Chat Log from Future of Second Life

The Uninformed

  • Why can’t they find a way above all to allow us to take our inventory?
  • OK. So what they are saying we want better graphics and performance, let’s move to a new platform. We still have not worked out all the bugs and kinks in this platform. What makes it feasible that there won’t be a lot of kinks in the new one?
  • I want SL to survive. I just got my sims a bit pretty… and I can’t take them with me…
  • I think it will do better with Oz and 2 people than before.
  • It is easier to start over because they messed up so badly in the past?
  • This isn’t really about businesses it about tech… and SL will close IMO. it’s like people clinging to gas powered street lamps and not wanting to more to electric. They’ll shut it down purely to force a tech leap/

About finding a way to take our inventory with us, I understand people not having a grasp of the technical complications. So for them it should be no more complicated than moving a blouse from one closet to another. So, lacking technical understanding they’re not going to be able to see the complication. So these questions are perfectly rational and understandable. If it were just that easy…

On the ‘we haven’t worked out all the bugs yet’, it’s another lack of technical understanding. The Lab is building a new world because they can’t fix the bugs in the existing world. The fixes are simply too complex. It’s easier to build the new world from scratch.

Remember. When they started building Second Life nothing like it had been done before. They no doubt made some mis-assumptions and came up with ideas that we now see where not all that great. But we as humans do whatever seems like a good idea at the time. Drinking that fifth shot of Disaronno seemed like a good idea at the time. Who I woke up with proved otherwise.

And as for not being able to take our Sims with us, we don’t really know that. There are some awesome builds in Second Life. The lindens might try to move some. But, there will be far more sim owners that want to move their sims across than the Lindens could possibly handle. I think it very likely considerable consideration will be given to the possibility of moving regions and their content. But, it may be too difficult task. We’ll have to wait and see. But to make the declarative statement that we won’t be able to move our regions is going over the top.

Oz and two people… Give me a break. The Lindens are not going to tell us how many people they have working on Second Life. And Maestro Linden has told us they will not talk about staffing. So, we don’t know if they’re down to 10% of what they were, 40% of what they were, or 80% of what they were. And in a company that is starting to approach 200+ employees again, what is a small group? 50?

‘Messed up so badly in the past’… While I sort of address that above.

‘Gas powered streetlights’ is a decent analogy. If Second Life were not to change from this day forward then I think the analogy would be applicable. But, streetlamps did not go away they changed. And Second Life is continuing to change. So whether it stays open or closes I believe is really up to the users. If we vote for open, by spending dollars in Second Life, it will stay open.

The Neutral

  • The people made SL , the opinion of the People should be asked
  • Absolutely worth watching that YouTube link, the second half of the meeting in particular, it is very clarifying.
  • I may want to go to the new one, but I’m not starting completely over. If I can take my inventory, I’d love to see the new platform.
  • Honestly 90% of my inventory I don’t need. it’s old crap.
  • My confidence in anything that Linden Lab is really low.

There are lots of statements like what I considered these to be, neutral. I probably should’ve put the confidence statement in the Interesting category. It is a statement of opinion. I try to respect sane people’s opinions. Whether I agree or not. I know my confidence level in Linden Lab is what I’ll call mixed.

When I think about the technical competence of the Lab I have pretty high level of confidence. I believe they’re doing things that most other gaming and multiplayer worlds don’t do as well. Because we have user created content the Second Life developers have serious a handicap. I find it amazing that they’ve managed to handle it.

In some other areas I have much lower confidence. When it comes to really understanding what it is the users want there is some disconnect. The Lindens simply do not use Second Life the way we do. I hope that that disconnect is lessened by Ebbe’s allowing Lindens to more freely roam and interact with users in Second Life. Also, Ebbe is more like a new user than most of us. He admits he’s not a content creator. He has said he’s managed to build a cube. Awesome.

So I suppose our confidence in Linden Lab is dependent upon what things we consider important and how well the Lab has taken care of our pet preferences. So it’s understandable we all see different levels of confidence in the Lab.

The Positive

  • The people made SL , the opinion of the People should be asked
  • SL has way to much old legacy stuff that really is holding back SL.
  • This will save SL.
  • It can only die if we all leave
  • Speed up the decline if everyone panics
  • It’s not a case of simply being able to transfer your clothes and animations. You may be able to transfer objects. But, mesh/animations would immediately break on their new models. That’s the reason they have never updated the SL default avatar model.
  • There is a possibility creators can sell to two worlds and even more users.

