Thread: Second Life
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Old 25th July 2007, 09:38 PM   #15
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Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Phoenix, AZ
Posts: 917
Default Re: Second Life

Second Life is a persistent online world built entirely from user-created content. More than just user-created however, the content is user-owned... meaning, users retain full rights to what they make and are not only allowed but actively encouraged to buy, sell and share what they’ve created. The in-world currency is directly exchangeable for US dollars and other currencies. Right now, the currency exchange rate is about $270 L to $1 USD, making the in-world currency slightly higher valued than many 3rd world nations.

Second Life often gets lumped in as a game or MMORPG, but most “residents” (users) would generally argue that terminology, as there are no high scores, no missions or objectives, no experience points nor any of the other things that would make it a “game” in the traditional sense. No one is quite sure what to call it, but many researchers and the news media have been using the term “social media platform”, which is probably as good a description as any. Because there are so many ways to use it for communication and collaboration as well as entertainment, many schools and universities as well as big corporations are experimenting with it. Harvard, Ohio University and many other schools have built working campuses where they are experimenting with remote-learning. It’s even gotten enough attention that Reuters has an in-world news desk.

In fact, this video from Reuters is an excellent “whirlwind tour” if you’ve never seen SL before:

Second Life is a really great outlet for creativity because you can make pretty much, well... anything. You can upload textures, video and even animations, and everything can be scripted to do stuff. I’ve made fish that really swim, cockroaches, spaceships... you name it.

If you want to try it, here’s the link to the client, which is free to download:

There’s no charge for basic accounts. It only costs money if you want to buy stuff from other residents, own land or upload textures. AC3D is a big savings there... lets you make sure you got it right *before* you upload!
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