Metaverse: Life 2.0, Linden Economy

n his documentary film “Life 2.0,” Jason Spingarn-Koff ’96 examines what he calls “the world’s first virtual world” – Second Life. Launched in June 2003 by Linden Lab, Second Life allows users to create simulated avatars that inhabit a vast virtual environment he says is “sophisticated enough that people feel it is real.”In his documentary set to come out next year, Spingarn-Koff says he has filmed a small cross-section of users over a period of two years so that viewers can see the dramatic transformations users experience through Second Life.
In contrast with the turmoil rattling global financial markets, it’s all smooth sailing in the virtual economy of Second Life, the California-based creators of the Internet-based universe said Wednesday. ‘Despite the chaos in the world’s economies, lead indicators for the Second Life economy remain strong’ said John Zdanowski, financial director of Linden Lab, which set up Second Life in 2003. ‘Second Life as a whole has been so far unaffected by the recent turmoil in real world markets,’ he added in a written response to AFP. The exchange rate of the Linden dollar to the US dollar had remained stable, he said, as had trading on the LindeX exchange.
Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

Crisis? What Crisis?

Ad Age asked all the holding company chiefs for their view on the turbulent economy. Here’s the CEO mashup: “Obviously, we are shocked by the fall of such significant and powerful financial institutions … The moves in the stock market during the last two weeks are unprecedented … The volatility in the financial markets is clearly creating uncertainty for both marketers and consumers … It is changing by the hour. You’ve seen in a few days the stock price of Goldman Sachs go down by 40%, and today some banks are 26% up … The current economic situation translates into an increased focus on measurability and return on marketing investment.:

I’ll give the final word to Sir Martin Sorrell: “It seems to me that the media are too focused on instant responses, when time will tell.” Thanks Mart.

Park(ing) Day, Updated McDonalds, Lying To Computers

  • New parks popped up all over the country Friday, thanks to Park(ing) Day, an annual event that turns paved parking spaces into temporary green gardens. The event was started in 2005 by ReBar, an art collective based in San Francisco, and is meant to challenge urbanites to think about what our public spaces would be like if they were designed for the pedestrian, rather than the car.
  • Photobucket

  • McDonalds has updated several of their UK locations with a surprisingly fresh, modern look. London based design firm SHH is responsible for the new interiors, which have banished the traditional plastic furniture in favor of a look that is straight out of a design magazine.
  • Photobucket

  • A recent New York Times article by Saul Hansell explains how companies in the troubled financial industry tried to fool their computers (and themselves) by entering only partial information into risk management programs. With the programs running off incomplete data, things looked grand. But as we all know, this short sighted game did not last long. A poignant quote by Hansell sums it up: “Lying to your risk-management computer is like lying to your doctor. You just aren’t going to get the help you really need.”
  • bullshit