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Linden Lab

 

An ethereal wisp glides through a fantasy forest and then vanishes, only to reappear at your side a few seconds later. Dozens of beetles and rats creep across the floor of a decaying,decrepit building, scurrying away whenever you get near. A hideous, scaly beast chases you up hills and across regions, dodging anything that gets between it and dinner.

These experiences are possible because Linden Lab is about to unveil a new, robust pathfinding system that will allow objects to intelligently navigate around the world while avoiding obstacles.

Pathfinding is a new set of LSL calls and Viewer tools that allow for smoother and smarter movement for non-player characters and objects in Second Life. These new tools will allow Residents to create objects that move around corners, climb inclines and cross region boundaries. Newly created functions such as pursue,” “patrol,” “wander,” “evade,” and go to a specified point — all of which are particularly useful for pet, NPC and enemy behavior — will allow for non player movements and behaviors never before possible in Second Life.

Pathfinding is efficient because it allows creators to place a much larger number of moving objects in a particular area without affecting server performance. Because the algorithmic complexity is on the server side, Residents can easily script with short and intuitive LSL functions that make creating a pet that follows you around as simple as rezzing a box.

As part of the pathfinding project, Linden Lab will also introduce new Viewer-side tools that will allow Residents to more efficiently create, visualize, test and debug Pathfinding-enabled characters. These tools are not required to create pathfinding behaviors but are particularly useful to builders and experience creators in second life.    

Additional pathfinding tools, and the ability to generate your own pathing data, will be put in Beta in the coming weeks. Linden Lab will begin releasing these tools to all Residents in the next several months. You can try out the new LSL functionality in select regions for which we have prepared pathfinding data on the Wiki page: http://bit.ly/wDrWhC .

 

UPDATE: 9/20/2012 
Content Creation Best Practices Guide and FAQ Now Available


As many of you are aware, we recently released the pathfinding server code that enabled all pathfinding behaviors and LSL calls grid-wide. In the next few weeks, we will also be releasing the viewer tools for changing pathfinding attributes and visualizing the navmesh. While these tools are not necessary to create a pathfinding-enabled character, they are extremely helpful in making new content or retrofitting existing builds to work with pathfinding. You can have early access to the viewer tools by downloading the beta viewer from here.

In addition, there are many helpful pathfinding best practices articles at the Good Building Practices wiki hub. Here you will find tips and tricks about how to build and optimize content in Second Life using mesh, scripting, pathfinding, textures, and animations. Over the next several months, the Lab will continue to add additional guides, as well as a series of builder-oriented tutorial videos!

The Lab would also like to take this opportunity to answer some of the common questions that have been asked about pathfinding here. We have been very impressed by some of your pathfinding-enabled creations and can’t wait to see what else you will create once the viewer tools are released!

 

 

Linden Lab
As we head into the new year, I’d like to share some highlights from 2011, as well as a glimpse of what’s to come in 2012.

First, if you haven’t already, I hope you will explore our recently launched Linden Realms, the Lab's first-ever game prototype. For newbies, it is a very simple way to earn L$, so hop on over and start collecting gems.

One of the key goals of Linden Realms was to learn more about what tools Residents could use to develop richer experiences in Second Life — and boy, did we learn a lot! In Q1 2012 , we will be releasing new tools used to develop Linden Realms, which will allow Residents to create even richer original experiences in Second Life. To prevent abuse of these tools, we will introduce a "creators" program in which verified members will be given access to these very powerful capabilities.

In 2011, we also made strides to improve usability in Second Life.  We launched a new version of the Viewer, which allows you to customize the user interface for a more flexible workspace with drag-and-drop buttons, among other key new features. The new Viewer also makes it easier for new Residents to discover essential, basic functions — so, with the simple click of a button, you can change your appearance, go to a new location, find inworld merchants or head on over to the Second Life Marketplace.

Speaking of customization, since we deployed Mesh earlier this year, we’ve seen more than a 16 percent adoption rate. I expect this to continue to grow at a strong pace as more and more Residents take advantage of all the features available to allow you explore Second Life and create even more engaging, exciting experiences.

This past year, we also improved the customer experience with expanded Premium subscription benefits that include virtual gifts, as well as exclusive areas where you can go and create. One of the other benefits of being a Premium member is ownership of a Linden Home, which I’m pleased to report has reached an historic high. For those of you who have enjoyed owning a Linden Home and are looking for a little more real estate, you can check out what is available on the Second Life Land Store and through private-estate purchases and rentals found through Second Life Search. In 2012, you can expect to see more value added to Premium in the form of additional features and content. If you are not yet a Premium member, you can sign up here!

In 2012, the primary engineering focus of Q1 will be server side performance and fixing bugs. In fact, you may have noticed one upgrade deployed this week which should reduce the number of restarts and increase performance for all regions. This kind of work makes for a poor headline, but has enormous payoff for the customer experience. We will also continue to invest in and focus on our customer support, reducing response times and increasing satisfaction.

For landowners, existing land tier pricing will not go up in 2012. In addition, our service and quality focus in 2012 also means that we will be delivering features and policies that we believe will significantly assist merchants and landowners in running a business more profitably.

For creators our first new feature for 2012 will be pathfinding. Because worlds feel most vibrant when they are full of life, one of our next focuses for Second Life is the ability to make high-quality “life” within it. So in 2012, we will be rolling out more advanced features that will allow the creation of artificial life and artificial people to be much smoother. For starters, in Q1, we'll unveil a new, robust pathfinding system that will allow objects to intelligently navigate around the world while avoiding obstacles. Combined with the tools from Linden Realms this will make the polished creation of full MMORPG’s or people/animal simulators within Second Life easier and of high quality.

In addition to delivering new features and increasing our support for Second Life, we will be launching some completely different products next year not related to Second Life. Some of them will be very experimental, but all will fit within our company’s proud history of enabling creativity, which I hope may interest some of you.

Thank you again for being a customer have a great holiday and a Happy New Year!


Linden Lab

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We're excited to introduce Linden Realms, where Residents can dive directly into exploring the towers, caves and valleys of the Lab's first-ever game prototype. Dodge rock monsters and fierce fireballs as you cross deadly, toxic rivers to complete quests and cash in your crystals for Linden Dollars. And that's just the beginning...


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Quests take you through the basics of game-play in Second Life while you earn Linden Dollars. You’ll start at Basecamp on Tyrah’s Island, where you’ll have your pick of exciting destinations to choose from!


  • Sunspire — Investigate a tower of experiments in teleportation and astronomy.
  • Shattered Cavern — Go deep into an intricate system of caves that snake down under a small mountain.
  • Devil's Canyon — Brave a  dangerous valley of fire and rock monsters, where the courageous are rewarded.
  • Whisper Hollow — Hike through a forest full of secrets and obstacles.
  • Banshee Peak — Soar above it all at the northernmost point of the island and admire the view of Whisper Hollow.
  • Tyrah's Peak — Scale the snowy peak overlooking the center of the island and the Basecamp.
  • Dark Moon Bay — Explore this southernmost point of the island, where Tyrah wrecked her ship and hopes to eventually escape.


Our teams dove deep into the inworld creation process during development, and are eager to share some improved tools that came out of this effort. Residents will soon be able to use those tools to create even richer original experiences in Second Life.


