The first part of this video illustrates the design process in virtual worlds and how Metrotopia was designed and built in Second Life. For this purpose, Ates Gursimsek (SL: Mandal Vlodovic/Metrotopia Design Team) builds an interactive hot-dog cart for the Metrotopia Park by using the Second Life 3D building tools. This part also shows how Metrotopia Design Team worked collaboratively, often from different locations, during the concepualization, design and construction phases of Metrotopia.
The 3D real-time interaction capabilities of Second Life allowed the collaborative effort of researchers, designers and outsourced service providers (such as costume design and video-making) to shape the city, as they had the chance to meet, discuss and work inside the virtual city throughout the process.
Here, the observation of designers-in-action is intended to provide an introduction to the design possibilities of virtual worlds. The objective of design practice here is not creating an abstract visual prototype of a real–life object, but building virtual objects and spaces inside the virtual environment for avatars to use/exchange and travel inside (experiencing the virtual space and interaction). This observation would also enable the researcher to analyse characteristics of interaction through the design process, the methods used by designers (to create interactive virtual object and places) and the collaborative working/prototyping environments provided by the virtual worlds.