Second Life is an online virtual world where people can meet each other and create their own content. It has already been around since 2003. I never had a look at it. This most likely because of the comments that I heard from Rob about it.
On one side he was amazed about the possibilities to create content in Second Life and the creativity of people connected to that. Basically you can create almost anything… clothes, houses, furniture, boats, trees. It seems that imagination is the limit here. And by scripts that you can add to the items that are created you can make them usable. For instance, by scripts you can sit on a chair in all kinds of poses, you can swim in water, you can work at a forge and so on and so on.
On the more negative side Rob told that the Second Life environment was completely ruined by jerks and misbehaving people who ruined the fun of others. This was among other reasons that many people turned away from Second Life and Rob with them. He said that it must be at least 9 years ago that he was for the last time there.
But some very beautiful pictures I have seen made me curious, so I decided to have a look at it. If not good, all I would have to do is delete the viewer from my computer (the “viewer” is the client application that you need to access the online world of Second Life).
So please meet the character that I created in Second Life:
The possibilities to create a character are endless. I had great fun with creating her and I think I managed a bit to make her look like myself. And I am pretty sure if I would really put more effort into it I would even get closer to it.
Apart from the character, the choices of clothes is really completely endless. And that is pretty awesome for someone who likes clothes as much as I do (Marion had a great influence in that ).
Let me show some examples of clothes my character can wear.
Clothes are available in almost every possible style one can think of… the latest fashion, jeans & demin, beach & sports wear, classy and formal, seductive and sexy. All these clothes are made by the Second Life citizen themselves. Just as in normal live (or “first life” or “real life” as they call it in Second Life) the quality differs from lousy to good and extreme beautiful.
Some of these clothes are for free, but most you have to buy. Oh, wait a minute! Buying? For that you need money!
Correct. And here we come to what makes Second life roll (and bring profit to the company behind Second Life). Second Life has it own currency, the so called Linden $. With this currency you can buy things the people sell in their shops (which can be clothes or furniture and anything else up to complete houses and castles).
You can earn these Linden $ by doing jobs in Second Life, as an help desk manager in a shop for instance. But there is a more simple and faster way: Buy it directly from Linden Labs (the company behind Second Life) with a credit card or through Pay Pal (and there more payment sources). This is one way Linden Labs makes profit from Second Life.
Another way is renting land to Second Life citizens where they can places houses or anything they would like to do there. For this you need a paid account for Second Life. You pay a small amount of (real life) money for that every month and that gives you certain privileges over none paying citizens as direct support and the privilege to rent land.
One of the nicest things of Second Life is that you can meet people literally from all over the world. In the short time that I am there, I spoke with people from all kind of origins. Alaska, Canada, Brazil, Mexico, Turkey, Bulgaria, Italy to name a few.
Most of them a very friendly and decent folks. A joy to talk with. I have a learned a lot about other countries and their cultures.
Sure, there are jerks like everywhere else. I just ignore them. They keep bothering me, I block and mute them. And for the few with discriminating or racist slurs, there is the option to report them with Linden Labs, who will look into it and ban them from Second Life if the claim was correct.
But as said, most people are very friendly. I had some real great chat about all kind of subjects like religion, politics, culture, art, music and many more things. That is the nicest thing of having some many people around you. There is so much knowledge and experience.
There are many things to see in Second Life. There are places where people reconstructed places and buildings from the “real world”. The monastery of St. Micheal is an example of this.
Some people made very realistic looking area’s after their own fantasy, such as “West of the Rain” and “Netherwood”.
And so there are area’s for role players were you can be an elf, drow, dwarf or gnome. “Avilon” comes to mind. And oh, there are area’s with zombies and vampires!
And so there many more things for people to enjoy. Large parks, harbours, airports, jungles, forests, castles, rail road stations and much more.
It amazes me to see the creativity of people with what they build things in Second Life. They put a lot of time and effort in it. And yes, the pictures of landscapes I am placing with this article are places made by citizens of Second Life. Apart from resizing there was no processing the pictures with Photoshop or anything like. This is how it is out there. It is really amazing!
And yes, I do know that there are also many awful and ugly places there. But you learn to pass them and ignore. Just fly over them… Yes, you can fly in Second Life :-). Beside that there is a very nice way of travelling in Second Life. When you found an interesting place, you can create a landmark in your inventory. Just clicking it and you travel back to the location of the landmark. And it is very nice that you can share these landmarks with others.
I also do know that there is more erotic side to Second Life, as there is a more darker side to Second Life. But I choose not to get involved in that. And that is simple, every area in Second Life has a qualification (G = General, M = Mature, A = Adult). You can simple define that you don’t want to able to enter area’s with a certain qualification. So uncheck adult in the preferences of the viewer and you won’t be able to enter an adult area. To that: If it is not clear to Linden Labs that you are an adult (18+), you won’t be able to enter an adult are at all.
For the rest, see something you don’t like: leave! Simple as that.
For me Second Life will be for that time that I will visit it a place to meet nice people and explore amazing area’s :-).
(Credit screen shots: Marissa)
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