[LINK] Second Life

Eleanor Lister eleanor at pacific.net.au
Sat Jan 13 12:29:07 AEDT 2007

Stephen Loosley wrote:
> Hi Tom and all,
> "IBM has poured many, many hours into (Second Life) to showcase
> what some at the giant US technology company believe could be a
> new way of doing business.  It's no gimmick.  Big Blue is serious .."

well, it's real enough for the IRS to be interested:

> IRS to Tax Your Second Life?
> Monday October 16, 5:12 pm ET
> By Tim Beyers -- How real is the virtual world? Real enough that the
> IRS may want a piece of the digital action. Congressional economists
> are beginning to weigh the question of how to tax digital assets
> amassed in multiplayer online games such as /World of Warcraft/ and
> /Second Life/, Reuters reports.
> <http://us.ard.yahoo.com/SIG=12eg13ou4/M=544710.9091841.10760352.4671197/D=fin/S=7811764:LREC/Y=YAHOO/EXP=1168657681/A=4299695/R=0/SIG=12i3jqfer/*http://www.fool.com/shop/newsletters/18/ecap.htm?cid=599&source=esayhobox3750071>
> The timing couldn't be better for the Feds. /Second Life/, for
> example, has already grown its virtual economy to the equivalent of a
> $150 million gross domestic product. Its 800,000 or so "residents"
> exchange as much as $500,000 in real money daily.

i think those of us with even a nodding acquaintance with sci-fi
literature would have seen the ideas people have about creating a "real"
world that is infinitely mutable, where everyone is young and good
looking and paupers and princes can exchange positions with the
application of wit, or lack of it.

IBM is just investing in one of the logical steps that need to be taken
to weld reality and fantasy together ... tennis could be much improved
if you can modify or replace the Avatars used ... like John Howard in a
tennis skirt vs Godzilla in a lycra bodysuit. :)

also a good game engine means that you can have massive compression
ratios, because you only need to store the symbolic movements and sounds
of a story, rather than an actual movie ... and it can be interactive.

imagine Lord of the Rings where you're not one of the headline acts, so
the main plotline doesn't alter, but you can be a person living in that
world, and take part in it as it changes around you ... i smell money in
this, and so does IBM.

you can even have movies where you change the avatars so that Angelina
Jolie can actually act.


Eleanor Ashley Lister
South Sydney Greens
webmistress at ssg.nsw.greens.org.au

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