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Going Back In Time Through Second Life

February 15, 2012

Antique Sewing Machine in Second Life (photo ©2012 by Michelle Southern)

Antique Sewing Machine in Second Life (photo ©2012 by Michelle Southern)

It’s one of those amazing, modern things that you can experience places and items from the past using experiential technology. If you haven’t been a part of any in-world Second Life activities you’re missing out on opportunities to walk the decks of the Titanic, visit Victorian towns, and body surf over waterfalls. And, of course, there are SO many other fun times to be had running amok through pixels with no brakes.

I’ve been a member of Second Life for many years, although I rarely spend any time there now. In the past I enjoyed being a content creator and owned several stores – if you are developing a brand or want a crash course in marketing, it’s a cheap and easy way to do both. I’ve met far-flung friends there, who I hadn’t seen in years, and met up with fellow quilters. In fact, I participated in the “First Ever Second Life Block Swap” with Pat Sloan and a handful of other blockmeisters who delivered batik Friendship Stars. There’s a large (and awesome) Steampunk influence throughout many sims, with interesting results every time. Authors, actors, musicians, and People Who Have Fans are able to safely travel and interact with those who genuinely admire them. And if you have an interest in a book or a movie there’s a chance you’ll be able to visit it somewhere within Second Life, and because there are no limits to what can be created there if you don’t find it you can build it yourself.

For those of us who get a thrill out of visiting places virtually that we’ll probably never set foot in physically, designing your own avatar and wearing clothes we could never be able to pull off in real life, and testing out items from the past (such as a sewing machine Grace might have used) and inventions that don’t exist yet, Second Life is addictive. If you haven’t tried it yet give it a shot – I saw this old sewing machine (pictured above) just wandering around one day after a months-long hiatus, so there’s no telling what you will discover. It’s a fantastic, wonderful place to immerse yourself if you need a little inspiration for a project that involves going back in time, like making quilt blocks from the past. If you find yourself in-world leave me a comment with your SL name and I’ll message you so we can meet up sometime. Enjoy your travels, even if you don’t leave your office…

  1. February 15, 2012 4:18 pm

    I am new to your blog but just read your first post. I must say I think your idea is inspired and you have made me want to read Margaret Atwood. I will add it to my reading pile.

    Looking forward to keeping up with your posts.

    • mds permalink
      February 22, 2012 10:41 am

      Welcome, and thank you for the compliments! I hope you are able to pick up at least one of her novels (“Alias Grace” being a personal favourite, of course, but if you like short stories try “Wilderness Tips”). Please let me know what you think – I’m always up for a book discussion 🙂

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