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Dive in, explore — and experience the wonder of Linden Realms!

Linden Lab

November Update

New Viewer Gives Second Life Users a Customizable User Interface
for a More Flexible Workspace


With the launch of the new Second Life Viewer on Nov. 8, Second Life Residents can now customize their user interface for a more flexible workspace.  

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New customizable functionality includes:

  • Drag-and-drop buttons on the toolbar so Residents can change ordering, move buttons from one toolbar to another and choose which buttons appear
  • An option to choose one, two or three toolbars
  • The option to select either icons or labels


The new Viewer also makes it easy for new Residents to find the essential basic functions, as well as access more advanced functionality as they grow in Second Life.

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New-user functionality includes:


  • How-to window provides easy, step-by-step instructions for common tasks
  • Destinations button offers interesting destinations
  • Avatars button allows Residents to choose and immediately change their avatar
  • Inventory button lets Residents see the things they own
  • Shop button takes Residents to the Second Life Marketplace

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By merging the Basic and Advanced modes, users no longer need to switch between modes, which improves usability – and ultimately enhances the Second Life inworld experience.

For further details on how to get the most out of the new Second Life Viewer, please check out the following video tutorials:





Inbox Messaging Gives Second Life Residents
a More Efficient Way to Communicate
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Did you know that you are now able to send a message from your inbox to anyone in Second Life who accepts messages from you?

Whether you are a merchant and want to ask your customers about their experiences with your products, or you simply want to keep in touch with friends, the addition of the profile inbox will help you better communicate.kLQetVR0iCS67FnLYg9s4d-z4X3Z2OKZAypdseKut7V9UDaGzO3n7zDC7QMY0Ra5Ga-4aCUpjHHzCY5LGvavv88jPRbodjrc37vOxYFEo7d74EKNoQU

Because you can view and track your messages, inbox messaging also allows you to better manage conversations. And because the inbox is available on the web, you don't have to be logged in to Second Life to read and send messages.

If you would like to contact someone who is not in your friends list, you can send them a message directly from their profile by choosing “Message” from the drop-down envelope icon.gHu_AF8hpBpwpeZsA4ILfMCjCFqcnh_ScAJtLefpU_CJGj6PJbfBYiSUvN8aPy25BnumjDEmQI2evGgZyEdW0ALjD3fCr4GCTn4gBdSI2YraQuYK0pA

Although direct messages to other users don't appear in your profile feed (even if that's set to public), if you are still concerned about your privacy, your profile settings allow you to control who sends you messages and how you get notified.

Linden Lab

The Second Life economy remained stable in Q3 2011. We closed the quarter with some positive momentum, with a continued increase in registrations and a stable Linden Dollar exchange rate with slight appreciation, as well as a higher amount of Linden Dollars held by customers. Most other key metrics were consistent with recent levels.  

For a definition of the metrics in this post, please see this wiki page. Click on each image below to see a larger version.

DAILY COMPLETED REGISTRATIONS

Following the launch of our new-user registration flow, improvements to the Premium offering and the launch of mesh, we’ve seen a continued uptick in registrations throughout Q3. In fact, August was the biggest growth month for Second Life in nearly four years, with Q3 averaging 45 percent more completed registrations per day than Q1 before the new reg flow was implemented.


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AVERAGE MONTHLY UNIQUE LOGGED-IN USERS

Average monthly logged-in users increased slightly from Q2 2011.  


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USER HOURS

User hours declined slightly, remaining within 2 percent of the most recent quarter.


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AVERAGE MONTHLY ECONOMIC PARTICIPANTS

Active economic participants grew by 2.8 percent over Q2 2011.


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AVERAGE EXCHANGE RATE

The exchange rate remains very stable, strengthening slightly with a 0.5 percent appreciation in the L$ over Q2 and a 6.4 percent appreciation in the L$ over the same quarter last year.  


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*Note that the exchange rate is expressed in L$/USD, meaning larger numbers represent a lower L$ value and smaller numbers represent a higher L$ value. The average rate is calculated by dividing the total L$ exchanged through the LindeX by the total US$ exchanged through the LindeX in the quarter.

L$ SUPPLY

Money supply grew by 3.7 percent in Q3 from the prior quarter and 8.5 percent year over year, bringing the equivalent U.S. dollar value of all customer-held L$ to U.S. $29.3 million.


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*Note: From time to time we will change our reporting in order to provide the most relevant and accurate summary information for the use of merchants, landowners, content creators, and other participants in the Second Life economy. Q2 2011 is an estimate calculated based on different methodology versus previous quarters.  


LINDEX VOLUME

LindeX volume for Q3 amounted to U.S. $30 million, a 2 percent decline in line with seasonality, but 6.4 percent growth of the same quarter last year.  

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WEB MERCHANDISE SALES VOLUME

Q3 2011 web merchandise sales volume grew 2.8 percent compared with Q2 2011, and grew 30.9 percent as compared with Q3 2010.


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WORLD SIZE

World size remained consistent, with last quarter at just over 2,000 square kilometers.  


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Previously:

Q1

Q2

Rodvik Linden

Hello Everyone,

It’s been a little while since I last updated folks on Second Life.

Earlier this year, I noted several areas we would be focusing on. Let me update you on each area and share with you our plans for the remainder of the year.

But first, we’d like to give a warm welcome to our newbies! August was the biggest growth month for Second Life in nearly four years! I hope you all take the time to try out the many different activities in Second Life
there’s everything from clubbing to boating. You might even to want to try your hand at making something new. As a side note, one of the easiest ways to find new things is to check out the Destination Guide in the log-in screen of the viewer.


Now, back to our areas of focus at Linden Lab:


Usability 

With the Basic mode, which we rapidly deployed, new users can now more easily find things, move around the world and manipulate the camera. This has really helped people walk and talk, as well as getting newbies up and running. But it has its limits particularly when it comes to participating in the economy and creating things. Soon you will see us merge the Basic and Advanced modes, which will eliminate the need to switch. All functionality will be in one mode with easier-to-use controls. After these modes are merged and deployed, you can expect us to release an improved UI into the viewer. This should be a lot more flexible for user flow for all users.

Deploy Mesh

Thankfully, this massive feature got deployed on time. Many new creators joined Second Life so they can use their Mesh skills, and some of the creations I’ve seen are truly spectacular.

Improved Service

Although our response times have improved, we realize that we still have a ways to go. You can expect continued investment and focus in this area to include expanded support staffing, as well new features (similar to the estate tools we rolled out earlier this year) and revised policies to make the Second Life experience much better for customers.

Better Customer Value

Last month, we added exclusive Premium areas such as sandboxes (places where you can go and create), as well as free items. You can expect more exclusive areas, items and features in the months ahead. We have been really pleased by the positive response to Premium by our residents. In fact, last week we reached the highest number of Linden Homes ever. We hope these new Linden Home owners will enjoy their newfound land ownership and check out other ways that Land is available on the Second Life Land Store and through private estate purchases and rentals found through Second Life Search.

You can sign up for Premium right here!

