Last Monday the blog of print publication Things Magazine included Virtual Suburbia alongside Keystone Bouchard's The Arch in a reading roundup (check for the Feb 05 entry, as no permalink seems to be available) of sorts, and had the following to say:
The ARCH, a weblog that 'explores the convergence of the metaverse with the real life practice of architecture'. Ultimately, it boils down to this: can Second Life be used as a real world professional tool for architects and planners? From our vantage point (without a presence in the virtual community), the answer would have to be a resounding no. Turns out that there is a burgeoning community of design-obsessed commentators circling the infamous on-line community; see also Virtual Suburbia, 'the architecture of Second Life, reviewed on the fly'. The question has to be why.As for Keystone's work, I'd encourage you to check it out and decide for yourself, and suggest his most recent posts (as covered in New World Notes) make a very compelling case to the contrary.
I tried to leave the following comment on the post but was told "Your form appears to be incomplete or your comments may be seen as spam," so it has been reproduced here:
"The lofty goal of Virtual Suburbia is to draw out criteria on a case by case basis of what constitutes architecture appropriate to the (non) physical and cultural contexts of Second Life. The problem-solving approach brought to bear on such architectures is in many ways ported from and translated back to design in Real Life. If the formal characteristics are not the same, the spatial experience and the very idea of a 'solution' to a particular function, be it of significant gravitas or indeed 'just a game' has much to teach myself at least about design in general, and most of my learning comes in the dialogue that is facilitated by the weblog form.
The not-so-lofty goal is to simply draw attention to the many talented individuals expressing their creativity with Second Life as the medium and provide additional information to those holding the assumption that Second Life as a whole reflects a bland unconsidered cacophony of shopping malls and doll houses.
Oh yeah, and its fun.
So, thanks for posing the question, allowing for a revisit of why exactly I'm doing what I'm doing, and to have discovered your excellent publication along the way."
Sorry if this is repetitive to any longtime readers. Thought it might also might be helpful for those visiting for the first time, for which you have my thanks.