In the movie Inception, Leonardo DiCaprio is swept into a world-within-worlds that results in a convoluted storyline something akin to Alice in Wonderland meets The Matrix.
Last week I had my own Inception moment, when I had the good fortune to take visual notes at a conference all about VR (virtual reality) ... using, of course, a VR headset.
The Immersive Learning Research Network (iLRN) is a global community of educators who are pushing the boundaries of how XR (eXtended Reality, which is becoming the accepted umbrella term for Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality, and Mixed Reality technologies) is shaping the field of education. The iLRN 2020 is the annual online conference for this community, and it seemed only fitting that conversations about VR should be captured using VR.
Using my favourite sketching tool, Tilt Brush, I was engaged to capture some of the bigger group conversations that happened during the somewhat audaciously titled "Grand Challenges." As if the technology setup of live streaming my visual notes to YouTube as they were being created, and then funneling that feed back into the virtual world in which the conversation was happening wasn't ambitious enough, the topics that the group tackled were equally ambitious:
I'm pleased to say that the technology held up, and the end result was definitely a hit with attendees. Participants commented that seeing their conversation visualised into 3D scenes injected excitement and optimism into the group. I'm pretty happy with how they turned out in the end!
A huge congratulations to Mark, Jonathon, and the rest of the iLRN team and associated volunteers for successfully running what they envisioned to be "the Woodstock of conferences"; I was very grateful to be a part of the event.
You can explore all four virtual scenes from the iLRN 2020 conference on Google Poly using a VR headset (or you can just view them in your web browser) by following the links below.
Matt is Chief Doodler at Sketch Group. He has contributed to several books on visual thinking, most recently The World of Visual Facilitation.