World Building for Semi-Old People

Tom Nickel
5 min readDec 19, 2020

One of the main features of being Semi-Old is realizing you won’t get to see how most of the things you care about are going to work out, if they ever do.

On the off-chance there is an Age of Aquarius coming, it will probably be after my expiration date. At this point, in my eighth decade, I don’t wonder as much about The Revolution because I doubt I will be here. That’s not a prediction, just my working assumption.

Building Virtual Worlds is one way I am still active in this world now. Without a nicely resolved ending here, at least I can have things just the way I want in my own World, right?

But is just the way I want really what I want?

Technical Disclaimer: There are many levels of World Building in VR. The most advanced practitioners today write code and use tools that combine visual creativity with a deep understanding of user experience.

The least advanced practitioners today do something like assembling Legos in a way that can also combine visual creativity with a deep understanding of user experience — but only within a fairly narrow range of pre-set options.

In the same way that I am semi-old, I am also semi-advanced, which also makes me semi-unadvanced. I have written code for a living but I’m not very good at it. I do know how to use code…



Tom Nickel

Learning Technologist focusing on VR, Video, and Mortality … producer of Less Than One Minute and 360 degree videos