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Dotsoul was an immersive 3D Virtual Reality MMORPG based on the Active Worlds application which ran from Dec 2005-2009 and was created by Joseph Bergeron and Laura Herrmann. A graphic and relationship intensive cyberpark, designed to facilitate the release of people's subconscious, the stated goal of the park is to create a dreamscape or playground of the mind where people creatively interact, role-play and build virtual works which bear the stamp of their personal identities.
According to its creators, Dotsoul is meant to trigger the ability in participants to make something out of their own images. It gives people the option to live outside the corporate structure and creates room for independent self-discovery. The society is, as stated on the official website “the parallel universe inside your head.”
- Respect everyone
- This is a PG rated world because like the "real world" it involves children (and a huge range of cultural experiences). Stay mindful
- No VR universe or world bashing here. Support everyone, including the competition
Residents create media, including three-dimensional graphics.
This attempt at creating a socially conscious “parallel universe” bears some relation to games such as A Force More Powerful and the project at PARC. However, unlike these games, Dotsoul is predicated on an open-architecture which is dependent on its user base for its content.
Dotsoul's avatars range from scuba divers, tourists, hikers to Hobbits, Superman, aliens, Clint Eastwood, Ferengi to birds, grasshoppers, apes, to historical figures, such as Navajo, Caesar, Venus, Osiris, Hotep, knights, princesses, and to science fictional, contemporary, and customized citizens.
Media and celebrity coverage
- Events, such as art gallery openings, internet connections with pod casters and Myspace members, and live shows
- In May 2006, a post appeared on the official website celebrating the sale of work by Kasmira and Jason Weinberg, two Maine based artists with a large gallery inside Dotsoul.
- Internet café exposure
- DJ music
- Community service and outreach with nonprofit organizations, such as Bridges across Borders.org
- Animated video productions, games, seminars, and promotion for independent artists and entrepreneurs
Built on the Active Worlds platform, creating things in Dotsoul involves clicking and pasting object tags which are accessible on the objects themselves scattered throughout the park. The act of making three-dimensional spaces would appear similar to the Myspace editing programs that have become so popular in recent months with the rise of that internet behemoth. While the Myspace editor interface allows users the ability to program in HTML without in-depth knowledge of HTML, by cutting and pasting code, in Dotsoul users cut and paste .rwx or renderware code in order to generate three-dimensional trees, rocket ships, flowers and moving objects.
While the content in the park is user generated, there is an in-residence Master Builder, called the Michelangelo of the Metaverse by Dotsoul members. The relationship between Master builders and apprentices is an aspect of the park's dynamics. Under the tutelage of the current Master builder, Soul Tech, the first incarnation of Dotsoul is an amalgam of moods reminiscent of Dalí, the Outer Limits and the original film The Matrix.
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