“Ratava’s Line: Emergent Learning and Design Using Collaborative Virtual Worlds” by DiPaola, Dorosh and Brandt

  • ©Steve DiPaola, Daria Dorosh, and Galen R. Brandt




    Ratava’s Line: Emergent Learning and Design Using Collaborative Virtual Worlds



    Ratava’s Line is an online, 3D virtual world fashion and interactive narrative project created collaboratively by students at both the Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) in New York City and at Interactive Arts at Simon Fraser University (SFU) in Vancouver, Canada, using emergent, collaborative 2D and 3D systems. This distance learning project, developed over two months and culminating in an online event in multiple, remote locations, integrated three key design elements: the translation of original 2D fashion designs from FIT students into 3D avatar space; exhibits of artwork of student and professional artists from New York City and Vancouver in virtual galleries; and creation of an interactive narrative “fashion cyber-mystery” for online users to participate in and solve in a culminating, cyber-physical event.

    The overall project goal was to explore how online collaboration systems and virtual environments can be used practically for distance learning, fashion and virtual worlds design, development of new marketing tools including virtual portfolios, and creation of cross cultural online/physical events. The result of this process was an interdisciplinary, cross-institutional, international effort in collaborative design in virtual environments, and a successful exercise in emergent, collaborative distance learning.

    Ratava’s Line is a collaborative design / e-learning research project between two university professors/researchers and their students from two different countries working with and about online virtual tools for fashion and virtual world design. The project began in March 2002, when Daria Dorosh, Fashion Design Professor at FIT in New York, and Steve DiPaola, Computer Graphics Professor at SFU in Vancouver, Canada, after being introduced by virtual worlds expert and FIT project facilitator Galen Brandt.


    All the students, especially Owen Milburn (SFU), Erika Glover (SFU) and David Aliperti (FIT). Also Bruce Damer, DigitalSpace Commons and the Adobe Atmosphere team.


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