Interesting article and reader comment thread in HyperBusiness where users of OpenSim, the open source spinoff of Second Life, contemplate the future of their virtual world activity in the wake of news that Linden Lab is massively upgrading SL and will probably discount land prices. For instance:
“For me, the main reason to leave Second Life, and I believe for many others, was the relation of land size verses land fees and OpenSim has a huge strong selling point — ten times more land with ten times less fees,” he said. “No matter which other aspects you bring to the equation, this is the determinant factor at the end of the day.”
Loff himself has three large projects currently underway in OpenSim.
“All this said, and with no offense to many wonderful OpenSim efforts, we must keep recognizing that OpenSim still has a bit of an refugee camp feeling,” he said.
There's pros and cons and honestly, it depends on the nature of the project. Obviously something that is intended to generate revenue will benefit from Secondlife's larger population and it's associated infrastructure (marketplace, etc), whereas something that requires multiple sims -perhaps for education, would be better done in OpenSim.
The OpenSim community may not have the luxury of choosing both. Given its small size (about 10-15,000 active users across all grids) any significant shift in usage back to Second Life could exert enough inertia to grind the open grid to a halt. Then again, there will always be cool reasons for some folks to keep using OpenSim -- like this one!