Milepost 10

Here I am on one of the Social Islands, the current second stop for a new Resident.  Things have changed a lot in the First Sims since I first logged in on the old Orientation Island ten years ago.

Yeah, that’s right; it’s my tenth rezz day.  It’s pretty safe to say that I’m one of Second Life’s Old Women now, though not as old as some others who started this land out as Linden World, years before I arrived.  I didn’t think Second Life would last this long.  In fact, what with this and that, including the rise of Sansar, many old Residents have had their doubts about the length of Second Life’s lifeline.  Well, guess what?  All of those instances of the Predicted Imminent Death of the Grid have resulted in a great … disappointment … for the various naysayers.  I’ve seen a lot of things come and go in ten years — the Banking Crisis, the Homestead Crisis, the Communications Crisis, and several CEOs come and go, as well as even the departure … of Philip.  (Harper bows to the east, murmuring, “Blessed be Philip, and materials and shininess to His Codpiece. Truly is it written that Philip shall come again to us; yea, even unto the Ivory Tower of Primitives.”)  And Second Life is still here.  And so am I.

How much have I learned in ten years of exploring Second Life and playing virtual dress-up?  It’s hard to say on that.  I can say that I’ve seen much that was good, and much more that was bad, come and go in that time.  I entered the virtual world in the days of the Great Hype, when everyone thought, based on Neal Stephenson’s Snow Crash, that Second Life was the prototype, if not the actual incarnation, of Web 2.5 or 3.0.  It didn’t turn out that way.  The corporate flirtation with Second Life withered when nobody could figure out how to monetize and leverage it into the Real World, and even the “embedded” Reuters correspondent eventually disappeared.

The essence of Second Life — the Residents and their creations — has remained.  Yeah, there’s been a lot of falloff in ten years, with many oldtimers and original Residents departing for various reasons — some of them just plain tired of a “game” with no real goal other than exploration and social interaction.  But the ones that have hung on have created much of beauty, and have explored their personal creativity in many ways, some fairly mundane (such as myself and my photography), others in startling creations that have stretched the definitions of art.  Holidays and friendships are celebrated, dances are danced and music is performed and enjoyed, and all this is truly very good.

Will Second Life still be here in another ten years?  Will I still be here, or will my husband brain me and tell me to get back to the Real World?  Who knows until the time comes.  For now, I’m planning on enjoying the ride.

Posted October 11, 2017 by Harper Ganesvoort in Personal

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