From technology to relationships: the evolving profile of virtual laboratories

The increasing integration between humans and technology, the multiplying interaction modalities, the enhancement of realism, presence and immersivity; the opening to soft sciences and to new multidisciplinary, interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary fields; the relationships and cooperation element coming to the fore: these are the key issues of the huge ‘scientific research potential of virtual worlds’, as the title of a well-known Science article stated (Bainbridge, 2007). And these are also the core peculiarities of virtual laboratories of today.

Received: 16 May 2012
Revised: 3 June 2012

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