Shiny New Things

Because worlds feel most vibrant when they are full of life, our next project for Second Life is the ability to make “life” within it. Second Life has more than a million real people in it every month, as well as many artificial creatures and people – however, our creation tools have not made it particularly easy for the content creators to build high-quality entities.

Over the next few months (with testing most likely starting in December), we will be rolling out a series of more advanced features. These will make the creation of artificial life and artificial people much smoother. For starters, we'll unveil a new, robust pathfinding system that will allow objects to intelligently navigate around the world avoiding obstacles. Imagine being able to create advanced pets, creatures or even a living town where non-player characters are walking about. Combined with the experience tools I mentioned above, it should soon be possible to create more advanced MMORPG’s or interactive experiences which use AI right within Second Life.

I will touch base again in a few months when we have delivered a few more things. Thank you again for being a customer! I hope you enjoy your time in Second Life, whether that has been for years or you have only just joined.

 

Rodvik

 

Linden Lab

September Update

September brings new developments to Second Life for Premium Memberships, improvements to Profiles and an update on mesh. These are all part of Linden Lab’s ongoing focus in 2011 on improving service, performance and usability.


New Premium Membership Benefits

At the beginning of September, we introduced some new benefits for Second Life Premium members. The first improvements? Exclusive gifts and Premium-only sandboxes.


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Getting access to your new Premium rewards is easy. Premium Gifts can be claimed now by members via one of the many inworld Premium kiosks, and the Premium-only Sandboxes are already open.

Even more benefits are on the way, so this is just the beginning. Read the original blog post for more details about Premium Sandboxes and Premium Gifts.


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Not a Premium Member? There couldn’t be a better time to sign up. We’re running a special limited-time promotion for new quarterly Premium memberships from now through Monday, Sept. 12 at 50 percent off the regular price.

Get Even More Out Of Social Profiles with Location Posting

September also brings a new social sharing feature to the Second Life Viewer. Residents now have the option to conveniently share where they are inworld by adding a location to their Profile posts as a tag:


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This means that people reading your posts live can teleport directly to your location and join you. Those who see your post later can also check out the location to see exactly what you were talking about even if you’re no longer there.

Of course, you can always choose not to use this feature it’s just there when you want it.

These “Locations” tags get really fun when combined with your Profile's “Nearby” feature. To check it out while you’re inworld, follow the menu Me → My Profile. Then, click on the first icon:
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Then click the second tab, “Nearby”:
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Now you’ll see posts from people nearby wherever you are inworld. Some of these posts might even be made by people in the same location at the same time you are there. It’s a great way to connect with others to start a conversation.


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You can also use this feature to browse through older posts, which can give you insights as to what kind of activities and conversations typically happen in that region. For example, you might uncover posts about recent or upcoming live music shows, hot new stores or the insider scoop on the hottest local dance clubs.

So... let people know where you hang out and why — or keep quiet, and just see what others are doing and saying.

If you haven’t heard the full story of Social Profiles, check out our post from last month for more details and the big picture.

Mesh Update


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With the arrival of mesh, a number of Residents have already started to create some impressive mesh items inworld. Since its inception, we’ve seen more than 9,000 content creators enable mesh, and more than 20,000 items have already been uploaded to the grid. And we’re looking forward to seeing what creations you make next.

There’s a lot of excitement around what mesh models can offer — for more information or to try it yourself, check out this page. You can also browse through some of the first mesh creations in our Mesh Showcase. The Lab is working on continued improvements and the next mesh release will include upgrades to how we show resource weight and land impact of objects.

Mesh rolled out in August as an added option to all inworld building tools to help Residents craft even more creations inworld. For the best mesh experience, you’ll need the current version of the Second Life Viewer (Version 3.0) or a comparable viewer.

Go create something great,

Linden Lab



Linden Lab

mixed-reality.jpg

PICTURED: Second Life Resident Keiko Takamura and her "real life" counterpart Amy E.

Linden Lab, maker of Second Life, is now casting both humans and their avatars for a new promotional campaign that will be featured on Secondlife.com and across the web.


For this campaign and a related video, we’re looking for people who are comfortable revealing their “human side” alongside their avatars in SL. This is your opportunity to participate in an extension and update to a campaign already in use on Secondlife.com and in various banner ads across the Internet. An example can be seen at: http://secondlife.com/whatis/avatar/.

This promotion aims to spotlight the diverse and creative communities in Second Life, so contact us if you’d like to share your passion for SL with the world! Whether you role-play as a Roman or robot...or just follow the latest virtual fashions and music in SL, we welcome all individuals to apply.

To be considered, please fill out this application form by noon (Pacific) on Sept. 12. All submissions will be reviewed by the creative production team for the campaign, but will remain private and undisclosed unless we receive your permission to use as part of the campaign.

We look forward to hearing from you!
Linden Lab

We’re Making Premium Better — Starting with Exclusive Gifts & Sandboxes



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We’ve been working to bring more value and features to our Second Life Premium Members. Effective immediately, we’re adding new exclusive benefits: Premium-only Gifts and Premium-only Sandboxes — and that’s just the beginning! Keep an eye out for even more surprises in the future as we continue to enhance and expand our Premium Membership offering.


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Here’s the scoop on what’s new right now:


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Exclusive Virtual Gifts


Premium members will regularly receive exclusive virtual items that you won't find anywhere else. The very first gift is a stylish set of furniture crafted by Colleen Desmoulins of The Loft. The set features a sofa, tables, plants and lamps to enhance your home’s cozy factor. You can change the look of most of the furniture to fit your home’s unique style and decor — whether you live in a Linden Home or elsewhere.


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This customizable furniture collection is the first of many Resident-created gifts Premium Members will be receiving regularly. Premium Residents can visit a virtual inworld kiosk to claim their gift now.

Premium-Only Sandboxes


Explore your creative side or just get down to the business of creating without the distractions of a more public space in one of the many Premium-only Sandboxes in Second Life. There are four new, exclusive Premium-only Sandbox Islands you can access right now to give you more room than ever to bring your creations to life. Members can visit right now.


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Keep an eye out for even more surprises in the future as we continue to enhance and expand our Premium Membership offering. Of course, Premium Members still get their own Linden Home, weekly currency rewards, Live Chat support and much more.

For more information and details, see Premium membership in the Knowledge Base.






Linden Lab

Today, mesh technology is available gridwide in Second Life. All SL users can now benefit from mesh technology, no matter what you do or where you are inworld.


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If you shop, be sure to check out items built using mesh — they can sit alongside everything else you own and love in SL, but often look superslick, and may have greater detailing or design than a similar item built without mesh.

If you build, mesh is another option to help you access unlimited creativity. All the other traditional SL building options are still intact, we’ve just added to your toolkit.

If you sell things, selling objects created using mesh is one way to diversify your offering.

If you own land, well-made mesh objects can be used to increase efficiency and maintain optimum performance on your parcel.


Make sure you use the new Viewer to view and upload mesh objects correctly; older viewers will not render objects created with mesh correctly. Please check with third-party viewers; mesh support may vary.

A More Technical Look at Mesh

You’ve probably already seen mesh technology at work in modern video games, special effects and 3D animation. The term “mesh” refers to an object that consists of polygonal geometry data. That means it is extremely flexible — and it certain situations, it can be way more efficient than the existing prims and sculpties you’ll find inworld currently. Although existing building tools and techniques may still be the best choice in certain settings. You can talk with other designers about mes here.

