Monday, 14 May 2012
End of the Road
This post is a long time in coming. Perhaps its an after thought really, for its been almost two years since I stopped research work on Second Life and virtual reality.
The main reason was with me: I got the answer I wanted about how people use the web. I found out that there is a massive area of research about Identity and cyberspace based around the work of Lacan and Zizeck and there many people more read and better informed than me that build up a huge body of science and theory about how the self is constructed in 'cyberspace.'
But it was also to a large extent audience. Though Lacan's framework is brilliant and widely used within Second Life the bias against Freudianism and even depth analysis was too great to make it a fruitful community. There is a perfectly good Lacanian analysis of this, that the illusion of Seocnd Life which makes it a possible project for inner issues needs a level of 'innocent' denial. If people start to think too much about what is going on in Second Life it would ruin their ability to use it.
This seperates Second Life from much of the work in Web 2.0 where people are actively engaged in trying to understand how the technology work. Second Life is more of a dream, and a dream only works if it can, if only for a short time, fool the participants with illusion.