training for today’s warfighters. More and more military branches are turning to the simulation and virtual training market to increase retention and performance of our treasured warfighters, maximizing the benefits of this training technology.


Militainment, huh? Just the name makes it sound so gamey and just plain wrong for training today’s techno savvy warfighters. The title itself belies the high standards of military training today. Take for example the official U.S. Army game called America’s Army, while it is a wildly popular gaming application and not to mention a great online recruiting tool, it’s still just a game.

Emulating Human Voice-overs with TTS Voices, Part Two
Since there was great interest in a blog entry last Fall called, ‘Emulating Human Voice-overs with TTS Voices’ I have elected to present those lessons as a Vlog, and so it makes sense that we give this newer presentation the same title, but suffixed with ‘Part Two’.

Serious Training Calls for Serious Games
Proven to be more effective than traditional training methods, Serious Gaming (SG) has many unique advantages. It’s not a new concept- it has been around for awhile dating as far back as 1977 when Clark Abt discussed the idea and used the term in his book, although it wasn’t directed to computers at that time.

E-Learning: Is It Really Worth It?
In a prior post I touched briefly on how e-learning tends to be, well, oversold. To follow up on this I wanted to review the relative costs associated with e-learning and compare to other technologies. With nearly one-third of training content being delivered electronically (according to ASTD’s 2008 State of the Industry Report) it’s no wonder it is such an easy go to.

Virtual Worlds & Training…Do They Mix With Social Media?

Social media seems to be all the rage right now. Is it really possible to infuse social media into a virtual world space? Would it be beneficial or detrimental?

Once again it is that time of the year for the hype cycle projections to be released by Gartner. At the beginning of this year I highlighted a few thoughts on what virtual worlds held in store for 2010, while looking back at 2009. Click here to look back at last years predictions.

While the year has yet to come to a close the graph below represents public virtual worlds coming out of the trough of disillusionment and towards the slope of enlightenment with an overall projection of 5 to 10 years for mainstream adoption. My thought is that they will take less time to become mainstream, but I guess time will tell.

Being a cowgirl at heart, I know that in some areas of the country ranchers can run their cattle herds anywhere they want unless a property owner fences them out, otherwise known as ‘Open Range.’ So you may be thinking to yourself… what in the heck does this have to do with NPC’s or better known as Non-Player Characters? Well… in a virtual world one can have free roaming (otherwise referred to as ‘open range’) NPC’s wandering around. The approach of a controlled or intelligent virtual world environment offers the use of Non-Player Characters to guide the trainee through the simulation exercises while NOT allowing these NPC’s to wander around in the ‘open range’ if you will. Rather these NPC’s have specific purposes to their actions and interactions with the trainees. Virtual world training inside a smart fence, so to speak.

A weekly wrap-up on what’s going on within the Virtual World sphere and beyond! Click on any of the below titles to read the full story.

Should You Stake Your Claim in a Virtual World?

Quick Stat: U.S. Virtual Goods Market To Hit $1.6B in 2010

Why So Many Organizations Struggle for Success in Virtual Worlds

Are Media Companies Missing The Virtual World Mark?

A weekly wrap-up on what’s going on within the Virtual World sphere and beyond! Click on any of the below titles to read the full story.

Farmers Market Moves from Second Life to Open Web

Enterprise immersive software trends for 2010

Educators find common ground in Second Life, for now

Almost as exciting as David Letterman’s Top 10 list- here is a list of the top 10 blog posts of 2009 from Visual Purple’s Virtual Speak blog.

Navigation in Virtual Worlds: From Simple to Complex

Chat Bots 101: Artificial Intelligence Optional

Promise and Perils of Virtual Worlds 1

Promise and Perils of Virtual Worlds 2

Emulating Human Voiceovers With TTS Voices

Push vs. Pull Learning

Let’s Define Collaborative…

Virtual World Cost Analysis- Diving In

Virtual Worlds: The Emperor has no Clothes!

Virtual Worlds for Enterprise and Corporate Use

A weekly wrap-up on what’s going on within the Virtual World sphere and beyond! Click on any of the below titles to read the full story.

Gates Foundation Invests in Virtual Learning

FTC: Kids Can Access Explicit Content In Virtual Worlds

New Study: Women Spend More Time in Virtual Worlds Than Men

Virtual Terror Attacks and/or Training on the Horizon?

A weekly wrap-up on what’s going on within the Virtual World sphere and beyond! Click on any of the below titles to read the full story.

Building Real Security With Virtual Worlds

Insurance Company Launches a Virtual World Aimed at Making Healthy Choices

Virtual world to offer chiropractic students unique patient experience

Second Life Gets A Life 2.0 At Sundance

Educators explore virtual reality as learning tool

U.C. Irvine Set to Offer 4-Year Degree in Virtual Worlds

Virtual world technologies aid real world problems