Back To The Future


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A review of the most innovative technologies that were launched in the Second Life® environment and how it completely modified and transformed it.

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Back To The Future

  1. 1. “Back To The Future” <ul><li>Gwyneth Llewelyn </li></ul><ul><li>Innovation Week ’08 </li></ul><ul><li>Orange Island, September 29, 2008 </li></ul>
  2. 2. What innovations changed Second Life® completely ? <ul><li>Clues to find them: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“Disruptive innovation”: suddenly a host of new things start to become common, when they were unthinkable before </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Fads that never go out of ‘fashion’ </li></ul></ul>
  3. 3. Since we just have one hour.... <ul><li>... we’ll focus on the kinds of innovations that unforeseenly changed the way we think about Second Life® </li></ul><ul><li>Often Linden Lab introduced them with completely different goals </li></ul><ul><li>Residents, however, transformed them and created something new </li></ul>
  4. 4. The Economy <ul><li>Second Life started... without the L$! </li></ul><ul><li>Allowed residents to exchange goods and services using a micropayment currency </li></ul><ul><li>Things like the LindeX (after the Gaming Open Market exchange) were unplanned and unexpected! </li></ul>
  5. 5. Lessig’s IP-on-a-prim <ul><li>Intended to allow deeper-grained control in collaborative building </li></ul><ul><li>Instead: it made SL an one-of-a-kind virtual world, the single one featuring only user-generated content! </li></ul>
  6. 6. Animations <ul><li>Introduced in June 2004 </li></ul><ul><li>Linden Lab thought about “emotes” (inside gestures) </li></ul><ul><li>But... it was used by the dance industry </li></ul><ul><li>... and made the whole sex industry go through a Renaissance! </li></ul>
  7. 7. Flexible prims (flexies) <ul><li>A nice addition to tortured prims allowing new types of building elements (e.g. flags, awnings...) </li></ul><ul><li>Totally used by the fashion industry! </li></ul><ul><li>The same applies, of course, to sculpties </li></ul>
  8. 8. Web connectivity <ul><li>June 2004: XML-RPC allows webservers to communicate with in-world objects (before that: email) </li></ul><ul><li>Planned to allow simple interactions with remote databases </li></ul><ul><li>... but we got web-based shops, market exchanges, social site mashups... </li></ul>
  9. 9. Voice <ul><li>Planned to “keep up with the competition” who used voice for gaming purposes </li></ul><ul><li>But we got business conferences, seminars, live music, even talk shows... </li></ul><ul><li>LL is the world’s second largest VoIP operator after Skype (in just one year!) </li></ul>
  10. 10. Streaming media <ul><li>Perhaps thought to allow people to tell their friends what they were listening to... </li></ul><ul><li>Generated a huge music economy, where DJs and live musicians now work full time, and radios and in-world TV stations offer regular features </li></ul>
  11. 11. Resident innovations! <ul><li>Mostly they addressed SL’s limitations by clever tweaking of certain features, exploiting bugs, or thinking out-of-the-box </li></ul><ul><li>Some have become so popular and universal that residents think it was “planned this way”! </li></ul>
  12. 12. The Ugly Avatar <ul><li>Newer generations will never remember Ruth any more, but... </li></ul><ul><li>we all have prim hair, shoes, and skirts </li></ul><ul><li>animation overriders & dance bracelets </li></ul><ul><li>avatar radars </li></ul><ul><li>skins </li></ul>
  13. 13. Extending Second Life <ul><li>If Linden Lab were any other company (think Kaneva!), these would be part of their services: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Snapzilla </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The online webshops </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>SL Profiles </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>LindeX is just LL’s clone of the GOM </li></ul></ul>
  14. 14. libOpenMV <ul><li>Formerly known as libsecondlife, this is a re-engeneering solution to talk to SL without using a 3D viewer </li></ul><ul><li>It brought us CopyBot and LandBots... but also all sorts of new ways of get rid of LL’s imposed limits on LSL </li></ul><ul><li>Statistics, metrics, mapping, invites... </li></ul>
  15. 15. The future?... <ul><li>As we will see later, new technologies might become the next ‘disruptive technology’ </li></ul>
  16. 16. <ul><li>Thanks for your time! </li></ul><ul><li>Feel free to IM me or email me at [email_address] </li></ul>