The stars came out tonight in Second Life, it was exciting to watch the green dots blink on, first on one CSINY island, then on a second, a third, a 100th, a 420th. The figure was finally released -- there were said to be 416 sims, although 420 claimed by Sheep insiders.
But the numbers of people on those sims, for the three hours I watched them before, during, and after the CSINY show, couldn't have beat 5,000 concomittant, and no more than 20,000 max total arrivals. In fact, it's probably far lower. Of the 420 islands, there were no more than 2-10 people on any given island in those 3 hours. There were 35-70 people piled up constantly on 3 of the big Orientation Islands, but they weren't getting off.
I was also getting newbies at the regular infohubs, including in Ross, where several furries, dancers, Philip-clones said they were CSI newbies and then began struggling to walk or fly. I redirected them out to the clue sims but they weren't terribly keen to go there -- these were the people that typically like to get OFF an OI they've been forced ON.
So if a million viewers was supposed to make 30,000 log on, it didn't work. I don't know what number they'd use to declare success. There weren't more than 4,000 people on these sims, sorry. I was only rooting for them to succeed, while heavily critical of the Sheep's crippling of the worldview through the browser with SEARCH ALL. Still, like many of us, I'm asking the same thing the detective asked when his partner in CSI on the TV show said that people make businesses in SL. "Why?!"
I tried several dozen people who were CSI newbies on my infohub and others, and on the CSI sims and tried IMing them, talking to them. Most didn't answer, a "Welcome to SL!" or "Are you looking for CSI clues" -- maybe they didn't figure out the interface yet.
A few answered...many sputtered out, logging off and not coming back. A few remained for 2-3 hours and were most interested in putting on their clothes. I sent some to the Fashion island related to the TV show, I heard you could get a dress like the murder victim or something.
I maintain that in fact people watching TV will not be terribly interested in following a preset story line with prefabbed clues and builds. It might work to get them on SL, but the hook from there has to be the hook that always works for SL: finding a friend, a club, a house, something, sex, a job, an interesting meeting or something to learn. You can't vary this menu too far, people are people, their needs are pretty basic.
2 in 10 people stick to SL after joining beyind 30 days. So the Sheep might get this figure up to 4, perhaps. Will that be good for the world? Well, it will surely be good for Fashion Avenue, the dozen or so lucky sweepstakes winners who got to be at ground zero for the CSI invasion. Even I bought a pair of nice canvas shoes for $1400 from JC.
I think there were three things broken, actually:
1. The load balancer -- the piling up on the OIs shouldn't have been happening.
2. The counter of people on sims -- the Lindens may have broken or turned that off deliberately, precisely to prevent the pundits and rubber-neckers from counting the sims and claiming lower numbers than they want to claim
3. The counter on the front page -- it bounced between 42,000 and went DOWN to 39,000, so something had to be "off" -- it's 34,000 as I write now, 2 hours after the end of the show. That's lower than a usual evening night, and I wonder if some regulars feared SL would be laggy and logged off.
SL did work pretty well this evening, but I had a hell of a time as usual, freezing, stopping, asstaching, ruthing.
I got a tip from a Linden that works well -- at least for each individual log-on, it has to be re-set.
Go to the task manager, find SecondLife.exe or whatever, right-click on it, go to process and put "less than normal" (counterintuitive, but works). That lightens the load or something, it runs just that much better to be worth it -- but not truly stellar on a Vista machine with Nvidia.