Category Archives: New User Experience

Second Life Last Names Returning Late 2018


This week Linden Lab announced fifteen reasons to celebrate Second Life 15th birthday which takes place in mid June 2018. On the list there was mention about the return of last names which is expected to go live in late 2018. Before then there are many things that have to be fixed on the back-end before last names can return again.

Latest Updates

  • Apparently the plan is to allow people to change their first and last name whenever they want to. Users will be able to select their last name from a pre-set list of available names like the old system before
  • Unicode will not be supported when entering a first name
  • Once a name is used it cannot ever be reused again
  • The first and last name will not replace Display Names
  • The pre-set list with last names will regularly be changed to keep the fresh and the lab are thinking about last name suggestions from the Second Life community later this year.
  • There will be a cost to change your name if you wish to do that. The fee costs have not been confirmed yet

Latest Discussions

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The return of the Community Gateway Program after 7 years


London City Gateway_001

London City Gateway

On Wednesday 31st May Linden Lab announced the re-introducing of the Community Gateway Program in Second Life. This is really good news to hear that the program will be returning again. Yay! 🙂

As many remember the lab axed the program back in August 2010 as “resources were reprioritized”. The good news is that over the past year the lab have been working with a number of communities to try to make it work again.

Today there are still many active Community Gateways in Second Life doing a fantastic job in helping new users get started with their new journeys. The return of the program will hopefully kick-start more folks helping new users in Second Life again.

The full blog announcement, see below:

We are thrilled to re-introduce the Community Gateway Program!  Previously, the Community Gateway program helped bring new users to Second Life, by enabling Second Life communities to attract, register, an on-board new Residents. The program was shelved in 2010 as resources were reprioritized, and now we’re excited to reintroduce the Community Gateway program along with some improvements that will make it even more valuable to Second Life.  We recognize the benefit of having Resident supported tutorial areas and have been working with several communities while fine tuning the new program over the last year.

This program allows Second Life Communities to:

  • Create a new user experience and attract Residents to your specific community

  • Assist those new Residents in beginning their journey into Second Life

  • Lend a guiding hand in the creation of their new avatar personas

  • Assist with increasing new user retention.

This powerful new tool will allow you to register new users right from your own community website and add them automatically to your group, thus helping your community to grow!

All details about this program (including how to apply) may be found here.

Helping Haven Gateway_001

Helping Haven Gateway

For more information, check out the Community Gateway wiki page

Ebbe Linden speech at VWBPE 2016 recording now available


Late last night Ebbe Linden CEO of Linden Lab attended this year’s 9th Annual Virtual Worlds Best Practices in Education Conference in Second Life. The recorded video runs for 58 minutes with new updates on Second Life and Project Sansar. Ebbe answered many questions during the session along with follow up questions.

I missed the live session yesterday due to it being so late for the UK but the good news is that the full recorded video is now available for those that missed Ebbe Linden live speech.

Here are the bits I found most interesting from watching the recording today. I did notice there was fewer audience members in the crowd this year compared with previous VWBPE conferences for Ebbe. I would imagine this is due to the bad timing of the session or perhaps it’s because interest has dropped for some reason.

Second Life 

  • Second Life performance is continuing improving, quality and stability is improving
  • Linden Lab are working on new avatars, new web on prim
  • In the pipeline: improved registration api coming, improving the time to redeem money
  • Linden Lab are working on a Oculus Viewer working with Second Life & Graphics Viewer
  • Community Gateway Program is proceeding, unknown for ship date, work to be done with registation api. Progress is going well and some have had beta access. The lab are doing simple contracts.
  • Ebbe says he doesn’t know when he will remake his avatar or making bears for people

Project Sansar 

  • Now over two years into Project Sansar
  • Since August 2015 there have been a handful of users working on it
  • The lab are focused on creators for the rest of the year
  • May or June for the lab to start accepting applications (hundreds of creators/users by the end of the year)
  • General availability at the end of the year
  • Second Life and Project Sansar are separate products
  • Invitation only and the lab have hand picked skilled/experienced users
  • In May or June people can request entry online
  • Age range will be 13+
  • There will be content ratings (adult content) at some point in the near future
  • Project Sansar will be made for PCs,  Windows, Oculus & the Vive
  • Mobile versions Project Sansar planned for Android and Apple IOS (2017+) – Streaming version solutions being worked on. Mac support later on.
  • Goal to be crossed platform for Project Sansar
  • Project Sansar money exchange may be launched. Transfer between SL and Project Sansar.
  • From June 2016 people can sign up to Project Sansar and the lab will pick experienced/skilled users
  • Third party tools will be supported, common file formats will be used, layer tools, original content tools over time
  • Still pictures of Project Sansar released during the last few months showing what’s possible
  • Project Sansar is still work in progress, still looking for answers in some areas
  • Between now and June 2016 the lab will be revealing more of Project Sansar in action and more pictures
  • Q3 more will be revealed then more over the months after

Special thanks to Mal Burns for uploading the recording. 🙂

New Classic Avatars released by Linden Lab


On Friday 6th November Linden Lab announced 16 new classic avatars for Second Life. These new classic avatars look good with mesh and they look much better than the old avatars from the early days of Second Life. 

These new classic avatars are available for both new residents joining Second Life today and for all existing residents through the Me > Choose an Avatar menu.

Hopefully this should improve new user retention rates and improve the experience for newbies getting started in Second Life. Along with the new community gateways that Linden Lab have introduced and I’m so pleased to hear the good news.

Check out the revamped classic avatars below! 🙂

Second Life classic avatars

What do you think of the new classic avatars ?