My prediction for 2009: The first month of 2009 Lindens will be very busy handling support questions in all possible languages that say something like this… “Why you raise did you me charging?”Localizing our content and experience in key international markets is a great objective, but with such a serious price hike - and weak argumentation for it - this should have been implemented in 2008 already. Knowing why you’ll soon be billed 66% extra is ‘key experience’, right?
Update: LL just released a time estimate on inserting script limitations, which differs a lot from the initinal “Before January 5th, we’ll tell you what the script limitations will be.” Timing for Script Limits:
In Q1, we will be gathering data on script load, and sharing this usage data with the community before deciding what the most appropriate limits are.
In Q2, we expect there to be Viewer changes to allow you to monitor your script usage against those limits.
In Q3 we will begin enforcing script limits.
So, err, although you get a “delay” or “free pass” off 6 months, you still don’t know what exactly the products “OpenSpace”, “Homestead” or even “Full Sim” are…. . Pretty nice to make your decisions upon when purchasing one, right? :D
But what if it’s really true, that Linden Lab can not supply enough L$ at the moment to keep the lindeX stable, because of .. let’s call it “an unexpected error that caused an insufficiency in funds”?
Grand Theft Avatar by Second Front
In Second Life, Lynden Labs owns huge amounts of land, makes their own laws and mints their own currency. They are, in effect, a nation-state. On April 14th, 2008, Second Front raided the Lynden Treasury. We plotted, we attacked and we freed the Lynden Dollars. Presented as a live performance at a panel discussion hosted at the San Francisco Art Institute, we impersonated the panelists to disguise our true identities in this historic raid. is what can be read at Second Front’s blog. So many questions arise: might there be a slight change “Lynden” is a codeword? But for what or whom? And what did Second Front do with the loot? And is this in any way related to the current conversion rates for the Linden Dollar?
PS. Should I make ‘making vintfalken.com wider’ a priority and screw up the layout of all my previous blogposts, or should allow blip.tv smaller embed sizes? I kinda still like how it is now, it fits perfectly well on an iPhone in vertical position. And “less widespread” is an easier read? :/
Please be aware that the Islands Added figures are not currently an accurate reflection of short term change and are therefore misleading. This is because of the way in which they are calculated and will tend to cause the figures to look significantly worse than they actually are (either by overcounting in some cases or under counting in others). In addition, the many Openspace conversions will significantly drop the total island count exaggerating the change in numbers. We are looking at changing this page to provide more accurate data soon.
We were already wondering how Lindens would turn this numbers to “the optimistic side” using the Art of Statistics, leaving out the voids converted to either Homestead or 1/4th a full simulator, the openspaces that are abandoned or ordered to be put to sleep by it’s owners. But I guess however they did it, they did it wrong: Miss Tateru over at Massively reports that Linden Lab just between December 22 & 23 Linden Lab has decommissioned more than 23,000 simulators in the space of 24 hours. The economics stats page now shows that “islands added” for the month of December stands at “-24562″ which leaves 0 “islands owned” by the Residents. Better log in and go check if your favourite islands are still there? ;)
Really, Lindens, when gaming the numbers, one normally makes it such that the numbers are positive! Might there be a big red button that says ‘emergency exit: delete all’ that was pressed by accident? Or is this a human error or machine bug? I hope this is NOT ‘the more accurate data’ Lindens are talking about. Regardless, if possible, dear Lindens, please return the numbers to their normal state showing “islands bought - islands dropped = islands added during month” so we can continue panicking over what you’re ‘openspaces pricing & policy change’ has caused. Kthxbye.
Shawn is grieving due to the death of his lover in a mysterious car accident. He’s slowly learning how to cope with the loss until few, rather strange incidents makes him convinced that his dead lover is trying to contact him, to tell him something important: the truth about her death… . This leads him to club ‘The Cut’, it’s owner Rico Constantine and revenge.
