Divining the Tea Leaves from Linden Lab

2011 has not been an especially good year with respect to communication from the Lab. A rumor here, a casual comment there, occasionally a missive from above combine to give us a glimpse into what we can expect at least in the beginning of the new year.

  • No more magic boxes. This project is already well along, nearing general release. As I understand it there will be a special inventory folder that will, in effect, be the magic box. I do not know how I feel about selling directly from my inventory, I will be somewhat surprised if there are not security glitches and exploits in the first months. We will have to wait and see.
  • Mesh will see increasing adoption throughout Second Life as content creators explore it’s possibilities. This will get a huge boost once Qarl is finished with the Parametric Deformer* and LL officially adopts it. I can hardly wait for my first mesh jacket that actually fits!
  • Gaming tools and code will be made available sometime early in 2012. I am not big on SL games, but it will be interesting to see what Mad Peas comes up with 🙂
  • Pathfinding —— I am not sure what this will accomplish other than better zombies and greeter bots, but it will be interesting to see.
  • Last Names will be back for newbies. This is in the talking stages at Linden Lab, but given the clamor over “Resident” I expect some possibility to change to a name from a list. It would be interesting and a lot of fun if LL created a way for residents to suggest last names for them to choose from. We could even participate in the vetting process, weeding out names that might cause problems or misunderstandings.

My Wish List in addition to those things above:

  1. Continue progress toward making everything work a little better. Lag, Region crossings, Sim performance all have improved, but there is more work to do!
  2. Something must be done about Mainland occupancy rates. In my opinion the surest way to do this is by increasing the land allowance for premium residents. Yes, Linden Homes and the Land Barons would take a hit, but it would be correcting an unintended benefit they enjoy at the expense of the mainland.

My Predictions.

  1. Linden Lab will make a complete cock-up of one of the items above.
  2. One development from above will be an overwhelming success and Linden Lab will not get the praise they deserve for it.
  3. There will be those who will predict the end of Second Life as we know it in response to every project and feature LL puts out!

*Last minute update: Qarl has posted a preliminary test version of the parametric deformer!!

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