Sunday, September 7, 2008

Letter to the Lindens

Sorry for the disconnect on that last session. There were network problems that the technical folks at the hotel denied were happening [sigh]. I hoped to have the "letter" posted into the CoveritLive session, but that did not happen.

HUGE thanks to Daniel Livingston for the idea of the letter, for helping facilitate the session, and for passing along the "letter" to me so I can post it here.


Dear Lindens,

Hi, how are you? We’re doing great, the kids are well. Having a blast with Second Life.

We’ve really enjoyed the better support over the past few months. Second Life is really the great for debating with small groups of students in depth – the Socratic model lives and is embodied in Second Life. The cost is fantastic! Open source too. J

We love telling all our friends about how great Second Life is, telling them about the wonders of exploration and experience that go on there.


We are struggling to get large number of our friends registered at a time.

Once we have our friends in Second Life, we have soooo many that it’s kind of hard to keep track of our contacts and organise them. If we could somehow tag our friends, that would be neat.

Application sharing would really just be the neatest – we’ve seen some other guys do thast, and wish you could too. Integrating them locally, where we live would be sooo useful.

We got that letter from your lawyer – is that really necessary? We have to be able to work together without worrying about this stuff.

And why do our friends have to pretend to be other people? Sometimes it would be easier if we were able to use our real names.

Some more tools to make things easier for educators.

Our friends kids can’t come and visit. If there was a way we could get passes for the kids to come visit us where we live – even for a limited time, or limited locations. Being able to communicate effectively with the teens across the grid we also need.

And getting content to the teen grid! Man, that sucks. You really need to work on that, it is holding us back and causing us a world of pain.

I’m not sure how you can help here, but having my private space for the kids (which my supervisor demands) is restricting.

When we have a bunch of kids – even 40 or 50 – managing that is difficult. It needs to be easy for when we have a big event or want to invite the whole neighbourhood over.

And when the kids have their 18th! Oy, this transition is awkward. Sometimes it happens in the middle of a class even – really awkward.

Remember that cool thing I scripted? Dude, you updated the server and it broke. At least give us tools to manage unit testing or something.

Is someone keeping track of the successful grants that people have got? That would be handy.

Can we have invoices when we need them? Sometimes we have deadline to spend money or it just goes – if we can’t get an invoice, we lose the money then we can’t pay you and we lose our house here.

On the other hand, easily booked short term sim rentals would help us put big events on. We don’t need ten sims for the year, but for cousin Ted’s wedding we want lots of guests over.

You know us. We are your best advocates. But there are other people out there making overtures, looking for our business. There are some things in our relationship that we/you need to work on. We need to be able to talk more friendly like, and lose the attitude.

Our kids are our most important focus. It’s why we are here – to help our kids. Whether it’s practical issues or legal hiccups, we need support not barriers.

But you know, thanks for listening to our gripes. Thanks for coming over, we really do appreciate it. To hear you say that meeting us is the highpoint of your year despite all the kvetching is super.

September 7, 2008
Yours sincerely,
The Educators

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