Scripts for free?

Scripters (or scriptors) are the Second Life programmers. They usually have some background in Real Life programming and have just discovered the joys and wonders of dealing with an awkward event-driven state machine with inconsistent library functions. If this paragraph sounds like gobbledigook to you, STOP READING! You won’t find this very informative anyway.

In the Real World, we have two major ways of dealing with software development: you either secure your code (ie. no one can have access to it) and license it (ie. people pay you to use it, and you give him/her some guarantees or maintenance and support), or you can put it into any sort of Open Source agreement: you retain the copyright over your software, but anyone can get the source code and distribute it freely (however, nobody can SELL it for you).

In Second Life things seem to be more hard to do. Actually nobody pays for a nice script! This is NOT the reason why all scripts are free – the nicest ones aren’t – but simply because a script usually needs an object to work with. This means that a non-building scripter will have a very hard time trying to sell his work.

What i usually advise to scripters is that they join forces with an object designer. Objects get their value enhanced greatly if they have a few scripts inside – like chairs with a script to point avatars towards the correct direction, or candles actually emitting light, flames and smoke! And who wants to buy a gun that doesn’t shoot at all? Working together, scripters and object builders complement each other and both profit. Sure, it’s the object that gets sold, but it’s the scripter’s work that enhances its value. After all, who wants to have a wonderfully designed car if you can’t drive it in SL?

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