“The real reason why we’re doing this is because we do feel the beginning of a major transformation on how people are going to interact on the Web — going from a flat to an immersive experience,”. This quote came from Maggie Blayney, director of Global Web Strategy & Innovation for ibm.com, and it makes clear, why IBM is so active within all this virtual worlds stuff. (More information also at Reuters)
IBM already understood that the internet is going to change our lives, differently to what many may think. The web 2.0 hype gave us insight in new kinds of communication and now, with the uprising of 3D worlds, we get a glimpse of the future after that. IBM is investing a lot of money to explore the chances and possibilities within virtual worlds. And since the beginning, Second Life was just a showcase for them.
The main point is, that there will be a completely new experience, how we communicate in the future, we don’t only have impersonal communication methods like chat, mail or phone, with a virtual representation we add an immersive experience to the distance-communication which makes it somehow richer (not poorer, as the pessimists complain).
And it is not only about communication, also the way, we experience other companies will change. Perhaps our avatars wander around from website to website, while these are not only flat 2D texts, but are explorative 3D experiences (e.g. like Rimova). A lot of challenges will have to be mastered on that way, but some already have started to go. So what about us?