Mesh objects are first created in external programs, such as Blender or Maya, (check here for more information) and then imported onto the Second Life grid. Once there, mesh objects can be manipulated in pretty much the same ways you would manipulate a regular old prim. Learn more about uploading your own mesh items here.



Linden Lab

Brasil Informa

 

 

É novo no Second Life e fala português? Pode ser frustrante conhecer o SL se você não
fala inglês. Por isso, Tiamat Bingyi, residente do Second Life, junto com seus amigos da
comunidade de falantes de português, colaboraram para reunir alguns recursos úteis em
português que podem ajudar a quem é novo no SL.

Eis as recomendações:

Fórum oficial do Second Life

Esse é o fórum oficial do Second Life para a comunidade de língua portuguesa. É o lugar para
conhecer outros residentes em seu idioma!

Blog Mundo Linden

Liberato Lindman mantém esse blog, um dos mais antigos em atividade. Ele trata do SL em
geral e inclui tutoriais, machinimas, informações sobre a economia do SL, notícias sobre o SL e
a LL, compras, lugares interessantes para visitar, RPG e muito mais. O blog é bem organizado.

Blog LindenBR

Outro blog interessante, bem parecido com o mundolinden.blogspot.com.

Blog SL por Montekuri

Um bom blog com muitas ilustrações. Você encontrará muitos tutorais aqui — e eles são
ótimos! Aprenda como usar o SL e construir coisas, além de obter informações sobre
segurança, meshes, scripts, sculps e muito mais.

Blog Avantasia

O Avantasia aborda as noções mais básicas do SL e inclui alguns tutoriais, notícias sobre
grupos brasileiros e outros interesses relacionados.

Second News! Brasil

Esse é um blog antigo sobre o Second Life. Muitos dos tutoriais são sobre versões antigas do
Visualizador do Second Life (V1.23 e anteriores), mas eles mantêm um fórum ativo sobre o SL.
Você também encontra informações sobre machinimas, fotosd e moda no SL.

Revista Innerworld

A revista Innerworld é uma revista eletrônica e um blog sobre o SL. Publica informações sobre
moda, criadores de conteúdo, lugares para visitar e design. Também há várias entrevistas com
residentes. A revista é bilíngue, em inglês e português.

Kurka’s Blog

Khrys Kurka mantém esse blog, focado em moda e itens gratuitos. Também apresenta tutoriais
e algumas dicas de segurança.

Turistas do SL

Esse blog é sobre os melhores lugares para visitar, mas também apresenta informações sobre
vendas e itens gratuitos. É muito bem organizado e tem um layout agradável.

Você tem um blog em português ou gostaria de recomendar um blog favorito ou recurso
útil da Web? Conte-nos sobre eles na seção de comentários abaixo ou visite o fórum oficial para se conectar e compartilhar seus favoritos com outras pessoas.

Obrigado a Tiamat Bingyi por nos ajudar a reunir essa lista útil de links e recursos! Visite o perfil de Tiamat no Second Life para saber mais sobre esse prestativo residente.

Linden Lab

The Second Life economy remained consistent in Q2 2011. The highlights were strong growth in registrations, a steady Linden $ exchange rate with slight appreciation, and continued growth in Linden $’s held by customers –with most other key metrics within 1-2% of recent quarters.


For a definition of the metrics in this post, please see this wiki page. Click on each image below to see a larger version.

DAILY COMPLETED REGISTRATIONS

With the addition of Basic and Advanced viewer modes, plus an improved new user registration flow in early Q2, there was a sharp uptick in registrations that continued throughout the quarter. Q2 averaged 27.9% more completed registrations per day than Q1.


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AVERAGE MONTHLY UNIQUE LOGGED-IN USERS

Average monthly logged-in users for Q2 increased 2.8% from Q1 2011. This chart is more comparable to industry standards for reporting size of customer base and will replace previous measures based on user repeat logins or time active.


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USER HOURS
User hours remained within 2% of the most recent quarters.

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AVERAGE MONTHLY ECONOMIC PARTICIPANTS

Active economic participants were within 1% of last quarter.

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AVERAGE EXCHANGE RATE

The exchange rate remains very consistent and strengthening slightly with a 0.4% appreciation in the L$ over Q1 and a 4.3% appreciation in the L$ over the same quarter last year.  


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*Note that the exchange rate is expressed in L$/USD, meaning larger numbers represent a lower L$ value and smaller numbers represent a higher L$ value. The average rate is calculated by dividing the total L$ exchanged through the LindeX by the total US$ exchanged through the LindeX in the quarter.

L$ SUPPLY

Money supply grew by 2.2% in Q2 from the prior quarter and 15.8% year over year, bringing the equivalent US$ value of all customer-held L$ to US$30 million.


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*Note: From time to time we will change our reporting in order to provide the most relevant and accurate summary information for the use of merchants, landowners, content creators, and other participants in the Second Life economy.  Q2 2011 is an estimate calculated based on different methodology versus previous quarters.  

LINDEX VOLUME

Q2 LindeX volume declined 2.7% to US$30.6 million in line with seasonality. This is a strong 4.4% increase over the same quarter last year.

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WEB MERCHANDISE SALES VOLUME

The volume of web merchandise sales grew by 4.9%when compared to Q1 2011 and by 38.1% when compared to Q2 2010.


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WORLD SIZE

World size remained consistent with last quarter at just over two thousand square kilometers.  


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Linden Lab

Cat-Avatar

"I’ve been getting a lot of emails from people that know nothing about Second Life, but have somehow found my blog through various social networks, asking me for more information. Therefore I figured I would write up a quick tutorial for those interested in joining and looking for some free resources to kick start their inventory..." Keep reading at StrawberrySingh.com



Linden Lab

August Update

This update brings a variety of features for you to check out, including upgrades to Profiles and the Viewer. The new features are part of our ongoing quest to create an excellent experience for you — whether you’re creating, connecting or exploring.

Profiles

It’s easy to forget about RL for a while, socialize as your unique SL identity, and share what you love about Second Life when you’re part of SL Profiles. Connect with other Residents and explore Profiles using whichever identity you choose. You can add your interests, tweet your favorite locations and form friendships with other Resis, as well as continue the conversation through Facebook, Plurk and other social sites.

As always, we value your right to network under any identity you like — and SL Profiles lets you do just that. Your SL Profile name and identity can be whatever you like — let your imagination run wild! Update your status, share your location and comment on friends’ posts. You’re in charge of how you connect and how much of your RL identity you share.

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Spend some time exploring — there’s a ton of ways to customize your settings for a rich, social SL experience. You can edit your Profile at any time — and there’s a spot for your real-world info, too. Customize your settings to optimize your Profile.


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The Recommendations tab lets you know which Residents might make good friend match-ups for you, and the more interests you add to your Profile, the more recommendations for potential pals will pop up. You have the option to add your recommended connections to your friends list right in Profiles, and you can contact them right away through instant messaging — or just have fun reading the profiles of like-minded Residents.


Updates to the Viewer

We’ve made big changes to the Viewer Login Screen.

