Innovation Week, Internationalisation, And More Utterly Useless Devices

Burning Life is around until October 5th. So many people have written about what it means for the Second Life® virtual world — the conception of a user-generated-content-virtual world comes allegedly from Philip’s totally fascinated experience with the real life “Burning Man” event — that I can only draw the attention to this true festival of pure creativity, which has been growing over the years, to a whopping 22 sims this year. People all over the world engage in their creative buildings and show off the best of the best, in a way that usually we don’t see often in SL.

But flipping over the coin of creativity and innovation, we have also Orange Island’s Innovation Week starting this Monday. This is pretty much a mix-up of evangelists, enthusiasts, visionaries, techies, and creative people who talk about Second Life and how its technology changed over time and influenced people to bring up with fantastic new concepts that were never possible before. Just imagine, three years ago nobody knew what a “mixed-media” event was! These days, we have them all the time — thanks to the intriguing use that people put to SL’s in-built voice, video, and streaming capabilities.

And finally we have this intriguing notion that SL is definitely truly global — an environment for creativity and innovation that skips all barriers of language and geographic distance. Very recently I was trying to hire another project manager for my company — a person living in the middle of the Atlantic. He asked me if being 1600 km distant from the offices in Lisbon (and 4000 km from the offices in New York) would be a problem. I’ve told him that he would actually be one of the “closest” people working with the two-person team in Lisbon (since almost everybody else lives further away), to his great relief and delight. Yes, for SL residents, the (real) world just became tiny, small — and interconnected.

The other day I was browsing across some products on SL Exchange and I saw an interesting advert. A device of some sort that allowed you to translate notecards into other languages: nothing complex, since it obviously uses the Google Translator Services or a similar service. What was interesting was the claim that “if you have your product information only in one language, you’re losing 75% of your customer base”. The numbers are obviously wrong — even if the creator of this device was thinking about English, more than half of all residents in SL speak English at least as a second language. Native speakers of English are probably 30 or 35% or so. Granted, native Portuguese or Japanese speakers are almost that size as well, so there is a point to be made: business in SL is truly international, and people cannot afford any more to target just one language market.

| | | Next → |
%d bloggers like this: