On Second Life

The NY Times on Second Life and Marketing. [Wikipedia link to Second Life]

This parallel universe, an online service called Second Life that allows computer users to create a new and improved digital version of themselves, began in 1999 as a kind of online video game.

But now, the budding fake world is not only attracting a lot more people, it is taking on a real world twist: big business interests are intruding on digital utopia. The Second Life online service is fast becoming a three-dimensional test bed for corporate marketers, including Sony BMG Music Entertainment, Sun Microsystems, Nissan, Adidas/Reebok, Toyota and Starwood Hotels.

Am not a big fan of Second Life. Downloaded it, registered and tried running it. But the application hogs the system’s resources, and I cannot do anything else while running the application. I haven’t really found a stripped down version. Besides, unless there’s a specific event that I want to attend, I get bored rather easily. I struggled with the flying, moving backward and forward. I suppose once you warm up to it, it would get easier. But what’s the point. Unless Second Life becomes a very quick install and has a UI that would get you straight to a venue instead of making you jump, hop and landing on a water body because you have no idea how to “fly”, I see limited use. Perhaps if it became more like an IRC client – where you can join channels with relative ease, Global Voices could even consider a more robust presence there. (Is that already possible?) I know there are some ideas floating around. Reuters has a news desk for Second Life – which I think is rather interesting.

The Economist covered it just recently. (sub required) Perhaps all the excitement is justified and I am not able to enjoy it. But for people with limited RAM and system processors, Second Life is simply frustrating at the end of it.

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0 Responses to On Second Life

  1. ang says:

    Neha.. what are your pc specs? what’s your ram like? and i do sl on a 64k cell phone connection… the fact is that some people are skeptical about metaverse.. so why bother is the atittude.. im seeing… i do not deny that sl is not robust, it isnt yet. grid scalability can be an issue at times and for those of us who are genuine avatars in sl.. its really frustrating.. just one thing though.. the emotions on second life are real… and connecting second life with real life is being pursued by many.

    but we agree to disagree.


    thanks for a nice read.


  2. Pingback: Second Life - improve the newbie experience! at Almost As Good As Chocolate

  3. ang – 512, 1.5 – Which I believe should be more than adequate given I am on a 2MB connection. I am not disputing that the emotions and relationships are real and have depth. I only think that the user experience is not particularly positive in the first few hours which is crucial. See, it’s also crucial that existing SL users not get defensive about metaverse. Unless feedback is accepted constructively without attacking “perceived” attitude. I don’t see how SL can be part of my functional online routine without dealing some of the basic issues.