I love love this machinima starring Albert Einstein to advertise this virtual marathon for science research on December 11. Sponsored by the Institute for Medical Research Israel Canada, this is essentially an innovative way to get people to pony up $25 or more to support different strains of medical research, from Alzheimers Disease to visual impairment.
In a surprising bit of versimillitude, according to New World Notes, the sponsors got the permission from the estate of Albert Einstein to use his likeness for this appeal.
Each cause is personified by different avatars of specific researchers working on a cure of that particular disorder. This is a nice way of humanizing the search for cures and treatments, rather than faceless institutions. You literally get to see the researcher's avatars racing around a track and root for your favorite cause to win. The winning avatar apparently gets a larger share of the research money, while the other groups get the remainder.
While I am in general not bullish on the use of virtual platforms for fundraising, at least compared to other online and offline mechanisms, this sounds like a smart use of the technology. I hope this is a big success!
(Hat tip to NWN)