Lessons Learned: Social Interaction in Virtual Environments

  • Lili Cheng
  • Shelly Farnham
  • Linda Stone
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 2362)


With the goal of studying online community, we created two multi-user virtual environment products [1], Microsoft V-Chat [2] in 1996, and the Virtual Worlds Platform [3] in 1998. We analyzed the social interaction that developed in these virtual environments and were particularly interested in better understanding what factors contribute to sustaining online community. Drawing from the design and evolution of physical cities [4] we believed an online community must be able to change over time and evolve the space within a flexible infrastructure. Over the past six years we have learned a number of lessons about the design of community and the effects of design.


Virtual Environment Virtual World Critical Mass Online Community Design Evolution 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lili Cheng
    • 1
  • Shelly Farnham
    • 1
  • Linda Stone
    • 1
  1. 1.Microsoft CorporationRedmond

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