15 Years in Second Life®

15 Years in Second Life®

I’ve been a “resident” of the online virtual world known as Second Life® since June 2005. Second Life® is a rich 3D virtual world, promoting digital entertainment, social interaction and a whole lot of fun. All of the content “in-world” is created by the residents that frequent there. Linden Lab (the company who created Second Life®) give us the tools – and residents like myself create all the content for our virtual world. Everything from textures, sounds, animations, scripts and 3D models.

“Whether you are a musician, artist, coder or just curious - Second Life® really is the place to let your talents shine.”

People that design for Second Life® range from talented professional 3D artists and coders, to enthusiastic hobbyists. Some people sell their designs to help fund the cost of owning land, or to showcase their creations. Other people give items away for free to new residents. Some people even give up their day jobs to work full time as a “Designer” or “Content Provider”, working from home, becoming their own boss and controlling every aspect of their business.

I love to build in the Second Life® world, and I’ve created a whole bunch of awesome items for you to check out. From virtual pets, custom built furniture, housing, vehicles, sci-fi gadgets and more. I create all my own scripts to put into my items to make them truly come alive. I’m always looking for inspiration and ideas to create new things or improve my existing items.

With more cool technologies being added to the world of Second Life®, the future looks ever more exciting.

Where Did The Years Go?!

I remember when I first started in my Second Life® adventures, and I didn’t have a clue what to do. I think for the first two days I was walking around with a door stuck to my avatar - as I didn’t know how to use the Edit tools to remove it! People in clubs were asking me why I was wearing a door while dancing! Luckily, some helpful person explained to me how I could remove it.

I also remember trying to customise my avatar. No matter which hair shop I visited, they didn’t have the hair style I wanted - so I was bald for about two years, and I didn’t even have any eyebrows!

Clothing was merely a texture that was applied to your avatar body. And let’s face it, us guys got the short end of the stick when it came to clothing all those years ago. The ladies were all well catered for, with fancy hair, clothing and shoes. While all the guys looked like they had just come from a 1970’s thrift shop!

Then

When I joined SL in 2005, I remember vividly how much worse things were than they are today.

  • Severe lag to the point your avatar could not even move in-game,
  • “griefers” terrorising our plots of land each week, crashing sims with twisted torus prims, and let’s not forget their signature “lewd pornographic particle images” in the sky, all across the grid.
  • Inability to log in, and having to wait for hours for Linden Lab to fix the servers,
  • Constant client crashes,
  • Graphical glitches. Old timers in Second Life® will remember the “hair up my butt” bug after teleporting or logging in,
  • Inventory items magically deleting themselves!

Now

Thankfully, most of the above issues have mostly been solved, and it’s good to see that Linden Lab have worked hard on improving the world we all know and love. A lot of new awesome features have been added over the years, and I’m sure there are many more to come.

These days, things are much better. We have new mesh avatars, with better skeletons. Motion capture has made animations look more realistic. We have “Project EEP” around the corner, which will build on the old “Windlight®” system, to make environments look a lot cooler. Premium members got a boost in parcel allowance bring us to 1024 square meters for free with your premium account. A lot of the old bugs mention above have been fixed. I’m still waiting for Linden Lab to fix lag on sim crossings, so sims won’t lose my vehicles - but I can only dream.

All in all, things have got a lot better since Second Life® was first created. I’m sure there are things I’ve not covered here, but in general SL is in a far better place now than when I joined.