Recently, we were asked about what resources IMA will be providing to our research and development working groups. While we have an idea what we can provide and what we think the working groups could use effectively, the door is always open to adding more resources if needed as the working group activities get underway!
To start, here is a list of resources IMA initially offers to Working Groups:
Community Forums: This resource is to be used for any purpose by the community. IMA will likely use this as a place for tutorials we provide to the community and encourage others to contribute their own tutorials. It may become a de facto go-to site because they are easily searchable.
Social Network:This is to be used by IMA members to build community, support collaboration, socialize when not in-world, share information, engage in discussions, plan events, and more. This creates a targeted network of like-minded people with similar interests and research goals on a platform we can customize or enhance for the community.
Community Newsletters: While we have an IMA newsletter on our http://lists.infinitemetaverse.org site, we hope the community will use this resource to build their own newsletters for their projects.
Community Surveys: This resource will be available to all working groups who need to conduct surveys in gathering data to support their research.
Community Web Pages: Five pages (news, grids, regions, maps, and statistics) are planned so far to be maintained by the community but hosted free of charge by IMA.
Virtual Worlds: These resources include, but are not limited to, our research and development projects IMA Grid, Test Grid, and Expo Grid. They are to be used in direct research or in support of research by IMA members and the public.
Virtual Content: One of the calls to action from the community was a place to share creative commons content. IMA considers this a philanthropic goal to host the IMAginations Store resource and provide potential income for builders who want to also sell their digital content. IMA will also seek grants or investors to fund the creation of more creative commons content for the community.
Grant Administration and Accounting: IMA itself is a resource for any working group or committee seeking grant funding that needs a principal investigator, accounting services, and grant administration. We take that workload off of the working groups so they can focus on their research efforts.
Training and Facilitation: IMA, through its Advisory Board and Director's Council Committees, will provide training needed in the working groups for Lean Six Sigma concepts, Virtual World content creation and design, scripting to support research efforts, and other task-oriented group activities. The Advisory Board members will also serve as liaisons to the business side of IMA to ensure the working groups have the resources available they need.
Project Management: This resource is a robust professional open source tool for managing any sort of project including open source code projects. It can be used by any subscriber working group and will be used by the core working groups - including generating roadmaps and sustaining source code.
Virtual Meeting Tools: This resource is a private online meeting server hosted by IMA with features like chat, voice, ability to caption, ability to record, breakout rooms, shared presentations, voting, and desktop sharing to be used by any research and development working group.