Exploring across the metaverses – User experience? Its not just buttons anymore

I am sure it will soon get to the stage that not only are there more islands in Second Life than you can keep up with, that there are more metaverse instances than you can keep up with.
I have been going around revisiting some of the older ones again as well as keeping up with the new ones.
there.com
There
kaneva
Kaneva
active worlds
Active worlds
habbo
Habbo UK
*** Updated with IMVU just missed the post
IMVU
IMVU
It is by no means straight forward to see the future of this, and it is clear that Second Life has opened many peoples eyes to the possibilities. It is interesting to wonder what it was, which magical element or event led to the rush of interest in SL.
I am remembering back to my very first experience of SL. What was it? What state of mind was I in than captured my imagination and exploded the possibilities and also then let us as eightbar, grab other people in the same way?
User experience is a subjective concept. The experience is now though also based on what others around are doing. You hit a traditional website for the first time, it is really unlikely that other browsers are going to dictate that experience. In virtual worlds that first conversation with the first person may set your mind for or against the environment or indeed the whole concept of virtual worlds.
I want to recount a story about a conversation that I seemed to get dragged into in one of the virtual envrionments. Just standing around getting to grips with the environment in a field on my own. I was approached by someone who wanted to discuss their trousers. Whether I thought their trousers may change peoples perception of their sexuality. I was honest with them, that I was really not bothered and their orientation either in the real world or the virtual world was up to them. The rest of the conversation seemed to involve them questioning my sexual preferences until they realized that I was not really bothered/shocked/interested that they suddenly said “I am back now, my brother was messing about with my login what did he say”. Yeah right! Still it was an experience.
Has that changed my view of this particular virtual world? In my case no, but I can see that some people would have had a problem with that particular “user experience”. Mrs epredator (or elemming as she is known) found it hilarious.
I think that my indeifference may be as I already have a meta user experience across multiple worlds and games and have done for years.
So the question is. Do we attempt to ensure people get a first experience on their first metaverse that is positive, and if so by who’s standards? Or, just let it sort itself out.
Over in SL we often used ourselves as the greeters, getting people to private islands, sharing the spirit of eightbar and then letting people go and find their own thing. That is not scalable from an individual evangelist point of view, but values can be shared across a very large group.
Now to go and explore another metaverse….

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About epredator

Director of metaverse and emerging tech consultancy http://www.feedingedge.co.uk Former IBM Consulting IT Specialist with 18 years at the company Games player epredator xbox live tag. epredator potato in second life

6 thoughts on “Exploring across the metaverses – User experience? Its not just buttons anymore

  1. > I am sure it will soon get to the stage that not only are there more islands in Second Life than you can keep up with, that there are more metaverse instances than you can keep up with.

    I think its been that way for years.

    >So the question is. Do we attempt to ensure people get a first experience on their first metaverse that is positive, and if so by whos standards? Or, just let it sort it self out.

    Depends who. Primacy seems more important than Recency for what we might call the first generation of metaverse users. Bartle has talked about the way cultures move across virtual worlds through tribes of Beta users whos expectations are imprinted by their first world. For business / non-primarily ludic users this initial imprint is really important, it forms the way you frame the virtual and it does not get shaken

    The exception is possibly those of use that surf the surface of things Ive regularly been in two virtual spaces at the same time on adjacent monitors (try running in opposite directions when a bit drunk, its a blast).

    Though as with many things my ultimate answer is just wait. The Club Penguin Generation as opposed to the “Tux Penguin Generation Im sure are much more happy to bounce between penguin, im, facebook and txt.

    ren

  2. I have no doubt the bouncing penguins will have no problem with multiple metaverses. Maybe I should not worry about the huge set of people who still worry abour web 1.0/web2.0 however, I would like to bring these people with us wherever we are going.
    I am not sure whether we are all ludic users or not. Business is itself a game though I accept that “serious” user may not realize they are playing anyway.
    Is it self deception in western culture that says serious business is not play?

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