  • When you open the Viewer, you’ll get a peek at what’s happening inworld. Check out the latest Destination Guide Editor’s Picks and stay up-to-date on SL news with a direct link to the blogs. Want to chat? “What’s Hot Now” reveals the most popular locations — click, log in and start socializing! Get started right now. Just click on any one of the images before logging in, and you’ll start your SL experience at that location.


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  • You’ll also notice some changes relating to Region Environment Settings. These give region managers the ability to customize environment settings — like atmosphere, sun, time of day, and cloud coverage. Visiting Residents will automatically see those settings, unless they’ve already chosen to use a personal override. For example: a Gothic castle might have a gloomy, spooky environment — and a tropical island might be bright and sunny. This feature is sometimes referred to by its previous moniker, Windlight Environment Settings. Check out the Knowledge Base for more info.


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  • For greater discoverability and to provide you faster access, you’ll find the Search Button displayed along the bottom bar in the Viewer.
  • Another new feature gives parcel owners greater control, including the ability to hide avis, avatar activities and conversations from everyone outside a parcel and vice versa. You also gain the ability to restrict sounds emitted by avatars on the parcel.
  • We expect to release the next version of the Viewer toward the end of August.


Meanwhile, we continue to work on the issue of full compatibility with Apple OS X Lion — we’re currently testing out compatibility issues. Many Residents have chosen to wait on upgrading their versions of Mac OS X so they can continue to go inworld. Check out more details here, and join in the conversation.


More new avatars

We’re proud to introduce the latest members of the SL family — a new troupe of human avatars. Last month, we rolled out our line of robot, animal and vehicle avis, and this month we’re adding to the new selection.

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Avatars created by: Adam n Eve

The newest group of human avatars includes a spectrum of ethnicities, and complements current inworld trends — Steampunk, anyone? You can try them out by going to the Library folder in your Inventory and choosing Clothing > Initial Outfits. These guys (and gals) have been designed to optimize loading time. We considered various benchmarks, including Avatar Rendering Cost. We worked with Adam n Eve to craft detailed textures that emphasize aesthetic beauty. This balance provides a good starting point for customizing your look, and serves as an example for creators of how to make inworld items look good — and also load quickly.

Second Life is about creativity, diversity and communication — and this new pack of avis gives you a greater range of personalities to try out. They’re also completely modifiable.

Payments

It is our goal to continue to improve our payment process in order to make it easier and worry-free. Starting this month, Residents will begin to see improvements in usability including simpler layouts and flows, and we’ll be working on making the system even easier over the next couple of months. We’re also working on a new-and-improved way to offer local currency options. If you are currently part of the Local Payments beta there are no changes just yet.

Mesh is in production

We’re still accepting volunteer regions to receive mesh support here. If you just want to experiment with mesh creation, the same link will provide you with the steps you’ll need to take to get involved, and locate a mesh sandbox to work in. We’ve started to roll out mesh to regions across the grid via our release channels, and it will soon arrive at a region near you. While it’s being deployed, mesh objects are supported — but not all viewers will display them, and not all regions will fully support them until the rollout is completed. Also, we know there are going to be questions about some concepts being introduced with mesh, and we’re working to help explain them — more to come on that topic in the near future. The mesh forum is a great place to see and read what others are doing, as well as ask questions.

More Personalized Emails

If you’ve unsubscribed to optional news and promotional emails in the past, you can now resubscribe to emails by category. It’s important that you enter the email address that’s connected to your SL account. These subscription options don’t affect the emails you receive for transactions, instant messages from friends and/or customer service responses.

Have fun,

Linden Lab









Linden Lab

July Update

It’s shaping up to be a hot summer here in San Francisco — er, at least at Linden Lab! —  and July brings a lot of exciting updates — including great news for all Residents who’ve experienced issues with Group Chat lag, awesome new avatars, sweet new features in Profiles and much more!

Non-human avatars


A longstanding question about the default avatars that the Lab provides is “Why do they only offer humans?” Well, fret no more! Check your Library > Clothing > Initial Outfits tab in any Viewer and you’ll be pleasantly surprised to discover 36 new default avs! We worked with three amazing creators and focused on balancing visual appeal with diversity and efficiency. We think you’ll find that this fresh batch of avis is far more performance-oriented than our previous defaults — and a heck of a lot of fun.

Animal series by Damien Fate

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Robot series by Renn YifuzpgLXVSNkcR-TCeNBdICAr7JED1qoszinZzhahYEA_fal1-yLps-4FfWVAp16r2mPgN5gBTaGbTH9dhOuOn0vR4bSm0--90CD2Tgw77GDx28tUOrpw


Vehicle series by Xenius Revere

 

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For Residents using Basic mode, the new set of avatars will soon appear in the avatar selector. In a short time, they’ll be available at registration as well. You’ll be tempted to choose your favorite. Try out Second Life as a robot, a dragon — or even a sports car!

Group Chat Lag


Here’s a little something about that right royal pain, Group Chat Lag. You know how it is: you’re inworld, having a ball chatting with a group of friends, but the chat shows up with words missing or in the wrong order. It’s like a bad roommate, always hanging around and making a mess, interrupting your conversations and ruining your jokes! Some of your friends won’t even try talking while that loser’s around, knowing that their impeccable comic timing will come out looking like free-form poetry.

Except, for some reason, we don’t see that dude around much these days. Was it something we did?

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We’d say that we’ll miss the old Group Chat Lag, but that would be a total lie. Instead, as the saying used to go: “door Don’t let the hit you in the butt on the way out.”

Profiles


We’re working on improved functionality and features for Profiles, a great way for you to express your interests, share your favorite activities, communicate your unique personality, and meet other SL Residents like yourself. Some of the cool things we’re adding will include a “Pages” feature that lets you add pages to your profile for different topics, interests, regions and other fun stuff. As always, you control the level of privacy for your account —  you can adjust precisely how much information you choose to display — or keep private!

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You can look forward to a feature that will allow the option of auto-posting to Twitter and Facebook— as well as a new activity stream, including a summary of your friends’ activities. This will allow you to check out what posts or photos your Second Life Friends have commented on, notify you when a friend changes their profile pic, and more!

We’re also working on integrating additional social-network identity — including popular sites like Plurk, Blogger, WordPress, Tumblr and Foursquare — so you can streamline your SL social networking, all fine-tuned to share just as much or as little as you prefer. You’re in the driver’s seat, but we’re glad to be along for the ride!

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Marketplace


For all of you who love shopping for new gadgets, outfits, avatars — and everything else under the sun! — we’ve implemented some changes to our Marketplace hat will enhance your shopping experience and make the process go more smoothly. One of the coolest features we’ve been working on is Direct Delivery. We launched the Alpha phase of Direct Delivery in early June, and the participating merchants have been giving us some great feedback! What’s next? More focus on improving Direct Delivery, and working with Beta Merchants on the Alpha platform.

We’ve been working on an API for third-party viewers to use to support listing items on the Marketplace, and continue to gather feedback as we develop that capability. Beta Program participation has been opened up for third-party viewer developers and vending system developers, and our primary focus has been on bringing Direct Delivery to market. 

