external next up previous contents index
Next: 3.2 MOO Seminars Up: Organization of MOO events Previous: Organization of MOO events

3.1 MOO Visits


The ground rule is (like for conference talks): prepare ! Here are a few rules for organizing MOO Visits for beginners:

  1. The most important thing is to distribute documentation on how to use the MOO. People won't be able to deal with the in-line MOO help. Usually 1 sheet with commands will do. Alternatively you can build a WWW page that people can open (but frequently people have small 15'' screens where you can't look at 2 applications at the same time.

  2. Your visitors must have the following written documentation:
    1. An exact description on how to log in (be sure to explain how to connect to a given MOO and how to log in as guest in detail)
    2. Basic communication commands (e.g. steal from section 2.1.1 on page gif)
    3. Basic navigation commands (e.g. steal from section 2.1.2 on page gif).
    4. The ``look'' command, i.e. ``look here'', ``look <person>'', etc.
    5. Precise indication on how to reach a given place in the visited MOO (make sure to test this a guest!)

  3. Make sure that people can use a MOO client. There are 3 possibilities:
    1. Have MOO clients installed if you do a demo in a computer room, but don't count people being able to install clients on their machine since most typical users don't know how to FTP or how to unzip a file. (see section 1.4 for some information on clients)
    2. If your visitors are on machines supporting a Java capable browser (e.g. Netscape 2.x or higher) enquire if the visited MOO provides Java MOO-client applets. At TECFAMOO we have installed several (check the ``How to connect'''' page). TRY them out on the kinds of machines that you visitors will use ! Java Applets are unstable and won't work everywhere.
    3. You can install a locked tinyfugue unix client that can be used via telnet. This allows people to connect directly into a MOO-client by connecting to a unix machine (or similar) with a given user name.
    4. Never use raw telnet ! (well some people do, but I think it is bad propaganda for MOOs)

  4. Herding sheep:
    1. If you have a larger group of people (10 to 30) count at least 10-15 minutes to let them log in, try out 2-3 commands and get to some place.
    2. Make sure that people will go to a place in the MOO after some wandering around. Give them the room number and the way to reach it (e.g. if you work in educational technology and you visit TECFAMOO take them to #199, i.e. tell them to use the '@go #199' command. Then you can visit LHM, the conference center, Tecfa etc.
    3. Else, build a place !

  5. Don't just visit ! Show them something, e.g. show them how you can organize talks or virtual seminars, or show them educational environments (exhibits if there are).
  6. It is also useful to organize playful communication and navigation exercises for beginners. If you let people wander around and try out things:

Finally, point out the specifics of a MOO. Make sure that people understand that it is not just ``written'' text, but a virtual ``place'' with lots of places and different useful objects. Also point out the MOO's communication features (say, page, say-to, channels, etc.) and they allow people to have parallel discussions.

next up previous contents index external
Next: 3.2 MOO Seminars Up: Organization of MOO events Previous: Organization of MOO events

Daniel K. Schneider
Thu Apr 17 12:43:52 MET DST 1997