Virtual One Green Gov Tutorial

Connecting in the virtual world to save the real one.

On January 22nd, join team mates in a virtual reality (VR) room designed for One Green Gov! In this article I’ll share the practical steps for how you can participate. As questions come in (beyond the comments in Medium), I’ll answer in Q&A format at the bottom of this blog.

I’ll also share why I’m so excited about this experience (spoiler: it’s just so easy).

Connect with us on January 22nd

Victoria BC is hosting a live space for our local cohort to connect. We’ll also have the virtual space running and we hope others from around the world will join in throughout the day.

How

We’re using Mozilla Hubs, a VR chatroom designed for every headset and browser, but it is also an open source project that explores how communication in mixed reality can come to life.

use mozilla hubs to connect with others in an engaging way for free

Follow the tips for the best chance at minimal tech issues. That being said, my testing has revealed plenty of little hiccups. These are almost always resolved with a quick refresh and re-entry to the room.

You can arrive to the rooms I’ve set up at any time:

I’ve designed the room with instructions for how to participate, even if you are alone in the space. Of course, it is much more fun with others there!

A hub room is limited to 24 people at once currently. I’m really not sure how many will be brave and try this out… If we get lots of demand on the day, we can easily create multiple rooms using the same scene. If so, I’ll add the new room links above, and will share out on our meetup event page.

You can take selfies in Mozilla Hubs. I hope my next one has friends in it!

When (UPDATE)

In Victoria, BC, Canada, we’re gathering from 10am until 2pm PST in the live space.

From 1–2pm (changed from 2–3pm) PST, I’ll focus on facilitating the online experience.

I’ll have a connection to the live meetup room available for folks to try all day (starting around 9am). I don’t plan to be be actively facilitating until the afternoon, but this could shift if the IRL (in real life) room is lively and self-organizing.

I’m also hoping we might have a few tech savvy team mates there on the day to pitch in facilitation and orientation in our virtual hub.

Why we’re using VR

I decided to add on this virtual connection to the live event for a few reasons.

First, as a facilitator, I got excited about experience of navigating a 3D world with my son in Minecraft. I wondered how adults might be as collaborative and creative together in such a tool.

Mozilla Hubs is a WAY easier tool to get people into. They’ve designed it with hosting meetups and conferences in mind. The open source community is constantly improving the tools, and they are easy to reach if you have any specific asks (I did!).

Even if it isn’t Minecraft, participants will still increase their cool factor with the kids. Not only that, but VR and it’s cousin augmented reality (AR) are quickly gaining relevance in everyday life, including service delivery.

One of the One Team Gov principles is “embrace technology.” We want to use technology to make us quicker, smarter, better and more data-driven. We want to help shape a public sector we can be proud to work for in the 21st century. We also value working in the open, and given that Mozilla tools are open source, it fits in nicely.

This is Spoke, the tool I made the room with. Sooo easy! And free. I still can’t believe it is free.

Beyond the tool set and my enjoyment nerding out with new tech, this is really about creating relationships and engaging experience. My daily work requires creative ways to facilitate a lot of change. With limited space, people and money, I seek to test those bounds with new tools and approaches.

While chatting with the Mozilla Development team at their open meetup, I learned that so much of what we aim to do at the Exchange Lab is accomplished in Hubs.

I have lots more to say on this… but why don’t you join me on January 22, and we can exchange our thoughts “in person?”

Here is a little preview of the space and some of the guidance for how to participate.

I hope to see you there. Don’t hesitate to reach out if you have questions!

H

Q&A

Are you recording this online session?

As you can imagine in a 3D world, it’s tricky to capture everything. However, we are able to broadcast a single point of view, and to record that. I will be attempting to broadcast and record the facilitated online session from 2–3pm.

Can I create a hubs room for my local One Green Gov Team?

Yes! Not only that, but you can take the scene I created and use it. You can even modify it in Spoke if you don’t like the trees I chose :)

Most of this is very intuitive if you explore at https://hubs.mozilla.com/.

Can I use Internet Explorer?

What? No. Apparently Microsoft Edge is also problematic. Please use Chrome or Firefox.

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Heather-Lynn Remacle

Slow to judge, quick to suppose: truth and alternatives I’m keen to expose. Open by default. How can I help? https://bit.ly/32Fmz2l