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During a 2001 meeting with investors, Rosedale noticed that the participants were particularly responsive to the collaborative, creative potential of Second Life.
As a result, the initial objective-driven, gaming focus of Second Life was shifted to a more user-created, community-driven experience.
Second Life also has its own virtual currency, the Linden Dollar, which is exchangeable with real world currency.
Built into the software is a 3D modeling tool based on simple geometric shapes, that allows residents to build virtual objects.
It was announced in October 2010, that Bob Komin, Linden Lab's chief financial officer and chief operating officer, would take over the CEO job for the immediate future.
In 2015 alone, Second Life users had cashed out approximately ,000,000 (60 million US dollar) and Second Life had an estimated GDP of 0,000,000 (500 million US dollar), higher than some small countries.
Avatars may take any form users choose (human, animal, vegetable, mineral, or a combination thereof) or residents may choose to resemble themselves as they are in real life.
They may choose even more abstract forms, given that almost every aspect of an avatar is fully customizable.
The maximum concurrency (number of avatars inworld) recorded is 88,200 in the 1st qtr.
In March 2006, while speaking at Google Tech Talks, Rosedale said: "So, we don't see this as a game. Second Life used to offer two main grids: one for adults (18 ) and one for teens.
In August 2010, Linden Lab closed the teen grid due to operating costs.
In many ways, Second Life is similar to massively multiplayer online role-playing games; however, Linden Lab is emphatic that their creation is not a game: "There is no manufactured conflict, no set objective".
Second Life users (also called residents) create virtual representations of themselves, called avatars, and are able to interact with places, objects, and other avatars.