guest appearance on this week in asia

i recently did a guest appearance on this week in asia, episode 116. topics discussed included:

  • samsung galaxy launch
  • a bunch of google stuff
  • some pan-asian consolidation in online travel
  • a couple of investments
  • echelon conference coming up

and of course, i got a chance to plug my startup, the sharing engine – the best way to build an online marketplace.

virtual world adoption rates

in the session yesterday, raph koster made an analogy of how quickly cell phones were developed and said that there were some virtual world technologies back in the late 70s and avatars already in 1985 and that in that frame of reference, virtual world adoption has been slow. but i don’t know if i agree, because cell phones took a long time to get developed and adopted, too. they existed in the 70s and had to overcome all of their technical challenges (battery life and size, range, towers, etc) and their business challenges (pricing that was affordable to people). probably virtual worlds just have to do all of these things first. there are parallels to almost all of these pieces in virtual worlds. for instance, the cell towers are like the infrastructure parallel to bandwidth. virtual worlds also need a network effect that helps bring the critical mass of users so that you go in because everyone else is in and you need to in order to get all the things you need to do done. the same happened for cell phones and was in fact actively encouraged through programs like fave 5 or in-network groups who all use the same carrier.

so in the end, i think it’s really about the same problem in a different environment and different implementation, and it will take time in virtual worlds as well.