If you read my previous Blog post you will know that i’ve had a rather spiffing busy eventful 2013 leaving me in a positive mood for 2014 and i will share my hopes for the new year as soon as i’ve discussed how my predictions faired for 2013.
Last year i stated “the lab’s codenamed Shinning project laid down the foundations for whats to come in 2013. Avatar Skin Baking, Reworked Cache, interest listing and HTTP Libraries all part if LL’s attempt to better performance.” And in all fairness this is exactly what the Lab did during 2013, although i don’t think none of us thought it would take ALL YEAR and spill into 2014. If the bloggers of SL had learnt anything in 2013 it was the sense of time it takes to I’mprove things on the grid.
So here where my main predictions for 2013…
1. Second Life will finally get the ‘Experience Permissions System.
Didn’t happen, in fact i learnt the Experience Permissions Team disappeared dashing hopes of any improved way to experience stuff in SL.
2. Mocap becomes affordable for all.
Didn’t happen. I did try some affordable tech but it was way off of being useful. Thats not to say there were no strides in this area. 2013 was definitely the rise of motion tracking and sensor tech which will grow in 2014.
3. Skeletal Animations.
Didn’t happen. i think at one group meeting with the Lab we had a definite “not on our list of current projects”, and we now know how long current projects take, so i’ll come back to this in a couple years time.
4. Content Creators will have to help newbs and 3DsoftwareShy residents bridge the gap between building with prims and understanding mesh.
This did happen i think. I did a few tutorials and i saw many others written to help bridge the gap. The Singularity TPV got an export feature that allowed people to convert prim based objects into Collada files which they could then re-import as a more efficient mesh object.
5. Linden Lab will release an SL iOs app.
Didn’t happen. But Linden Lab did introduce a plethora of iOs Apps such as Versu and Creatorverse while purchasing Blocks World.
6. Groups will be overhauled.
Didn’t happen. In Fact the SLfeed has progressively gorton worst the more of my friends that use it. Oh dear.
7. There will be a 64bit viewer and macs will get similar performance to Windows users.
This did happen over at the Firestorm TPV team and things seem to be working great…. on windows. Linden lab are apparently watching waiting to pounce and cherry pick.
8. Content creators will battle each other to create Avatar 2.0
This sort of happened. I saw many friend sporting various complete mesh avatars but no ones come up with what i would call a perfect solution yet. But you can’t deny there are plenty of experiments going on right now. Things might have been help back due to the almost biblical fiasco that was THE MESH DEFORMER which in the end was dumped for a hack job of some old SL code.
9. and finally …. Second Life will be released on STEAM.
Didn’t happen. instead Linden Lab bought their own steam clone called Desura which surprised everyone. No body saw that one coming and has lead some, including me, to speculate on wether this will lead to a complete direction change for the future the Second Life Platform.
So as you can see my predictions for 2013 mostly SUCKED. Which does not bode well for my predictions for 2014. In the end though they are more hopes and dreams rather than predictions, so lets see…..
HERE BE LOKI’S MEGA AWESOME BUT PROBABLY WRONG PREDICTIONS FOR 2014 IN SECOND LIFE.
1. Second life will finally get the ‘Experience Permissions System’.
YES I KNOW THIS IS THE SAME AS PREVIOUS YEAR, but while the original team mysteriously disappeared there has been snippets from User Group meetings to suggest the project is not fully dead. In fact it may have been delayed because Linden Lab takes ages to do stuff without screwing up stuff or because they suddenly had bigger plans.
2. Linden Lab reveal Bigger Plans.
The bigger plans might involve new ways to interact with Second Life via Oculus, Leapmotion or other sensor tech thats rapidly emerging from the tech industry. Changes to how you navigate or a complete new interface. ‘Experience Perms’ will be part of these big plans. The Bigger plans could also be a totally new platform that can use content available on SL servers and may explain TOS changes and use for Desura. Another idea for bigger plans will be a change to the old PRIM based creation tools to ones blatantly blagged from Minecraft in order to pre-emptively lure the kids who play Minecraft as they become teens to Second Life.
3. Rodvik Linden will be defrosted from carbonate now that Shining project is almost complete so he can introduce Linden Labs Bigger Plans.
Its been hard to tell if what i’ve seen of Rodvik was really him or that cardboard cutout that keeps appearing in Bay City. Many wish to see more of the saviour of Second Life and some have seen his absence from twitter as a sign of Linden Lab frosting over when it comes to being friendly with its premium members. I do miss Rodvik, i liked his enthusiasm for games and where games where heading even unrelated to SL. While Rodders is away Instead we have Draxtor.
4. Object export will arrive in the Official SL viewer because its a good idea.
Singularity showed how useful exporting .DAE files can be for builders amateur and pro for building reference models or updating old objects to more efficient mesh. Not only that but as 3D printers start to really take off in 2014 SL users will have a way to build in SL, export then 3D print their creations.
5. Linden Lab starts to add a clause into new employment contract that prevents them from being poached by High Fidelity if they show talent.
We are going to hear a lot more about High Fidelity during 2014. I personally feel that HF will become the future of virtual worlds, a sort of SL reboot. My concern being that all the awesome people who can help evolve and improve SL will be snapped up by Philip Rosedale leaving SL to stagnate and stay the same. Of course some people just want SL to stay as it is, well i don’t. I want it to keep evolving and growing and keeping up with whats going on around the world of tech. But truth is, if the only way to step forward is to jump ship, then thats what will happen. I don’t see this happening for a while though.
6. Linden Lab will dedicate some time to fixing its Whale Failing Web based services.
Marketplace, SL Profile Feeds, The destination guide. They all have massive flaws through which you can see how improvements would make the whole community feel less angry.
Marketplace: Needs to offer Merchants a shop front where they can present their own categories and feature items.
SL Feed: Needs to work first, then perhaps connect it with other SL features like marketplace and DG. Its almost like the Lab is fearful of having fluid communication between users.
Destination Guide: Its almost new year and the Guide is still featuring places from October Halloween. Perhaps the barrage of suggestions it gets is to overwhelming for the poor Linden who has to deal with it all. In any case it’s hard to get stuff listed on there, hard to get stuff updated and hard to get stuff removed so maybe a rethink of the process involved in administrating the important destination guide is needed.
7. Premium Membership will gain worth.
i don’t know how they can achieve this… oh i do have ideas but i don’t think they would do any of them :-p
8. A official version of the SL viewer will appear for Tablet devices.
We’ll it was reported that a beta sign-up email for a mobile version of SL had been sent out to users, that is common knowledge. Just how this mobile version of SL will look and perform is tightly kept secret by an NDA.
So thats it, my predictions and hopes for 2014. Of course there is a lot more stuff I’m personally looking forward to trying out next year which ill probably write about in another blog post. Thank you to all those who blog every little bit of info they find out about what the Lab is up to, it’s all part of the fun. Here’s to 2014 and what the Grid brings us!