Jo Yardley has a new post up: Ebbe talks to SL users about SL2. She has quoted a number of posts that Ebbe makes in the SL Forum. For a quick read her article is ideal.
If you want to jump into the conversation, search the SL Forum for Ebbe Linden. You’ll get a listing of all his comments and be able to dive into the thread that interests you. SL Forum – Ebbe Linden.
The thread titled Linden Lab is building a NEW virtual world was started by Jo Yardley. It is now 28 pages long. I think Ebbe is getting an education in the thinking of Second Life™ users. They are not particularly sane or rational. That doesn’t seem to bother him.
Ebbe is correcting some of the dumbest guesses, speculations, and claims. I think the most telling reply is:
I don’t think we can assume that the SL tech and experience as we know it can last forever and that something better will not come around some day. It’s either us or someone else. By letting you know that we are working on something I’ve already seen a lot of positives come out, and yes, some doomsday stuff, but there are always a group of people who dislike change (even for the better). So, in the future, you will move to something better, and we plan to provide that.
The more I think about it, I imagine that SL 2.0 will be very much like SL 1.0, but without the problems. Ebbe keeps saying better rather than different. Obviously in many ways it has to be different. Likely a different avatar, less or no lag (like Philip claims is possible in HyFy), regions with a 1,000 avatars… But, will the graphics be better? May be.
The world may be built to scale and the system designed to promote to-scale building. But, a building is going to be a building. It is likely we will still fly, teleport, chat, and have voice. What is it people think may change? I am suspecting we will get a Second Life with the technical problems fixed and an easier to learn user interface.
Hi Ebbe, thanks for dropping by!
I think we are all in agreement that the idea of creating a new and “better” virtual world is by no means a bad thing. And, yes, I’d probably rather LL do it than, say, Facebook. And I think we probably mostly understand, in theory anyway, why it makes sense to build from scratch, rather than trying to tinker with code that must be riddled, at this point, with weird little anachronisms and band-aids.
My concern, and that of others I think, is that there are too many questions about the transition from SL 1.0 to 2.0. (We have, of course, other concerns, about the shape of this future VW, but those are separate.)
The problem, as Maddy noted above, is that a lack of solid information breeds speculation. I do understand that work on this new VW is probably still in pretty early stages, but if there are not some more concrete assurances about the relationship between SL 1.0 and 2.0, on a number of fronts, I very much fear that SL 1.0 is going to be a virtual ghost town long before the new one is ready to take its place.
Whether or not LL is ready to make guarantees about the fate of SL 1.0, I think that some sort of serious damage control is needed, because you need SL 1.0 to be thriving when SL 2.0 opens. If people leave here in any numbers because they perceive it as a dying world, or one no longer worth investing in, many, perhaps most, won’t be back to try out your new shiny.
I’ll just mention one point that comes immediately to mind. The only possible reason to continue operating SL 1.0 after the new world opens is because the two are radically different, and not just in terms of tech. If they are similar in other regards, but one is merely “better,” why would anyone stay on in SL 1.0? And if that is the case, then making a long term investment of any kind here makes little sense.
If, on the other hand, the two worlds are going to be very different in ways other than their codebase, then some clarity on that is important.
But, honestly, given what I’ve heard, I frankly don’t believe that LL won’t pull the plug on SL 1.0 shortly after the creation of the new version. Because I can see absolutely no reason why anyone would stay here.
Ebbe answered her:
Thanks. So FB/Oculus came out and said they are going to do a VW for a billion people. I did not hear a peep from anyone here. How compatible will that world be? When will all users run over to that one? Should I invest in SL now that they are doing that…etc.
If all users move rather quickly from SL to our next gen then I assume things went very well. If few are, then I think we’d have more work to do and SL will keep on tickin until only the new one makes sense to operate…
I can’t give a clear path for exactly when and how this transition may or may not happen (could be that they are side by side for a very long time).
All I’ve said is that we’re doing it, we’re going to invest a lot to do it, and that from now on forward we’ll all be talking about it with more and more detail as time goes by. You’ll be along for the ride. Trying to hide it for a long period where we can answer all the questions by the time we do reveal it I don’t think would work because it would come out anyway and second, I want to have dialog with you all about it rather than come up with all the answers first (and then get yelled at for not including you sooner .
So, my recommendation is that if you have interest in VW then use the best product there is (SL) and as time goes on we will figure out how to make it worthwhile for you to stay with us and work through the transition over time . But none of us can predict what the world will look like 2 years from now (regardless of what we do or do not do).
I think that exchange makes things about as clear as they will ever get. When it comes to compatibility between SL 1.0 and 2.0 Ebbe makes it clear in this comment what his plans are:
I’m being honest and you don’t seem to like it. Ok. I did not say at all that everything will be obsolete. I have no idea where you get that from. What I did say is that we will not sacrifice how good the future product will be because we have to twist ourselves in knots to be 100% backwards compatible. Basically we are saying that a better product is more important than making sure everything is SL as you know it will continue unchanged. That could end up just being an upgrade rather than a major step forward.
2014-06-23 06:56 PM
So you think SL can continue forever and still be competitive enough to matter in the future?
We are going to do our best to make it smooth, but if we have to make a crappy product with crazy complexity and poor user experience to preserve some very specific content compatibility we don’t want to cause those problems.
A lot of what you have will be possible to move across and more specifics will come through over time.
This is the best information we have for now. Everything else is speculation or misinformation.