I wrote earlier about small number of positive comments being made. I think all the positive comments show a pretty keen understanding of Second Life and what the Lab is trying to do with it and the new world.

The Questions

  • What does it look like for the designers and how will it affect us?
  • Are they going to target us who don’t make what ll wants here?
  • What’s wrong with starting over fresh and clean? as long as I can still use SL?
  • Do we all have to convert?
  • When this new platform is released will that mean FS will be shut down instantly?
  • Can you honestly expect SL to be around for another 11 years?
  • What about those of us who have not got a clue what’s going on?
  • Do you realize that we have years before we need to make a decision?
  • He spoke to the press about this new platform? Really?
  • We’ve asked for better avatars, for lower tier, for getting rid of the sim crossing problems, better tools, better landscaping and more – and we might get it! That’s not bad, is it?
  • Why is Firestorm defending this? There will be no 3rd part viewers.
  • i heard a rumor it would be possible to take some of the inventory with you .. would that be full perm items only?
  • SL is about entertainment, have you not had FUN the last 9 years?

Many of the questions are perfectly rational. Many also show that people are just catching up on events. When asking how does it look for the designers, Ebbe said content creators will be king. But, Ebbe has also said the ‘consumer type user’ is going to be taking care of.

Think about that little bit. How much of the current viewer in Second Life system is designed to handle content creation? Then compare that to how much of the system is designed to handle consumers/shoppers?

Shoppers really just need a buy button. The complexities of content creation are pretty overwhelming.

When asking about what Linden Lab wants in the new world, we have pretty long history to tell us what they want. Basically they want stuff that doesn’t lag the system. Otherwise they don’t really care. The Lab has been excellent at providing user freedom for creativity. I see nothing that will change that aspect of the Lab as they build a new world.

Starting over and still being able to use Second Life is, I think, going to be the best of both worlds.

Asking if we all have to go to the new world is just an uninformed question. Ebbe has been very clear that Second Life will remain open and we will be free to choose whether to stay in Second Life or visit our move to the new world.

As to the Firestorm being shut down, Jessica Lyon has clearly stated the firestorm team tends to stay together until such time as Second Life closes down, if it ever does. We have a good chance of seeing closer cooperation between third party developers and the Lan for SL.

Do you expect Second Life to be around and 11 years? I don’t, not in the form it is today. I expect it to advance. I also believe that if Linden Lab does as good job on the new world as I think they’re capable of doing then I suspect Second Life will eventually close. But, if the Lab goes the route of multiple virtual worlds then I think Second Life may be around for far more than 11 years. But 11 years is a long time in the technological world. We may be closer to something like what was portrayed in the movies Surrogates or Caprica.


Obviously many of the questions were asked to get some of the wackadoodles thinking. I’m not sure that’s possible. And many of the answers to questions asked are speculative. But, overall I have much better feeling about Second Life and its users after wading through the chat log. It seems more people know what’s going on and are being rational than there are Wackadoodles and Chicken Little’s… however the later run faster and in smaller circles.

4 thoughts on “Chat Log from Future of Second Life

  1. ”Cinder Roxley brought up the point that I hadn’t thought of. For a viewer or browser to display anything on your computer somewhere a server has to transmit information to it. That means someone can monitor the data stream leaving their computer coming into the computer from the servers and reverse engineer a viewer/browser to do the same thing. So, open source or not there is a possibility for third-party viewers.”

    Not if the client (the \viewer\) associated with SL v2.0 is a \lightweight\ one, such as a web browser… Who tells you there will be a dedicated viewer at all ?… A WebGL enabled browser could be what will be needed to log in SL v2.0, and all the data processing could be done server-side, meaning no data but rendering related one would have to be transmitted to the \viewer\. This would make it pretty impossible to design a third party viewer (or even a third party UI/skin for SL 2.0)…
    I of course hope it will not be the case, because after 2007, LL lost all sanity in UI designing (till the release of the first \voice\ viewer (1.18.2), I loved every UI change that got implemented by LL, but starting with 1.18.2, it went down-hill with every new release, thus my involvement in TPV development), but I alas think the probability is high that LL will attempt to make access to SL v2.0 dependent on just a web browser. In this case, however, LL could design their web-based \viewer\ software with some \plugability\ or skinning features, allowing to at least let third party developers to design an alternate UI… But I doubt it would be among their top-priority, at least in at first.

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