I'm a big fan of the acronyms NASA and SL and was really interested to read the article on NASA's SecondLife Presentation of their work on Synthetic Worlds. (via Slashdot)

The details are fairly light, but it seems as though NASA is building a VR game on space exploration (remember Microsoft's Space Simulator, or the free and open-source Orbiter?). I wonder why NASA is rebuilding their own engine rather then picking up and using existing simulators (like Open-SESSAME) on top of the Unreal graphics/physics engine.

I also wonder if, given their presentation venue in SL, if they are considering integration of their space simulator with SecondLife itself. Apparently right now it is possible in SL to have some sort of orbital platform. But imagine if they actually opened up Space Stations, or other planets/moons for exploration/colonization.

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Andrew Turner is an advocate of open standards and open data. He is actively involved in many organizations developing and supporting open standards, including OpenStreetMap, Open Geospatial Consortium, Open Web Foundation, OSGeo, and the World Wide Web Consortium. He co-founded CrisisCommons, a community of volunteers that, in coordination with government agencies and disaster response groups, build technology tools to help people in need during and after a crisis such as an earthquake, tsunami, tornado, hurricane, flood, or wildfire.