If you follow the ramblings of Ener hax on the iliveisl blog, you’ll know that we have pulled out of Second Life. Ener did a wonderrful job in single handedly running as many as 19 sims with 101 tenants. That is a huge task and one the Ener did very well. Usually when an estate closes, there are a lot of bad feelings, but not in Ener’s case.
An outpouring of love, support, even financial donations, show the true richness of Second Life. Community is what it is all about. Linden Lab is simply a provider of a an open source virtual world. The iliveisl community that Ener fostered is truly a community and many of the sims were purchased by its residents, are staying together, and are even keeping their original names! That speaks volumes to the efforts of Ener and to the wonderful residents that call ilivesil home for play and in-world business.
My role has always been in the background of iliveisl with Ener Hax being the spokesperson and manager. As part of my role, I developed the social network accounts and tied them together to allow for Ener’s efforts to reach outward. The iliveisl blog steadily receives 1000 hits a day, the Twitter account has over 10,000 followers, and the iliveisl Flickr just broke 7000 images.
The social presence of iliveisl is important, not as a marketing tool, but as a way to share the joy, creativity, and possibilities of virtual worlds. For my interests, I like what can be done by using virtual worlds as an elearning animation tool and as a space visualization and meeting tool.
In looking at Linden Lab as a virtual world provider, filtering out all the hype it received three years ago, it is an easy decision to try OpenSim as an alternative. There is even a wonderful, low tech installer that you can try out for installing OpenSim on your own box.
However, the ability to share what we make with others also guided what choices were suitable. Reaction Grid as an OpenSim host was the clear choice. It is home to many prominent educators, such as Jokay, whom I admire greatly. It is also home to Boston College, Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Intel, and many others.
The Reaction Grid team is wonderful to work with. While poor Ener tried to get M Linden to just tweet out a simple hello (seems reasonable? especially with a $3K a month customer and why would you be on Twitter if you were not going to part of the conversation?), Kyle, CEO of Reaction Grid and very much its front man, is able to spend hours a month Skyping with me! One could argue that Reaction Grid is smaller and it is, but it also does not have 300 employees working for it!
Great cost, passionate team, and a fantastic community make Reaction Grid the right choice for our endeavors.
More to come as “Enclave Harbor” builds its way to life. This time Ener Hax (hmm, same initials as Enclave Harbor) gets to strictly focus on building, remains the outward facing spokesperson, and retools iliveisl to be the “i live in sim lands” team behind the workings of Enclave Harbor. That team includes two of the best Second Life scripters and a successful clothing maker (pays for her two sims from her in-world work).
We look forward to you coming into Reaction Grid, using our free sandboxes, and snagging the free resources we are making. See you in-world or at a conference!
More on the photography of Therese here