Second Life: Next Generation Platform Update 2015

I started this series with: Second Life: Educational Community Update 2015 March. This article is about part of what I gleaned from the speech about the coming Second Life 2.0 or as the Lab calls it: The Next Generation Platform (NGP).

Kwai in the Mystical Sky Castle IV

Kwai in the Mystical Sky Castle IV by Bernard Broono, on Flickr

What’s Coming?

We haven’t heard much about what they are building into NGP for months. In his speech for VWBRE Ebbe Altberg (Linden) makes it clear that all technology being developed by the Lab is for both NGP and Second Life (SL). This doesn’t mean everything being developed for NGP is going to make it into Second Life or vice-versa. Nor does it imply how everything is implemented in Second Life will be similarly implemented in NGP. But, there are interesting clues as to what’s currently happening in both. 

Chat is being improved in SL. NGP will have the same chat delivery challenges. So, it seems reasonable to figure what is learned in SL will be applied to NGP. We may see a very different backend developed for NGP. Or we may learn the SL chat backend has been built into something that can work for both. I think the later would be a smarter solution.

Inventory is another example. The Lab has learned that we have huge inventories. Creative types often have multiple avatars as part of their inventory control system. And having an inventory with 100,000 items is not that uncommon. The number of inventories that number in the tens of thousands is probably astounding. Expect far better inventory management tools in NGP and new ways of making outfits, managing them, and wearing them. Don’t expect those features to migrate to SL.

The Marketplace… the Lindens are changing how the Marketplace works. We see changes in the project named: Viewer Managed Marketplace. It seems reasonable to me that the programming interface between the viewer and marketplace will be the same for both SL and NGP.

I think it makes sense to reuse a store that works. While I think how well the marketplace works is  debatable it does work. Starting over with a whole new marketplace? That seems like a lot of work for a group that already has a ton to do.

We might have products from both SL and NGP in the same store as a marketing tactic for NGP. Sort of a strategy of see how much better this is? But, maybe not. We know the Lab is not likely to allow more ‘product decision’ complication. Mesh clothes and avatars are confusing enough. Having to also figure out which world a product is for may be too much complication. So, depending on which world you log into or select, you’ll see only products for that world. In which case a marketing advantage for SL is see how much more stuff we have…


There is more to come in subsequent articles. In this one we see that Linden technology is not exclusive to either NGP or SL. It is shared. But, not all tech is applicable to both worlds. Nor will mutually applicable tech be implemented the same way in each world. I am expecting different users interface for most features.

3 thoughts on “Second Life: Next Generation Platform Update 2015

  1. Here are some questions.

    1. Is the NGP going to be optimized for headsets like Oculus or traditional two dimensional platforms?

    2. How do the graphics look? From what I have seen, the characters looks more cartoonish and emphasize things like new formals of animated visual communications.

    3. Could it be that the NGP is essentially Second Life 2.0 with some technology improvements for mesh rendering, etc.., and the hype about it being a radically different platform just hype?

    I suspect that the real value of the NGP may be in not calling it Second Life (or 2.0) and start with an entire new name to avoid all the negative publicity which the term Second Life still delivers., especially if Linden is aiming to be acquired by Facebook or even Microsoft or Google which I still think is a medium term goal.

    • 1 – Keep reading coming articles.
      2 – Where have you seen any NGP images? May be a link? Or are you thiking of HyFy?
      3 – I doubt it. The avatar, skeleton, scripting, better mesh support… all suggest a radically different back end. Still the final result may look much like SL to some users.

      You may be right about the acquisition angle. But, we have no evidence either way. People have also made a good case for it not being an LL goal.

  2. Pingback: Second Life: Next Generation Platform Update-IX 2015 | Nalates' Things & Stuff

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