Placeness is a feature, not the point

 Posted by (Visited 14896 times)  Game talk  Tagged with:
Feb 242010

so rather than worrying about getting a virtual world in a browser has #slviewer2 side stepped by becoming a mixed media browser?

– Ian Hughes aka @epredator


Plenty of analysis is out there now on the new SL viewer — which is, undoubtedly, a big step forward. Full web functionality on a prim including Flash — check out Habbo Hotel running on a wall inside SL! A usable interface! Non-programmery design!

But the answer is still no, because for better or worse, virtual worldness is increasingly a feature of a website, not a destination in its own right. Placeness is a value-add to something else — a game, a community, etc. And adoption is driven by the something else, not by the placeness.

To phrase that differently: The new viewer makes Web integration a feature of SL. Which is a great value-add for SL people. But it is not a value-add for Web users. Wagner James Au breaks it down into a series of questions, but fundamentally the question a new user asks is “why?” And for a web user, the first question is “why go somewhere else?”

The SL experience might be a value add for Web users, but for that to happen, SL would have to be a feature of “something elses” on the Web, and as Mitch Wagner points out, it’s not.

Don’t get me wrong — a great step. But I would be surprised if Linden isn’t working on the larger problem.

A whole bunch of news tidbits

 Posted by (Visited 5842 times)  Game talk  Tagged with: , , , ,
Jan 052010

Boy, have I neglected the blog. Here’s some stuff I said to myself, “I should blog that” that flew by.

Philip Rosedale leaves Linden

 Posted by (Visited 5525 times)  Game talk  Tagged with: ,
Oct 162009

As a full-time job, anyway. There are theories as to what he’ll do and elegiac meditations on his legacy, and among long-time users of Second Life, there are crises of confidence.

Philip is a crazy dreamer, so I am positive that whatever he does, he’ll keep doing that much: dreaming crazy dreams, and more power to him. 🙂

Here’s the link to his official announcement.

A glimpse into SL’s CS calls

 Posted by (Visited 6638 times)  Game talk  Tagged with: ,
Sep 302009

Tyche Shepherd has posted some great analysis and charts that give a glimpse into what it takes to run Second Life in terms of customer service.

Last week I mentioned that I had been storing Second Life Incident Reports since the beginning of the month to build up a database similar to my Region Survey Database. A forum lurker who wants to remain anonymous, who read this , contacted me in-world and sent me the full past 28 months worth of published incident reports (21600+). I cannot thank the person enough for providing this data…

In total I now have data which seems complete from 7th Jun 2007 up to the current time, at the moment this comes to 21665 published incidents.

What did the naughty people do ? – SLUniverse Forums.

For contrast, I just saw a Tweet from the #nygames hashtag (NY Games conference of some sort?) saying that

#nygames Playfish uses 3 support people to support is 50 million players – focused on users helping users to hold costs and scale up

Obviously, very different circumstances, but it still makes you think…

Imitating life TOO closely

 Posted by (Visited 6425 times)  Game talk  Tagged with: ,
Jul 282009

Spotted via New World Notes: Ryker Beck’sTutorial For Photoshopping Avatar Skin Imperfections.

Yes, that is right, we are now to the point where we not only have to cover over the imperfections in real people, but also in non-real people.

This is a good example of what I mean when I talk about the fact that we have imported a bit more of real life into virtual worlds than may be strictly healthy. On the Internet now, people now know you’re a dog thanks to voice, increased realism, etc — but at least you’re an airbrushed dog.