These just keep popping up. Ciaran Level in Linden Lab CEO Rod Humble on Second Life’s Tween Years links to the article on AllThingsD: Linden Lab CEO Rod Humble on Second Life’s Tween Years (Q&A).
Also Jo Yardley has an article, up about the same interview: Oculus Rift in Second Life goes public late summer!
Again Rod comments on Second Life’s performance and how it has been a prime concern. Rod says that this year he believes he will be able to say, “Hey, performance is good.” I definitely will go with ‘better.’ But, I’m going to have see more before I’ll say ‘good.’ I also suspect it is going to be ‘good’ for SL.
Jo is thrilled Rod finds the Oculus Rift ‘surprisingly cool.’ Rod states they have a working version of the viewer that accommodates the Oculus Rift. He expects to make a version of that viewer public by late summer. But, remember the Oculus people don’t expect to have the ‘retail’ product out until 2014. They are releasing a high-definition version of the developer kit June 25th this year.
So, whatever the Lab releases it is more likely going to be some type of experimental version of the viewer. But, it may make it into the main stream viewer channel. We’ll have to say as nothing Rod says makes that clear.
Another aspect of the user stats makes it out. Rod says about half the user base has been in SL less than 18 months. That sort of suggests a core user group of 500k logging in each month and another 500k that are new to SL and not hanging around that long.
When asked about mobile support Rod says parts of the viewer are already mobile… well, Profiles, Destinations, Search, and other parts of the viewer are web based. But, Rod says the getting the user interface for building and 3D navigation are hard… does that suggest they are trying? How else would he know it is hard? I supposed one could imagine it is hard. But, imagining doesn’t seem to be how Rod decides. From other things he has done I would expect him to imagine something and then try coding it.
Rod touches on the concept of a financial model for user-based content creation. Other than to say its likely coming for the general field of user made content he says little else.
When asked about the good and bad content of SL rod said, “It’s a perception issue. What percentage of Google search terms are, uh, adult related? But we don’t think of them as the porn search engine. We let people make whatever they want — unless it’s illegal — and there’s always been this sniggering “oh my” reaction. Somebody in the medium’s got to be first to be grown up about it. If you’re a writer and every time you’re writing, someone says, “Ah! But what about that D.H. Lawrence? That was rude, huh?” The community’s rightfully sensitive to it.”
When asked about how to get people interested SL, Rod points out that is not a problem. There are 400k new signups each month. The problem is getting people to the things they are interested in. He says when they do that, people stick. I have to wonder if he has hard analytical data on that. But, he points out the problem I’ve stressed all along, how does one know what a new user is interested in?
Now that we know the government and big business is listening and tracking us, we know there is a way. The Lab just has to breach our privacy to know. It is unclear if that is going to happen. But, Google or Facebook could provide the Lab the data needed.
Another interesting fact is Rod says only 20% of the 400k new signups last longer than a month.
When asked about console games Rod says he doesn’t know much about that area of the market. But, he has an interest in taking SL toward Valve’s and Android’s game engines.
He points out the problem I hit when I think of SL going mobile, content. SL has 200 petabytes of content. How does that fit into your data plan?