Ebbe Altberg Interview

22:00 – Asked about what he thought of locations and communities where residents have deep commitment, Ebbe got into what has impressed him. 1920’s Berlin is one such location and community. The mix of experience, social involvement, and community commitment is amazing. For SL2 the designers are thinking about how to get the right combination of social tools to encourage beter community building. Ebbe pointed out he is blown-away not just by these groups creativity but by the community’s involvement.

People - Lost Eden

People – Lost Eden

25:15 – Saffia, I think, brought up concern about changes and how it affects people. Ebbe says because some make their living here, SL1, they have to be sensitive to backward compatibility. Ebbe thinks they have done backward well.

When it comes to SL2 they made the conceptual change to not being backward compatible because it was too restrictive. But, they do not want to change the world so much that people will businesses in SL1 cannot have the same business in SL2. So, they are not looking to make drastic changes in SL2 but improvements. The changes are intended to be destructive to businesses in existence now or what we can now do, but instead want to make improvements to what we can do now.

We have a ton of feature requests and user cases that have been provided the Lindens. Despite the no-nothings claims, these are read, cataloged and prioritized. And yes some are s-canned. So, we are likely to see SL2 bring a much easier world to build for and be able to do many of the things we cannot do in SL1. Want to add 2 arms… I think we will be able to do that.

27:30 – saffia/Elrik bring up the idea of checking changes like the TOS with community groups before making the change. Ebbe thinks how TOS was rolled out was the biggest problem. He may be right. But, some foot work was done here to stop the questioning going deep into the TOS change. I was doing some yelling at this point. There is no doubt the wording definitely shifts an ownership issue and locks us out of using things like textures from CG Textures.

Ebbe thinks looking at metrics may be more efficient way to get answers to questions like how to change the TOS. But, in the future they plan to make it easier to give feedback to the Lab. Support has changed since Ebbe came on board. It is now monitored in real time and their response is much faster. There are still pissed off people. But, I see few bitching in the forum. Those that are often quickly reveal personality issues or ignorance about what is a support issue verse a bug verses a user-to-user issue.

Ebbe knows SL2 will need a fast feedback loop at start up and during testing. They are planning to buld that in.

The result of all this for many to understand is that at first release SL2 will not support ALL user cases. There are so many use cases, some none trival and some critical, it is going to be impossible to support 100% of them at start up. The Lab will never get everyone to agree on what is important. A fashion designers and architect’s needs are just too different.

Ebbe points out that the development cycle will in some cases determine which cases are supported first. For an example he uses fashion designers verses architects. For an architectural use the avatar appearance is not all that important. So, if avatar customization is going slow, we may see architects coming into beta ahead of fashion designers.

31:00 – Group Chat – there are performance issues in chat. Fixing the problem is like pulling string from a box. No one can see the end of the string or know how much of it there is. I can just keep coming out. So, no one knows where they are in the process. Ebbe believes it is better, but he is not sure how close they are to having it solved. No one knows how much string is left.

We do know from this morning’s (Monday 10/6) Open Source UG meeting that a server problem with ports has been fixed and work is once again proceeding on performance issues. – Note the Ebbe interview was conducted two weeks ago.

32:14 – Elrik/Saffia asked about new performance stuff for SL1. Ebbe mentions CDN… HTTP Pipeline… the pipeline project has been a long one, lots of string in the box. Ebbe thinks we are within weeks of seeing the HTTP pipline project making it  to a project or RC viewer. He is optimistic it will make a noticeable difference in performance.

By mid to end of October we should see these features improve things. We know from this morning’s meeting that 128± regions are running CDN.

In connection to performance Ebbe mentions Loki’s experience, Escapades. 34:30 Ebbe saw it before it was completed. He has yet to make it back. From how he talks you can tell he plans to make it back to Escapades.

35:00 – Saffia sked about LAST NAMES – BANG! This is on the list of things Oz and the SL1 team want to tackle. Ebbe saus it is high up on priority list. Ebbe has no ETA information. Until some project is active and being worked on it is too fuzzy to predict when it may be completed. But, is in the next set of things they want to tackle. But, things could crowd in ahead of last names.

But, for many this is awesome news!!!

37:00 Commercial break

40:15 – They shift to SL2 discussion. SL2 is planned to be massively multiuser. I take this to mean doing away with the 80 avatars max per region limit.

