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Tuesday, March 23, 2010


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Menno Ophelia

Thank you so much for this link.
This is a brilliant presentation.

Opensource Obscure

not sure the link is going to work forever, but here is a page where you can watch at the video and read the transcript at the same time - very useful for non-English speakers.

Also: PDF transcript of the talk.

Arcadia Codesmith

I don't disagree with your main point, but I will quibble on some specifics.

The wii is faltering because it's an inferior gaming platform with an innovative controller. Xbox and Playstation both have control systems in the works that get the player off the couch and moving.

Rock Band: The Beatles suffered from a serious skimpage on included content and being incompatable with the rest of the series. Rhythm games in general seem to be leveling off... but sales of electric guitars and other real instruments are up, and there's at least one title in the pipeline that incorporates a functioning guitar rather than a game controller.

I don't think it's a desire to be 'real' so much as a desire to be immersed, to dispense with the mouse and keyboard or game controller and just become part of the experience. Those of us who have been doing this for years use our controls much like we breathe, without conscious effort or thought. We forget that for most people these are clunky, frustrating, awkward ways to interact with a virtual world.

It's like a group of concert pianists shaking their heads and clucking their tongues because the cleaning woman can't even play a simple scale progression. She may have the finest music of the century in her head, but it will never be heard, because the interface is incomprehensible to her, even though it's perfectly natural and intuitive to those who have mastered it.


" High-end 3D graphic card and other demanding technical specs. A time-consuming account creation, download, and installation process. A learning curve of several hours. And so on. Which is the high level explanation for why Second Life's growth has slowed in recent years. Not necessarily because people don't want what Second Life offers. But far more likely, because there are many more other products out there which offer a somewhat related experience, but far more quickly and effortlessly."

Which is why SL should be developed and marketed for the educated elite who have the intellectual ability, time and money to spend on it.

In the long run, this luxury product will become generalised creating benefits for society after it has reached its potential first in the luxury market.


Getting a degree in Physics is also hard but I don't see MIT watering down their courses. The attraction is the privilege of a MIT degree.

Similarly, the attraction of SL would be, if marketed as a luxury product, to be part of an elite group who are changing the way we live, learn and work.

"Quick and effortless" would be worthless in the long run.


I think Jesse's main point is one of being able to thread experiences across lots of platforms and places. We already do that when we use the social glue of twitter to share achievements and frustrations.
People's profiles are filled with discovered updates, locations, game achievements etc.
It does not mean, to my mind, that we leave any of the self contained experiences, but merely that we have other options for feeling engaged and sharing experiences with others.
Some of those shared experiences may be with our less physical friends, others with those we go to the pub with.

Ignatius Onomatopoeia

Mecca huffed:
"Which is why SL should be developed and marketed for the educated elite who have the intellectual ability, time and money to spend on it."

Holy Smokes..now I'm about to argue with myself. I just noted my disdain for the mainstream, in Hamlet's last post on this topic.

I get bored easily. But that's no reason for people who might otherwise bore me (and be bored by me) not to engage in virtual worlds. As in other endeavors, we can just ignore each other.

On the other hand, making the UI more intuitive for SL and other virtual worlds may actually bring in an "educated elite" who never mastered a game controller.

Mecca, most of the brightest people I know have mastered the interface of the English language perfectly, including the irony, satire, world traveler, and second-language expansion packs. They've leveled up through Latinate puns and Shakespeare references.

Some of them would make delightful avatars, but they'd be flummoxed by SL's UI.



We all want an improved UI. However, different people have different ideas of what is improved.

A UI that facilitates social networking to the detriment of immersion is not improved to me.

But the larger point is that the dynamic nature of SL - create your dreams as often as you like as long as you are paying for server space - means that SL cannot scale to support a large user base due to the current level of development of computer technology.

I think it was one of the Lindens who said that even if SL had all the computer capacity of Google it could only support 1.7 million users at a time.

Consequently, SL cannot be a mass market product like WoW etc. This can only happen if SL becomes more static and Linden managed. This would be a big set back for a technology that has the long run potential to transform the way we socialize, learn and work, in terms of a matrix like immersive dynamic 3D artificially generated environment.

