Sunday, March 21, 2010

Coordination meeting of European Transhumanist Associations in Teleplace

Following the opening meeting in Milan last November, a second coordination meeting of European Transhumanist Associations has taken place today in a Teleplace virtual workspace. Online 3D technologies and workspaces for videoconferencing and deeply interactive collaboration already permit productive e-meetings for distributed workgroups. Online meetings, which can be especially productive for pre-existing groups, are not (yet) a full replacement of physical meetings, but can be a very useful complement to physical meetings and permit saving money and time.

Agenda: VR meetings and seminars in Teleplace, Transvision 2010 conference (draft program and logo almost finalized), H+ UK 2010 conference (very good progress, I look forward to attending), collaboration with various European research groups and projects, and an online transhumanist art exhibition under development.

Besides the agenda, I was also interested in studying the first reactions of newcomers to Teleplace: all participants besides David Orban and myself had never been in a Teleplace before. All newcomers learned how to use the basic functions of Teleplace (moving, talking, streaming webcam video, adding and editing documents) in a few minutes, and one (Marc) set up a complex presentation without help. I think everyone had a very positive impression and could see the potential of Teleplace for professional online meetings and presentations.

Besides working group meetings, we are also planning a beta version of an ambitious e-learning initiative (much more at due time). We will start with monthly seminars in Teleplace, and the one-and-only Anders Sandberg has accepted to give the first lecture on advanced neurotechnology wizardry and mind-boggling future prospects.

I look forward to hosting other virtual meetings, and I wish to thank Teleplace for their support.


  1. Thank you very much Giulio
    And thank you very much in the last participants for their patience ...

  2. Thank you all, and looking forward to talking with you in person on the UKH+ event!

  3. It would be interesting and useful if you guys could take the time to comment (on the blog, on the mailing list or by email) on your first Teleplace experience. Was it easy enough to learn? Did you have any problems? Do you think 3D e-meetings are useful for groups like this?

    Yesterday I heard mainly positive and even enthusiastic comments, but I think it is important to address David (W)'s point: why 3D when there are so many 2D videoconferencing and collaboration tools? What is the added value of 3D?

    I think the answer is related to the psychological effect of immersive 3D workspace with user interfaces that mirror physical reality: at some point, something clicks in your head and you begin to consider the virtual experience as real. The day after, what you remember is not sitting in front of a screen and watching pixels move, but participating in a real meeting or social event with real people. This highly immersive feature of 3D, missing from 2D videoconferencing, favors involvement and productivity - I remember having seen quantitative psychology studies with focus groups.