Expanding metaverse attendance

The stress and fusses of the last few days are now slowly turning back into a normal working life; which is fantastic news for me and anyone who likes the idea of me not spending my fays chewing the furniture in a haze of aggravation.

Screenshot of me inside my TARDIS
Don't the pictures brighten up the place?

I am still working hard to get caught up on my targets but my plan of getting all my work done by the end of Monday is now starting to become a reality more than simply wishful thinking. It will be a difficult day tomorrow, as usual, but nevertheless I am confident that I can pull this off.

With that said, I decided to take a little time out while having a cup of tea to pay a visit to Second Life. It is always worth bearing in mind that too much work and too much stress lead to health problems and also a fundamental lack of ability to actually get as much work done as you would like. I therefore recommend the occasional short break to help yourself wind down a little, even if it is only for a moment or two.

So I took my TARDIS for a spin. There are “working TARDISes” in Second Life. It is really quite an amazing way of travelling around the metaverse even if they can’t actually travel through time, just space). On my travels I met a fellow Time Lord, which is always nice, and we discussed how I had decorated my ship.

As it turns out, most people with a TARDIS fall into two camps: those (like me) who decorate the console room to make it more in keeping with their own personalities, and those who stick rigidly to how the ship looks in episodes of Doctor Who. I’m not going to make a value judgement about either way, I’ll just say I prefer to have a few pictures on the walls and a chair to sit on.

I met this fellow time traveller when he landed his ship in my console room. I have the room set up so people can land in it mainly because I was making a reference to the 2011 Comic Relief special; which has garnered me several comments about how I need to “complete the look” by getting myself a redheaded Scottish woman in a miniskirt to accompany me on my travels.

They seem to miss the part where I look nothing like the Doctor. I think this says something about the appeal of Amy Pond, don’t you? 🙂

Screenshot of the Star Wars space station I visited
I added the lens flare to make the picture look extra snazzy. 🙂

Anyway, while on my travels today I came across a Star Wars roleplaying group, after I haphazardly landed my ship in the middle of one of their space stations. It was a very nice place to have a look around and I think I’ll go back there when I have more time to actually give it more than a cursory glance.

This brings me to what I actually wanted to talk about. There are a lot of very creative people in Second Life who spend a lot of time creating amazing things, but hardly anyone who doesn’t spend their time exploring the metaverse ever gets to see it. This is a real shame. Some of this stuff is simply amazing to look at.

So what is really needed, I think, is a far simpler way to access the metaverse. Facebook has become a huge thing and this Facebook Connect system means a lot of people can log in to a lot of websites without having to go through a tedious sign up process before they can access what they came to the site for in the first place.

What if there was a way to connect to Second Life using your Facebook profile, rather than a Second Life-specific account? What if you could simply explore the world using a web-based application rather than a large (and often not very streamlined) program?

Quake Live showed me that a web app can generate 3D graphics in real time, so surely something could be built to run Second Life in a browser? As a bonus, you could add a “Facebook Like” or “Tweet this location” button to the interface and then you can tell all your friends about the wonderful places you have found with one click of a mouse.

I honestly think this is to everyone’s benefit. I’ve talked before about the excellent comedy nights and concerts I’ve attended in Second Life, as well as the writer’s groups, and I’m sure I can’t be the only one who thinks other people who would not necessarily want to go to the trouble of creating their own avatar and setting up a virtual world identity for themselves would be interested in attending some of these events too.

If there was a far simpler method of getting into the virtual world, I honestly believe it would be a boon for those people who are putting on these events and also for the numerous new people who would get to experience them.

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