Round Up of News About “Second Life 2” from the Lindens

Jo Yardley’s Round-Up of SL2 News
Jo Yardley of the 1920s Berlin Project has been gathering official news from the Lab about Second Life 2 at her blog, Jo Yardley’s Second Life:

Ebbe talks to SL users about SL2
In this post, she compiles another Ebbe Altberg tweet on SL2 and some of his comments in the official Second Life forum. (Warning: 59 page comment thread)

Ebbe Altberg talks to Voices of VR
She also excerpts some of Ebbe Altberg’s most significant remarks on SL2 from his recent appearance on the Voices of VR Podcast.

Second Life 2 Scheduled for 2016 Launch
Jo also links to an interview with Ebbe Altberg from The Next Web where he states that SL2 is currently scheduled for a 2016 launch.

Other Reactions from Around the Web
Gawker Media’s I09.com went tabloid with their editor Annalee Newitz’s post “Is Second Life About to Become a Ghost World?” What’s most interesting about the article (other than confusing High Fidelity and SL2) was the parade of I09 regular commenters lining up to assure each other that they are so cool that they’ve not heard of Second Life in ten years, and if they ever tried it, it was only for an hour or so before they realized it totally sucked.

My favorite clueless comment: “I thought second life was dead ten years ago? Some librarians were using at the college I was working at years ago, and even then I thought… nah… no one is using this. There’s no real porn aspect to it.”

No new content at all was added by the Daily Dot’s article on SL2, “Second Life Announces Plans to Relaunch with Oculus Rift Support”, which completely misses that Second Life supports the Oculus Rift right now. If Linden Lab does hit their promised 2016 launch date for SL2, I predict by that point people will be going “Occulus what? Was he a Transformer, dude?”. The hype cycle is ruthless, as long time residents of Second Life know.

The video game website Polygon regurgitates the Linden Lab press release in their post “Second Life Studio Working on a Spiritual Sequel” and illustrates Second Life with a picture from 2004:

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A Bit More From Twitter
Ebbe Altberg popped up to answer a few more questions on Twitter since this Saturday.

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Finally, Ebbe Altberg makes it clear, that at least on Twitter, he’s not Ebbe Linden.

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Lastly, we have the full text of an email Peter Gray Linden (Linden Lab’s Director of Global Communications) has been sending out to anyone who’s approached him with concerns about SL2:

Linden Lab is working on a next generation virtual world that will be in the spirit of Second Life, an open world where users have incredible power to create anything they can imagine and content creators are king. This is a significant focus for Linden Lab, and we are actively hiring to help with this ambitious effort. We believe that there is a massive opportunity ahead to carry on the spirit of Second Life while leveraging the significant technological advancements that have occurred since its creation, as well as our unparalleled experience as the provider of the most successful user-created virtual world ever.

The next generation virtual world will go far beyond what is possible with Second Life, and we don’t want to constrain our development by setting backward compatibility with Second Life as an absolute requirement from the start. That doesn’t mean you necessarily won’t be able to bring parts of your Second Life over, just that our priority in building the next generation platform is to create an incredible experience and enable stunningly high-quality creativity, rather than ensuring that everything could work seamlessly with everything created over Second Life’s 11 year history.

Does this mean we’re giving up on Second Life? Absolutely not. It is thanks to the Second Life community that our virtual world today is without question the best there is, and after 11 years we certainly have no intention of abandoning our users nor the virtual world they continually fill with their astounding creativity. Second Life has many years ahead of it, and in addition to improvements and new developments specifically for Second Life, we think that much of the work we do for the next generation project will also be beneficial for Second Life.

It’s still very early days for this new project, and as we forge ahead in creating the next generation virtual world, we’ll share as much as we can.

If we had one message to share with Second Life users about this new project at this point, it would be: don’t panic, get excited! Again, Second Life isn’t going away, nor are we ceasing our work to improve it. But, we’re also working on something that we think will truly fulfill the promise of virtual worlds that few people understand as well as Second Life users.

Best,
Peter

Peter Gray | Director of Global Communications
Linden Lab | Makers of Shared Creative Spaces

Peter Gray’s (Peter Linden in world) letter first appeared in excerpts at New World Notes, then completely at Living in a Modem World. I’d like to thank Leslea Aldrin for passing along a complete copy.

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