We talk again about third-party viewer to connect to Second Life because of a recent post of Jessica Lyon on the blog of Phoenix / Firestorm (http://www.phoenixviewer.com) where she reported that Firestorm viewer, based on codes of Linden Lab Viewer 2, has exceeded as number of users those of the “old” but still loved Viewer 1.23 of the Californian company. A success of which the members (all volunteers) of the Firestorm / Phoenix team are proud (with reason), since in a few weeks the new viewer has risen to third place in popularity among the “residents” of the virtual world developed by Linden Lab (which in turn started to study new functions to be introduced in the next generation of its viewer and maybe even on the side server).
Lyon points out, rightly, that the viewer is still in a beta stage and much work should be done both to introduce new functions or to carry on some of the possibilities allowed by Phoenix both to improve the stability and usability of the Firestorm client. A task that rests on the shoulders of 54 volunteers (16 developers and 38 support members who speak a total of 8 different languages), none of whom gets a penny for the time and attention he/she devotes to the project (indeed the two projects, since Phoenix is far to be abandoned). In a period that seems full only of difficulties and not only in the field of virtual worlds, the Phoenix / Firestorm team’s success can only be a positive signal of which should be taken account with a certain respect.