Second Life Needs YOU!
(I will do my best to keep my opinions out of this post while promising I will voice it sometime soon in some other more appropriate venue. For this I will stick to the facts. JL)
New Second Life platform to come from Linden Lab
Many of you have heard by now that Ebbe Linden (CEO @ LL) slipped news at Friday’s Third Party Viewer Meeting that LL is moving resources to developing a new platform, a next-generation platform built “in the spirit of Second Life.” I will provide links to related media and articles at the bottom of this post, and I highly encourage you to read them to form your own opinions. But for now, here are a few facts as we know them.
- The current plan is that the new platform will not be open source at least initially. (This means there will be no Third Party Viewer alternatives at least initially, and there will be a new viewer built by LL.) This could change over the course of time.
- LL intends to continue maintaining and developing Second Life while they develop the new platform and will operate them in parallel even after the new platform is launched. SL will remain as long as it is profitable for LL to continue operating it.
- The new platform will be built “in the spirit of Second Life” and will put focus on content creators as the primary customer. LL wants to make it so good SL users will want to migrate to it.
- Assets (inventory) from Second Life will “likely” not be transferable because they do not want to constrain what is possible by maintaing backwards compatibility. This wasn’t said with complete certainty, though, which suggests some content may be permitted.
- Second Life will continue to be improved, albeit on a smaller scale. Oz Linden is now Technical Director and in charge of a small team who will keep development in SL going.
- This new platform is still in very early stages, and it is unlikely even a beta will be seen before next year.
For some, this will be very exciting news and for others it will come as very scary news. For most it will create a level of uncertainty toward the future of our current virtual world. I’ve read and heard some people stating they will now stop buying content, stop building, sell their land, etc., wondering what’s the point. Please don’t do this! Whether you are on the side of keeping SL alive and well or not, this type of action/reaction is the worst you can do for all of us.
Personally, while I would love to see a new platform succeed I would also like to see Second Life thrive well into the future, but it is going to need a boost! Here is where you come in!
Where you come in!
Your opinion matters more than ever! Think of one thing, whether a feature, fix, improvement or whatever, that you feel will achieve the following goals best and drop it in a comment on this post.
- What will add the greatest value to existing users?
- What will attract new users to Second Life?
- What will improve profit margins for LL by encouraging spending among all its users? This can include anything from Premium signups to land sales to user-generated content sales.
- What can do these things without breaking existing content and without requiring changes in LL policies?
- THINK BIG
We are looking for a magic silver bullet to give Oz that can be introduced to SL to make it bigger and better than ever before!
Lets hope you have it! Good luck, and in the meantime keep doing as you always do! Also, don’t panic!
Related media and informational links:
- Video recording of the TPVM where this took place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7S-hoXupxXw (Ebbe’s bit starts aroud 58 minutes in)
- Blog post by Inara Pey (who was present): http://modemworld.wordpress.com/2014/06/21/ebbe-confirms-were-working-on-a-next-generation-platform-with-audio/
- Follow-up to the above-mentioned blog post and a letter from Peter Gray (Director of Communications at LL): http://modemworld.wordpress.com/2014/06/21/lab-were-not-giving-up-on-second-life/
- If you dare, the SLU forum thread… Although this thread is rife with every kind of reaction you can imagine, Ebbe does provide some further comment in there. Warning: put aside a half day if you intend to read through it all. http://www.sluniverse.com/php/vb/general-sl-discussion/97035-linden-lab-working-next-gen.html
- If you are interested in further reading, simply use Google. The news is all over the blog-o-sphere.
The Phoenix Firestorm Project, Inc