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Reader Comments (17)

Posted: Oct 1st 2010 10:31AM Pyrii said

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Whether it's wrong or right, it's the most ridiculous news ever. Either Microsoft has no clue about the market and is buying a total Turkey that is just accountants and maintenance staff and none of it's original programming/design talent.

Or Linden Labs is selling and trying to get interest by talking crap about a bid from MS.

But then knowing MS, it is the former.

Posted: Oct 1st 2010 11:09AM Skyydragonn said

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I honestly wouldn't be too surprised to see Microsoft try and buy them out. As silly as second life apears to me I know a good number of people that play it almost religiously. the sheer amount of customization allowed by the game is unbeatable by anything else out there. Yes, the performance definately leaves something to be desired but thas not what people play it for.

Posted: Oct 1st 2010 12:26PM (Unverified) said

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Wow with everything that has ever happened to SL and countless moments of people declaring SL doomed, if this has any truth to it, this might be the closest thing to the actual doom of SL.I can already imagine Sl being microsofted, goodbye Sex, goodbye free accounts,goodbye average joe and jane.Hello 3D habbo hotel, hello overpriced montly feee,hello corporate use and focus and eventual failure..


Then again this is probably not even remotly true, but its still fun to speculate.

Posted: Oct 1st 2010 11:18AM delphinius81 said

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MS could simply want to buy it for the technology. Tons of companies are acquired solely to transfer IP/technology. Although the SL client is pretty crappy in my opinion, so I'm not sure why MS would buy Linden Labs just for that.

Posted: Oct 1st 2010 11:27AM (Unverified) said

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That was not a UK Linden Lab employee who tweeted the rumor. That tweet came from a Second Life resident/griefer.

Posted: Oct 1st 2010 11:54AM dudes said

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I would not be f'in surprised if this is true with the amount of linden dollars that ching ching through the game every day, Microsoft will buy SL, forget about it then watch the $$$ build up in their already well-padded account.

Posted: Oct 1st 2010 12:17PM (Unverified) said

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I just ended a >5 year significant business presence in Second Life. There is no way, no how, that anyone who does due dilligence at Microsoft will be able to hold onto their job if they recommend a purchase of Linden Labs. There are about 50,000 "avid" users on Second Life and most of them do little to contribute to the virtual economy. Support is non-existant. Most of the mainland resembles a virtual rustbelt with a sh&tted up landscape and no control over what the masses are doing. Theft is rampant and you are more likely to be screwed over by a landlord or business partner with no reprecussions, then ever before.

Microsoft will not want to associte itself with the pornography that continues to be the main attraction and even if they decide their PR can deal with that, they will not want to put forth the resources necessary to clean-up the mess and provide even a mediocre level of support.

The code is open-source. There are many grids running outside of LL and anyone with half a brain can develop a tweaked viewer.

Silly talk from someone who should pat themselves on the back for getting the media to pick this nonsense up.

Posted: Oct 1st 2010 12:49PM Yukon Sam said

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Second Life is the premier showcase for the potential of user-generated content, despite constant missteps by Linden Lab in managing it.

I doubt that this makes it a good fit for any entity that's not similarly built on user content (including content that is explicit, tasteless, or controversial).

If anybody buys Second Life, it's not to acquire the label (which is frayed and tattered) or the technology (buggy and antiquated). The value in Second Life is in the community of resident artists that bring it to life. And like many other artists, they can and will evaporate if mistreated or censored.

Posted: Oct 2nd 2010 2:23PM (Unverified) said

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Agreed, it seems extraordinarily unlikely for Microsoft to acquire Linden Research/ Second Life. Where would it fit into their corporate strategy? The sudden influx of IPv4 addresses that MS would get from LL (to paraphrase one insider's sardonic comment) is the only motivation I've heard that had anything to do with a marketable asset!

Acquisition of Linden Research by Oprah would be just as plausible, and based on more well founded information than this rumor, at least for now. After all, Oprah DID purchase a recent documentary film about Second Life last month.