Promotional Emails


On the promotional email front, we’ve improved the functionality of promotional-email subscription preferences. To unsubscribe to any promotional email, just hit the “unsubscribe” link in the message, and you’ll be able to choose the type of emails you want to get from Linden Lab — instead of “all-or-nothing.” This feature allows you to opt-in to messages you’d like to see more of — and unsubscribe from those you don’t! You’ll still receive other messages, like inworld notifications and Marketplace emails.

Search


Later this month, the new Search functionality that was included in the most recent Viewer release will go live as the primary Search experience for all Residents. Every search on the Secondlife.com website and in the Legacy Viewer “All” and “Groups” categories will use the new back-end technology, and will benefit from the improved result relevance. Viewer users will not only get the updated results — they’ll also be able to take advantage of all the exciting features we've included in the new Search interface, including easier searching for Events, Land Sales and Rentals, and Classifieds. If you haven't explored Second Life with the new-and-improved Search functionality yet, download the Viewer and take a look!

Let us know what you think! Share your experiences with these new features in the Technology Forum. And, don’t forget to hit Twitter — follow us @Secondlife and tweet using the hashtag #secondlife. Now, go explore Second Life, tap into your creative side — and make something incredible!

Cheers!

Linden Lab

Linden Lab

oakland_night_skyline_web.jpg

Oakland city skyline at night. Image courtesy: thedude.com

The 7th Annual Second Life Community Convention 2011 will take place at the Oakland Marriott City Center in Oakland, CA from August 12-14, 2011, and registration is now open!  Linden Lab is a sponsor of this great event that is offered to you by the amazing AvaCon organization.  Read about them here!

The following article courtesy of: slconvention.org:

The Second Life Community Convention is three days of exciting activities, events, musical performances, machinima screenings, panels, workshops, and much more that showcases the abundant creativity of Second Life Residents.

Don't Just Attend — Be Part of the Convention

The Second Life Community Convention is more than just what is planned — the convention is also what you want to make it.  Don't just attend — share something with the community!

Submit a Proposal

SLCC 4898083149_7a96cd3242_m 1.jpg

The Call for Proposals is up, and with five new track themes and fun presentation formats, you have the opportunity to share your hard work and creativity with the community that will most appreciate your efforts.  Don't want to give a full presentation? Consider doing a Speed Sparks session of 20 slides in five minutes to share the gist of your idea in a fast paced presentation style that was a huge hit last year!

 

 

Be a Staff Member, Track Leader, or Volunteer

SLCC4886492763_42f91923f5 2.jpg

 

There are a few Staff and Track Leader positions open, and if you want to help run the show on the ground in Oakland or inworld, you are invited to join the team.  It's easy to ask "Why don't they do X?" but the real fun comes when you help make it happen!  Apply for a Staff or Track Leader position, or be an Oakland volunteer or Inworld volunteer today!

 

 

Sponsor the Convention

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If you have a product or service and want to get your message out to the most enthusiastic Second Life Residents, or if you just want to show your support, there's no better place to spread the word than at the Second Life Community Convention.  There are many levels of sponsorship, so it's more than affordable to help support this nonprofit, community produced event - become a sponsor!

 

Organize a Social Event

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The convention has a light schedule on Friday, Aug. 12th to make sure there's plenty of time for socializing and networking, and to give you the opportunity to organize your own fun events.  Check out the Social Events & Mixers page to organize a social event or outing for your friends and communities. Need ideas for things to do?  There is a terrific guide of things to do In & Around Oakland to help you get started!

 

 

Planning Your Trip

There has been lots of hard work this year to help keep the cost of the convention affordable, and there are a number of resources available to help you plan your trip.

 

Reserve Your Room at the Oakland Marriott City Center

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The convention will be held at the Oakland Marriott City Center in the heart of downtown Oakland, CA — just a ten minute train ride from San Francisco.  The best room rates ever have been negotiated!  $109 a night for up to quad occupancy, and free wireless internet access in guest rooms.  You must be registered for the convention to receive the group-rate discount, and you will receive the link to reserve your rooms in the email confirmation you receive when you register for SLCC.  Note that lunch on Saturday and Sunday is included in your convention registration, as well as free wireless internet access in all convention spaces.  If you need information about flying, driving, or taking the train to SLCC, check out our transportation guide to get all the details you need to get to the convention.

 

Budgeting & Sharing Expenses to Reduce Costs

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There is also a guide to help you budget for your trip. Visit the SLCC General Budget page to see a breakdown of convention expenses, a general budget guide to help you estimate costs for travel, and tips to help reduce the overall cost of the convention.  If you're interested in sharing expenses on hotel rooms or travel, you can also find information to help you coordinate Finding a Roommate or Carpool.

 

Program Information Coming Soon

More details will be announced soon about the program sessions and keynote speakers in the coming weeks.  SLCC is going to be a fun and thrilling three days of sharing, learning, and networking with Second Life Residents from around the world!

See you in Oakland!

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Linden Lab

You’re invited! Second Life’s 8th birthday (SL8B) celebration begins on Monday, June 20th and runs through Saturday, July 2nd. This year, there are 21 SL8B regions that open at 10:00 am. on Monday, June 20. There will be more than 300 exhibitors 300 live performances, and all the cake you can eat. And, did someone mention the freebies on the Marketplace? Yep, there are already free SL8B bears for everyone. We’ve got a great line up planned and you won’t want to miss a thing!

Get a sneak peek of all the planning, preparation, interviews, and events on the official SL8B blog. Can’t wait for the fun? Chantal Harvey, renowned machinima artist and SL8B volunteer, gives you a taste of what’s to come.

 

Phaylen Fairchild has created a wonderful video about the evolution, magic and imagination of SL from inception to its eight year anniversary. Both videos are well worth watching!



Also, mark your calendars for Monday, June 20th when Kim Linden will give a short opening address at 11am SLT. Then on June 23rd at 3pm SLT  Rodvik Linden, the CEO of Linden Lab, will be mingling with the crowd at the SL8B Main Stage.

 


Follow @Secondlife and the #sl8b hashtag on Twitter for more real-time info! Plus, share memories and fondest moments in Second Life history with #slmoment.

 
 
Linden Lab

Oh, we have some fun things to share today. Big news on Search and Lighting and Shadows.

New Search Beta Makes Finding People, Places, Events, and Things Much Easier
In the latest version of SL Viewer (2.7.1) released today, we’re introducing the new Search beta as the standard search technology that helps you find interesting people, places, events, items for sale, and other things to make your inworld experience more fun, collaborative, and meaningful.

In addition to the cool things that we mentioned in the Search Project Viewer blog post, here are a few new items that will make searching a breeze:

  • Enhanced Classified Listings: You can now search classified ads in the beta. So, whether you are searching for a seller, item, or store, you’ll be able to find them quickly and easily.
  • Sorting is a Snap in People, Places, Groups, Events, and Land: Handy sorting features are now available in several popular categories. For example, when searching for people, you can sort by either User Name or Display Name. When searching for events, you can sort by name, or by when an event is scheduled to occur. When searching for land, you can sort by name, price, area, and more. Nice, huh?  And we’ll be adding more sorting options in the future!
  • Featured Land listings: Not only are we making land listings easier to navigate, but we’ve added featured land listings to the main page. Take a look at the Land & Rentals tab on the search homepage for quick links to available properties!