SL has the potential to be the next industrial revolution but not if it becomes a static game to be played on iphones.

Ignatius Onomatopoeia

@Mark--elegant and intuitive UIs that permit UGC and processing power can be mutually exclusive.

Dr. Schell seems to have read M.T. Anderson's young-adult novel, Feed. His vision of life-as-game is a gentler and greener version of Anderson's consumerist dystopia.

I fear that sort of future, but Schell presents a more appealing vision than does Edward Castronova's book, Exodus to the Virtual World. This is a work of economics done as creative nonfiction. In it, Castronova predicts that RL will begin to atrophy because connected citizens have their most meaningful experiences in game-like synthetic environments.

Schell's vision at least would tempt more, not less, engagement in the world of flesh.


watched him...
said nothing that wasnt "part of b scifi movies" from the 80s.... and scifi lit from the 60s.

is foolish, if he beleives like mcgongal that "gameborg" humanity is a good thing...it cant sustain, and will always end with revolt.REAL human history tells this reality over and over..

he is concerned with who'll lead us... but seems to be pandering to the same crowd that makes these hula hoops and davy crockett hats of today... but that could have been reality of the ploitics of the venue.

and as to history- NO - digital culture- he'll learn in a decade when hes no longer the invited guest at tech fest like DICE.-- dosent record for any history, BECAUSE- a gameborg drone- ONLY is IN THE NOW...-- like the SL forgotten FIC of 2006..;) or any record of the active AOL communities of 1992 online that most of his "ideas" were expressed at before...well i guess thats why hes a "guru" today for hamlet to hawk.:)

anyhow- hes part there, now he just needs to be forgotten to truly grok the meta state he's dancing around today. At least hes not selling us that games will help africa.

newbs.... and shiny stuff... PT Barnum never died;) he just got accelerated and made the "good guy"... just like Darth Vader.:)

Net Antwerp

"Which is why SL should be developed and marketed for the educated elite who have the intellectual ability, time and money to spend on it"

So, in "Mecha"s version of reality, only the very rich and successful have access to all modern services, with the rich man dictating exactly how the financially 'unlucky' should live their daily lives.

What a load of Bull.

Everyone knows that it's Linden Research who hinders development and adoption - something Hamlet subtly admitted in one of his recent entries.

Arcadia Codesmith

The naysayers are right to the extent that it's going to take some fierce back-end innovation to deliver a constantly shifting user-generated world to a mass audience.

It may require everything we've built over the last decade to be rebuilt in a more efficient, up-to-date format.

I'd like that. Because frankly, if we're in a walled enclave using yesterday's tools to create yesterday's content, we're not 'elite'... we're a bunch of Luddites.

Crap Mariner

He's dead-on with the wave of the marketing of fake-reality.

We're living in the Low Spark Age, where the man in the suit has just bought a new car from the profit he's made on your dreams.



no crap.
that was last century.. this century he wont be able to buy a new car.. since all those who dreamed of making them, wont know how anymore....

and the last new car will be speeding out of control wth no brakes.;)--- on thats history already;)

dreams are mostly forgotten when one awakes...theyre not such a good reference for ones daily actions.

like i said, give this all another decade or 2..itll either be cleaned up or we will all be just batteries for skynet and its few humans keepers..until they get the axe;).


Crap Mariner


I talked to SkyNet today, and he's looking into tidal, geothermal, and wind energy.

You know, just in case the meatsacks scorch the sky.



skynet is really colossus's misguided nephew- jimmy.

;) casino royalle cube3

Ann Otoole

Nobody knows what the "Next Big Thing" is going to be.

Be prepared to adapt. If your platform cannot adapt then be prepared to jettison it.

That is the moral of the story.l

Connie Sec

So..the argument being we should pander to the ADD generation to reach the "mainstream":)

Driving games

We live in exciting times, as the growth and potential of casual gaming is being explored and taken care of, in a few years time everyone will be gaming on cloud services.

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Wagner James Au
Wagner James "Hamlet" Au
Dutchie 0223 Masssage table Slideshow
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