Posted: Oct 1st 2010 1:49PM (Unverified) said

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Moe --

The Second Life viewer code is open source, not the server code. However, there is a free, open source software alternative, OpenSim, which is used to power grids which are compatible with Second Life viewers.

In fact, Microsoft has been active in OpenSim, which runs on the company's .Net framework and is written in C#.

I would like to see a version of OpenSim with built-in Sharepoint and corporate directory integration (IBM already sells a version integrated with Lotus Notes and its corporate directory product).

But of course, you can't buy OpenSim. Maybe Microsoft can use the SL server technology to offer a proprietary yet compatible alternative to OpenSim.

For example, on the Web, you can use a free, opensource server software -- Apache - to run your website, or you can see a commercial, proprietary alternative from Microsoft - Windows Server.

Both the Second Life server and the OpenSim server use the LibOpenMetaverse communication library (the 3D version of HTML) so, in theory, you should be able to put up a Second Life-powered grid and teleport in and out to OpenSim-powered grids, with full access to your home avatar and inventory. In fact, technically, this is doable today - the only obstacle is the lack of a "multigrid" permission option for objects that would allow creators to limit their products to just one grid, or allow them to travel to multiple grids.

-- Maria Korolov
Editor, Hypergrid Business

Posted: Oct 2nd 2010 4:24PM (Unverified) said

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I have actually known about this for months. I will get my people on it and try to get you some more information soon.

Posted: Oct 1st 2010 2:21PM redsolar said

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Hmm... Perhaps Second Life will finally get DirectX support as an alternative rendering engine aside from OpenGL. I assume that is possible with the Second Life codebase but I'm no developer to know for sure.

Posted: Oct 1st 2010 6:47PM ElfLove said

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I hope so! Maybe then it'll work on my machine. >_<

Posted: Oct 1st 2010 11:21PM (Unverified) said

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I’ve been saying for months (http://cleanslate.cityofnewbabbage.com) that some or many of Linden Labs’ investors are looking for an exit, at a valuation that makes their balance sheets happy. I find it easy to imagine that the fact that these positions are for sale crossed the desk of someone at Microsoft who controls some deep pockets, who cooked up some plausible logic (laced liberally with ego and deal-narcissism), and the wheels started to turn.
Microsoft has a lot of cash sitting around that it needs to put to work, and acquiring companies with tenuous strategic value seems to pay off for them 40% of the time, so why the hell not?

Here’s my prediction: this rumor is true, and we’ll hear an announcement that Microsoft will take a stake in Linden Labs (not a complete acquisition) within the next 30 days.

Posted: Oct 2nd 2010 12:24AM (Unverified) said

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Look at it this way if MS does buy SL it would be a brilliant move for the future.
How so you ask.
3D technology
Next generation web browser / operating system.
You seen all the cool 3d computer stuff in Iron man or even Avatar.
I mean specifically the 3D sci fi computer interfaces stark uses to make modify the Iron man suit or the Army support personal directing the troops in Avatar.

lets see you take a 3D environment like SL you add 3D vision monitors / glasses as standard to computers mix in your OS and voila a 3d OS. also lets not forget the wii action monitoring so something that could monitor your hand actions alone to access manipulate information etc is not to far off.

the speed of such a system would only be limited to ones own ability really.

speak to interact with things or use your hand/ to point at something and interact with it. alot of choices of how to use such as system to when you think about it, truly there wouldnt be anyone who couldnt use it.

so you would be interacting with a 3D system which would be hugely more flexible than what we are dealing with currently its seems a merging of many divergent attempts to bring a Virtual reality to life is that much closer. The limits to such endeavours is now more possible once 3D vision is commonplace in the home via TV or computer.

Its a good move. Now all I need now is that hover car.

Posted: Oct 4th 2010 1:23PM (Unverified) said

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I can't get past the picture of Bill Gates standing at an Apple Genius Bar... O.o

Posted: Oct 7th 2010 12:05AM (Unverified) said

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I'm thinking Microsoft might be interested in using the technology for Xbox live to rival Sony PS3 Home. Don't think it will translate well but it might be some corporate guy thinking it is a good decision. Otherwise I don't really see another reason why they would be interested.

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