Voki

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Contents

What is Voki.com?

Voki.com allows users to create personalized speaking avatars, called Vokis, for use in various web-based applications. These avatars can then be customized to resemble the user, celebrities, even animals. Users can then embed these avatars in blogs, social networking profiles, or even emails.


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History

Voki.com was created by a New York-based company called Oddcast Inc. that specializes in innovative user-generated media technology and viral marketing. Founded 1999, Oddcast has been creating speaking avatars for years, and developed several successful campaigns including Career Builder's Monk-e-Mail and Volkswagen's Babymaker 3000.

How Does it Work?

Creating a Voki is as easy as following the steps below. Voki.com allows for complete customization of each avatar—thousands of combinations are possible!

  1. Choose a base character for your avatar.
  2. Customize your avatar by modifying hair, skin, height and weight.
  3. Select your avatar’s clothing and/or accessories.
  4. Choose a backdrop.
  5. Customize your avatar’s voice.
  6. Publish and share your avatar with the world!

Your Voki can now be embedded in your blog or profile, emailed, or sent to a mobile phone. Alternatively, you can create a free account with voki.com to allow you to save multiple Vokis at a time. This allows you easy access to all your Vokis so you can send them to

Applications Using Vokis

According to Oddcast, Vokis are for personal and entertainment purposes. A partner company called Sitepal.com was developed exclusively for commercial applications. However, one commercial application where Vokis show promise is in education. Teachers (especially those in elementary education) are beginning to utilize Vokis to break up the monotony of everyday lessons. Also, Vokis have been used to facilitate foreign language classes and assist ESL (English as a Second Language) students. Voki avatars provide a certain level of interaction that makes learning fun.

More likely even, is the opportunity to utilize Vokis on everyday social networking sites. Vokis can be embedded in blogs, wikis, and even networking profiles provided they support JavaScript. In fact, Vokis can be embedded in most Web2.0 applications. The video below demonstrates how to upload a Voki to your blog.



Oddcast has used Voki technology to implement many advertising campaigns and fun applications. The image below depicts some of the web applications to play with on Voki.com. Although superficially for fun, these web applications also drive valuable brand awareness campaigns for various companies (Cheez-It and Paramount's Trek Yourself, Breyer's Smooth and Dreamy...).


Conclusion

Vokis put an interactive on Web2.0 applications, but aren't all for fun and games. The internet advertising capacity for Vokis is considerable and rapidly rising during this age of viral-video advertising. Educators nationwide are beginning to implement Vokis into curriculum. The idea is still novel, but as the trend grows, look for Vokis to be internet mainstays for a long time.

References

http://www.voki.com

http://www.oddcast.com

http://www.voki.com/site/aboutVoki

https://blog.voki.com/

http://www.squidoo.com/voki

http://encouraginglearnerautonomy.blogspot.com/2007/09/creating-voki-characters.html