Ebbe says they early in SL2 design process, four months in. Progress is good. They are at the point of tech coming together. They are 3 to 4 weeks from first internal milestone, a little later than they had hoped, which is to import content, script, and be able to cruse in world with an avatar. There was no comment on what that avatar may look like.

One goal is to make it easy to get people to the spaces/experiences in SL2. Improving visual fidelity and performance to the levels they wanted for SL2 going to be too hard to do for SL1. Getting SL1 on this tech would have been ridiculously complex and time consuming.

Ebbe says the next milestone is planned for the end of year. And they are looking to schedule the first special use cases for testing with users by mid 2015. Don’t count on that. That is a plan.

Ebbe says they are planning cross platform and mobile compatibility.

Ebbe says he hasn’t seen anything in SL1 that looks as nice as the little SL2 test world they have now… hmmmmm.

Ebbe says not so much is different in SL2 as it is an evolutionary step forward.

They are planning to make SL2 more engaging… OK.

48:00 – They ask how SL2 will be marketed, who are the target demographics… young males… SL1 has a larger female and older demographic. Ebbe says that in SL2 they plan to provide more use cases, vertical uses like architecture. He also wants better support for more community teams. In SL1 limiting land access to a specific team is rocket science. They want to make it easier.

Plus they are designing easier ways to get people into SL2. How do you get someone that is not an SL user into your SL2 shop… click a web link? Could happen with no install or some minimal install.

For the vertical use cases of architects… they will probably provide better AutoCAD import for a building and ways to get clients, agencies, designers together in the environment… with the building.

Ebbe has people working on how ro make education processes and tools work better.

When asked about what name to call SL2 Ebbe says they are a long way from selecting target audiences for branding, marketing, and promotional design. Most of these things are too far out for Ebbe to give good answers.

52:15 – Saffia relates the user case of the City of Burmingham Library – the architect used SL1 to help the client and architects design the real life building. Staff also was invited in and provided feedback. In RL, when the library opened staff could easily work in and navigate the parts of the building parts they had seen in SL1, but they got lost in parts of building not modeled in SL1.

53:45 – Why is SL2 and its ‘viewer’ being made as closed source… Ebbe answered. Nothing new. We knew they wanted to work quickly and do fast iterations. Something that would be frustrating for those working with them in open source. Plus that frustration would be a hindrance for the LL team. They would likely try to slow development or stop talking to reduce dealing with the frustration.  

12 thoughts on “Ebbe Altberg Interview

  1. Note to Ebbe:
    Create 2 new FEMALE alts, one old style, one mesh. 2 complete new outfits for each every week. At least one of the old style avatars weekly outfits must be fitted mesh.
    You will “get it” within a month.

    • Or… just change your outfit ONCE a day… Try having an appearance (shape and face) that you want to keep and dressing that avatar.

      And Ebbe, what is with not being able to arrange Outfits in folders?

  2. I think if Ebbe tried asking the women in SL – or even being female himself – his take might be a little different.

    We are not just a huge part of SL, we are what helps to make SL different I think – For example, the number of female creators and families here is very significant I think.

    • Sylvie, I so agree with you.

      I’m not sure all guys can do female and gain insight. But, I think many could. Ebbe might.

  3. Thanks for writing all that down. Some interesting and good news on SL2 – APIs are definitely the way to go .

  4. Pingback: Bits of Second Life 2014-41 | Nalates' Things & Stuff

  5. Pingback: Drama: Community Portals for Second Life 2 | Nalates' Things & Stuff

  6. Altberg is the worst CEO Linden Lab ever had. I am convinced that he´ll not only bury Second Life, but Linden Lab too – if the board does not stop this DOA project Whoever made the decision to invest millions of (customer) dollars into a somewhat \better tech\ Second Life, for which no one ever asked for, without customer asset backwards compatibility, must be completely mislead by the attraction of shiny new technology while celebrating total ignorance of the human interface, customer demand and the iron rules of the asset management software market.

    You are right, THIS guy has absolutely NO clue on what for and why people spend time and money in and on SL. All he knows are the metrics and probably some biased forums and blogs, which don´t tell the story at all. Market research and a valid customer survey obviously never were planned nor executed. And now WE pay for another idiotic Linden Lab shot into the blue.

    Unfortunately, the only ones ho could stop this guy ruining the company is the board, and the board does not seem to have too much interest in redirecting the company into market compatibility.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *