#SL Direction Speculation

After listening to last week’s Metareality podcast and this week’s announcement of CreatorVerse™ and Patterns™ it occurs to me there may be a plan at work here. This is speculation on my part so it may just be my hallucination.

Patterns™ Splash

First, one of things I mention in MetaReality Podcast Week 37 at time mark 32:45 is the number of beginning Internet and computer users. A major number of people using computers now have never used Internet or for only a very short time. The number of Internet users has increased 500% over the last 10 years. The number of first time computer users is going up too.

Last week the Metareality panel was discussing the 3D Internet and how people were not even prepared for simple 2D web pages and how far beyond them 3D anything was. That is a serious consideration.

That worldwide demographic of new users may well be something the Lab has realized. We know new SL users have a large learning curve and that it is an obstacle to retention in Second Life. These new games may Rod building a fun learning path to lead users into Second Life.

Consider. Hamlet Au at New World Notes has often pointed out that perhaps Second Life has all the users that exist for Second Life. If that is the case, how does one create more users? If learning SL is difficult then the answer is probably education. No one is going to sign up for that school/class. But, they might sign up for Patterns. As they learn it, they may well be learning the basics of Second Life building.

I think the idea of a pre-SL school could work. We see complexity being added to Minecraft as users want more and more creative tools and freedom as they learn the in’s and out’s and limits of Minecraft. Providing Patterns to the world and building an educational pathway into SL may be the solution to SL’s learning curve problem and a key to retaining more users. As they outgrow Patterns they may move into SL and not run  into an overwhelming learning curve.

If that idea is correct and the Lab is pursuing it, we may also be able to better anticipate what the Lab is going to do next and what may be added to Second Life next… or at least some direction they are likely to take.

Time will if this is just a hangover dream on my part or has some actual merit.

4 thoughts on “#SL Direction Speculation

  1. To quote myself:
    Overall, I am intrigued by the rebranding of the company and somewhat impressed by the coherence. The products have a clear, common theme, yet seem targeted quite differently so they do not cannibalize each other. And Second Life is a perfect fit, giving LL a trio of creator platforms with varying level of complexity and tools. Given what we have seen here, I feel quite confident that SL is an active part of LL’s business plan.
    (From https://plus.google.com/u/0/115651166594579792799/posts/6W8EDqP4Kd9 )

    I am not sure whether it is intended as a direct upgrade path, or merely as a way to cover demographics which do not overlap anyway, but I definitely see a coherent theme which could easily allow the products rub off on each other, in ideas, technology and users.

  2. I tend to agree with you. If the Lindens play it well, this could be a win-win situation: diversifying their products while enticing new users to upgrade to SL.

  3. I am happy to see Linden Lab diversify and create new products. That will make for better corporate health than relying on one product does. If they have a few products, if one becomes less profitable the others can support it for a time. In the long term, diversification is good news for Second Life.

    Diversification is probably good for staff. They can move from one product to another which could help reduce burnout. The push to develop new products can get the creative juices flowing once again. An innovative idea in one area, could spill into another.

    All in all, I think Linden Lab is moving in the right direction. Rod Humble appears to be the right man in the right place at the right time.

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