John Lester

John Lester is currently Chief Learning Officer at ReactionGrid, a software company developing 3D simulations and multiuser virtual world platforms. His primary focus is on collaborative learning and instructional design, working with academic and business clients to develop immersive education environments.

John is also Community Developer and Creative Advisor at Wiggle Planet, helping create free range, self-animated artificial life at the intersection of augmented reality and the physical world.

From 2005-2010, John worked at Linden Lab, the creators of Second Life. At Linden Lab he led the development of the education and healthcare markets while evangelizing the innovative use of virtual worlds in research, art and immersive learning.

Previously, John worked at Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, creating online medical education and patient support communities while exploring the underlying neuroscience behind how people communicate and collaborate effectively.

John has a background in neuroscience research and a deep interest in how to best design and use virtual world technology to enhance education, build collaborative communities and augment the human mind. His areas of expertise also include knowledge management, business development and community development.

John is currently focused on virtual world research and development using Unity, Opensimulator and Jibe. His active research interests include designing immersive multiuser VR environments using the Oculus Rift and creating AI-based avatars that communicate via natural language using ChatScript.