We’ve also added a few subtle, but helpful, usability enhancements—all based on Resident feedback. Those include going back to the check box as an option to click when searching for mature content, adding wildcard searches to the people tab (ex: rod* lin* finds Rodvik Linden), highlighting search terms in results, saving your place in search results when you reopen search, and making it easier to open and close search results. So, big thanks to those who took the time to send feedback in the Search Project Viewer. We got some terrific suggestions.

SL Viewer Search is still in beta and we continue to smash bugs, tweak relevance, add features, and optimize it for international Residents. So, let us know what you think by sharing your suggestions by clicking the “Feedback” link at the top of the Search window.

Real-Time Lighting and Shadows Brings a New Dimension to Second Life
You might have noticed the cool log-in screen images with shadows that give them greater dimensionality and lifelike feeling. Now, you can have them too. This version of the SL Viewer introduces dynamic lighting for multiple local lighting sources, as well as high quality real-time shadows from the sun or moon.

And, it’s easy to enable. In the SL Viewer’s Advanced mode, choose Me > Preferences, go to the Graphics tab, click the Advanced button, and just check Lighting and Shadows. (If your graphics card can’t support this option, then it won’t be available.) Then, you will experience the magic of Second Life like never before.  For more information, see Lighting and Shadows.

So, download the latest SL Viewer today and we’ll see you inworld!

Download SL Viewer (2.7.1):

Helpful Links:



Linden Lab

As you may have seen in the news, email/password combinations for user accounts on other platforms--including Sony’s PlayStation Network--have recently been released following ongoing attacks.

To be clear, Second Life has not been targeted in attacks of this kind and your personal information remains secure with us.

However, if you access Second Life using the same password from a platform that has been attacked, then your email address could be all that’s needed to take control of your Second Life account. Recently, we have seen people attempt to acquire Second Life users email addresses by posing as a Support agent, a Linden, a trusted member of a group, or someone that you know. We want to do everything possible to help you protect yourself from these attacks.

Here are a few things that you should do right now to ensure that your personal information and your Second Life account remains safe and secure.

Do Not Reuse Your Second Life Password on Other Platforms
Using your Second Life password on other platforms, such as forums, bank accounts, or email services, may put your account at risk if these other platforms are compromised. Change your Second Life password, as soon as possible, if this situation applies to you.

Always Practice Good Password Hygiene
Here are some good rules of thumb to create a secure password.
    •    Never use a simple word
    •    Make it at least 8 characters in length
    •    Include two numbers
    •    Include two shift-key characters (i.e. %, *, #, +)

Be Cautious When Sharing Personal Information Inworld
No Linden or Support agent will ever make an unsolicited request for your personal information or password. Do not comply with any such requests, even if they are from an inworld friend or group member, and file an Abuse Report immediately.

Finally, if you think that your account has been compromised, then please contact Support and we will help you to resolve the situation.


FJ Linden

As most of you are already aware, we are beta testing a new local payments system and we’ve hit a few bumps in the road. Again, we want to apologize for any inconvenience that this has caused for Residents using the beta system and we are here to help you get your issues resolved quickly.

For those who have been affected, here is some information to help you get back up and running in Second Life.

PayPal is Now Available as an Option in the Local Payments Beta
Last week, we introduced PayPal as a payment option to choose from. So, if you’re in the beta, and would like to use PayPal, then just go to the billing management page and click “Add PayPal.” Once that’s done, you can then choose to associate PayPal with a recurring payment on that page. If you have an outstanding balance, then we will process the payment (within a day), your account will be back in good standing, and your PayPal account will continue to be billed on a monthly basis, as expected.

Customers Affected by Billing Issues Will be Automatically Migrated Back to Main Payments System on Monday
We have identified a small number of accounts that are nearing delinquency, or are delinquent, as a result of the known issues with the payments system beta. While we are working on the fix, we will switch those Residents back to the main payments system by 5pm PT on Monday, June 6. That should resolve your payment issues immediately, although you will lose the ability to pay in local currencies and other payment methods. The affected Residents will receive an email tomorrow and on Monday with more information. So, keep an eye out for emails from us and you can always call Customer Support at the 1-800 numbers provided in our previous blog post.

For additional information, please read the Local Payments FAQ on the SL Wiki. And, thanks for your patience as we roll out the new payments system.

Linden Lab

Of all of the things that excite us about Second Life, and there are many, Mesh is near the top of our list. Since the Mesh Project Viewer has been available, many content creators have given it a try on the test grid and we have only seen a small glimpse of the unlimited creative potential that this technology brings to Second Life. On behalf of everyone at the Lab, we want to thank everyone who have participated in the test and created these cool videos demonstrating the power of Mesh.

So, now that you are excited about trying it out on the Main Grid, we wanted to share the launch time line, as promised.

In July, we will enable a limited set of regions to use Mesh and will roll it out, in a phased approach, throughout August. By the end of August, everyone in Second Life will be able to import Mesh objects. Of course, if we run into unforeseen issues or bugs, then this time line will need to shift.

We know that you must have a lot of questions regarding policies, costs, and how Mesh objects will be weighted. Although we cannot share these details yet, we will continue to keep you informed on our progress and other relevant news on this blog.

So buckle up and get ready for a whole new wave of creativity in SL.

Linden Lab

Search is a vital element in Second Life that enables you to find interesting people, places, events, items for sale, and other things to make your inworld experience more fun, collaborative, and meaningful. It has been a while since we last updated you on search and that’s because we’ve chosen to take a big leap forward versus smaller, incremental improvements. We believe that new search is a vast improvement over current search both in terms of usability and relevance. But we’re not the only ones who think that. We conducted a quiet test with a savvy group of Residents who preferred new search results over 75% of the time compared with current search results.

Now it’s time for you to test it out. Today, we have released a Search Project Viewer, that works on the main grid. Here are a few things that you’ll notice right away:

  • Better Search Results User Interface: It’s not just prettier (we had to say it), but it’s also much more usable. Our new search engine considers Second Life specific data, such as how many people are at an event versus web-based data, so search results are more relevant and less subject to spam. And, now search results are compiled on a single scrollable page instead of several pages that require multiple clicks to see. You can even view multiple search results at one time by expanding results!
  • Delivers More Relevant Results: The new search engine also serves more relevant results than the current search technology, based on four rounds of double-blind testing. And, we’ll always continue to test and tweak the results to ensure that you find what you’re looking for.
  • To Buy or Rent? That is the Question.: The land sales category has been revamped, separating sales and rentals and giving you better options to limit your search by price range and land size. Now, it’s much easier to find that perfect place to settle in Second Life.
  • Find Out What’s Happening Now: You can also search Events by either the exact start time or ”happening now,”  but might have started earlier. That way, you can quickly find out what’s happening in Second Life right now.
  • Search Results Are Saved: Many of you have shared with us how you use search to discover your world and shop, and how you want your search results saved. We’ve all had this experience. We search for something, find an interesting event or place to go shopping, and then want to go back to our search results and find another place to go--but they are gone. When using the new Search, results are saved for 15 minutes so that you can easily go back and explore other options.

Take a look at this video and see for yourself.

