Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Second Life, Second Income

Second Life is a virtual world. Created in 2003 by San Francisco-based Linden Lab it gives its 'residents' tools that allow them shape the way this computer-generated universe looks and works. Residents also retain the intellectual property rights to the objects they create (although they are required to offer Linden Lab an open license to it).

With over 130,000 subscribers, and its own currency 'Linden Dollars' (275 LD = approx. 1 USD), Second Life even boasts its own economy. Nearly 5,000,000 USD changed hands in January 2006. Much of this money is paid to people who design custom 'avatars'(online representations of yourself), and items such as chairs, vehicles and dwellings. Wired has published a fascinating article about people who make a living from doing this.

Second Life is available for PCs and Macs (a Linux version is also in the pipeline). Monthly subscriptions start at 6 USD (1,650 LD).

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