Although I find “The Cut” ’s intro less compelling, the second part of this Second Life machinima definitely is ‘must-see’. With it’s dark imagery - same style as Krrish Spyker’s “The Visitor” and more dialogues and story line, Krrish is advancing with huge leaps. Something we can only cheer about. ;) Make sure to watch Krrish Spyker’s “The Cut” in full quality when enjoying it on YouTube!
The above machinima is ‘cut short’ to fit the 10 minutes video limit of YouTube. The complete ‘The Cut’ larger, in better quality and with credit roll can be found on Vimeo. (Thanks for that update, Mr Krrish! ;))
Yeey, Greenies (teleport-linkie) made it into the Winterfaire Hot Spot Venues selection. No wonder if you see the work creative geniuses Pavig Lok, Littletoe Bartlett and My Mackenzie have put into making sure the sim is ready for a ‘cosy virtual christmas’. Giant Mistletoe, pretty socks, a lovely xmas tree, lots of gifts, gingerbread men, … . And the tons of “stuff to do’s” that are planned by Miss Angelina Rhode! More information after this advertisement:
Virtual Xmas Gifts
There are quite some ‘freebie’ gifts to discover in occasion of the winter holidays. Find warm cosy slippers, complete outfits, … . You can start off by searching in the obvious locations - like, err.. the gifts under the xmas tree - but it’s worth to click around at Greenies too! ;)
Saturday, December 20th, between 12 noon and 2 pm SLT: Help us decorate for the upcoming holidays. Pavig and LittleToe will be on hand to put up some merry swag and help you put up some of your own ornaments. DJ Sarlah Maggs will be providing the music to get everyone in the mood.
Monday, December 22, 12 noon to 3 pm SLT: there will be a big party on the Greenies kitchen table from, hosted by Angelina Rhode with DJ Krakov Letov. Winners of the Greenies Virtual Holiday Decoration Contest will be announced and fabulous prizes handed out.
Lindens unravelled the new design for secondlife.com portal ft. Big SpaceShip. Behold! They are as kind to ask us if we like. Hmmmm. Let me think about that. NO! And it seems neither does the rest of the crowd. Why not? I can think of numerous reasons, but here’s my top 3 on why this page is FAIL:
It’s f*cking _flat_. You’re trying to sell a 3D!!!! world. Right. Black background. Sweet, and so web 2.0…. *rolls eyes* If you add at least a gradient (to create a sense of depth) or reflections. Same for your ‘photographs’. I can from head advise 20 people who’d produce more appealing content with no post-processing.
Where did the content go? When I visit your homepage, I want to know what’s the latest news, how many people are there online, how are we doing, … . I don’t mind if you game those numbers & stories, but at least show them. If I need click thrice to find those, just nvm. Like euhm… what if I’m not interested in Second Life for play, flirt, shop or dance?
I hate scrolling. More and more people are using mobile devices or ’smaller’ portable laptops to browse the webs. Your client might not be suited for those devices, but you do want to leave a good impression, no? Give every ’screen’ it’s function or move it out. If it’s just for showing of graphics quality - yeah right - move it to the showcase will you. Will save me my scrolling trauma. And if I am forced to scroll after all, vertical direction, please!
Cuddo’s though on not selling land on your front page anymore! That’s one hoax less. :D Oh, if you want to see it ‘full screen’, just take off the ‘?w=300&h=193″ hspace=”10″‘ and you get this. Yikes! Big Spaceship design disaster.
Believe me, you can’t live your Second Life to the max until you realise and accept the following:
Whatever happens in-world stays in-world gets published on the web.
The myth of total anonymity shall be kept alive.
Breasts are squared (until you take a closer look) and push-up bra’s are default.
Sex is not defined at birth. Often, it’s not defined at all.
Drama is a skill. Admire those who can. From a large distance.
Eventually, all things will rezz. (Or not.)
Remember, deep down, we all share the same mesh.
Get a First Life for Sunday Evenings.
Penises, pigs and you can fly.
Mile High is your best guaranty for privacy.
Got any more indispensable knowledge needed to appreciate Second Life that both ‘Praddles’ and me forgot about? We both have comments! ;)
Inspired by Prad Prathivi’s ‘Rules of Second Life’ where Mr Prathivi shares wisdoms such as “15. You have enough clothes.”, “16. You have too many shoes.” and “46. Putting on a tail and ears and purring a lot doesn’t make you cute.” Don’t worry about #46 all to much. Mr. Prad forgot to mention ‘46 bis’: “Good guns on girls guarantee cuteness.” ;)
I probably won’t need to tell you how focussed a lot of ‘virtual world users’ are on making Real Life cash. Often the first question Mentors hear is “How do I make money?” - recently, but only temporarily replaced with how do I find virtual love - and ‘how to get rich’, ‘make linden dollars’, ‘free money’, ‘get linden dollars’, … can often be found in my blog’s keyword search results (and I’m not even aiming at those). Yet, there’s more functionality to ‘virtual currencies’ than just earning it and then converting it to real life ‘hard cash’.
Juho Hamari writes about those reasons for introducing virtual currencies at the Virtual Economy Research Network Blog. Separating those different uses of virtual currencies in three major strategies - which can be used separately or on it’s own - you get:
Virtual Currencies by Strategy
Acquisition of users - Reward existing users with payments in a virtual currency for bringing in new members. Better give those new members a ’starter budget’, so they quickly get accustomed to shopping & paying for stuff in-world. Life is more fun if you have some money to spend, goes for the virtual life too!
Retention of users - Maybe the most important is the addition to the ‘perceived value’: “Oh my god! I have 7000 Linden Dollars in my balance. I’m rich here!” Nobody would leave a world where he’s rich, right? You can also reward users witha virtual currency for good behaviour, achieving a certain mission, helping others or spending a large amount of time in your world. This will level out the difference between users that invest a lot of time and users that invest a lot of real life cash into this virtual world.
Monetization - Strangely enough, most Linden Lab uses for monetization are not listed in Juho Hamari’s overview: Get a percentage on the trading of the ‘virtual currency’ to a ‘real currency’ and vice versa. Allow users to pay their user fee and virtual land (*cough* server space *cough*) in this virtual currency. Charge the virtual currency for certain inworld services such as owning groups, texture uploads, … . (often referred to as ’sinks’).
Virtual Currencies by characteristics
Mr. Hamari also stresses that a Virtual World can have multiple virtual currencies and rule sets. Any combination of the ones below is possible:
Time Currency / Purchased Currency / Earned Currency (by missions, good behaviour, …)
Interchangeable currencies / Currencies that allow you to purchase a specific set of items/services
Exchangeable to a ‘real’ currency / Just for inworld use
I really suggest you go and read Juho Hamari’s overview, as it makes our Second Life economy look pretty simple! That is, if you think out the whole ‘Own or rent Virtual Land’ part of it.
Mr. Hamari also offers a whole lot of ideas still unexplored by Linden Lab. Maybe the ‘time credit’ isn’t such a great idea - *waves at the campers*, but a little incentive when you rezz your first prim, create your first group, send your first Instant Message, upload your first texture, make your first ‘Second Friend’? Non-transferable though, to prevent abuse and to be spend at ‘Linden Government Owned Shops’ where they offer items from starting virtual world designers? Or that they can use to pay their first months of virtual world rent? Or assigning a ‘noob’ to a mentor and giving the mentor a financial reward when that n00b becomes a ‘True Resident’? Maybe we’re not using the LS that we love so much to the max! ;)
If this isn’t futuristic, I don’t know what is. An awesome blonde blend of Hackers, Mad Max and Fashion Shoot gone terribly wrong. Mr Philip Rosedale - aka Philip Linden - at the ‘real’ Burning Man 2008 as shot by ‘Gabe Kirchheimer‘.