For those who want more details, the Search Project Viewer FAQ explains the test process and the search terms that landowners will need to use when listing their land for sale or rent.

One of the first questions many will have is, “Will new search work in Viewer 1.23 and Third-Party Viewers?”  New search will soon be available to you in the official SL Viewer and we will not be implementing it for the 1.23 Viewer. To be clear, you can still use the 1.23 Viewer, but search functionality will be impaired once new search is released into general availability, after the test period. (We cannot speak to which Third-Party Viewers will adopt the new search technology.) All of our development efforts are focused on making SL Viewer with Basic and Advanced modes exceptional for all Residents--new and seasoned.

So, test out new search using the Search Project Viewer that makes finding cool people, places, and things in Second Life easier than ever before.

Linden Lab

Some recent issues with our billing system have caused some accounts to become delinquent and that has prevented those users from logging in to Second Life. We apologize to those who have been affected and for any inconvenience that this has caused.

If you have had problems with our billing system, such as difficulty adding or updating your payment info or you are unable to login to Second Life, then we’re here to help.

The best way to quickly get your billing issues resolved is to call our Billing Support team who is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. And, we’ve just created several new toll free numbers as an added convenience for our international customers.

Call Our Support Team to Resolve Your Billing Issues
Toll-Free (US/Canada): 800.294.1067
Long-Distance (US/Canada: 703.286.6277

Local Toll-Free numbers:

  • France: 0805.101.490
  • Germany: 0800.664.5510
  • Japan: 0066.33.132.830
  • Portugal: 800.814.450
  • Spain: 800.300.560
  • UK: 0800.048.4646

Please press option 3 to get to Billing Support.  

Or, if you would rather, you can always create a Support case and we’ll get to it as soon as possible.

Thanks for your patience as we work through these issues. We’re looking forward to helping you get everything sorted out and seeing you back inworld.

Rodvik Linden

We’ve been very busy at the Lab since I last updated you in March when we launched the SL Viewer with Basic and Advanced modes. As BK mentioned today in the Q1 Economy Update blog post, we have seen a significant improvement in new and completed daily registrations when compared to recent months and an increase in new users exploring Second Life. It’s a solid first step and I wanted to take this opportunity to share some of the changes and improvements that we’ve implemented and a small look ahead.

The Refreshed and Fun Registration Experience
On the registration front, we’re knocking down the barriers that can sometimes prevent interested users from joining Second Life. If you haven’t checked out the Join experience lately, then you definitely should. New users start by picking an avatar in a dynamic, animated interface that immediately draws them in. We’ve also removed much of the non-essential information, that we used to require in the registration flow, to make it a quicker and more delightful on-boarding experience. We’re going to continue to refine and evolve this experience, but it is a big contributor to the 33% growth in new registrations.

SL Viewer Basic Will Soon Have a Wider Assortment of Avatars to Choose From
When we first launched Basic mode, we started with a basic set of human avatars that helped get new Residents immersed in Second Life without having to worry about configuring their avatar to socialize and find cool things to do, in the integrated Destination Guide. But, we know that the beauty of Second Life is the diversity and richness of how we choose to represent ourselves inworld. So, we’re adding 12 animal and 12 Robots and soon we’ll have Vehicles too. Then, we’ll also commission another set of human avatars that represent a wider, more diverse audience.

Have You Noticed the New Dynamic Login Screen?
If you use the SL Viewer, then you might have noticed a change this week. The login screen is one of the most important pieces of real estate that we have to communicate with you. To start, we’ve added announcements and the blog feed. In the future, you’ll see more feeds on that page--like cool things in SL going on right now, highlights from the Destination Guide, and more. So, next time you log in, take a moment to check out the new feeds before you enter SL because you might find some new places to explore or learn about new features or initiatives going on at the Lab.

The Return of the Resident Help Network (RHN)
Thank you to all our Residents who suggested this. For those who might be unfamiliar with the program that began a few years ago, the RHN is a grouping of communities dedicated to helping new users get acclimated to Second Life. The RHN includes over 15,000 volunteers from the following organizations: Help Sandbox, Hobo Helpers, Mental Mentors, New Citizens, Inc., Phoenix Wave Mentors, Second Ability Mentors, Virtual Ability, and the White Tiger Mentors. The program has been in a bit of a holding pattern on the Linden side, while each of these groups continued to do their good work. I’m happy to report that we’re officially bringing back the RHN network and look forward to partnering with these communities and integrating them more tightly into our new user experience.

For those who are wondering why I haven’t mentioned our initiatives on fixing lag, and other updates from the technology side of the house, FJ and Bagman will be updating you on those items next week. In the meantime, thanks to all of you for your continued support!

Over the past few weeks, I have explored cyberspaces, flown aircraft, gone sailing, attended music concerts, made a battleship, attended charity events, and met some wonderful people all within Second Life. I hope to see many of our Residents old and new inworld soon!

Rod

BK Linden

Efforts to improve operating focus and cost structure have resulted in two consecutive quarters of strong cash flow and profitability with Q1 2011 the most successful in Linden Lab’s history.

Regarding Customer Support, we made some changes late last year that unfortunately impacted Residents with longer resolution times. Over the last few months, we have worked through the backlog and have returned to 24- to 48-hour resolution times for nearly all types of issues. We continue to add resources and adjust processes to further improve resolution times and customer satisfaction, especially for more complex issues.

After launching the new SL Viewer with Basic and Advanced modes in late Q1 2011, and improving the new user registration experience in early Q2 2011, we have seen over 33% improvement in new daily completed registrations when compared to recent months. This is an early indicator that usability improvements are having an initial positive impact with more significant ones still to be delivered over the coming weeks and months.

In Q1 2011, measures of the size and strength of the Second Life Linden Dollar economy improved slightly while users, usage and world size were consistent with the last few quarters.

For a definition of the metrics in this charts below, please see this wiki page. Click on each image below to see a larger version.

DAILY COMPLETED REGISTRATIONS
There has been a positive trend since the new registration experience was introduced on April 11.

daily_completed_reg.jpg

AVERAGE MONTHLY REPEAT LOGINS
Average monthly repeat logins have been virtually unchanged over the previous 3 quarters.

avg_monthly_repeat_logins.jpg

USER HOURS
Similarly, user hours have remained consistent over the last 3 quarters.

user_hours.jpg

AVERAGE EXCHANGE RATE
The value of the Linden dollar has continued to improve from Q4 2010 and is at its highest level in the last 6 quarters. 

avg_exchange_rate.jpg

*Note that the exchange rate is expressed in L$/USD, meaning larger numbers represent a lower L$ value and smaller numbers represent a higher L$ value. The average rate is calculated by dividing the total L$ exchanged through the LindeX by the total US$ exchanged through the LindeX in the quarter.

L$ SUPPLY
The US dollar value of Linden dollars held by Residents of Second Life has increased for the third consecutive quarter.

LINDENDOLLAR_Money_Supply.jpg

LINDEX VOLUME
In Q1 2011, the LindeX Volume was at its highest level in the last 6 quarters.

LindeX_Volume.jpg

WORLD SIZE
World size has also stayed within a 1% range over the last 3 quarters.

world_size_km2.jpg