Friday, February 24, 2017

Second Life From a Newcomer's Perspective

While longtime residents of Second Life usually can remember details about their earliest days, time and experience have a way of dulling memories. Plus things change over time, and newcomers have to deal with things the earlier residents haven't, such as mesh and Bento. On the other hand, they have access to things like the Destination Guide, and of course the Newser, that those here years ago didn't have. So sometimes we need a newcomer's perspective.

Mangrovejane. a self-described "artist ... A creator of Fantastical Things. An explorer of virtualities and a philosopher on the nature of realities,"had only recently heard about Second Life after reading articles about the art there. So she decided to sign up and see what was there herself, documenting the first five days of her journey. Her preconception was that making an avatar and moving about would be easy enough, thinking of "The Sims" and "World of Warcraft." But that wasn't exactly the case. She had been a little worried about perverts trying to trick her, but instead found people willing to help her out. On day three, she found some examples of the virtual art she was searching for. On day four, she came across the IvoryTower of Prims and the Builders Brewery and took a crack at building.

After five days, she felt she had accomplished much, and had found some preconceptions didn't match what she experienced. She had some advice for other newcomers.

After Learning Island, residents are basically on their own. Fortunately, there are places such as Caledon University where newcomers can keep coming back to learn.

Have a goal or goals and a purpose, "Without a goal, you will feel lost and will quickly become bored and despondent."

Not everyone is out to grief or harass you, "Don’t assume everyone in world is creepy and out to get you and grief you. You will not meet one person who treats you badly or even annoys you in this first week. There will be no drama and no griefing. People will be genuinely friendly and are often happy to give you advice, especially if they know you are new."

Don't believe the hype and bad press, "Go in and make your experience about what YOU want. Think about what you like to do, what you might want to do, who you want to be and live that life. Stay away from the 'adult' areas (unless that is where you actually want to be)."

Don't let those who do try to bother you push you around, "if someone is annoying you…just teleport away. Mute them, block them and go somewhere else and do something else…don’t let someone else’s bad attitude ruin YOUR experience."

If your only experience with interacting with others on computers is from games like "World of Warcraft," always remember, "it took me a little while to fully comprehend it…You CANNOT die in world!!!!!!"

You’re gonna be ok. You are going to get frustrated and the learning curve is going to be steep. You will accidentally get naked in public and not know how to get dressed and be so mortified you mention it over and over again. You are going to run into walls and people while you are learning to move around in the world. You will not know where to go or what to do. You are going to freak out the first time you fall from great heights while flying. You are going to doubt your ability to translate your first life art into second life art and you are going to have a hard time talking to people because that’s just you. When it all gets a bit much, just stand up and walk away from the computer. Go outside. Breathe fresh real air and live your first life. Your second life isn’t going anywhere without you.

And lastly, adventurer….Explore, Explore, Explore.
Mangrovejane is still going about Second Life. You can contact her by IM, or send her a message on Facebook.

Hat Tip: AlmostThere Inventor

Bixyl Shuftan

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